We can measure success in various ways. JWs for example, for a very small group of believers, somehow managed to mount the most determined and sustained resistance to Nazis in the Third Reich of any Christian group. I think that deserves respect.
JWs are bigger and more successful than the Mormon church
Well yes, I don't disagree with that at all, but to wax about the fifty-year head start of the LDS church, implies that the two groups were on the same racetrack, so to speak. But that's not the case. The two groups might as well not have been on the same planet for how different they were.
The Utah area prior to the Civil War was not a place you went to if you wanted contact with the outside world. Quite the opposite, this was a place you went to sever all contact with the outside world. Utah was not even a territory back then. If anyone reading this thread is not familiar with the Utah War, then Google it. If that doesn't make the point then I'm not sure what will.
Joseph Smiths first vision was in 1820. First edition of Zions watchtower 1879.
1820-1879 = 59 years.
4 January 1896 Utah was granted statehood by the US Government.
Im searching for an explanation as to why watchtower has been so successful, as apposed to their Mormon counterparts. Could it be that a JW is more inclined to physically go because of social influence e.g Sunning by a community etc.
We can measure success in various ways.
I was kind of surprised that the video claims that the Mormon Church net-worth is hundreds of Billions of dollars ----approaching A TRILLION DOLLARS with a membership of only 3 million members.
They have 400 BILLION OF CASH GENERATING ASSETS LIKE STOCK, INVESTMENTS, ETC.
The speaker mentions that JUST DURING COVID----- the Church made 20 BILLION in returns from investment in Amazon, Tesla, Game Stock, etc.
He said that if all the members stopped giving monies to the Church, on investments ALONE at 7 percent return, the Mormon Church could function ETERNALLY.
That IS a lot of money for a shrinking church.
Compare that to the Watchtower who is selling Kingdom Halls every day, begging for monies, cutting full time servants from Bethel and sending them home, cutting publications, There is just no comparison who is more successful.
It’s like a business with 50 employees making 100 million a year in profits vs another business with ONE million employees making ONE million a year in profits.
I would consider that aspect in itself to be a much better indicator of Success and longevity of the Mormon church than any other thing the Watchtower has going at this time.
Membership as a means of measuring success would be secondary in a case like this.
I had no idea the Mormon Church Net Worth was this much.
Yes I agree pistolpet. I think wt net worth is very modest in comparison to their counterparts. It depends on how success is measured. If money is the gauge then certainly the Mormon church. If it’s winning people’s hearts and minds, then, at least superficially, it’s watchtower.
This is a mistake, wt made, that has now come back to bite them. I firmly believe at its core, Wt was never about the money, but more in service or time dedicated by its members. Because the world was soon to end, what was the point in investing money in companies. They believed that Jehovah was its backer, so Holy Spirit was going to pay the bills, and not compulsory tithing. Publishing, and free labour, were their income stream, that had been hugely successful. Unlike the Mormon church, the Wt income stream has gone, they made no preparation for the event of this, and are now resorting to asset stripping to stay afloat.
The lds on the other hand, has made some very wise decisions, which inevitably may mean it out lasting wt with a smaller customer base. They have encouraged large families. It was stated on the video that mormons having 3 child families may be the only thing keeping the membership from free fall in the United States. They in force compulsory tithing, and their is a lot of social stigma for non compliance. It’s pushed education, political involvement, pro internet, etc. It’s brought stocks, shears, and property. Wt if anything was very anti these things and Is now paying the price.
The point I’m trying to make, and why I’m so passionate about this, is that Wt has done outstandingly well. It a myth that the preaching work hasn’t been successful. It has outperformed the lds and , I suspect, equal to the SDA, if anything. What makes the difference, is what it’s been compared against. Sure you can quote pew survey with graphs, but it can only go so far, in that it can’t gauge people minds and hearts, to the point that they want to be actively involved.
Wt was never about the money, but more in service or time dedicated by its members. Because the world was soon to end, what was the point in investing money in companies.
I agree Joe134cd
The leaders were taken just like the rank and file. They truly believed the promise of a New World Order.
I think they still do.
And if any of the GB ever woke up, they would go through the same ordeal that every one else that has woken up has gone through.
They would probably be posting on this site asking for help.
Joseph Smiths first vision was in 1820.
Smith was only 14 in early 1820 and with the exception of a few close friends mostly kept that event to himself
Maybe a better comparison, would be the publishing of the BOM in 1830, because this was the first true glimpse that outsiders got into Smith's world
But even that quickly devolves into apples and oranges. Russell's pseudo Adventist message of restitution was more mainstream by an order of magnitude than Smith's claim to having been personally visited by angelic beings including Peter, James and John; having actually spoken to them; having the Aaronic Priesthood conferred upon himself and Cowdery, having translated a set of golden plates that only about ten other people ever allegedly saw, etc., etc. etc.
I initially said it was a 50 year head start.
1879 - 1896 = 17
It was 17 years after the first printing of Zions Wt that Utah gained statehood.
OK let’s say, for arguments sake, the start time for the LDS/ JW were the same. It still makes no difference as the JWs have still significantly out preformed the lds by 200%.
Here is another scenario. Let’s say that of the 8.23 million JWs, a third are PIMO publishers and have sporadic meeting attendance. The Mormon church had a 10 year head start.
8,230,000 x 33% = 5,514,100.
JWs are still up 1.5 - 2.5 million members. Even with a 50% PIMO rate they break even with the lds. I would strongly doubt the PIMO rate would be any where near the 50% mark. I think it would be generous making it 10% PIMO.
Im searching for an explanation as to why watchtower has been so successful, as apposed to their Mormon counterparts
You've been posting this stuff for several years now. That's plenty of time to become familiar enough with the two groups to avoid apple and orange comparisons, like equating the LDS General Conference to the JW Memorial, or for that matter, equating numerical growth with "success" which has been your basic premise from day one.
Like I've tried to point out, the free exercise of their faith, including their polygamous marriage customs was more important to the LDS Church than numerical growth. They separated themselves from society completely and their reintegration was slow, painful and even violent at times. (The Mountain Meadows Massacre happened shortly after C.T. Russell, was born, I believe.) The Mormons, as group, continued to be clannish and reclusive, especially in small towns, well into the 20th century.
You can't claim to be looking for an explanation for how the two groups got to where they are today while simultaneously glossing over all that history. --Not unless you're just here to stump for the JW's...
joe is definitely not supporting JWs.
Like me, joe has visited a number of different religious groups including (correct me if I’m wrong) Mormons, Seventh-day Adventists, Christadelphians, Iglesia ni Cristo, and the Catholic Church. He has a good knowledge of these groups for personal experience.
TD I’m not so sure why you object to numbers of adherents/congregations as measures of success. The Mormon church itself has placed a strong emphasis on growth, claiming to be the fastest growing religion, a new “world religion”, and so on. They are every bit as obsessed with growth as JWs, arguably more so. There are multiple Mormon blogs, websites and publications dedicated to the subject. More than you can find for JWs.
Since Mormons themselves point to growth as a measure of their success, isn’t it fair to point out that JWs and SDAs are larger, from a later start, and that evidence shows Mormons are in fact in decline?