The really cool feeling of community within JWs
To your point Pbrow....I found a great feeling of community with some of my neighbors who ride motorcycles. We meet regularly at a coffee shop, organize group rides, help each other with repairs, do charity fund raising. Likewise, in my hockey league, we go out after the games, some guys help each other with finding jobs or getting work done...The best thing about it all is no one cares about the religion your in or your political opinion. All that matters is that you treat others the same way you wish to be treated.
Frank Ward: I think you may still be sipping too much Koolaid.
But I'm OK with whatever works for you, my friend. But after discovering TTATT, my BullShit Meter goes off real easily on some of your statements.
lovesjah and Frank Ward...
Six years ago I stopped attending JW meetings after 50 years of faithful service. I was never reproved or inactive and growing up I was on the program of several conventions , including an international one in New York City because of my exemplary conduct. Although never an elder, I gave public talks in other congregations, conducted the ministry school occasionally and was a book study conductor for the group we hosted in our house. I served as the account servant and for many years was a sign language translator. I was the go to guy for last minute parts on the school or service meeting parts. Then I stopped accompanying my wife to the meetings because I could no longer keep up with the numerous doctrinal changes starting with the overlapping generation. It's been six years and I am still waiting for the first phone call from my closely knit JW community. The best they have done is for two elders to come to my door unannounced to officially inquire, this more than a year after I stopped attending. One of the elders I considered a close friend....he hugged me at every meeting and yet, he never called me to ask how I was doing, and now over a year later he's at my door with another elder in their suits and Bible in hand...hypocrites. The best I get now from the warm JW is an occasional hello from "friends" through my wife when she returns from the meeting...by the way, I see the Kingdom Hall from the corner of my street.
Frank Ward Atheists can't possibly offer the same closeness and trust which Christianity offers.
Gotta love how these religious fanatics shoot themselves in the foot with their own words.
You just traded one judgemental and bigoted belief system for another.
NVR2L8 - it looks like you alienated yourself from them. They are waiting on a phone call from you, since these six years. You can't be mad at them not reaching out to you for some time. They indeed have reached out to you, quicker than you have reached out to them. They even speak to you through your wife. How are they the problem?
I knew a sister that ruined it for everyone in one congregation; but it was the elders that allowed it such wusses were they. They were afraid of her. When she finally died, things improved. In another congregation there was a brother who did the same thing but the elders stood up to him.
In the end it is the organization and it's reprsentatives that set the tone in a congregation. Even outside the congregation friends take time and energy which is why having one or two good ones is the norm.
Nvr2l8= I can report something very similar to your experience. I have often commented on the lack of attention they give to the maintaining and retention of current members. I am puzzled when I hear reports of repeated and unwelcome visits by elders because I know in my case and from others I have heard from this certainly wasn't true and this was after nearly 4 decades of been a member. I kind of compare it to wanting to be invited to a party even though you really didn't want to go and when the invitation didn't arrive you are hurt and confused at not been invited. But that been said it takes 10× more money and effort to find a new customer than what it takes to keep an existing on happy and returning. Something Wt could learn from.
The feeling of closeness, camaraderie, friendship with like minded people you could trust.
Haven't experienced it since I left.
I see what you're saying but I think even this is conditional. If someone in the little groups doesn't like you or your family then you won't be invited to all the activities. Or sometimes they will invite people after field service, so if you didn't make it out in service you were forgotten. Another thing is most of the friendships are very superficial. Nobody wants to reveal too much because they could be seen as being "spiritually weak". What kind of friendship is that? The only real friends I have had are the ones I grew up with and even with those I wouldn't feel free to voice all my opinions about "the truth".
Lovesjah....aren't our shepherds supposed to be caring for the flock? What about leaving the 99 to find that one lost sheep? Shouldn't my sudden disappearance raise concerns for the caretakers of our soul? What about those I helped materially and spiritually?Shouldn't they be prompted to return the favor? You said that they are waiting for me to call them...what kind of friends do that? You can only be friends with them on their own terms...and I don't need that kind of one way friendship. Every one of these "friends" would turn me in to the elders in the blink of an eye if I shared with them the reasons for leaving the cult. There's not one of them I could have a heart to heart conversation without being viewed as an mentally diseased apostate...not even my wife!
Billions of hours to recruit new members - 0 phone call to inquire about NVR2L8 who hasn't been to the meetings for a year. I guess my JW friends are too busy standing by a literature kart...