Encounter with a long time elder. (Jehovah's happy people)
So I'm at work and go to my vehicle parked outside the empty property I'm working at and an elderly man comes out of next door and we recognise each other from when we were elders in the same circuit. He is early 80's in age, a JW since the 1960's and so the next generation in age up from me.
He's an outwardly jolly sort and asks how I am etc. (knows I'm not an elder but thinks I'm PIMI) and asks if I want a cup of tea so I go in and sit in his kitchen for my lunchbreak and have a chat.
I have a little fish around and ask about how JW's in his hall are. Here's the cut down version ...
Me: Whatever happened to Tim H? (MS aged 40 - son of P.O. as was - with young family that I knew had gone inactive a few years ago)
Him: Well they just stopped coming - they told the school they were no longer practicing jw's apparently. And his father-in-law's gone too. Almost seemed deliberate to me. (Sounds like a clever fade to Freddo!)
Me: Really? Did they Disassociate?
Him: No just went inactive. And Pete McK and his family have gone too?
Me: Don't recognise the name.
Him: Yes you do - bricklayer - moved away to XXX - celebrate Xmas the lot. New congregation elders not interested in catching up with them.
Me: Oh yes. How long ago did they stop coming?
Him: Two years. DON'T THEY KNOW ARMAGEDDON'S RIGHT IN FRONT OF US? The world's never been so bad!
Me: (Laughing) I dunno - when you were a kid you had to be evacuated from (CITY) because of the German bombing. My Aunt lost her job when her department store got flattened!
Him: That's true! You do make me smile Freddo!
Me: We've been saying the end is coming for a long time mind!
Him: (Laughs) Yes! And we'll carry on telling them eh? - (He reflects) Actually, my kids (early to mid 50's) weren't going to leave school!
Me: How they doing?
Him: He tells me how it's going - the son - walking stick heavily overweight - depressed not holding down a job. Daughter - Depressed - her husband not working has M.E.
Me: Wow! They're younger than me and not doing so well then?
Him: No! (Sadly) What we need is the new system to put it all right; that's what we're all hanging on for aren't we?
Me: Chin up - you and (wife) seem ok. How's your brother?
Him: Almost inactive, I can't understand it.
Me: (Cheerfully) Well thanks for the update on Jehovah's happy people! Keep smiling!
Him: (Smiling ruefully) You've got to Freddo ... otherwise you'd cry.
It would be funny if it wasnt so sad. Glad those people have woken up and left though.
Also, a lot of JWs i remember seemed to have M.E. It's an illness that only seems to affect JWs isnt it?
It'd be funny if it wasn't sad 😑
after reading that update about his family and friends, he's still holding on, sad
Some old timers think that if they stick it out their loved ones will at least have a faithful example to reflect on and it might just save their lives. Cant fault the old guy.
Wasaelder: Cant fault the old guy.
Sure we can. We might understand him, but that doesn’t excuse the inexcusable. Everyone—EVERYONE—is ultimately responsible for the consequences of their decisions and their actions.
In 1990, it was calculated that 5% of the publishers in our circuit were suffering from M.E. (or Chronic Fatigue Syndrome - CFS - as it is now most commonly known as). I recall its victims including Special Pioneers and the like. It even seemed that the more "active" you were in "Jehovahs Organisation", the more likely you were to be afflicted by M.E. / CFS. Youth offered no protection, either. In our congregation, even some children were suffering from M.E. / CFS.
However, in the 23 years that have gone by since I broke with that lot, I have known only one person who was diagnosed as having that complaint. It would seem that it does indeed afflict JWs more than the population in general.
That old man’s glum response when surveying the illnesses among JWs is so typical of JWs: It’s taken as proof that the new system is all the more necessary.
These people are simply self- responsibility-deniers. Small wonder JW organization has major appeal among those who are passive individuals who have largely “missed the boat” on their chance in life.
jp 1692, "Sure we can. We might understand him, but that doesn’t excuse the inexcusable. Everyone—EVERYONE—is ultimately responsible for the consequences of their decisions and their actions."
Fault a man in his mid 80's?, go ahead. How are we "excusing" him? The guy is likely near death and now locked in a mental and emotional prison. The only hope he has known is false and of course he is responsible for his own actions. I hate to break it to you but he no doubt hasn't a malicious bone in his body. Go ahead and hate. I think a little discernment and understanding is called for. Better he dies with some hope than none. We know its a fantasy, but is it our job to judge him for a lifetime of folly and think ill of him? You must have had it rough JP.
What a sad old man. Yup, everyone is responsible for the consequences of their decisions and actions.
How should we regard such ones who have been deceived and blinded, as many of us here once were? I'll always hold my hand out to such ones. Stupidity by definition is not evil. The real poison within the org is like a snake - it emanates via the head, the G.B. The current GB conclave is overtly more corrupt than any I've ever seen - and they positively revel in their new-found public persona!