Analysis of 2017 vs 2016 Yearbook reports for Europe
2009 Peak 126,518
2017 Peak 118,036
2010 Peak 218,057
2017 Peak 213,473
"Too bad, too bad ... "
Lots of Polish people moving to the UK which begs the question why did we have a fall of about 900 publishers last year?
"peak pubs" is really not an accurate way to even look at this. What I find most interesting, is that they completely abandon the avg publishers stat by country.
It can't be good.
You’re right problemaddict 2.
At least in the now defunct Yearbooks, they’d show the previous service year’s average number of publishers - but now their eye-catching but shallow number displays on JW.org have no points of comparison or contrast. To the average viewers, peak publishers will mean nothing - and there’ll be no way of determining whether the peak for any one year is bigger, smaller or the same as previously. Notice also, no country-by-country breakdowns on Bible Studies, pioneers and Memorial attendances.
I'm sure the society know very well that the peak publishers is not an accurate way of measuring congregational service activity. But they have gone with it because the average publisher figures look even worse than the peak publishers figures.
FadeToBlack7 hours ago7 hours ago
Not sure what is going on in Poland.
Hi Fade to Black, Am I correct in thinking the Polish exjw's have been very organized and extremely impressive in their protests recently? ( we saw some footage). Could that have anything to do with the decrease in numbers? Or is it a symptom of the drop? I know my old area has 2 thriving Polish congs ( England) but as we know, those that emigrate are more vulnerable to Watchtower conversion.
Signs are that JWs are all set to crash-land with a great scream (contrast Isaiah 60:22). Organization is to be renamed as TITANIC II
Where did you find the number of baptisms for each country?
Very interesting display, thanks.
Poland has been decreasing for years. Why? A few reasons possibly. For one I think the population of Poland itself has been declining due to migration. This doesn't explain the extent of JW decline however. Initially Poland was one of JWs' greatest successes in Eastern Europe in the 1990s. So as with Japan, Poland's decline might to some extent be in proportion to its previous meteoric rise. Poland also has a strong Catholic national identity to fall back on of course. There is a strong "anti-sect" discourse in Eastern Europe, especially relating to JW refusal of blood. East Europeans find this disregard for human life particularly offensive. Plus nationalism has been on the increase in Poland as the rest of Europe. As has been mentioned, Polish apostates seem to be active and effective as well.
Another statistic I find intriguing is the increase in Ukrainian congregations at a time when their publisher numbers are decreasing. If it wasn't for the increase in Ukrainian congregations then the Europe wide figure would be over 100 congregations lost.
Netherlands and Denmark continue long term decline.
Baptisms are down in the majority of countries, even as the WT has stressed getting baptised young,
Greece lost 5% of its congregations in a single year, which is higher as a proportion than the United States.
An interesting statistic I thought might be worth calculating is baptisms per publisher. This would probably be a good indication of future decline because you need a certain number of baptisms each year to cover deaths and losses. Worldwide the figure is over 3%, but for declining countries it is much lower. Poland has just over 1% which I think is the worst in Europe and Japan has just under 1% which I think is the worst in the world. As long as baptisms remain so low these countries will continue long term decline. When JWs were growing strongly in the 1980s and 1990s they were baptising 7 or 8% of their publisher numbers per year.
Splash. Thanks for your work on this. I did notice there were several counties not included in your listing, namely Faroe Islands, Greenland, Gibraltar, Madeira, Moldova. Was this an oversight or are they included with some of the other countries.
Also if we include Russia in the European figures, that would make the loss even more.