New Zealand Begins Selling Kingdom Halls

by KiwiBoy 33 Replies latest jw experiences

  • KiwiBoy

    The Wainui-O-Mata Hall is closing and from 01 February they will be relocated to the 200 seater hall in Newlands. Johnsonville is merging with the Wellington West Congregation and will be known at Wellington Central also to be located in the Newlands Hall. Wellington East will remain in the Hall in Kilbirnie at this stage but rumour has it that this hall will also be sold and they will make up the third congregation sharing the Newlands Hall. The Samoan Congregation is relocated from Newlands back to the Porirua Hall. Wainui-O-Mata are joining with the Waterloo Congregation at Newlands and will be known as Lower Hutt Central Congregation. They will have about 150 pub, 16 elders and 19 pioneers which will include the Hindi Group. The Avalon Congregation in Lower Hutt will also relocate but they are going to the Upper Hutt Hall, with no actual date set at this time, presumably they will want to sell the Lower Hutt Hall first. But it too is closing. Wainui-O-Mata Hall is obviously to be sold. It is a lovely Hall but it seats only about 120 with no room to expand. Travel time for Wainui-O-mata to Newlands will be about 20 - 25 minutes. Remember this is twice a week and for maintenance and cleaning will be extra. Have not heard what the reaction has been to these changes but I believe initially quite a shock. Photo of the Wainui-O-Mata Hall.

  • joe134cd

    This just warms my heart.

  • zeb

    and where will the money go..? No prizes for guessing.

    • Will someone in NZ contact their MP
    • and their local papers,
    • tv stations to wake them up about the wholesale exporting of money..
  • Crazyguy

    I heard that is some places the halls are being sold and people are now meeting in assembly halls. This may become the norm is places where there’s a assembly hall. They need to sell as many properties as they can not only because of the loss of members but because they don’t want thier properties in the hands of pedophile victims.

  • steve2

    Thanks for the update, Kiwiboy! Not to be too pernickety, but the selling of Kingdom Halls began a few years ago with the selling of the following three halls in the mid-North Island: Shannon, TaIhape and Waitara (just outside New Plymouth. I know that galls were also sold in Auckland and Dunedin . So it looks like the selling of halls is gathering pace.

    On paper, this very much looks like the “original” congregations (e.g., Wainouiamata) are diminished in numbers attending their local halls because they’ve merged with other congregations. Is that a correct assumption?

    Also, a poster suggested local people contact their MPs (Members of Parliament). What on earth for? Surely religious organization’s have the right to close congregations and sell their meeting places - or have I missed the reason for contacting MPs?

    BTW: Does anyone else remember when the organization stopped the weekly Book Study meeting the main ( perhaps the only) reason given was to spare brothers and sisters the cost of travel due to fuel prices.. Now local Kingdom Halls are closing, often resulting in longer travel times. And not a peep about the extra costs brothers and sisters will have to bear. Still, these are largely very obedient shel.

  • KiwiBoy

    Yes the merging is correct as Wainui was always a smallish congo. For years they traveled over the hill to Lower Hutt. Great celebrations when they finally got their small hall on their side of the hill. But now the merge with a half of the Lower Hutt group they will totally lose their identity. They will no longer be the Wainui Congo. The CO would not even visit them as they are now part of the Lower Hutt group. There is nothing in Wainui for him to see. Sad days for them I think. And think of the distance they have to travel. I wonder what this says about smaller congos in say the Waikato region?

  • KiwiBoy

    Yes Steve2 They did talk about the cost of petrol back then. The rank and file will always pay the price. They worked hard to raise the money for their own hall. Got it payed off. They now had an identity in their little town. Now they are back to paying again with long distances to travel regardless of the petrol costs. I wonder where a new hall will spring up on the other side of the world that they can say "Well we helped with that"

  • LV101

    Thanks for 'Selling' update, Kiwiboy.

  • smiddy3

    All of these selling and merging of KH`s in one place after another surely is not indicative of an organization that is flourishing , but one that is in decline ,is that a fair assumption ?

  • steve2

    In the case of New Zealand - and I daresay other Western countries, the mergers are a sign of stagnation or increasingly likely, decline in numbers attending. New Zealand hit a peak of just over 14,500 publishers in 2011 and has never again hit let alone surpassed that peak - I think they managed 14,100 in 2017. Yet in previous decades, peak numbers publishing were soon surpassed by average numbers of publishers. (hope this makes sense?). My impression from family still in is that the midweek meeting is very poorly attended and that at the latest regional district convention (2018) there were fewer than 2,800 at the Porirua convention when just over five years ago they were reporting peak attendances of well in excess of 3,000.

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