By Guest Nicole
By The Librarian
もりしんいち: 集りあった愛する兄弟姉妹、まだ見ぬ日本の、世界の、兄弟姉妹と共に 励まし合い
忍耐しつつ一心に まだ見ぬ希望を 待ちたいと思います。
Brothers and sisters who love you had gathered , yet unseen in Japan , of the world , each other encouragement along with the brothers and sisters , I think I want to wait for intently unseen hope with patience . - Contributed on a Google + page of mine
By Guest Nicole
By Guest Nicole
Public Witnessing in Tokyo
By Guest Nicole
By Bible Speaks
Welcome! We know You’ll Love all of GodÂ’s People! .
We finished the memorial. I invited my grandmother, she is not a witnesses, to this ceremony. She accepted my request and came to our kingdom hall even if she has a bad condition. Thank Jehovah for giving us a great opportunity!
My mother, she is a pioneer, my grandmother and me. ItÂ’s a 3 generations from Japan! #jw #jwjapan
FEBRUARY 17, 2016 / GAZELLE I wanted to visit Ebina Bethel. I really wanted to see the Japan branch office of Jehovah’s Witnesses, which is one of the largest in the world. This was one of the reasons why I planned a week-long vacation in Japan .
The Bethel’s address is 4-7-1 Nakashinden, Ebina City, Kanagawa Prefecture, 243-0496.
To get there, take the Odakyu Odawara Line Express bound for Odawara, and get off at Ebina Station or Atsugi Station. The branch is a 10-minute taxi ride from Ebina Station or a 20-minute walk from Atsugi Station.
FROM ASAKUSA TO ATSUGI
From Asakusa in Tokyo, I took the Tokyo Metro Ginza Line until Omote-sando Station, where I transferred to the Tokyo Metro Chiyoda Line to Yoyogi-Uehara Station. In this station, I hopped on to the Odakyu Odawara Line Express to Atsugi Station. My travel time was approximately 90 minutes.
However, finding the Ebina Bethel after getting out of the Atsugi station was another story. I did not know how to reach it from there. I approached a station staff and showed him the map and address of Ebina Bethel, and he gave me certain directions. I thought that I was able to follow the map and directions given to me. However, after about 30 minutes of walking, I realized that I was already lost. I decided to try asking random Japanese walking on the street, “Where is 4-7-1 Nakashinden?” “Do you know Watchtower? Or Jehovah’s Witnesses?” But unfortunately, we could not communicate well because of the language barrier. They did not know “Watchtower” or “Jehovah’s Witnesses”. Of course, they have different [and Japanese!] terms for these. I prayed to Jehovah God to help me reach Ebina Bethel. I said that if I still would not be able to find it until lunchtime, I would just go back to Asakusa.
Finally, I chanced upon a Japanese man cleaning his car in front of his house. I gathered courage and asked him while showing him the map and address. Fortunately, he knew how to speak in English! He was also familiar with Ebina Bethel. He pointed his finger to the way. Yes! Thanks to Jehovah God because I finally made to the Japan Branch Office of Jehovah’s Witnesses!
EBINA BETHEL TOUR
A branch office of Jehovah’s Witnesses is called “Bethel”, meaning “House of God”. This Biblical name is fitting because all those serving here are ordained ministers who have dedicated themselves to Jehovah God and devote themselves full-time to promoting the work of Kingdom preaching. Bethel family members are furnished with room and board and a small monthly allowance to assist with their personal expenses.
Under the direction of Governing Body of Jehovah’s Witnesses, Ebina Bethel supports the worldwide Kingdom-preaching activity in cooperation with more than 90 other branches around the globe.
Tour times are from Monday to Friday, 8am to 11 am and 1pm to 4pm
A local brother served as our tour guide. I toured with Brother Danilo Jamero, also a Filipino. He is a circuit overseer to Tagalog congregations in Visayas and Mindanao in the Philippines. He was also vacationing at that time in Japan. He was invited and hosted by the Ueno Tagalog Congregation in Tokyo, which planned a week-long activities for him. Today, his schedule was the Ebina Bethel tour.
The brothers serving here handle correspondence from traveling overseers, elders, pioneers, and others. This department schedules assemblies, conventions, and various schools. It also keeps records of congregation territories and field service activity.
This provides assistance when it becomes necessary to establish or defend the rights of Jehovah’s Witnesses.—Philippians 1:7
This receives the English text of our publications in electronic form from the world headquarters of Jehovah’s Witnesses in the United States. The text is then translated, checked, proofread, and composed. Translation into Japanese sign language is also done here.
Under the direction of the Governing Body of Jehovah’s Witnesses, the Writing Desk does research and prepares material for publication in the Watchtower and Awake! as well as on the jw.org website.
This department makes printing plates using electronic files sent from world headquarters and various translating branches. For printing, pages are arranged electronically in printing order. The information is then inscribed by laser on four separate plates for printing full-color images.
Two high-speed offset presses print Bibles, books, magazines, and brochures. A sheetfed press prints cover for softcover books.The printery produce publications by Jehovah’s Witnesses in their personal study and Christian ministry.
Soft cover and hardcover bindery lines produce Bible and other literature. The bindery can produce up to 100,000 books in one day.
This ships publications to congregations throughout Japan as well as to branches overseas. It also receives and handles materials sent to the branch.
REGIONAL AUDIO/VIDEO CENTER
This department produces audio and video publications in more than 80 languages for distribution in CD/DVD formats and on jw.org
This department maintains computer systems in the Japan branch and assists other branches in Asia with their computer needs.
Trained members of the Bethel family carefully maintain the branch equipment to keep it operating efficiently and safely.
After the Bethel tour, we were showed the history room. It focused on the progress of the Kingdom preaching work in Japan.
A Special Exhibit: Which Book Helped You to Know Jehovah?
A Special Exhibit: From Family Albums in Japan
A Special Exhibit: Revisions of the New World Translation of the Holy Scriptures
Photo Taking Corner: Donald Haslett was the first missionary of Jehovah’s Witnesses to visit Japan
Priceless memorabilias from 1930’s to 1940’s that were used as tools for preaching the good news
LUNCH WITH JAPANESE BROTHERS AND SISTERS
We were then invited to lunch by some Japanese brothers and sister volunteering in a Tagalog Congregation near Ebina. They welcomed us warmly. They are so kind, humble and accommodating! We had an encouraging and faith-strengthening conversation with them.
After lunchtime, a Japanese sister and her husband drove and dropped me off at Atsugi Station.
Jehovah God is truly generous. I only asked to at least see the Ebina Bethel. But He not only let me find it, but He let me have a tour, eat lunch, and meet our loving and warm-hearted Japanese brothers and sisters. If it is Jehovah God’s will, I hope I could visit here again next time with my family and friends.
A VISIT TO EBINA BETHEL
By Guest Nicole
Jehovah’s Witnesses from Florida, Georgia and Alabama will attend an annual convention at the Columbus Civic Center in July.
Convention spokesman William Goodman announced that about 9,400 people are expected to attend the event to be held over two weekends, July 1-3 and July 8-10.
You do not have to be a Jehovah’s Witness to attend. Goodman said the event is free to the public.
The theme of this year’s convention is “Remain Loyal to Jehovah!”
Goodman said the convention will examine the loyalty of Jesus to his father Jehovah God as outlined in the Bible and will emphasize how all people can develop a stronger relationship with friends, family and God.
On Saturday afternoon a feature length video “Hope For What We Do Not See” will be shown.
“Over the next three weeks we will be out inviting people here to attend this special event. We are all looking forward to being back in Columbus,” Goodman said.
By Jack Ryan
Japanese blog translated;
There was a new announcement at the meeting this week.
Org will accept JCB credit card for online donation,
I’m fed up with org’s soliciting money.
And there was another announcement.
Members will not allowed to use “second auditorium” during a meeting without elder’s permission.
(Second auditorium is a small room attached to a main auditorium, sometimes used by people
who don’t feel well or baby keep crying)
I always use “second auditorium” during meetings, so this new announcement made me feel
extremely uncomfortable. I’m thinking about stop going to meetings . It is not loving Christian
By Jack Ryan
KH used by
Oe congregation and Obiyama congregation
(KUMAMOTO KUMAMOTOSHI )
is soon to be closed.
Reason ’They cannot afford to maintain KH.
Two Congregations have no loan payment, but amount of donation keep declining.
By Guest Nicole
Numbering 8.4 million worldwide, the Jehovah’s Witness faith is derived from a unique and, to some Christians, perhaps radical interpretation of both the Old Testament and New Testament of the Bible. Members are devoutly Christian, yet do not venerate the cross or any other symbols, abstain from many mainstream seasonal celebrations and avoid politics so assiduously that devotees do not vote.
Late last month, more than 4,000 Jehovah’s Witnesses gathered in Nampa for the first regional convention in Idaho in more than 20 years. About 180 followers of this tradition are active in the Wood River Valley, gathering at the Jehovah’s Witness Kingdom Hall at 2731 Shenandoah Drive in Hailey.
“We have been in the Wood River Valley as a congregation since the 1960s,” said Kevin “Keb” Anderson, a “publisher,” or baptized member, of the congregation.
“A publisher is a minister of the good news,” Anderson said. “Both men and women, they teach and preach about a real kingdom government described in the Bible that will bring true peace and security to the earth. Our hopes and plans are that others will learn what we are teaching from the Bible.”
He said that after the Armageddon prophesied in the Bible, only 144,000 people will take places in the heavenly realm, but billions more faithful could enjoy perfect health for eternity on Earth.
“Just as it was originally intended for Adam,” he said.
The Jehovah’s Witnesses began as a Bible study group in 1870 in Pittsburgh, Pa., headed by Charles Taze Russell. According to Wikipedia, an apocalypse was expected by the faithful in 1914 and at several future dates, including 1975, neither of which transpired.
Royce Porkert, of the media services department operating the Jehovah’s Witnesses Convention, said the group no longer espouses a particular date for Armageddon.
“We don’t live by a date anymore,” Porkert said. “1914 was a significant year. So was 1975. But the Bible says we know neither the day nor the hour, so keep on the watch.”
Porkert cites numerous biblical references in describing his creed. He said the Jehovah’s Witnesses follow the teachings and example of Jesus Christ and honor him as their savior and as the son of God. He said the Kingdom of God is a real government in heaven, not a condition in the hearts of Christians.
“It will replace human governments and accomplish God’s purpose for the earth. Jesus is the king of God’s Kingdom in heaven. He began ruling in 1914,” he said.
According to Porkert, deliverance from sin and death is possible through the “ransom” sacrifice of Jesus that was ordained by Jehovah God to set right the sins that began in the Garden of Eden.
“In a sense, Jesus stepped into Adam’s place in order to save us,” states the jw.org website, the official website of the Jehovah’s Witnesses. “By sacrificing, or giving up, his perfect life in flawless obedience to God, Jesus paid the price for Adam’s sin.”
To benefit from this sacrifice, Jehovah’s Witnesses must not only exercise faith in Jesus but also change their course of life and get baptized. A person’s works prove that his faith is alive, Porkert said.
“However, salvation cannot be earned—it comes through the undeserved kindness of God,” he said.
According to the Jehovah’s Witness creed, people who do not reach salvation will die and pass out of existence.
“They do not suffer in a fiery hell of torment,” Porkert said. “God will bring billions back from death by means of a resurrection. However, those who refuse to learn God’s ways after being raised to life will be destroyed forever with no hope of a resurrection.”
Starting in September, the Kingdom Hall of Jehovah’s Witnesses will be offering to the community a program titled “Where Can You Find Comfort?”
In October, the group will start a special campaign to invite people to meetings on Sundays at 1 p.m.
“Each Sunday in October, there will be a different talk subject that will appeal to the public,” Anderson said. “All of our meetings are open to the public and collections are never taken.”
For more information, go to www.jw.org.
By Guest Nicole
Loyalty is the theme for this year’s Convention of Jehovah’s Witnesses series in Duluth starting Friday.
All ages can attend the free three-day program with the theme “Remain Loyal to Jehovah!,” according to a news release.
The program will take place at the Infinite Energy Center at 6400 Sugarloaf Parkway from Aug. 12 to Aug. 14 and from Aug. 19 to Aug. 21. Sessions will start each day at 9:20 a.m.
“Loyalty can be a challenge. … At work, in the family, in our personal lives and in our relationship with God,” Mike Funston, a convention spokesman, said in the release. “All too often, disloyalty is fracturing our lives and communities.”
The convention will feature discussions and video clips about Jesus Christ and a full-length film on “on how a mighty King remained loyal while being besieged by his enemies,” he said.
Funston said about 6,800 are expected to attend each day.
For information, visit www.jw.org.
By Guest Nicole
3000 in attendance
Almost 40 publishers got baptized.
By Guest Nicole
The annual convention of Jehovah’s Witnesses takes place July 22 at the PCU Centre in Portage la Prairie. A total of 47 Bible-based talks and more than 50 audio and video presentations will assist all in attendance to reflect on timeless and practical advice found in God’s word. Included among the video presentations are two feature-length video dramas that demonstrate examples of severe tests of loyalty faced by faithful worshippers of God. The full program schedule is available for download at jw.org. Sessions begin at 9:20 a.m. There is no charge for admission, and no collections will be taken.
By Guest Nicole
DEKALB – Jehovah’s Witnesses are stopping at homes to invite residents to this year’s Remain Loyal to Jehovah Regional Convention taking place July 29-31 at Northern Illinois University Convocation Center, 1525 W. Lincoln Highway.
A Spanish-speaking convention will be Aug. 5-7 at the center. The public is welcome.
Visit jw.org for a convention program, highlights, and trailers for two video presentations.
By Guest Nicole
BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) -
The protests and national attention have not kept tourists away from the Capital City. A regional convention of Jehovah’s Witnesses is in Baton Rouge for the first time since the early 80s.
“Everybody's very hospitable. We've been enjoying the nice restaurants and the nice people here, so it's been real nice,” pastor Timothy Bealer said.
Bealer is in town from Mississippi to help preach the convention’s theme of loyalty. He said organizers never considered moving the gathering because of recent events.
“We do have good Bible-based messages that come across our platform here as well as in our congregation meetings, so in situations like that, comfort is what's needed the majority of the time,” Bealer explained.
Around 15,000 witnesses will be in Baton Rouge over three weekends, and with them comes revenue. Organizers say around 7,000 hotel nights have been booked at 17 area hotels.
“We have been pursuing Jehovah's Witnesses for many years and finally brought them in about a year ago to finalize plans for this year,” Visit Baton Rouge CEO Paul Arrigo said.
The summer months are traditionally slow for Baton Rouge tourism, plus corporate business is down this year thanks to the declining oil industry, but Arrigo said no one has pulled out over protests.
“We have had one or two calls of persons who had interest in knowing what was going on, and the determination was for the conference to continue to come to Baton Rouge, and they had a very good conference,” he said.
It’s the same feeling at the River Center. The Witnesses will not only take home lessons in faith, but also impressions of a host city working to heal.
The Jehovah’s Witness convention is broken up over three weekends (July 8-10, July 15-17, and July 29-31). The entire program is free and open to the public. Doors open to the River Center at 8:00 a.m. for seniors/disabled and 8:15 for all others. The program starts at 9:20 each day and ends at 4:50 p.m. on Friday and Saturday and 3:45 p.m. on Sunday.
Baton Rouge will also host the Tiger-Rock Martial Arts World Championships and Italian Heritage Fest in the coming weeks.
By Guest Nicole
LeConte Hall signs during a convention for the hearing impaired at the Jehovah Witnesses Assembly Hall in Fairfield, Friday. The convention drew 1,300 people and attendees travelled from Alaska, Idaho, Nevada, Oregon and Washington. (Aaron Rosenblatt/Daily Republic)
FAIRFIELD — Gloria and Gilbert Dante drove from Spokane, Washington. Jose and Marites Calma flew in from Hawaii.
Both couples were among the 1,300 people in the Jehovah’s Witnesses assembly hall Friday for the first day of a three-day annual regional convention for the deaf, blind and those with impaired hearing.
Some of them traveled from as far as Alaska.
Gilbert Dante lost his hearing when he was 7 months old.
“He couldn’t hear anything,” Gloria Dante, his wife of 43 years, said.
He was sent to the Berkeley School for the Deaf, where he learned alongside John Tracy, the deaf son of actor Spencer Tracy.
Gloria Dante learned sign language when she married him. He used to spell words backward in sign language just to tease her, she said.
The couple became Jehovah’s Witnesses after their son died of Sudden Infant Death syndrome in 1972. They traveled for several years to Southern California to attend conferences that offered services for those with hearing impairments.
“He is in his element (here),” said Gloria Dante. “He is hearing the Bible through his eyes.”
Marites Calma grew up in a small Jehovah’s Witness congregation with no services for the deaf. She would go to meetings but not understand what was being said.
“It’s hard to connect with God if you don’t know him,” LeConte Hall, a Vacaville resident who spoke Friday afternoon on the topic “When Tired,” said.
Marites Calma said through her husband of 20 years that the American Sign Language conference is “in my language” and gives her the opportunity to meet with other deaf Jehovah’s Witnesses.
Bryce Henry of Santa Rosa learned sign language and speech. He’s more comfortable signing, he said.
The American Sign Language conventions draw him closer to God, he said, because the Scriptures are brought to life rather than just reading them on paper. He has many passages of Scripture, in American Sign Language, on his phone.
This year’s convention has more audio than in the past, Hall said. Most of the deaf people attending are accompanied by speaking family and/or friends.
“For each deaf person here, there’s probably another two or three people with them,” Hall said.
Nearly 50 videos will be shown over the course of the convention. About 90 percent will have audio as well as American Sign Language.
Speaking people at the convention are asked to use sign language out of respect to those with hearing impairments. A bevy of monitors are spread throughout the huge room so all can see.
According to JW.org, the first sign language service was held in Korea 40 years ago. Today, there are more than 4,000 sign languages services in Jehovah’s Witnesses.
The Fairfield Kingdom Hall offers American Sign Language services at 7 p.m. Tuesdays and 10 a.m. Saturdays at 2010 E. Tabor Ave.
Hall is part of the services. He learned American Sign Language from the deaf mother of a friend. He began working as interpreter while in his teens.
The Jehovah’s Witnesses website has translated its material in 28 different sign languages.
The free convention is open to the public and begins at 9:20 a.m. It’s in the Assembly Hall at 2020 Walters Road, behind the Kingdom Hall.
For more information, visit https://www.jw.org/ase/jehovahs-witnesses/conventions
By Guest Nicole
The first of five Jehovah's Witnesses conventions will be held Friday through next Sunday at the Santander Arena, 700 Penn St.
Other conventions will be held July 29-31; August 5-7 (in Spanish); August 12-14 and August 19-21. The conventions will draw a combined total of 25,000 Jehovah's Witnesses from 225 congregations in Pennsylvania and Maryland.The theme for the conventions will be "Remain Loyal to Jehovah!" Visitors are welcome; there is no admission fee and no collection taken.
By Guest Nicole
Robert Fleming comes from a long line of Sault Jehovah's Witnesses
Robert Fleming travels the deserts, jungles, savannahs, and waters of West Africa hoping people will see what he sees in the Bible.
Fleming is a Sault born-and-raised fourth generation Jehovah’s Witness who left the area when he was 24 and came back for the first time in 20 years last week to visit family and attend a regional annual conference of Jehovah’s Witnesses.
In an interview with SooToday Fleming talked a bit about his family’s history and about his life preaching in West Africa.
Fleming’s great grandfather John Fleming came from Scotland to the Sault in the early 1900s and when the Spanish flu hit the area he got a job at the cemetery on Fourth Line.
One day he was literally standing body-deep in a grave he’d just dug out when a Jehovah’s Witness approached him and commented, “you know, that’s hell you’re standing in."
John Fleming was puzzled and, after through conversation learned about how Jehovah’s Witnesses don’t believe in an afterlife in the same way other Christians might imagine it and other interpretations the group has of the Bible.
This meeting led to a full-blown conversion and three generations later John Fleming’s descendants are still practicing Jehovah’s Witnesses.
“My earliest memories are me going door to door as a kingdom preacher,” said Robert Fleming who after his father, grandfather, and great grandfather is continuing the tradition.
“Third Line, Carpin Beach Road, Leighs Bay Road. I don’t know if the old-timers are still there or if I’d even remember them. I was very young,” said Robert Fleming.
Fleming left the Sault in 1985 to preach in Quebec and in 1995 he went to the Jehovah’s Witnesses Missionary School in Paterson, NY.
After five months of training there Fleming flew to West Africa where for the last 20 years he’s been preaching for Jehovah out of Douala, Cameroon, which at 3 million people is the country’s largest city.
“I was nervous to go, boy oh boy. I was there one week and I was checking out the price of airplane tickets to go back. Is that too honest?”
Fleming said that Cameroon is not only immensely diverse geographically — it's often called “Africa in miniature” — but also culturally as the country has roughly 200 tribes and dialects and a range of religions that include indigenous beliefs and assorted versions of Christianity and Islam.
“There’s a hundred times more religions than Canada. Every neighbourhood has its own church because they want to worship God how they think God should be worshipped,” he said.
Fleming said Cameroonians are incredibly religious people and that the Christians among them will often carry a Bible around on their phones and regularly consult it.
Fleming said the more traditional African religions that he’s encountered don’t talk about “God” or “gods” so much as they talk about “forces of nature” but that these forces seem to be roughly equivalent to the idea of “gods”.
Most Africans, regardless of their professed religion he said, continue to follow a tradition of ancestry worship, where they believe that their dead relatives are still influencing the world and helping or harming their living descendants based on how pleased they feel.
“They’ll put out salt or palm oil, things like that, to appease, say, their dead grandfather and if something bad happens in the family they might say it’s their grandfather that has done it to them. The Bamelike Tribe in the west of Cameroon, after the grandfather has been dead for a year, will actually dig up the skull and they’ll have a small alter in the home and when they have to make big decisions they’ll consulate with him.”
In his time there, Fleming has travelled by canoe and bush-bike to get to remote tribes in the jungle, like a tribe of pygmies living in grass huts, or to secluded islands off the coast of the continent, but he never goes more than a days journey.
Fleming said Jehovah’s Witnesses have been in Cameroon since the late 1930s and even though they were banned from 1970 until 1993, largely for not participating in local government because it is against their faith, even tribes like the pygmies are quite familiar with his group when they arrive.
As a preacher, Fleming said he follows the standard Jehovah’s witness preaching technique of basically asking people what they think about a topic, then introducing what the Bible teaches about that topic, and then hopefully getting a person out to a bible study group where they can learn more and potentially feel compelled to join the faith.
But unlike other Christian religions, he said, to be a Jehovah’s Witness a person cannot partially follow their old faith, and in the case of Cameroon, that means locals have to leave their ancestry worship behind — something which can be difficult for many when, like Christmas here, it's not just a religious practice but also a social one.
“When we do preach to them and they read the Bible and realize ‘Hey my grandfather is just sleeping’ that means they have to leave these traditions that obviously contradict what the scriptures say, to serve Jehovah.”
Fleming said that when he arrived in 1996 there were about 20,000 Jehovah’s Witnesses in the country and that now there are about 40,000.
He said many people in Cameroon see the positives of the faith, the health benefits it tends to lead to like stopping smoking or reducing AIDS, and actually approach his group to set up Jehovah’s Witnesses centres, or ‘kingdom halls’, in their community.
“Many people in Cameroon make the change. I wouldn’t have stayed there for 20 years if we weren’t having wonderful success,” he said.
By Guest Nicole
As part of a series of three-day conventions across the country, Jehovah's Witnesses are offering community programming this weekend in Rochester.
With a theme of "Remain Loyal to Jehovah," the convention features more than 40 different presentations, and runs from 9:20 a.m. to 4:50 p.m. on Friday and Saturday, and from 9:20 a.m. to 3:45 p.m. on Sunday. All of the events will be held at the Blue Cross Arena at the Community War Memorial, 100 Exchange Blvd., and will feature music, videos and films exploring loyalty.
The event is free and open to the public. More information can be found at www.jw.org.
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