Is the Watchtower organisation facing the biggest crisis of its history?
I tend to agree that the GB members were, in the past, mysterious and thought of as so much better than the members. And now that image is shot to hell.
The "overlapping generation" along with other strange changes allowed many hardcore JW's to start questioning.
But it is money problems that really do it to hurt the organization among the membership. From reduced printing to layoffs to the big money grab and now there just isn't enough money for anything, the membership is seeing a lack of God's blessings.
Using the benefit of Hind-sight ...............and after nearly 60 years "in" and now out ............I ask myself was ANYTHING in this group EVER Relevant ? .................. I answer NO ! Never !
Another good post there Magnum. I can give a good example of what your saying. There was a couple attending the meetings a few years back and we're making reasonable progress. She was a team leader in a government department and he had his own building business. These were 2 really nice, middle class, descent, level headed people that would of been a credit to any organisation they joined. I remember at the time them saying that they were going to talk to their former pastor about the things they were learning. Me been the fully indoctrinated dub I was thought that they were now going to give the pastor a run for his money. After that I never saw them again. Always wondered what happened to them.
Anyway fast forward a couple of years and now as a fully awake fading witness I see them in town so I ask them what happened. I was given 2 reasons of why they never returned.(1)Internet(2)Sex abuse.
They were the the lucky ones.
The biggest crisis was the 1914 fail, followed by Russell's death. 75% left. Rutherford resurrected from the ashes the religion branded with his own unique style.
If 75% left now, they would still have 2 million followers with billions of dollars in equity. The next charismatic figurehead would have the perfect springboard to launch the religion from, put his own stamp upon, and if he desired a huge cash resource to live off.
in 2015 Watchtower spent 1/4 billion looking after missionaries and special pioneers. The current Governing Body are winding back this unnecessary waste of money, unnecessary branches and printing expenses, so that the religion can operate within its means. After shedding all that dead weight, anyone with decent leadership skills could take over and set up for great luxury for decades to come.
I will agree with JWFacts. I do not think they are in the biggest crisis. They are experience economic readjustment driven by demographic change and rise of the mobile media over publishing. This mean that business model of Knorr became obsolete and it does not requires as many branches and facilities. All can be done remotely and this is sufficient to get things done from handful facilities around the globe to save shipping and transportation costs.
I never sort of looked upon it like that Paul. But I can understand your point of view. So what your saying is a smaller oganization will lead to a greater and stronger cash flow e.g not having to spend as much money. So what would happen if the vast majority of 75% were from wealthy western lands, leaving the other 25% in Africa and Latin America. Hey! It's totally possible.
In a sense what Rutherford created after 1917 was a different religion than what went before. The Watchtower magazine was the continuity. Magazine publication is not the same any more, so gaining control of the printing presses, if they still existed, wouldn't be as meaningful any more. There's simply no one with the force of personality of Rutherford around at the moment by the look of it. And the structure prevents someone easily rising from the lower ranks.
It just seems to me that gentle decline will be hard for JWs to pull off. Their whole ideology relies on a prospering growing organisation. When that fails they may not just gently slide into irrelevance, some sort of implosion may be on the cards. As happened with the Worldwide Church of God. Their crisis was also prompted by money problems. And they still technically exist, but they are a shell of their former selves.
Sociologist David Voas predicted a possible collapse in JW membership a few years ago. I was sceptical at the time, but it seems a more likely scenario to me now.
If 75% left now, they would still have 2 million followers with billions of dollars in equity. The next charismatic figurehead would have the perfect springboard to launch the religion from, put his own stamp upon, and if he desired a huge cash resource to live off. - JWFactsYes but if that 75% included all of our families we would be overjoyed. I've always thought this religion will carry on in some form with hardcore crazies adhering to it no matter what happens. But if our families get free then to hell with the GB and all who sail in her.
With all the bad press they are getting about child abuse and money grubbing while claiming charity status no sane person will join. All that will be left will be a tiny loony group. The world has plenty of those.
Not only the Organization, but also an awful lot of J.W.'s themselves!
When the Corporation's "maximising of auditorium capacity" gets into full swing, (the self-proclaimed "Master Plan") just sit back and watch the average J.W.'s reaction to their K.H. being sold off, and having to travel to a more distant location to worship the Magnificent 7 on the big screens.