Former Longtime Elder - Reflections

by James Jackson 51 Replies latest jw friends

  • Tech49

    James, on the subject of meetings being increasingly boring:

    Yep, totally agree. Just look at the KM schedule for the month, each week is virtually the same. 25 min from Jeremiah book, oh yay!, BH part from unqualified MS or older elder that just needs some face time on the platform, Bible reading (2-3 minutes of stumbling around with big names and stuff, seriously, can anyone not READ anymore??), 2 sisters rehearsing an unrealistic RV in the field, and brother wanna-be spouting his personal super-knowledge for the last 5 minutes. Service Meeting: 10 min part on Magazine presentations, 10 min part on What do we Learn (scriptures read and talked about), 10 min part from BE book.

    Or a fascimile of the same, every week, RINSE, REPEAT, RINSE, REPEAT.

    On the last week of the month, we get LOCAL NEEDS. whoo hoo! Usually 10 minute part about DO MORE DO MORE DO MORE, GIVE MORE, or STOP DRINKING, FORNICATING, GOSSIPPING, etc etc...

    Blessings abound! I feel so refreshed!

  • TotallyADD

    Before I step down as a elder the last elder school I went to talk about this very problem. If my numbers are right there is about half the amount of elders now in the U.S. than there was 20 years ago. The same for the MS. The MS I knew did not want any part being a elder because they saw how over worked they were. That's why I think someday they may have to consider paying elders to do the job. I know this sounds dumb but todays borthers are getting smarter and they won't do any extra work like what a elder has to do and not get paid for it. Who today has time to work a extra 40 hours a week and not get paid for it. If you are lucky to have a full time job most are just to tried to work another 40 yours a week for nothing. Besides when I was elder the pub. always treated you like you was being paid to do that job. Totally ADD

  • Magwitch

    The quality level of elders seems to be at an all time low. Just an example...

    My father (a born-in) is in his mid-80's is still serving as an elder. Actively giving talks and serving on committee meetings.

    • He had a stroke a few years ago and still shakes like a leaf.
    • He had quadruple by-pass surgery 2 years ago and is still so skinny his pants can barely stay up
    • His voice is all but gone
    • He is hunched over like the very old man that he is.
    • The last public talk he gave was quite embarrassing according to my sister. Misquoting things like..."The Society publishes in over one million languages." She said he sounded like a little retard (sorry I know this is P.I)

    My father is EXHAUSTED and definately has one foot in the grave. Yet, the body insists he keep serving. I guess they just do not have too many replacements.

    On the other end of the spectrum, I had an elder serve on my committe meeting (that I did not attend) that was 25 years old. I knew him from the time he was a little boy.

    • He had a very disturbing childhood
    • He had a lot of learning disabilites
    • Did not graduate high school (but pioneered)
    • Any joke, piece of history, book reference etc. went way, way over his head
    • IQ has to be in the Forest Gump area.
  • clarity

    Wow ..Legacy you are a strange one, ...just got baptised &

    now you are on here! LOL

    I say that because a newly baptised witness usually runs from an 'apostate' website!


    However, we are very glad that you are still thinking critically

    & independently & came on board here we look forward to

    hearing more from you as you discover what makes us tick!


    You ask ..." what would they say to the younger men about reaching out..



    After spending over 50 years wasting my energy serving the

    Watchtower Publishing & Real Estate Company .......... I say...



  • clarity

    Btw Tec great post, very interesting how the onetime dedicated mature

    men have faded away ... it is really understandable, as there seems

    not to be much of a purpose anymore.


    The generation that recieved the message, that they were the bunch

    who would never die at all ...............are all DEAD!


    As a group, the social lives & fun times of the witnesses has all but gone!


    Elders must feel like they are just beating a dead horse at this stage!


  • sir82
    That's why I think someday they may have to consider paying elders to do the job.

    It's against the religious beliefs of the governing body to pay money for anything.

    Unless it's for real estate or lawyers fees.

  • JakeM2012

    Clarity, I agree, run like hell. You are playing with fire thinking that you know what your getting into and can handle the situation. If you play with fire you will get burned. Just saying.

    I gave over 47 years of my life, and look back on the sacrifices and think, "Why, what was I thinking"? When I was an elder I was always getting into it with the "Bulldozer" elders that were hard-line company men that felt compassion, mercy, or love was a weakness. I have some relatives in my family that still serve as these "superfine apostles".

    For me, the last 18 years of meetings were a stretch to attend. It irritated me that Bible Highlights would run for 12-15 minutes, absolutely no consideration for the time. Young MS servants or inexperienced elders would get up for the service meeting read 15 minutes of letters from the society, and then break into 2-4 magazine demonstrations running a 8 minute Service Meeting introduction into a 8 minute + 15 minutes overtime. I had no problems getting up to do the last part and commenting about the title of the part, and tell the audience that we were out of time. I would then introduce the song and have a very short prayer. It used to be there was some leaway for comments in your own words, bringing in brief experiences or things studied. Now, it seems that you have to comment using the exact wording in the paragraph or the conductor will ask the question again until he gets the exact paragraph wording. Reading the paragraph three times is boring.

    Observations of potential elders: I have talked with many brothers that have served as elders before, and they are not interested in doing the work. These were men that were reasonable and easy to get along with, but ended up on the other side of an adverse elder body. Elder bodies have purged anyone that wasn't a full blooded company man. Elders that had experience in the military seem to like being elders and thrive. If the elders think that you are smarter or have more knowledge in the truth than themselves, you will probably not be appointed unless there is some major butt kissing. The problem with this is that if everyone in the organization from the top to the bottom has to be smaller than their superior, then you end up with a mentally shallow group. The current state of elders is just that, a mentally shallow group that is lost.

  • outsmartthesystem

    "Hi James Jackson, Considering what you wrote and that the Pew study estimates that JWs are composed of 60% women and 40% men, will the WTBTS change its position of letting women become elders/MS?"

    Are you kidding? Those bigots will allow full blood transfusions before they would allow a lowly woman to "teach" the men

  • cantleave

    I don't know how you can still go. It must be agonising attend the BS sessions.

  • outsmartthesystem

    "you can go from Hall to Hall or church to church, none of them have the truth, because the Bible depends on each man's interpretation."

    This may be true. But how many other churches teach that there is only one true religion and you must be a part of that religion if you want to survive "the end"..........and in order to be a part of it, you must believe any and all teachings and dictates that are handed down from the powers that be no matter how many times they have changed in the past, and if you choose not to believe, you will be excommunicated and shunned by your family and friends for the rest of your life?

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