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Do You Get Asked?


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We had our CO visit a couple of weeks ago and just before his public talk I saw him in the back room with a brother and an elder. When the brother came out, another brother went in.

 

They were both appointed as MS the next meeting. 

CAUTION: The comments above may contain personal opinion, speculation, inaccurate information, sarcasm, wit, satire or humor, let the reader use discernment...:D

 

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It is not just a case of asking if you "want" the privilege - the Brother is also asked if you know of any reason you would not qualify for the position - it is always possible the person may have a "secret sin" not known to any of the Elders.

"Let all things take place decently and by arrangement."
~ 1 Corinthians 14:40 ~

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When the CO comes, the local elders have already met and discussed the qualifications of almost any who meet the general criteria for consideration.  These are basic things, like husband of one wife, good reputation and so on.  Of those discussed, there may be some who meet all of the general criteria and who warrant a closer look at their spiritual activities,  interaction with the congregation and many other details.  If someone meets all of the Bible directed requirements (to a reasonable degree), they can be recommended by the body to the CO for consideration as an MS or Elder.

 

That CO will go over all of these things again, often asking for details and extra information concerning a brother.  If he is satisfied that all is in order and the body is unanimous in their recommendation he will agree to the appointment, pending the questions to that brother.  As was mentioned before, Is he willing to serve, and is he aware of any reason for disqualification? If he answers Yes he is willing and No he is not disqualified (secret sin or past unresolved sin), then he is notified of his appointment.  Effective date is usually a Sunday but the announcement is held until the following Midweek Meeting during the announcements.  It is posted with the organization immediately.


Edited by jwhess
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When I was appointed as an elder, it was on the Sunday after the meeting.  Yes, they asked you first if you accept, and any reasons that would disqualify you.  The next week was our assembly, so the announcement wasn't made until the following week, so I had to keep quiet for about 10 days until the announcement. 

 

Wasn't always like that.  At one time, the first the newly appointed brother new about it was when it was announced at the meeting.

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4 hours ago, venturesofjah said:

Before they make the announcement that someone is a ministerial servant, do the elders ask that person if they want the privilege or is it just by surprise?

it is interesting you say the word surprise..

 

in addition to what has already been said.. (reviewed and all seems in order) most are surprised at being told they would be approved  subject ot the two questions. Most of the pre-approval approaches made have been met with the surprised,  'me?'..   That is always a good start to either an MS or elder appointment... thankfully.

 

What you don't want to hear is 'about time!' or 'I thought you were going to ask'. Even when a brother has worked hard to meet the qualification, humility will prevent him being confident 'in himself'.     Then,  the brother is a blessing to the congregation.

 

It is not like taking an exam and getting  certificate.. :)

 

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7 hours ago, Bek said:

Br. John, I don't think I have come across that phrase before. What is it? How can you resolve a sin? 

Br. Nurzat, perhaps you can picture something that fits this scripture? You need resolution before sacrifice.

 

Matthew 5:23-24.

 “If, then, you are bringing your gift to the altar and there you remember that your brother has something against you, leave your gift there in front of the altar, and go away. First make your peace with your brother, and then come back and offer your gift."

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Do the same considerations apply for someone who is not an MS, but is appointed as, let's say, literature servant? That happened to me years ago. I was just a little over a year in the truth, and our congregation was splitting (actually, two congregations split into three). I was not an MS, but it was announced that I was to be literature servant in the new congregation. I knew nothing about it beforehand. Things did not go well at all in the new congregation. I couldn't do the job, and I messed up royally! Anyway, I called the brother who had studied with me, an elder who was by that time in a different congregation. He said that was normal to be appointed without any notification.

 

More recently, though, an elder told me that's the way things used to be done. He didn't indicate when the change was made. The above experience was in 1986.

 

 


Edited by Sheep
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19 minutes ago, Sheep said:

Do the same considerations apply for someone who is not an MS, but is appointed as, let's say, literature servant? That happened to me years ago. I was just a little over a year in the truth, and our congregation was splitting (actually, two congregations split into three). I was not an MS, but it was announced that I was to be literature servant in the new congregation. I knew nothing about it beforehand. Things did not go well at all in the new congregation. I couldn't do the job, and I messed up royally! Anyway, I called the brother who had studied with me, an elder who was by that time in a different congregation. He said that was normal to be appointed without any notification.

 

More recently, though, an elder told me that's the way things used to be done. He didn't indicate when the change was made. The above experience was in 1986.

 

 

Ooooh a shock for you! 

 

As ha been said 'let all things take place decently and by arrangement'

 

Not good to not speak to the party in advance :(

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40 years ago, I moved to a new congregation.  In the past I had been an MS and elder in other places.  When I moved I informed the new body that I did not want any appointments for the foreseeable future (due to a business start-up, moving difficulties, my lack of confidence in the new congregation and so on).  I moved in September and we had a CO visit 60 days later.  They decided that I was just being "overly-modest" and that I really wanted the job.  They sent the recommendation to the Society and the organization accepted their recommendation.  They came and told me the night they were going to announce it.  I told them I would not accept the job.  The brother said, "But we already received the notice."  I told him they would have to write back and cancel it (which they did).

 

The way we do it now is both scriptural (CO appoints) and much more practical and considerate.

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9 minutes ago, jwhess said:

. . .  I told them I would not accept the job.  The brother said, "But we already received the notice."  I told him they would have to write back and cancel it (which they did). . .

Interesting. Even though I was messing up the literature department so badly, the elders wouldn't let me go. They told me there was no one else to do it. We had a small congregation of 55 publishers. But we had nine elders and I have no idea how many ministerial servants! And there was no one else to do it? I don't get that. :confused:

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1 hour ago, Sheep said:

Interesting. Even though I was messing up the literature department so badly, the elders wouldn't let me go. They told me there was no one else to do it. We had a small congregation of 55 publishers. But we had nine elders and I have no idea how many ministerial servants! And there was no one else to do it? I don't get that. :confused:

Not knowing your congregation and its abilities (ms) I can't really say.. but not everyone appointed is able to do every job. Something like accounts is very responsible and their actions reflect on the trustees (England at least with its charity laws) they become responsible  if the accounts are at not carried out with proper care. The literature dept also is not an easy job to do well. 


Edited by Alan

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1 minute ago, Alan said:

But knowing your congregation and its abilities (ms) but not everyone appointed is able to do every job. Singing like accounts is very responsible and their actions reflect on the trustees (England at least with it charity laws) they become responsible  if the accounts are at not carried out with proper care. The literature dept is not an easy job to do well. 

Later, while in another congregation, I was asked to do Kingdom Hall accounts (not congregation accounts). The elder who asked me wasn't aware of my bad experience with literature. (Back in those days there was money involved in literature, before the voluntary donation arrangement.) I turned it down. I found literature impossible, so there's no telling how badly I would have messed up accounts!

 

When I did literature I was coming up with numbers that were up to $100 out of wack with the reality. I got in trouble for that. Unfortunately I didn't get much instruction on how to do the job, and it was difficult to find an elder who was willing to help me with it. It's just as well; they had an elder take over literature after I left it.

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I was running late because my mother wasn't feeling good that night. We pulled in literally 3 minutes before meeting started, if not later. We walked in and two elders approach me and say they need to see me in the back

 

*gulp!*

 

Then they complement me, tell me I'm not in trouble yet and ask if I've done a bunch of illegal stuff or am involved in any wrongdoing, then they tell me "Ok, we're going to announce you as a Ministerial Servant. Is that OK?" (Something to that effect), and out to find seats I go. xD 

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1 hour ago, Sheep said:

Later, while in another congregation, I was asked to do Kingdom Hall accounts (not congregation accounts). The elder who asked me wasn't aware of my bad experience with literature. (Back in those days there was money involved in literature, before the voluntary donation arrangement.) I turned it down. I found literature impossible, so there's no telling how badly I would have messed up accounts!

 

When I did literature I was coming up with numbers that were up to $100 out of wack with the reality. I got in trouble for that. Unfortunately I didn't get much instruction on how to do the job, and it was difficult to find an elder who was willing to help me with it. It's just as well; they had an elder take over literature after I left it.

Then it is not your fault my brother!!! 

 

No one could be bothered to give you training in the first place and then not help when you asked for it?

 

Keep your peace! :)

 

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We stress training for MS very much.  It is a new in our organizational future and probably not wise to dwell on mistakes of the past.  As our CO used to say, "It is OK to glance in the rear-view mirror occasionally, but a good driver focuses on the road ahead."  I make great efforts to help MS (especially with the computer end of things, like literature and magazine requests, files and paperwork, online inventory and so on).  It doesn';t always stick with them, but we keep trying.  It is a bright new world ahead.

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1 hour ago, jwhess said:

We stress training for MS very much.  It is a new in our organizational future and probably not wise to dwell on mistakes of the past.  As our CO used to say, "It is OK to glance in the rear-view mirror occasionally, but a good driver focuses on the road ahead."  I make great efforts to help MS (especially with the computer end of things, like literature and magazine requests, files and paperwork, online inventory and so on).  It doesn';t always stick with them, but we keep trying.  It is a bright new world ahead.

 

It seems to me that the Slave/Branches are much more in to quality, standards and consistency than they were some years ago.  I'm not saying that things were not those things before. But when I was young - in the '70s, '80s, early '90s - it seemed to be a bit more "up for grabs" regarding how Kingdom Halls were built/decorated, training for brothers in various duties, security, etc.  There was more of a feeling that - Armageddon is coming any moment so there's no point in spending extra money or time for serious quality and that Jehovah would fill in the blanks regarding skills. One only went to Pioneer School ONCE... in LIFE!!!   

 

Today, it's MUCH more attention to doing quality work first, ensuring skilled/trained brothers and sisters are in charge of training others so that everyone knows what they're doing, consistency in building standards and designs - and of course, Pioneer School every five years.  Also all the other schools that did not exist back then; there was only Pioneer School, Gilead... and going to serve where the need was great.  Even regular publishers are being trained as never before.

 

Jehovah give us what we need when we need it, indeed!

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3 hours ago, Alan said:

Then it is not your fault my brother!!! 

 

No one could be bothered to give you training in the first place and then not help when you asked for it?

 

Keep your peace! :)

Thank you for the comments. I should clarify the part about the elders. For my initial training they put me with the literature servant in the previous congregation once to train me. But I didn't really catch on. Over the months that followed, I asked a few elders (remember, we had nine of them) for help with literature, and one would tell me "that's not my field, try Brother So-and-So," and Brother So-and-So would push me off to someone else. I guess they figured that with nine elders there should be plenty of others to help me out. In all, there were two elders that spent some time with me, on two occasions, to show me how it was supposed to be done. But it wasn't enough for me. I still had no comprehension of what I was doing. I think it was just me. I didn't have the knack for it.

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3 hours ago, Hope said:

Today, it's MUCH more attention to doing quality work first, ensuring skilled/trained brothers and sisters are in charge of training others so that everyone knows what they're doing, consistency in building standards and designs - and of course, Pioneer School every five years.  Also all the other schools that did not exist back then; there was only Pioneer School, Gilead... and going to serve where the need was great.  Even regular publishers are being trained as never before.

 

Jehovah give us what we need when we need it, indeed!

Sr. Uani, at my last Elder's School (SCE), the expression was made that the reason for the thorough training and the fact that it was a little different (in focus and application) was because it was "New World" training. It was designed for our work in the future not for our work in the past.  It made me smile.

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7 hours ago, Sheep said:

Thank you for the comments. I should clarify the part about the elders. For my initial training they put me with the literature servant in the previous congregation once to train me. But I didn't really catch on. Over the months that followed, I asked a few elders (remember, we had nine of them) for help with literature, and one would tell me "that's not my field, try Brother So-and-So," and Brother So-and-So would push me off to someone else. I guess they figured that with nine elders there should be plenty of others to help me out. In all, there were two elders that spent some time with me, on two occasions, to show me how it was supposed to be done. But it wasn't enough for me. I still had no comprehension of what I was doing. I think it was just me. I didn't have the knack for it.

This reminds me of the example video of proper/improper way of handling deeper stuff (7 times of Daniel) where the conductor didn't perceive the student not 'getting it' and saying you'll pick it up.. It was held as an example of how not to do it.. 

 

I feel for you.. 

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21 hours ago, jwhess said:

40 years ago, I moved to a new congregation.  In the past I had been an MS and elder in other places.  When I moved I informed the new body that I did not want any appointments for the foreseeable future (due to a business start-up, moving difficulties, my lack of confidence in the new congregation and so on).  I moved in September and we had a CO visit 60 days later.  They decided that I was just being "overly-modest" and that I really wanted the job.  They sent the recommendation to the Society and the organization accepted their recommendation.  They came and told me the night they were going to announce it.  I told them I would not accept the job.  The brother said, "But we already received the notice."  I told him they would have to write back and cancel it (which they did).

 

The way we do it now is both scriptural (CO appoints) and much more practical and considerate.

I have read a lot of your comments on this site. And I really appreciate the way you go about things...humilty, love, and knowledge. Your congregation must truly benefit from you working side by side with them. I mean...I feel that way when I read a lot of posts by the loving friends here this site...but yours stand out to me. Keep up the loving work

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