Who are the "Inactive"?

by thereishope 26 Replies latest watchtower beliefs

  • thereishope

    I'm being serious here. This was my starting point in this journey of rediscovery, and I've made great strides, but here I am again asking the same question. All this talk re the RC and the shunning of the inactive ones. There is no announcement made obviously about "Shun sister so-and-so, as she is inactive." Or is it up to the individual elders and I don't want to ask them because I don't want to call attention to myself. Asking because I'd like to know if I can expect to be shunned, Oh, or is it the old "upbaptized publisher/publisher/baptized unpublisher" (kidding, but not really). They've sure made it confusing, haven't they? PS I'm baptized.

    Sorry if this isn't very clear, and I know it's not, but I'm tired and need some sleep but wanted to get this asked first. Thanks for any clarification.

  • stan livedeath
    stan livedeath

    it simply means the congregation can ignore those who arent there anymore.

  • Phizzy

    I think we need to wait and see how what is said at the R.C's is actually put in to practice at Congregation level.

    My gut feeling is nothing will change much, individual JW's may choose to take a harder line than in the past, but a few months down the line from the R.C's we shall all be back to normal. (?)

    If this prediction is about right, it will show that the G.B are further loosing their grip on the minds and lives of JW's, many of whom seem to ignore a lot of the "counsel".

  • TheOldHippie

    An inactive one is a publisher who has not been out in service / has not turned in a service report for the last 6 months. Hence it is not a thing a single elder can decide, but is based on the missing reports.

  • stuckinarut2

    Exactly what Stan said above.

    This gives the green light for the judgemental and critical behaviour of witnesses.

    It really is a sign of the abusive nature of relationships in the org. "IF you behave according to our terms, we will be your friends. IF you DONT, then we will condemn you" (Oh, but God is the judge)

  • jwundubbed

    But you can only be inactive if you have been baptized, right?

  • freddo

    Old Hippie gives the definition accurately.

    How an inactive one is treated depends on:

    A) How they conduct themselves

    B) How the elders in their congregation (the one in which they became inactive) react.

    C) How your believing family reacts to A and B

    If an inactive person gets to about 2 or 3 years of not reporting (this was brought out in a few elders schools/CO visits and "written in the margin" of our elders books) then they are "off the radar" as far as being chased down for judicial action unless they become a "danger to the flock" which depending on the body of elders works broadly like this:

    If you do something which is of a judicial nature and it becomes known about and unsettling to any jw and they bring it to the elders, the elders will discuss what to do - at this point anything can happen from you getting a free pass, through private advice to those in the know to curtail association with you to a judicial committee and DF'ing in absentia.

    The more of these things mean you openly do then the more likely you will get DF'd/shunned.

    Apostasy/Co-habiting/Xmas/Halloween decorations/smoking etc.

    As time goes by then less of an issue will be made, especially if you are discreet and out of the territory. Having an elder relative can work for or against depending on how he views things (hard core or not.)

    In my congregation area a long time inactive (20 years) now lives with her boyfriend and another has Xmas decorations up. (Mind you she could blame this on her worldly husband)

    No action taken.

    But another who was out for three years and who posted her halloween party online was "invited" (Ha!) to a judicial committee and DF'd in absentia.

    And the more talks we get about it then the more hard core ones will obey the implication and the soft core will ignore.

    Not an easy path to tread without much deep forethought.

  • stillin

    Shunning the inactive ones will definitely help them to realize that they have left a religion of loving people.

  • Darkknight757

    The wife and I are now officially "inactive" by not turning in time for 6 months and by not attending meetings. The shunning has already begun. Nobody has called or written. This has worked out well because it shows my wife the conditional love that you get from the org. It's a bit hurtful yes, considering how much we killed ourselves for those thankless people but freedom always comes with a cost.

    Hopefully you can start making real friends and renew bonds with non witness relatives. That really helps curb the betrayal one feels when the shunning starts.

  • joe134cd

    Darknight757 - I experienced much the same thing as you. Not one visit. Although I'm not complaining I don't really know what to make of it. Weather to be great full for their lack of interest as it saved me having to deal with them or as an insult e.g after just under 40 years of service and no one could be bothered to show, and my house is located less than a 5 minute walk from the Hall.

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