Meetings to Help Us Make Disciples
WEEK STARTING APRIL 29
12 min: Song 80. Appropriate announcements from Our Kingdom Service and general announcements. Remind brothers that they will be asked during last meeting of month to tell what they have been doing with the things they have learned.
20 min: Discussion of Psalm 146 with the purpose of familiarizing ourselves with the psalm that is the basis of our suggested presentation for May through August. To be handled by a well-qualified teacher. Have verses read by different ones in audience, asking such questions as the following after each reading:
Vs. 1: As Jehovah’s Witnesses, what do we want to do? How does our sharing in field service help to accomplish this?
Vs. 2: In our efforts to make known God’s government, what should be our determination?
Vss. 3, 4: What are we advised not to do? Why? How could we use these verses to show that confidence in human governments is not practical?
Vss. 5, 6: What is the basis of true happiness? Why is Jehovah the one in whom we should trust? How could we use these verses to show that confidence in a government by God is practical?
Vss. 7-9: What will Jehovah do for the downtrodden and unfortunate? Whom does Jehovah love? Who will not prosper? How will our using this information encourage people to have confidence in a government by God?
Vs. 10: For how long is Jehovah to rule? Why does this give us confidence in God’s government? So, what should we do? In conclusion stress that Jehovah’s kingdom, his government, is mankind’s true hope. We have confidence in it and want to help others to have such confidence.
20 min: “Presenting the Good News—With Our Topic for Conversation.” Chairman to base opening remarks on paragraph 1, drawing attention to our previous Topic for Conversation and the appropriateness of following it up with our new one. Then have qualified publisher demonstrate presentation in paragraphs 2-4 with householder who is willing to listen. Chairman should interrupt at appropriate points and ask audience why they feel this is a good way to introduce a point or to draw householder out, and so forth. Analyze whole presentation point by point with audience. Then have a second presentation by a new or youthful publisher who gives a simplified presentation using only Psalm 146:3 and the suggestions in paragraph 5. Consider paragraphs 6-8 by means of audience participation, emphasizing that our ultimate goal is to make disciples.
8 min: Field service announcements. Song 81 and prayer.
WEEK STARTING MAY 6
8 min: Song 58 and general announcements.
23 min: “Spreading the Good News with Joy.” To be handled by an elder with good teaching ability, using the question-and-answer method. Have the paragraphs read by a good reader. Enthusiastically affirm how grand the good news is that we bear, highlighting who it is that is attempting to dampen our joy. Show how joy can be realized in defeating his efforts. Emphasize the ways in which many of God’s people maintain their joy in spite of obstacles. Stress the importance of good preparation (par. 10); let publishers illustrate this by relating personal experiences.
22 min: “Can You Have a Part in Disciple-Making?” Talk by elder emphasizing that it is a Christian responsibility for all to share in telling the good news and in making disciples. (Matt. 24:14; 28:19, 20) Raise the question: But can all really have a part in disciple-making? Have three publishers, prepared in advance, relate the three experiences in the article. After each experience, ask for similar experiences that local publishers may know about. Draw comments from the audience as to how it is possible for all to share in disciple-making. Show ways in which we all can have a part in this vital activity.
7 min: Field service announcements. Song 89 and prayer.
WEEK STARTING MAY 13
8 min: Song 17 and general announcements.
25 min: Opposition Overcome, Evidence of Backing by God’s Spirit. Talk highlighting Jesus’ promise at Acts 1:8. Use material from 1979 Yearbook to prove that God’s spirit backs those who serve him and helps to turn back Devil-inspired opposition. Assign publishers in advance to relate briefly some of the experiences cited below, with speaker telling the others. Clergy opposition unsuccessful: p. 40 ¶1-4; p. 65 ¶1; p. 215 ¶2. Mob action failed: p. 208 ¶3 to p. 209 ¶3; p. 218 ¶2 to p. 219 ¶1. Bans and censorship overcome: p. 139 ¶1 to p. 141 ¶4; p. 149 ¶3 to p. 150 ¶3. Police action backfired: p. 110 ¶2 to p. 112 ¶4. Hypocrisy of clergy aids honest-hearted ones: p. 102 ¶3 to p. 103 ¶2. In conclusion encourage brothers to read Yearbook; upbuilding experiences remind us that Jehovah is truly with us.
20 min: How Helpful Have the Meetings for Field Service Been to You? Handled by elder who has frequently conducted these meetings and does well. Point to the purpose of these meetings: To help prepare publishers to be better equipped for field service. Draw audience into discussion with questions such as: Have you found these discussions immediately before you go in field service helpful? In what way? What can you do to contribute to the effectiveness of these meetings? To illustrate value of these meetings, conduct the current discussion on “Listening to People We Talk To,” letting audience serve as publishers who have met for service. If time permits, entertain experiences from audience showing successful applications of points from Meetings for Field Service. If you have not gone to a meeting for field service, discuss outlined material with car group or while en route to territory.
7 min: Suggest that audience bring their copies of March 22, 1979, Awake! with them for next week’s meeting. Field service announcements. Song 57 and prayer.
WEEK STARTING MAY 20
Theme: Glorify God by Bearing Good Fruit.
15 min: Does Disco Glorify God? Discussion based on the material in the first three articles in the March 22, 1979, Awake!, making local application. Draw out the information in the articles by involving the audience with questions such as: What is disco? How popular is it in our community? Why do people go to discos? What evidence is there that disco has homosexual roots? Why is this a matter of concern to Christians? Why are disco’s roots in ancient fertility dances also a matter of concern to Christians? While not all discos may be the same, what are the outstanding characteristics of disco? Are these things that glorify God? Why are disco movies such as “Saturday Night Fever” objectionable to Christians? What spiritual as well as physical dangers are encountered at many discos?
15 min: “How Christians Should View Disco.” Talk and discussion of final article on disco in March 22, 1979, Awake! Raise and discuss following questions, drawing comments from audience: (Read applicable paragraphs.) What advice was given a teen-ager by a disco magazine? What are some of these harsh realities in the world today that are so often confronted at discos? How have some Christians been harmed spiritually by going to discos? What evidence is there that just because something is enjoyable, that does not make it pleasing to God? Although social gatherings can be upbuilding and fine, emphasize the need to watch one’s conduct. Explain what developed at early Christian “love feasts.” Encourage all to work together to keep the Christian congregation free from the unrestrained spirit of the world. At all times our conduct should glorify God.—1 Cor. 10:31.
17 min: Discussion of Our Kingdom Service insert from the beginning of article to the end of the section “Maintaining Honorable Conduct” (pars. 1-13). While this will primarily be a talk, elder should bring audience into discussion by asking questions that highlight such main points as making plans now to attend, commendation for improved conduct, applying Bible principles daily. Emphasize thoughts especially applying to your congregation.
5 min: Service announcements. Song 55 and prayer.
WEEK STARTING MAY 27
15 min: Song 18. General announcements. Talk: Why I Attend Conventions. In preparation, speaker should inquire of others in congregation what their reasons are for attending conventions and how they have applied things learned in their lives. Use these local expressions. Encourage all to arrange their affairs to attend “Living Hope” convention all four days.
15 min: “1979 ‘Living Hope’ District Conventions.” By question-and-answer discussion, consider material in insert from “Special Morning Field Service” to end of section “Music.” Ask questions that will emphasize the making of plans now to share in field service at convention. To build enthusiasm for field service, quotes from the three conventions reported on can be read or briefly discussed. In portion from “Volunteer Service” through “Music,” ask questions that will make sure the brothers understand clearly the situation regarding the need for volunteers and how they can go about volunteering their services. Help them to fully appreciate why the new arrangements for field service and also convention tickets were instituted and should have our hearty cooperation.
8 min: “District Convention Reminders.” Consider remaining insert material under this heading. Can be presented in the form of a talk and can read certain pertinent sentences. Invite audience to follow closely in their copies. These are “reminders” of things many publishers will recall from previous assemblies, so can move quickly from one point to another. Conclude by reading John 13:35 and comment on the spirit that will undoubtedly move all of us to assist and encourage one another to attend and benefit fully from this “Living Hope” District Convention.
15 min: What Are We Doing with What We Are Learning?
This is the fifth month for this special audience-participation meeting part. Work needs to be done on it WELL IN ADVANCE. During May, regular meeting attenders will spend up to 24 hours at congregation meetings. Have we been using what we have learned there? Remind the brothers early in the month that they will be asked about it during this meeting part. Continue to emphasize that what is wanted is not simply a recitation of what they have learned from the meetings, but how they have actually used or benefited from what was presented at these meetings.
7 min: Service announcements, including subject to be discussed during week’s meetings for field service. Song 36 and prayer.