Witnesses Knocking on Doors Again
Matthew Travers, of Norfolk, and Jules Guerrier, of Walpole, engage in a door-to-door ministry of delivering a message of hope and comfort. Photo courtesy of Jehovah’s Witnesses.
Norfolk and Wrentham Jehovah’s Witnesses Return to Door-to-Door Ministry After 30-Month Pandemic Pause
Jehovah’s Witnesses resumed their trademark door-to-door ministry on September 1 when a two-and-half-year suspension of the work was officially lifted, just in time to begin a global campaign featuring a new interactive Bible study program.
The decision to resume their door-to-door ministry marks the complete restoration of all pre-pandemic in-person activities for the 1.3 million Jehovah’s Witnesses in the 13,000 congregations in the United States. Houses of worship (called Kingdom Halls) were reopened April 1, witnessing in public places resumed May 31 and in-person conventions are once again being planned for 2023.
Visiting neighbors at their homes is something Matthew Travers, of Norfolk, has had an active part in for over 30 years. During the worldwide pause from this in-person ministry, Travers said he “missed the face-to-face conversations.”
Ready to resume knocking on doors, Travers said he is “excited for the opportunity to engage people.” He added, “I look forward to sharing the hope the Bible provides, especially given the distressing things people have experienced during the last two years.”
The suspension of the public ministry was a proactive response by the organization to keep communities and congregants safe. The move was also unprecedented. Jehovah’s Witnesses had been preaching from house to house without interruption for more than 100 years through an economic depression, two world wars and global unrest. But COVID-19 demanded a different response.
“We believe that the early decision to shut down all in-person activities for more than two years has saved many lives,” said Robert Hendriks, U.S. spokesperson for Jehovah’s Witnesses. “We’re now ready and eager to reconnect with our neighbors once again – person to person, face to face. It’s not the only way that we preach, but it has historically been the most effective way to deliver our message of comfort and hope.”
The pandemic forced Jehovah’s Witnesses to quickly pivot to virtual meetings and conventions, while conducting their ministry exclusively through letters, phone calls and virtual Bible studies. This has led to growth in meeting attendance and the number of congregants, with more than 400,000 newly baptized Witnesses joining the ranks of 120,000 congregations globally in just the first two years of the pandemic.
For more information about Jehovah’s Witnesses, their history, beliefs and activities, visit their official website, jw.org, with content available in more than 1,000 languages.