JWs in the UK: 27 years of yearbook stats and stagnation

by 88JM 44 Replies latest jw friends

  • Phizzy

    I think Entirely Possible's point above is a good one. Not as dramatic to look at in the actual figures or on a percentage basis as the figures we usually look at.

    In fact I get slightly depressed that the "penetration" is only slightly on the decline when you look at the ratio, but decline there is.

  • slimboyfat

    I agree recent JW growth is pretty disappointing in historical perspective (they were growing by an incredible 10% a year in the 1950s) but it is still pretty decent compared to religions in general in the UK.

    The graph on the first page does not look so much like stagnation to me as it does strong growth at first (pre- 1995), followed by decline (1995 to 2005), followed by return to growth but at a weaker level (2005- ). But weak growth is still much better than Christianity in general in the UK which is in steep decline.

  • cedars


    weak growth is still much better than Christianity in general in the UK which is in steep decline

    Agreed. But remember that "christianity in general" does not recruit (lying and brainwashing) or retain (threats of shunning) members anywhere near as aggressively. Considering this, as well as the fact that most JW growth in the UK is accounted for by births, the performance of JWs begins to look less impressive.


  • slimboyfat

    Well of course, and not only that, but JWs are strict, and as we know many sociologists argue that strict religions grow best.

  • steve2

    slimboyfat introduces some thoughtful views, particularly comparing jws with other churches growth. Fair enough too. The only discomfort Id suggest for the Watchtower is its own published hubristic claims about its superior growth rates and its virtual luxuriating in the demise of churches. Fact is, within church growth, and allowing for greater proportions of general populations not identifying any religious affiliation, evangelical groups, including pentecostals are burgeoning, leaving jw growth for dead. Plus, with increased immigration patterns, Moslem numbers in Western countries have virtually dwarved jw growth rates. Whilst jws are not alone, and could be said to be doing respectably, their days of exponential growth , that they praised themselves so highly about, are well behind them. Our fascination with numbers is a dubious legacy of jw self important crowing.

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