Sat 25 Feb 2006
Last week, I visited Kingdom’s Hall of Jehovah’s Witness Center. I decided to visit a the center because in the past, my mother had told me about the religion because her grandmother, my great grandmother was one. Also, although my friend from home is not Jehovah’s Witness, her family is and since Jehovah’s Witness do not celebrate Christmas or birthdays, my friend would come to my house to open presents on such holidays. So, I was interested in learning what was exactly entailed in the Jehovah’s Witness belief system.
The Kingdom’s Hall building itself was unsuspecting and looked more like an office than a religious center. When I entered the building, an individual handed me about 8 pamphlets regarding every aspect of the Jehovah’s Witness beliefs. After I sat down, two women from the audience went to the front and acted out a skit. The skit was based on their belief that communicating with the dead was impossible and that spiritualism is sinful. Next, a male around my age went to the front and discussed why violent video games were not for Christians. He quoted passages from the Bible and explained that those who love violence are hated by Jehovah. Following that, the congregation sang a song; since I did not a hymn book, a gentleman to my right offered me his. After the song, two men spoke about how to create opportunities to talk about Jehovah’s word and try to convert people to their faith. This part of the service was very interactive; the preacher would ask a question and individuals from the audience would raise their hand to answer. It was easy to tell that this was an extremely close group since the preacher called on everyone by their first name. Another part that I found interesting was that when the preacher called on someone to answer a question, he referred to them as “brother” or “sister.” The whole event lasted for about 2 hours. After the service ended and as I was preparing to leave, the man who offered me his hymn book came to introduce himself and the rest of his family. And before I knew it, the entire congregation swarmed me. They were all very polite and friendly as they introduced themselves but they were trying to get me to convert to their belief system. They asked if I was from the area, why was I here and etc. One women offered me a video about what it means to be a Jehovah’s Witness and if I was interested in becoming one. Looking back on it, I should have known that was going to happen. I had just sat there for 2 hours listening to them talk about how to create opportunities to convert people and, of course they were going to try it out on the one person in the building who was not a Jehovah’s Witness. All in all, it was an interesting experience. Even though everyone was very polite, I felt pressured to become a Jehovah’s Witness and it was easy to tell they were disappointed when I declined.