Door-to-Door Work - Most Inneffective Work of the 21st Century

by Black Man 52 Replies latest jw friends

  • Mulan
    Keep in mind however that it costs the WTS ABSOLUTELY NOTHING to engage in this most ineffective work. All the costs - time, gasoline, car maintenance, etc., are borne by the individual "minister." It's about as sweet a deal as any scamster could imagine.

    My husband always says that if they had to pay the rank and file, to do this work, they just wouldn't, because they KNOW it is ineffective. Have to keep them marching, marching, marching.

    I think in the 1930's and 40's, and maybe even 50's, it had some effect. Of all the people we studied with, who became witnesses (considerable), maybe 2 or 3 were found door to door. The others were referrals from relatives who were dubs or informal witnessing at work or school. Two actually walked into the KH and asked for a study.

  • ARoarer

    I may be wrong but I had thought that the house to house work, as ineffective as it is, serves the purpose of the Watchtower Society's "community service" activity that gives it the right as a religion regarding being taxed. I am curious to know if this is true or not.

  • minimus

    Clearly, if the Governing Body REALLY wanted to reach as many people as possible, they would find the most effective way to do so. The internet, the media, TV, radio, telemarketing, almost anything but door-to-door! Informal witnessing is more effective! But they will say that the Bible is the reason they do this work.Ahh, they love to misapply the scriptures.

  • jgnat

    I doubt the government makes them do it. Door-to-door never varies from country to country, though each one would have it's own laws on the matter. They do door-to-door because that is the way it has always been done. Here are the general Canadian rules on what constitutes a registered charity.

    From a Canada Customs and Revenue Agency (who determine who has Charitable Organization status for tax purposes) document:

    The advancement of religion

    This category refers to promoting the spiritual teachings of a religious body, and maintaining the doctrines and spiritual observances on which those teachings are based. There has to be an element of theistic worship, which means the worship of a deity or deities in the spiritual sense. To foster a belief in proper morals or ethics alone is not enough to qualify as a charity under this category. A religious body is considered charitable when its activities serve religious purposes for the public good. The beliefs and practices cannot be what the courts consider subversive or immoral.

    Other activities that advance religion include:

    • organizing and providing religious instruction, and performing pastoral and missionary work; and
    • establishing and maintaining buildings for worship and other religious use.

  • rocketman

    Excellent comments,a nd I can only echo what most have already said, plus add my own observations at Circuit Assemblies, where just about the only people who got baptized were JW kids. For all those hours spent (1,000 people x 10 hrs per month x 6 months between assemblies, and even if you count them all as 'low-hour' you can still make it 1,000x5x6= 30,000 hours spent) with very little to show for it.

    Of course, the WTS claims that their work is not results-driven or oriented. But the feeling I got being out there until I recently became inactive is that what I did was accomplishing absolutely nothing, and I was spending my time and resources on it. How many people would take up a "work" like that? How many people would ask that of others - 'you spend your time and money, do our work, accomplish virtually nothing, and don't expect anything from us in return'?

  • RunningMan

    With all of this organizational structure, and huge amounts of labor, you would think that they would be converting people in droves. Well, this is just not the case. For example, let’s take a look at the statistics from my home country, Canada.

    Last year (2001), there were 107,218 Jehovah’s Witnesses in Canada. They reported 18,544,473 hours of field service. This activity resulted in 2,030 new baptisms. Now, let’s calculate their efficiency.

    Each Witness averaged 173 hours in field service during the year. Every baptism came as a result of 9,135 hours of reported activity. Another way of stating this is that it took 53 JW person-years of activity to generate one baptism. This does not seem terribly efficient, but it is really just the tip of the iceberg.

    If you attend a Jehovah’s Witness convention, you will find that the majority of their newly baptized members are not converts from outside the organization. Approximately 90% of them are children of their own members. It is not necessary to canvass from door to door in order to contact your own children. So, of those 2,030 baptisms last year, only about 200 of them represent actual converts.

    Now let’s rerun the calculation, using more realistic numbers. Each convert came as a result of 91,352 hours of field service activity, or 529 person-years. This seems to be a grossly inefficient use of labor.

    How many doors must JW’s knock on, in order to make a convert? Well, that depends on the type of activity. If a Witness is conducting a Bible study, then one call could take a full hour, or possibly even more. If that same person is canvassing new territory, then 20 or 30 calls could be made in an hour. If we make the assumption that each hour of field service generates five house calls, then 456,760 doors must be approached to find one convert. Since the average Canadian household contains 2.6 persons, then a total population of almost 1.2 million must be contacted in order to make one Jehovah’s Witness convert.

    But, it gets even worse than this. I have given them the benefit of the doubt and assumed that all 203 of these converts came as a result of the door to door work. Really, many of them came into contact with Jehovah’s Witnesses through informal methods, such as friends, relatives, and coworkers.

  • Scully

    I guess this means that my parents were really "special". They became JWs as a result of the door-to-door work.

    Love, Scully

  • BluesBrother

    My Mother was contacted in the H to H work, as well ( I can just remember the study visits when I was young )

    The above posters are right. Why worry about a mis use of labour when that labour is free? They have tried to make the visits more effective by encouraging field service at less convenient times, like late aftenoons and evenings - but with little success. The dubs prefer to go out when it suits them , not when they might actually meet someone.

    This raise another point, Why do the individuals do it? I contend that many if not most do so for their social reasons, (Always in pairs), and to "Work out their own salvation" Php 2 v 12..... Not for the benefit of the housholder.

  • Room 215
    Room 215

    ``Why do they do it?" Bluesbrother asks... I submit they do it(a) because they're browbeaten; (2) it's a cathartic ``feel good" exercise to assuage WT-induced guilt; and (3) it's reckoned as another installment payment on their idyllic New World homestead. In any case it has little-to-nothing to do with love of neighbor, at least in the majority of the cases.

  • blondie

    During Rutherford's time they did use the radio quite a bit to advertise the organization. Unfortunately, Rutherford had a thing against the Catholic Church and made that the theme of all the sermons. The Catholic Church basically shut them down. Now if Knorr had been in charge during the radio period, things might be very different.


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