At the AGM on Oct 7th, his eminence Miserable Morris III stated the JW yearbook would cease publication and that the annual report would instead be released via the "about us" menu in the JW website. Related to this, the "Life and Ministry Meeting Workbook - January 2018 (LIVING AS CHRISTIANS)" outlines the following item to be considered Jan 1-7 2018....
"Annual Service Report: (15 min.) Talk by an elder. After reading the letter from the branch office regarding the annual service report, interview publishers, selected in advance, who had outstanding experiences in the ministry during the past year."
It struck me that this is very advanced notice of a WT letter being issued. I can't remember such notice before.
These points arise in my mind immediately...
1. The wording of the above item suggests the annual report will have been published online prior to Jan 2017.
2. Will the annual report be lesser in detail compared with the workbook? Will the letter from WT excuse such as a further example of "keeping a simple eye" and/or augment the absence of a 2018 yearbook similarly?
3. I suspect that the interviewing of publishers who "had outstanding experiences" is designed to distract from the negative growth in the organisation. So it's local experiences which hold primacy! Never mind the negative growth. I suspect the GB will be trying to emasculate the negative growth.
4. The interviewees are to be "selected in advance" rather than broad impromptu participation via raising of hands. So the item is to be carefully managed. Hard to do a worse job than that done by Miserable Morris at the AGM however.
I do hope this latest mess by the GB will cause more JWs to reflect and begin the process of disengagement.