One reason behind the slow steady decline of JWs

by AllTimeJeff 56 Replies latest watchtower beliefs

  • AllTimeJeff

    Hello first of all to those that remember me. I'm doing well, 10 years since my missionary trip to Cameroon. I've met a couple of goals. One of the most important being that I no longer am up on the latest with JWs and the GB. For my part, every month and year away continues to erode the programming.

    Reading a a couple of topics here got me thinking about an issue that, though subtle, continues to rot the GB from the inside. In short, GB 2.0 (or is it 2.1 now) never learned to lead.

    Putting their bat shit crazy beliefs aside, one of the most important reasons why JWs grew was Knorr. He was the factory overseer, and learned through many years how to get work done through other people, an important factor for any business. (Which of course, JWs are)

    When I read of the continual, face palm worthy moments of the current GB, (and having met most of them) I am reminded of the fact that most never got their hands dirty in real work. (Yes, their hands are very dirty for other obvious reasons) Most were missionaries and pioneers. None of them ran anything other than a congregation or circuit. Their ability to inspire and galvanize, and yes, lead, is something that their backgrounds never gave them.

    Being able to give "good talks" is not leadership. Parroting the current, CYA company line while enjoying the smell coming out of all orifices insults the intelligence of their flocks. Amazingly, I think they are just coming to terms with the fact that the general Western membership does know about them. They do read up on the Internet. Being a JW used to have real purpose and identity, now, more of the West goes to the KH the same way others go to church. Friends and family are there, and the rest is just window dressing.

    Say what you want about the Knorr years (which in my view finally died out with Henschel) That group led and got things done. GB 2.1 likes their glass tower. Good thing, they'll have a great view of the slow, continued demise of their fruity little cult.

  • jookbeard
    good to have you back Jeff, been some time
  • Magnum

    Wow! Glad you stopped by. I remember you well. Don't know if I was here when you were, but I've read many topics that you contributed to.

    Being able to give "good talks" is not leadership.

    Glad you put "good talks" in quotation marks because I don't even think the current GB members give good talks.

    Say what you want about the Knorr years (which in my view finally died out with Henschel) That group led and got things done.

    I agree. Things, to me, were so, so, different back then.

    I don't know to what degree you have kept up with the goings-on in JWdom, but the last few years have been crazy. Following is a list of some interesting things (I copied this from a post I made a few days ago). Forgive me if you already know these things. I just want some of you have been around for a while to know what's going on; I'd love to know what you think about the changes, etc.

    -The district overseer position has been abolished. No more DO’s.

    -No more book studies. That arrangment has been gone for a few years. (Remember how the Book Study was supposed to be critical to our spiritual well-being?)

    -District Conventions now called Regional Conventions.

    -JWdom went from demonizing the internet to embracing it. JWs have made a virtual idol of their website (JW.ORG). They have the logo plastered everywhere – even on Kingdom Halls. They wear pins and ties with the logo; they have umbrellas, mugs, etc. with the logo on them.

    -There seems to be some kind of financial problem (crisis?) going on with the org. They announced a worldwide buidling campaign with fanfare and then not long thereafter halted and slowed down buidling.

    -They took all the extra money (savings, building funds, etc) that congregations had. They “forgave” congregation loans. I put the word “forgave” in quotation marks because they didn’t really forgive anything. They basically said "we forgive the loans, but we want you to pay us a set amount (like maybe the loan amount) in perpetuity." It’s insane. It would be like this: You owe me $100. You’re paying me $10/month to pay off the loan. I say “I forgive the loan; just pay me $10/month from now on.” Their doing that should give them steady income from now on (that is, until everybody wises up). Oh, and they also told congregations that didn't have loans to make monthly donations as if they had had loans. So now they should get set monthly payments from all congregations.

    -Many Bethelites around the world are being told their services are no longer needed. Those that remain will do their own cleaning and laundry. I think there is a change in the eating arrangement, too. Something like maybe cafeteria style – no servers.

    -Many special pioneers around the world are receiving letters stating that very shortly they will no longer be such.

    -The Watchtower and Awake! have been reduced in size and in number of issues.

    -Their was a massive selloff of Brooklyn property. The org is leaving there and buidling a new luxury compound in Warwick.

    -There are no more Regional Builidng Committees (will explain that one later if you want).

    -Last summer JWs went nuts in conjunction with Internation Conventions. They were dancing in Kingdom Halls and in parking lots, playing music they never would have in the past, etc. I have a lot of videos saved.

    -Most of us seem to agree that it is no longer the religion we once knew. JWdom has been drastically dumbed down. The old, deeper Franz era stuff has been abandoned.

    -There seems to have a been a deliberate, carefully crafted rebranding. Many of us think they hired an outside PR or marketing firm.

    -They have "new light" on the meaning of the term "generation" in Matthew 24:34. It is absolutely ludicrous.

    - Names of meetings have changed (for example, no more "Theocratic Ministry School) (format changed some, too).

    - Something has changed with missionaries, but I can't remember what. Maybe the org is no longer providing housing? I'm not even sure they're sending out missionaries anymore the way they used to. I think they might be just sending out couples who can pay their own way and support themselves. Can somebody provide more info on that?

  • antes8080

    Welcome back ATF,

    I'm sure you don't miss those days in Cameroon. It's so true on what you said. The new GB does not know how to run a business. They haven't hold a job in years, and for they don't have a clue on what they do.

  • sparky1

    Great post Jeff! Thanks for adding this idea to the board so that others can think about this. I think that you are right about these men. They were District Overseers, Circuit Overseers, Special Pioneers and Missionaries all thrown together to 'govern' a huge religious/business empire with no 'real world' experience beyond their loyalty to the 'mother' organization. It reminds me of when the first residence building was built at Watchtower Farms. Someone got the bright idea to 'call in' Circuit and District Overseers to work on the project since they would be both spiritual and humble. My understanding was that this backfired terribly because these men were not used to hard work and none of them wanted to be told what to do since they were used to bossing other witnesses around in their small circuit and local 'kingdoms'. These men on the current Governing Body (tm) seem to prove the theory of the 'Peter Principle'.

  • OnTheWayOut

    Hey Jeff,

    Knorr was a man of "his" time. About anything a giant printing company does today is going to be vastly different with worse results than in Knorr's day. I am fascinated at how he focused on productivity while letting Fred Franz focus on the batshit crazy doctrine. But the charismatic leader needed today would be completely different.

    But I agree that is the big difference between today and yesterday. They had what they needed yesterday and they have clowns today.

  • neverendingjourney

    Nature abhors a vacuum. If the GB aren't leading, there must be an underclass who take care of the day-to-day details of running a multi billion dollar entity.

    A leadership coup/black swan event is very much in play, possibly within a decade or two.

  • NewYork44M
    Good to read your posts again ATJ. Great comments.
  • AllTimeJeff

    Good thought OTWO. Knorr was a man of his time. There really is no "man of this time" for the GB to rally around.

    Magnum, thanks for the updates. It is definitely not the cult I remember. 😂 My only thought on all the recent changes is, they're running out of money. Sucks to be them.

  • sparky1

    Nathan 'Papa' Knorr was a finely crafted persona that served the Organization very well. At Bethel he was all business and kept his nose to the grindstone. When he gave talks at assemblies and other gatherings he projected a fatherly and comforting demeanor. He appeared full of confidence and spoke with authority without overpowering his audience. 'Papa' Knorr was head of the Bethel family and 'head' of the 'spiritual family' of Jehovah's Witnesses. In the current arrangement who can 'fill his shoes' in the Jehovah's Witnesses 'family'?:

    Stephen Lett: He's the eccentric uncle everyone wishes was never invited to Thanksgiving dinner.

    Mark Sanderson: He's the youngest brother in the family that moves back home because he can't make it in the real world. He has great plans but can never seem to 'get back on his feet'

    David Splane: He's the egghead older brother that needs to be right all the time in order to make the family look good.

    Anthony Morris: He's the old biddy aunt that scolds you at the drop of a hat. Never encourages you but is always finding fault. Everything displeases him.

    G. Jackson: He's the uncle that your parents warned you about. 'Don't get too close to him. He's not trustworthy'.

    G Loesch: He's the foreign brother-in-law that everyone tolerates because his accent makes him seem cool and from the 'old country'. No one puts much stock into what he says, however.

    S. Herd: He's is the 'family mascot'. No one pays too much attention to what he has to say, but he is not too bright so he makes a good scapegoat.

    No one in this bunch engenders confidence or comfort. CARDBOARD CUTOUTS posing as human beings without any ability to inspire or lead their fellow congregants.

Share this