2018 Service Year Report - Released on jw.org

by Drearyweather 61 Replies latest watchtower bible

  • careful

    The big jump in the number of baptisms in 2017—isn't that because of the push to baptize children? It can't be coming from real newbies, at least not in the western lands where growth is so stagnant.

    If it's already gone down a bit (according to the 2018 stats), it may be because they're running out of in-house kiddies. Maybe they'll drop the age even further now to pump the the numbers up again? Infant baptism is next?

  • Brokeback Watchtower
    Brokeback Watchtower

    The whole way they got the report setup makes it difficult to find out much, only by a close look at the figures and going back and forth to the top of the columns can one get some type of picture. There's a whole lot of obfuscation going on. But lets face it the whole organization is devious, you can't trust the figures they have such a records of dishonesty , cherry picking, and facts distortions.

  • Gorbatchov

    A friend of my, PhD new religions, did meet a WT representative, son of a gb member, approx 1996, to discuss about JW demographics and statics. I can tell you, the boys now in Warwick are highly interested in this matter and use secular analyses.


  • Crazyguy

    It’s all bullshit smoke and mirrors. Thier claiming over 2 million new baptized in 8 years even with half of them leaving in that amount of time you would still need to be building Kingdom Halls like crazy. Total bullshit.

    This is a cult that has lied about numbers for over a 100 years. 1914 was when Armageddon was going to take place, no wait that when Russell predicted wwI. Now Armageddon going to take place in 1918 no stay alive til 1925 no I meant 1975 no we didn’t say that. Lies after lies after lies!! How can anyone take their number of members seriously?!

  • slimboyfat

    It’s still worth noting that, compared with most other religions, JWs are doing pretty well.

    Take Britain for example where JWs are still managing to grow a little. This is pretty remarkable in a broader religious perspective when you consider that practically every other denomination is in decline: Anglicans, Church of Scotland, Catholics, Methodists, Mormons, Salvation Army, Brethren, Baptists, Christadelphians, Unitarians. Many denominations are in freefall, having lost 2% or more every singe year for decades. Some are talking about folding their churches as a whole within the next few decades. (The only churches that are growing in Britain are churches that comprise immigrants who have newly arrived from other countries.)

    In that context the fact that JWs have managed to grow at all in the last few years is pretty amazing. How much longer can they defy the gravity of general religious decline? On top of general religious decline, they have many internal problems. Who can say what the future holds, but my best guess has to be that they cannot defy gravity much longer. And the signs of decline are already beginning to appear: declining congregation numbers, relying on immigrant groups for growth, cutbacks and branch downscaled, general rhetoric of decline.

  • steve2

    SBF, I’d be far more inclined to agree with you if they highlighted the average number of publishers year to year for Britain - but now they don’t. They base the percentage from year to year on the peak number which, as others have shown here and in past reviews of JW annual service reports, is prone to double counting and other inflations.

    Good on you for tempering your praise with the clause “have grown a little”. That’s a crucial phrase because we would expect that level of growth from born-ins alone.

  • slimboyfat

    It’s annoying not to have to average publisher number for historical comparison, but the peak figure it still useful. It is more volatile than the average figure, but in the long term it evens out. So for any given year the average figure would be more acccurate to have, but in the long term the peak figure reveals the same trend.

    To be clear JWs are doing much better than most churches. The latest Church of Scotland Yearbook has just been published for example. Get a load of this. Their latest membership figure is 337,000, which is down from 661,000 in 1997.

    By contrast Jehovah’s Witnesses in Britain grew from 132,000 in 1997 to 139,000 in 2017.

    So while the Church of Scotland declined by 49%(!) JWs continued to grow modestly and added 5%.

    I don’t know of any other significant Christian denomination in the UK (apart from churches that comprise mostly immigrants) that has grown at all over the last 20 years.

    I suspect that JWs will begin to decline in the UK, indeed the number of congregations has already begun to decline. But the fact remains that JWs have done incredibly well to defy the trend of secularisation in the UK up to now.

  • TheOldHippie


    You must reread your math books.

    You have calculated based on the latest year, not based on the first year.

    Year2 - minus Year1 = the difference. Then take the difference and calculate that towards Year1.

    THEN you will get the figures correct.

  • DesirousOfChange

    Desirous of change, yes even when their stats show an increase in memorial partakers, I wonder how much they are holding back in the actual (likely) larger number of partakers.` Steve

    Steve, you are SO RIGHT!

    For years, the direction from "mother" has been to disregard anyone partaking who is now a "known JW". Thus, the unbaptized visitor that nibble and sips is NOT counted. The DFd apostate that attends and partakes for the "shock and awe" of it all, IS NOT counted. The 20K partakers that are actually counted are active R&F JW's. If these rules were not in place, I suspect the number might double.


  • alanv

    Ok I think I understand the report now. So although they present peak publishers in the report, the actual increase is based on the average publishers per country. That explains the figures from Britain. Peak publishers 2017 is 137468, Peak Publishers 2018 is 139783. So although this is a 1.7% increase, the actual increase they have published is based on the average publishers that are not shown to us. So average for Britain is shown as 0% increase in 2018.

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