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"Paying A Visit to the Jehovah's Witnesses" - Just an article I came across


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I came across this article today. 

 

http://www.adn.com/article/20151016/chris-thompson-paying-visit-jehovahs-witnesses

 

It's an overall positive article about someone reviewing one of our meetings. But, I can see we all have room for improvement. How does you congregation handle the occasional new visitor?

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I told my new Bible student that even if she was not able to be introduced to every one in the congregation, there were people who were praying for her, even if they did not yet know her name (as I personally pray for newcomers, even if I don't get an intro that meeting.)  I always ask the publisher who invited the new one, so i can keep that one in my prayers.  I attempt to make a personal intro to new ones. I also try to make a note of the new ones, so that I can, not only pray for that person by name, but can also greet the new one on his/her second visit. We are there to incite one another, and each of us has a responsibility to be on our toes. I look at each meeting as an active assignment rather than a passive uptake of info.  Just a thought. YS.p

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In our congregation there are almost always one or two elders greeting everybody as they come in, we tend to throng around visitors and we get a lot of visitors. The congregation will follow the lead of the elders in being hospitable. If elders are cool to new faces the publishers will follow that lead.

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I was under the impression that the assigned attendant was to greet all at the door & thereby be in position to direct the seating or other special needs. I'm thinking FS has directed so but I'll have to find that.

Here is a link that refers to it but not exactly. There are other references but I will need to dig some more.

km 1/10 p.2

http://m.wol.jw.org/en/wol/lv/r1/lp-e/0/21795

Attendants serve to maintain an atmosphere appropriate for a house of worship. They help families and those who occasionally arrive late to find appropriate seating. The attendants are mindful of being tactful and discreet in helping others to be comfortably seated without unnecessary distraction. They use good judgment when handling any unexpected disturbances. When a child’s conduct becomes distracting to others, attendants may kindly offer assistance.


Edited by palmhat
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I went to a Memorial talk one time when I was traveling. Not one person spoke to me. I decided that I'd best do some visiting myself, so I did not leave feeling ostracized.

Then a worldly daughter of a sister visited a congregation that was having the Memorial at a time that fit in with her work schedule. As she was leaving, after nary a person said a word to her, a little sister spoke to her. The only one in the congregation, mind you.

Sometimes it is so hard for me to even feel like approaching strangers in the hall, but, I make a real effort. How many times have we been told that the visitor did not understand a thing tat was said, but the way they were warmly treated?

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I noticed that some young ones in our congregation were at the main door, opening it to people who come in.  That is one very good way to keep them aware of the need for all of us to welcome one another, and particularly visitors.

 

Often in another congregation of which I was a part one would find that the wives of ministerial servants and elders will also be there in the foyer as people come in, offering a smile and a kind word. 

 

Our congregation is very aware of the importance of greeting one another at the end of the meeting, even commending the friends who have parts, or the Sunday speaker.

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Whenever people skew the news to malign Jehovah's witnesses, I think that the best witness is our truthful testimony about our own congregation, that those who are faithful among us are very careful to do Jehovah's will, and our knowledge of Jehovah's word about wrongdoing and disfellowshipping. The world's organizations have this happening all of the time, so it is not news.

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I'm very grateful that the congregation I'm in is really good at welcoming new ones When I moved here lots of people came up to say hi and thankfully that is a pattern. It's so important to make any new ones feel welcome. I think of how Jesus was and that's how we need to be

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WT10 10/15 p 25 has a wonderful box in which it outlines ten ways to make the meetings upbuilding.

 

The last two ways apply to this thread:

 

Commend participants. Tell those who have a part at the meeting or who give comments how much their efforts are appreciated.

 

Associate. Kind greetings and upbuilding conversations before and after meetings add much to the pleasure and benefits that come from being present.

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In our congregation there are almost always one or two elders greeting everybody as they come in, we tend to throng around visitors and we get a lot of visitors. The congregation will follow the lead of the elders in being hospitable. If elders are cool to new faces the publishers will follow that lead.

 

My wife and I try to greet as well. After all it is the responsibility of all in the congregation to show love. Most of our elders are busy making sure things are arranged for the meeting. It also allows us to greet our brothers and sisters with a smile and handshake. ALL the friends. Keeps us spread out and personally I think it makes a huge difference for our friends. 

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I think it is funny that we put so much effort to go out in service, try to find people at home, make repeated return visits and eventually find someone that wants to study, yet someone walks into the KH and we ignore them. 

 

I know of several times that someone walked into a KH and accepted a study from the first person that talked to them. 

 

Can you imagine starting a Bible study while walking from your car to your seat at the KH, then have them attend the meeting too?

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I'm surprised the writer had trouble finding the Kingdom Hall locations, even on our web page. Maybe it should be on the main page? ... Now that I look, it is, near the bottom. I also wonder what he meant by congregation Facebook pages? Then again, maybe I don't want to know. :o

 

Anyway, it's good to remember to say hi to the friends and visitors around us at assemblies and the Memorial, too.

 

Sounds like overall he had a nice visit. That's great!

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I'm surprised the writer had trouble finding the Kingdom Hall locations, even on our web page. Maybe it should be on the main page? ... Now that I look, it is, near the bottom. I also wonder what he meant by congregation Facebook pages? Then again, maybe I don't want to know. :o

 

Anyway, it's good to remember to say hi to the friends and visitors around us at assemblies and the Memorial, too.

 

Sounds like overall he had a nice visit. That's great!

 

When you check in somewhere on Facebook that does not have a page Facebook creates a page for that particular place which allows people to check in, comment, and review that location. I recommend not reading the comments or reviews for the Kingdom Hall. And I agree the location finder is a little buried, but that may have been by design. Allowing people to find information on the site without feeling pressured to attend a meeting. ( just my opinion ). I personally wouldn't mind a nice large button at the top. When traveling the site always comes in handy for checking out local meeting times. 

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I'm surprised the writer had trouble finding the Kingdom Hall locations, even on our web page. Maybe it should be on the main page? ... Now that I look, it is, near the bottom. I also wonder what he meant by congregation Facebook pages? Then again, maybe I don't want to know. :o

 

Anyway, it's good to remember to say hi to the friends and visitors around us at assemblies and the Memorial, too.

 

Sounds like overall he had a nice visit. That's great!

Sad to say, I have been out of town & have looked for a kingdom hall for Sunday meeting. I called 5 different congregations before I could get a response and that was an answering machine. We went to the address & time indicated. The meeting was in another language. The brothers directed me to another hall a few miles away. That too was not the congregation it was supposed to be, nor was the meeting time accurate. Fortunately the language was English and the meeting time was 1 hour later than we were told so we got there early & waited in our car only 15 minutes before the door was opened.

On a side note, we have noticed that the Marque on our hall has the wrong times and still has meeting times for a congregation that no longer exists. We have mentioned it to the brothers & it will be addressed I'm sure.

A good exercise would be to pretend you found yourself looking for a kingdom hall in your town & didn't have Internet. Would the phone book & answering machine guide you appropriately? Hopefully, that reporter & myself are the only ones that were misdirected.

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Almost 20 years ago I was in Scotland and wanted to go to a meeting. I don't remember exactly how I did it, but I remember using the phone book, I probably called and heard a message, and got directions from the hotel on how to get there on the bus. Somehow, it all worked out.

 

A couple years ago we were in Mexico City and wanted to go to an English meeting so we looked up the closest one to the centro. We took a taxi to the hall, which was about 4 stories and had many halls inside. We couldn't find the English congregation, it seems either there was a mistake with the schedule or they had their meeting changed. We never found out. We just attended a Spanish meeting.

 

About a year ago we were in Cd. Juarez and wanted to go to an English meeting. We checked the location on Google maps street view, but we couldn't see a Kingdom Hall and the neighborhood didn't seem to be a place for one because it was just some random cul-de-sac. We didn't try to go because it was extremely hot and my husband was not feeling well.

 

So yeah, it can be an adventure. I never thought of it that way, since we usually know someone where we plan to go.

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Almost 20 years ago I was in Scotland and wanted to go to a meeting. I don't remember exactly how I did it, but I remember using the phone book, I probably called and heard a message, and got directions from the hotel on how to get there on the bus. Somehow, it all worked out.

A couple years ago we were in Mexico City and wanted to go to an English meeting so we looked up the closest one to the centro. We took a taxi to the hall, which was about 4 stories and had many halls inside. We couldn't find the English congregation, it seems either there was a mistake with the schedule or they had their meeting changed. We never found out. We just attended a Spanish meeting.

About a year ago we were in Cd. Juarez and wanted to go to an English meeting. We checked the location on Google maps street view, but we couldn't see a Kingdom Hall and the neighborhood didn't seem to be a place for one because it was just some random cul-de-sac. We didn't try to go because it was extremely hot and my husband was not feeling well.

So yeah, it can be an adventure. I never thought of it that way, since we usually know someone where we plan to go.

I sent meeting invitations to several family members.in Alabama and Texas. I used the JW.ORG web site to find locations and times.

One Kingdom Hall that was near several of my relatives in Alabama was in Sylacauga, Alabama. I attended this KH some 35 years ago. It is still in the same place. I know the times are correct because I do have a fleshly suster who attends there.

Some other relatives live closer to a KH in Pell City, Alabama. I know the address is correct even though I never attended there. I guess the times were correct.

Two Kingdom Halls that I recommended I am not familiar with. These were in Calera, Alabama and Kilgore, Texas. One fleshly sister recently started attending the KH in Kilgore , Texas. The address and times on the Web site turned out to be correct.

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