"Peak" pubs in U.S. increase only .26% over 2011

by Gayle 23 Replies latest jw friends

  • sir82

    If they do still have growth in the non-English congregations, they must be having some pretty bad negative growth in the English ones.

    At an elders school about 7 years ago, one of the instructors mentioned that spanish-language JWs made up 25% of the US publisher figures.

    In my experience, Spanish congregations typically had 3 or 4 times as many baptisms as English congregations. If anything, that ratio must be significantly higher now.

    I'd venture to say that all of the growth in the US has been in foreign-language congregations - not only Spanish but Chinese, Russian, Vietnamese, Tagalog, etc.

    My gut feeling is that the count of English-language congregation publishers is declining year over year, probably at a pretty steep clip, 2 or 3% down per year.

    I'd also note that a lot of the "growth" in US publishers is due to immigration - JWs from other countries moving in and joining foreign language congregations.

    Now that immigration has slowed, and internet access is penetrating other language groups in the US more deeply, perhaps we've reached the point that even the modest growth of the Spanish congregations is no longer enough to offset the decline of the English.

  • james_woods
    I wonder how much the figures are getting cooked. It isn't like their numbers are getting any kind of an outside audit.

    I wondered the same thing. I know for a fact (from experience) that the publisher numbers, the hours, hell - even the attendance numbers at memorial and assemblies - were always cooked upward. Which made me think - wow! If a 0.26 increase over 2011 is the best they can cook the books, then how bad must it REALLY be?

  • wha happened?
    wha happened?

    It must be bad enough that the growth is the foreign language congregations is slowing as well. I see a negative number in 2014 reports

  • Gayle

    why would this stat be a "cooked" number by WTS? it is indicating a "flatline" unless they are trying to indicate their "flakey"pubs arre decreasing? maybe they are that desparate,,,,but why didn't they boast bout their "avg. pubs if that did increase more??

  • james_woods

    We are just guessing, Gayle - but some of us who were involved in turning in these numbers KNOW they cooked them in the past - at least on the congregational level - to please the circuit overseer.

    We are wondering too - how bad could it really have been, if this is the best they felt they could manufacture out of their statistics?

  • Billy the Ex-Bethelite
    Billy the Ex-Bethelite

    "why would this stat be a "cooked" number by WTS?"

    I started a thread about a year ago about the JW culture of "untruthing" that could infect the reporting numbers. Particularly with the August figures, the term "peak publishers" leads you to think, "this is how many people were preaching for JWs this month. In reality, the August report has a peak because it is the last month of the service year and all the secretaries chase down (or fabricate) missing reports for earlier months, so that the cards can get finished up and totaled. It's not necessarily that there were that many individual publishers that month, it's that they came up with extra publisher reports from earlier in the year to get included in that month.

    I realize that I'll get an argument from some that JWs would never pad the numbers. But in my experience, it was easier to cook the books than endure the wrath of an a$shole CO that cares about nothing but the numbers.

  • james_woods

    Exactly, Billy - the operative words being "fabricate" and "wrath of an a$shole CO that cares about nothing but the numbers".

    On assembly attendance figures, we were constantly told (as attendants who did the count) - are you sure you counted all the babies? Did you add a few numbers for people who might be walking around or were in the bathroom?

    It all depended on who was in charge at the moment and how badly they wanted numbers.

    And again (on topic) - that 0.26% increase is one sick puppy.

  • wha happened?
    wha happened?

    it's been a while Billy but I do remember now how the last month of the year was a catch all for publishers not turning any time in, or not going out in service. I still remember the calls, in desparation, for one to just say, "Yes, I talked to someone in a round about manner for 15 minutes. Then in the elders mind, it's on you. He's not lying.

    I remember changing congregations in 1999 after my marital seperation. I didn't go out in service so I turned in a slip that said, Zero. The sec in the new congregation was a bit surprised and he kept pushing me. I was of the opinion that it was truthful so what the hell? I guess they just couldn't have an inactive publisher in their ranks

  • problemaddict

    It will be interesting to see what figures they come up with next year 2013, & 2014(1914 100th year aniversary). This admission of failed predictions in the january WT by the Governing Body outa cause a big drop, but time will tell what doctored up report they will make to hide in thier delusional dream of serving the most high.

    Hey Franken,

    I honestly don't think that will be the case. The admission of being "too eager" will simply wash over the masses as assurance that their organization is humble enough to admit its mistakes, even though that is simply not the reality. The 100 year anniversary of 1914 means even less, since all current teaching regarding that date don't really teach that separation from it causes any significant changes.

    Basically, they are disarming very common reasoning points from people on this board. Fortunately, there are lots more.

  • Balaamsass

    It appears 3K+ JWs or converts overstayed Visas or swam the river this year in the US. Seems like under reporting.

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