problemaddict: I was being groomed to be part of the HLC as a young guy. Most of what we did, was go through the hospital and visit JW's from other places registered as JW's. The guy "training" me now in hindsight, was not qualified in the least bit to understand and advise on complex medical issues. I found this to often be the case with the boots on the ground guys that show up to the hospital.
They were more focused on being a "presence" of sorts, to make sure what they called the patients wishes were respected.
TD: ...and two JW elders (HLC?) showed up at the hospital. They seemed like decent enough men although they were not qualified to give medical advice of any sort.
They politely left after a brief conversation.
Yes, the 'bottom level' of the HLC hierarchy. You both describe what the initial pool of special pioneers are like that the WTS draws their noblood 'experts' from. Or rather, the pool of volunteer medical support people that either couldn't or didn't move up the HLC ladder to bigger and better positions.
In the HLC hierarchy, the lowly special pioneer member is the one who simply visits hospitals when congregants need support. Actually, though, the support isn't direct - it is directed towards the hospital personnel. The HLC is there to ensure that the hospital follows the noblood order. And to arrange for alternative procedures if needed. Patient interaction is generally done by the elders et al - the patient visiting team. They are the ones whose job it is to ensure that the patient remains steadfast in their refusal of blood - or, if convenient, changes their mind to fall in line with what the HLC 'recommends'.
Those 'recommendations' come from up line. From the HLC guys who climbed the ladder. There is another layer of special pioneer class HLC. The ones who travel to seminars and give presentations at hospitals etc to medical professionals, promoting the WT brand of 'blood management'. And make calls on doctors, evangelizing to them about the virtues of blood management etc., leaving noblood literature etc with them.
Then there are the HLC guys who write and publish papers in medical journals, presenting arguments and rationale for no blood treatments and recommendations on how to "manage the JW patient".
And there are the noblood guys who, on their way up the WT noblood ladder of success, find niche spots to make noblood pursuits their livelihood. Because, right at the very top of the HLC pinnacle, at the heavenly elevated spot of disengaging from the WT network, an HLC man can hold an international position that allows him to make decisions that impact everybody's blood supply.
Whew...I need more coffee. I will try to return with actual names and people to stick on the rungs of that HLC ladder so that it doesn't seem like I am just pulling this "theory" out of where the sun don't shine.
The HLC starts at the level of congregational special pioneer and ends at the level of global influence on the world's blood supply. It is a long ladder and a profitable one.