2011 Annual meeting information needed!

by Atlantis 47 Replies latest jw friends

  • Cadellin

    Interesting! Thanks for posting.

  • Doubting Bro
    Doubting Bro

    Wow, this is quite a change. So, if I'm reading this correctly, Gillead will be used not to train missionaries but to have folks provide support to local congregations? Sort of like the MTS was used for? It's really strange because I thought the School for Couples was basically going to be used for that. School for Single Brothers was the direct replacement for MTS right?

    I wonder if this is somehow tied to the long rumored replacement of the CO position?

    Given the amount of growth from nations where they send Gillead trained missionaries, this makes no sense whatsoever. It almost sounds like they're de-emphasizing the door to door work, but that makes even less sense because DTD is about the only thing JWs are known for (maybe no holidays and possibly no blood are the other things). Plus using it to keep JWs busy and as a guage for "spirituality" is very valuable .

    I'm sure the GAM notes will be out soon enough but this is very interesting.

  • Mickey mouse
    Mickey mouse
    I wonder if this is somehow tied to the long rumored replacement of the CO position?

    I wondered this too.

  • Gayle

    No money in the third-world countries, the GB really don't care about the really poor or very uneducated,,but the GB want to save their assets in first-world countries/cities. The GB will only 'follow the money.'

  • Doubting Bro
    Doubting Bro


    I agree, it's always about the money. But, having missionaries in 3rd world countries bringing in recruits does keep the numbers up and provides encouragement to the rank and file JWs in the mature JW countries where growth is almost at a stand-still.

    I saw Terry's post that was cut and pasted from that 6 screens site that mentioned the same thing and I'm now very suspicious that they're making this change at all. If "Johnny the Bethelite" claims it, it must be false!!

  • DesirousOfChange

    But, having missionaries in 3rd world countries bringing in recruits does keep the numbers up and provides encouragement to the rank and file JWs.

    Could it be that the numbers are dwindling so fast that it doesn't make any difference? Someone already reported on the 10% decrease in baptisms. Did you ever hear of circuit assemblies in the past with NO ONE or only ONE person being baptised?? It is happening now.

    One of the Dist Conv talks spoke of a "culling work" going on within the Organization. If they're going to take a significant decrease, why spend tons of money where it doesn't produce any substantial monetary paybacks. A 20% decrease is no bigger deal to a 10% decrease. This is why I don't understand why they just don't have a "Get Out Of Jail Free" card at some point...... LET [THOSE] PEOPLE GO! The ones that want OUT.....let 'em out! Cease the shunning penalty and all that. It's causing more harm than good. It would get rid of the shit-disturbers and the one that cause them a bad name.


  • jah1914

    The rumors....if you can call them that are true......just talked with a couple that came back from the annual meeting. The move with the schools make perfect sense. Terribly inefficient to run Gilead....a missionary spirit is a very rare one in any religion, so even though people went to Gilead the rate of people that left their assignment was probably high. Think about how long it really takes a Gileadite to become effective, 5 months of training, probably 1-2 yrs to become proficient in a language. It makes much more sense economically to bring the 'school' to the people where they live and already know the language. You can churn out much more 'educated people' that way. For what I understand the curriculm for Bible School(MTS(single brothers) and now also Couples) were exactly the same as the old Gilead training minus the afternoon time in the field and with work assignments. Except for now the people coming out of those schools will be largely responsible for themselves, and they are used to the living conditions. They are actually getting more for less, fairly savvy if we are being honest.

    Now Gilead will become a school for only the most loyal JWs, where they are sure the time and effort in trainging them will be recouped., because they will basically be sending them to cushy metropolian areas where lifestyle adjustments will not be that difficult for them. It could be that this could be the end of the COs(speculation) that has been rumored. Set these guys up like Moses, where all the minor issues are handled by local elders and COs, but all the really sticky stuff is refered to these 'super' gilead brothers. Otherwise I don't really know the purpose of having them.

  • Quarterback

    Sounds like they will be sending the older, weaker, unhealthy ones to Canada. This is where they can give free health care to those burned out servants, and reward them for their years of service.

  • sir82

    Hmm that makes sense.

    I've heard rumors that a really large percentage of Gilead graduates drop out of their assignments within a year or 2. Heck we've even had a couple on this board as regular posters!

    So why not (a) make sure the ones invited to attend the school have already "proven" their loyalty by being in "special full time service", and (b) send the graduates to areas where they won't experience such a culture shock, thus are more likely to stick with their assignment.

    Although I don't see how this would spell the end of COs. Gilead school only churns out about 50 or 60 couples a year - there are thousands of COs.


    Maybe the graduates of the "Bible School for Christian Couples" / "Single Brothers" are to be groomed to be the "Circuit Overseers - the Next Generation", and the graduates of the Gilead 2.0 are to be groomed to be the next version of District Overseers?

    Maybe the next generation of COs & DOs will no longer be in "Special Full Time Service" and thus no longer be de facto "employees" of the WTS? It seems that would tend to insulate and protect the WTS from lawsuits resulting from elders enforcing WTS policies. I.e., COs and DOs would in effect be "contractors" rather than "employees" or "representatives" of the WTS, cutting a link between the congregation & its actions, and the WTS.

  • Doubting Bro
    Doubting Bro

    Jah1914 - Thanks for your confirmation. I tend to discount anything that is mentioned on the 6 screens site but I guess even a blind squirrel finds a nut every so often. Your points are well taken and I agree that it's a savvy move from a monetary sense . Certainly the culture shock has knocked out many a missionary. And not having to take care of these folks once they graduate is a huge point. I can't recall how much they spend in taking care of "special full time servants" but I want to say its just above 100m per year (USD). That's a number they would love to shave down I'm sure. The consolidation of various Bethel branches is another example of trying to get that number to a more managable one.

    Question - did your friend indicate whether the WTS is going to be recalling the current missionaries and reassigning them to their home areas? That would be very interesting. Honestly, I don't see how they could not given the turnover rates that are being mentioned. Or perhaps they just slowly close down missionary homes once they lose critical mass in various countries? That way they don't have to announce anything.

    Sir82 - I was thinking the same thing. I really think their legal team is trying to figure out how to break the chain of liability before they get hammered. The sexual abuse suit that was settled what 2 years ago or so was likely the tip of the iceberg as far as those go. While the settlement wasn't huge, it caught their attention. You start paying out 800k per person to settle those and it can add up pretty quickly. Obviously nothing like the Catholic Church because they are so much smaller but significant nonetheless.

    I do think there's a psychological effect that they haven't considered when deciding to change Gilead and not churn out missionaries. Gilead used to be a point of pride for JWs. Having a special school devoted to producing missionaries while "other religions" sent out folks with much less training (like the LDS). Maybe not, but I just can see this causing a few to wonder that's going on.

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