Congrats Watchtower. You've survived the 19th and 20th centuries. No mean feat. As God was saying to Homer Simpson, most religions don't make it through the first six months. But you are looking pretty weak coming into the 21st Century. Here are some suggestions on how to keep existing, and still fleece your flock.
A few things the WTS could do to stay alive (maybe they read apostates for tips)
- Stop mentioning the 1914 thing for five or six years, take the books still harping on it out of print (or revise them), and finally have new light on the whole thing.
- Stop, or at least move away from "field service" as it is now. It does not work. Move into advertising, as well using "informal witness" tactics like hospices, international volunteer work, and other forms of "Service".
- Use some obscure old testament scripture to show "New Light" that brothers and sisters should have lotsa babies. A high birthrate is one of the societies only immediate sources of sustainable numbers. Two is not enough.
- Informally promote JWs as THE alternative religion for minorities in countries such as USA. When people get tired of the Southern Baptists, let em drop money at the Kingdom Hall.
- Communalize the witnesses. Not necessarilly Amish style, but have these poorly educated suckers share what they got and not have to worry as much about "the world". Isolate them.
- Allow for polygamy for non-elders, as is scriptural. This will siphon out non-elder material and allow the Witness culture to continue to be paternally dominated. In lands were polygamy is illegal, allow for non-state recognized domestic unions, with marriages carried out privately by the Elders.
- Develop higher standards for being an elder. Require intensive education, background checks, testing, and tutorship.
- Institute a department of internal affairs strictly for elders and other persons in positions of responsibility.
- After the certification of elders begins (see above) remove any trace of legal connection from the WTS to the watchtower short of requirement that elders be approved by the WTS and their criteria. This will remove any possible legal action from the watchtower in cases such as child molestation. At the same time if the elders are properly monitored (see above), then possibly repeated criminal conduct by the watchtower can be reduced.
- Completely drop the blood issue.
- Prepare to handle "right now" possible schisms, especially in third world countries where they have little control by developing local strategies differing where necessary.
- Set up a JW university. Something with decent academics even if it has a terrible philosophy (sort of like Bob Jones University) If you can't stop em from going to college at least keep them in the fold. Keep it unaccredited though, so no one will be able to transfer out without loosing a lot of time and money. Consider setting up these universities in many areas around the world.
- Drop disfellowshipping and Disassociation as they currently stand. Leave the apostates nothing to counterattack. Instead make non-reptantance to the elders for wrong doing, a cause for the person to not be allowed to one meeting only: the memorial.
ok I dont want the society to survive. I'd laugh if it closed shop tonight. but I was thinking what could be done to save it (even if it were evil) and these are some things I came up with.