Finally received our "shepherding call" today
We will not subject ourselves to a barrage of questions that are none of their business. What our heart condition is, is none of their business.
That is the best way, I feel, to approach this whole issue.
If making judgement calls on heart conditions is the job specifically of God and Jesus, just who do the GB think they are to assign by proxy the judgement of a persons heart condition. They are in fact not there to make a judgement call as to whether or not you love Jehovah or Jesus, they're there to test your loyalty to the WT organization. Too many people on the outside are still actually trapped because they still feel that they have to answer to nosy elder bodies.
The elders knocked on my door a couple of months ago. I yelled "GO AWAY" and made no move to answer the door. My wife, who's still a firm believer, went and answered the door and talked to them for a few minutes. She didn't volunteer to me what she said to them, but, they haven't been back. She's on notice that unless I initiate contact with them, I expect to be left alone.
Are all these calls supposed to be done by the end of March? The congregation in receipt of my PRC must have a lot of inactives, I haven't received any calls yet. I know they have my card. Maybe the PO made it disappear? Maybe I should make a shepherding call on the elders. They're not doing their jobs. Am I not worthy of a call?
Hey Joules, interesting! Keep us posted. I guess quite a few of us have this to come! If you refused or showed a 'bad' heart condition.....would they have DA'd you?
Make it clear that when they are in your home, you set the agenda, they do not. If they do not wish to live by the rules you set, show them the door with the warning to not let it hit them on the butt on the way out !! I have given this a lot of thought since my wife and I are facing an elders visit soon. Posts such as this are extremly helpful. Bug
Yesterday, I put a sticky note by my doorbell that said "JW Elders - do not call today". This because they have been at my door 5 times in the past 2 months - three visits from elders in my previous hall, and now two from elders in the new hall (my pub cards were sent without my final authorization; I said "I may be moving", and lo and behold, two weeks later, the elders from the new hall told me they got my records).
Well, they never saw my note, because I was in my car, warming it up, when they walked up and knocked on my window (startling me in the process). So that's 6 visits now - this time, they wanted to know which bookstudy I planned to attend. I haven't been at one in 9 months or so.
Well, I went to the PTalk yesterday for my first visit to this new hall, and left right after the talk. I think the elder who saw me leave could tell I was not in a good mood.
A friend came up with what was imo a good reply to make to the elders for those wanting to brush them off politely. He said, "if we could possibly be in attendance we would be". And just leave it at that and say that anything further on the matter is "personal and private".
I'm glad u expressed your familiarity with the topics in the Worship book (or whatever it's called now). Most of us have studied these publications over and over with different people and simply studying it again does nothing to address matters that we are concerned over.
I would also express my discomfort over notations being made about me for sharing with others. Friends don't "make notes" about conversations they had with u in your home and then submit these to others to read. I think it is rude for another person to even presume they can size up another man's spirituality or heart condition.
These untrained guys must really be brainwashed to feel they are entitled to take such liberties about such personal and private matters. I'm sure they would be insulted too if someone offered to "study" with them such basic publications. What a bunch of ignorant jackasses.
Overall, the visit wasn't what I expected. I was sure that I was going to have to face the question, "Do you believe that the org is directed by the fds, blah blah?" Along with - needing help in the field ministry, the school, etc. I was seriously dreading those questions as my answers could have led into an entirely new situation, a very uncomfortable one. But in the end, it all worked out ok. I didn't have to face any tough organizational questions. I didn't have to lie about my stance towards the org.
I predict that my current situation will continue to be the same as it has been for the past few years. I try to stay out of the limelight for family sake. I still attend a few meetings here and there and most everyone at the hall seems to like me a lot as I tend to get along well with most people. We are always invited to do stuff with people from the hall - just about every week. Funny, that for an inactive bro, I get included in a lot of things. Must be because of the strong spiritual wife. I think that if my wife wasn't so outgoing, we would merely be blips in the congo.
I think that there are two types of inactives out there. One of them is my type. We still go to the meetings, support our families, and do not make waves. We get along with everyone and still get invited to do things. On the other hand, the other type of inactive is the one who never goes to ANY meetings, could care less about going, and gives the elders a hard time about everything. I think it is the latter one that the elders are going after to get rid of. The ones with the bad "heart condition." It could also depend on the type of elders too. But for the most part, they are not all that hardcore and anal. At least not in my hall....
Jourles I don't know how you step foot in a Kingdom Hall or have anything to do with those people as they are not true friends. If something comes out in your study don't you think they will disfellowship you for it and never speak to you again? Are you really up to being fake and saying that you believe their bullshit? By the way there is a 3rd type of inactive one which is me I just left never looked back and in 4 years have never recieved a visit or phone call and have not caused any trouble what so ever just said so long to that part of my life. They still haven't bothered with me even with this "new light" so I guess as far as me and my husband are concered they will have blood on their hands.
Jourles, the reason I can't go back and "not make waves", attend a meeting here or there, is because I know its all a lie. Its like living a lie and being two people. I don't go out of my way to debate doctrine, even with my family who I see quite often. I have had a slip once or twice when hard pressed by one of my family, but it didn't come to anything. Basically, my wife and I were HARD PRESSED to go back when we first left, but we simply refused to give an answer, just that "we don't want to go". Nobody really bothers us about it anymore, although I want to shout things at them when they are having their 15 year old daughter sign her life away in a medical release, power of attorney form. Or when I see my brother and sister in law, young kids, willing to throw their future away for this fairy-tale of a religion.
I don't know if you still somewhat believe in this religion, and I guess thats not the issue. I don't, and I think that there is plenty of evidence to prove that they are totally full of crap and have been since the late 1800's. But I encourage you to do whats best for you and don't live a lie, after awhile, it takes a toll.
Jourles, in your case then, you're fortunate. The call seemed to go okay, as sheperding calls go. I am still kind of amazed that you get asked to social activities though, but as you said, that's more your wife's doing. All in all, you're in pretty good shape. I hope it stays that way for you.