Is attendance down in your location too?

by StarryNight9 90 Replies latest jw friends

  • steve2

    Joe, the semi-rural congregations I know of that have been sold are: Shannon (merged with Foxton), Taihape (merged with Ohakune which has a small congregation) and Waitara (merged with a congregation in New Plymouth. Another poster reported that there have been a few mergers in the South Island (and gave examples of Invercargill and Dunedin). There are probably others that have been sold and/or merged that I have not heard about.

    I am not convinced that JWs are moving out of these areas to join city congregations as much as meeting attendance and participation is declining.

    Still, the 2018 Census figures should be out early next year which typically show more people identifying as JWs than are currently active - but even across at least the last 3 census's, the self-reported numbers of JWs has declined and the peak number of JWs reported in JWs' own Yearbook in New Zealand was in 2011 - about six years ago (this kind of stagnation was unheard of in previous decades).

  • scruffmcbuff

    My old hall had 2 seperate halls inside it (Y shaped building).

    With 5 congregations. With a further 4 congretgations within a 10 mile radius at seprate halls.

    Ill drive past next tuesday to have a butchers at the car park. It used to be ramo. About 50 cars in the carpark.

    I already know the answer as there is now only 2 congregations in there.

  • James Mixon
    James Mixon

    The great crowd (1960-1980's), the end is near. Oh hell, no great crowd Jehovah is getting rid of the weeds so you see folks the end is near...again...

  • Pete Zahut
    Pete Zahut

    As you will remember, an increase in Congregation size means Jehovah is blessing the work

    A decrease means that the love of the greater number is cooling off and Bible end times prophesy is being fullfilled.

    Either way it's always good news for JW's.

  • blondie

    The WTS applies Matthew 7:12 to non-jws, not jws.

    Much of that prophecy found a fulfillment between then (33 C.E.) and the great tribulation on Jerusalem that the Romans caused in 70 C.E. (Compare Luke 19:41-44; 21:5-28.) During that interval, did the love of most anointed Christians cool off? No. Those who fell away from Christianity during that generation evidently were in the minority. Most Christians experiencing persecution from the Jews kept up “declaring the good news of the word,” displaying love for God, for unbelievers and for fellow Christians. (Acts 8:1-25; 9:36-42) But love did cool off among the Jews, who claimed to be true worshipers. The greater number of them ignored Jesus’ warning, revolted against Rome and resorted to a violent defense of their nation.

    Jesus’ prophecy extends beyond the first century and has its major fulfillment today. (Revelation 6:2-8) As with the Jews back then, people have less and less effective love. Millions have turned atheistic. Even in Christendom people tend to show less neighbor love, and church attendances and knowledge of the Bible generally are declining. Many who seem to be religious try to rectify human problems through political causes. So it apparently is among such claimed worshipers of God that love is cooling off.

  • Charles Gillette
    Charles Gillette

    What does the current yearbook show? Can we accept those numbers?I know the topic is about local areas,however,can the year book help us with the break down as to the growth or decline of the watchtower society?

    I don't care one bit about the numbers game. I'm just asking if it helps with this topic. Can we make solid conclusions about growth or decline from the year book?

    I served for 33 years in many ways. Left in 2002.A lot has happened since 1969 to 2002 when I joined this site as Blueblades.

  • LongHairGal


    I went to a memorial talk for a person who had passed away a few months back and I was shocked at how empty the new hall looked to me.

    I was just shocked because if it had been a decade or more earlier the place would have been jam packed. Also, I noticed just about all the attendees were elderly and people in late middle age. The only young people there were underage children under their parents’ control.

    No, it does not look good for the JW religion and as some have wondered - what happens when all these faithful elderly pass away???

  • steve2

    Charles an excellent website that looks at the very questions you raise is It compares growth rates from the Yearbooks across the decades and the conclusions are that, primarily in Western countries there has been a significant slowing down of publisher growth and baptisms. For example, in the 1990s, worldwide baptisms exceeded 300,000 most years; however in more recent years, it has not.

    Examples from my home country New Zealand are not untypical of Western countries:

    The peak number ever of JW publishers was in 2011, over six years ago - and it has never been exceeded. In the past, peak numbers were eclipsed in a year or two by average numbers of publishers. Also, from time to time, there is a decline in the average numbers who are door-knocking. This seldom if ever happened from the 1970s through the 1990s.

  • Annon

    Could it be that when we see a Kingdom Hall with lots of empty parking spaces we are missing something. Possibly 30 vacant parking spaces are actually only 15 "overlapping" empty spaces. Therefore by extension, contrary to our imperfect human reasoning, and common sense the hall is actually overflowing with people. Who can say.

  • slimboyfat

    Will they publish figures next year or phase them out?

    Will the numbers be reliable even if they do publish them? With no monthly figures in the Kingdom Ministry there is no way to verify annual figures any more. And with the numbers turning south there is more incentive than ever for Watchtower to fudge the numbers.

    But the one statistic we should be able to verify is the number of congregations in each country. This may take some time but I think it is a figure worth compiling independently of Watchtower statistics. Because not only can it be indepdently verified, but number of congregations is one of the best measures of overall vitality, growth or decline of the organisation.

    The number of congregations has already declined significantly in Japan and Germany, and other countries, including even the United States, look set to follow that trend.

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