“Bear Thorough Witness to the Good News”
1. What good news do we have to share?
1 In a world where good news is scarce, we have the privilege “to bear thorough witness to the good news of the undeserved kindness of God.” (Acts 20:24) This includes letting people know that “the last days” will soon give way to Jehovah’s righteous new world, where “the former things [will] have passed away.” (2 Tim. 3:1-5; Rev. 21:4) At that time there will be no more sickness. (Isa. 33:24) Deceased loved ones will come out of the memorial tombs and be reunited with family and friends. (John 5:28, 29) The whole earth will be made into a beautiful paradise. (Isa. 65:21-23) This is just a sampling of the good news we have to share!
2. Why does the Memorial season provide excellent opportunities to bear witness to the good news?
2 The months of March, April, and May will provide excellent opportunities to declare such good news. During these months the weather and longer daylight hours in many parts of the world are favorable for spending more time in the ministry. In addition, the most important occasion of the year, the Memorial, will be observed around the world after sundown on Saturday, March 22. Now is the time to begin making preparations to increase our activity.
3. What will help us to increase our activity as families?
3 Auxiliary Pioneer: Could you arrange your schedule to auxiliary pioneer for one, two, or all three months? Why not take some time during your next family study to consider this matter? With good cooperation, one or more members of the family may be able to auxiliary pioneer. (Prov. 15:22) Make this a matter of prayer, and see how Jehovah blesses your efforts. (Prov. 16:3) Even if no one in the family can auxiliary pioneer, all family members can set specific goals to increase their share in the ministry while working along with those who are able to pioneer.
4. How could we schedule our affairs to auxiliary pioneer if we have a full-time job?
4 If you have a full-time job, a good schedule may enable you to auxiliary pioneer. Perhaps you can use part of your lunch break to preach. Or you can obtain a personal territory near your home or place of employment and share in the ministry for an hour or so before or after work. You may be able to make additional time in your schedule by moving nonessential activities to another month and by spending full days in the ministry on the weekends. Some have been able to take a day or two of vacation time to spend in field service.
5. How might you assist the elderly or infirm to auxiliary pioneer?
5 If you are elderly or infirm or have limited energy, you may be able to auxiliary pioneer by spending a little time each day in the ministry. Ask Jehovah to supply you with “power beyond what is normal.” (2 Cor. 4:7) One sister was able to auxiliary pioneer at the age of 106! With the assistance of her Christian relatives and others in the congregation, she preached from house to house, made return visits, went on Bible studies, and shared in other features of the ministry. She assisted in starting Bible studies with ten people. “As I think about the wonderful privilege I had to serve as an auxiliary pioneer,” she says, “my heart swells with love and appreciation for Jehovah, his Son, and His loving organization. I truly want to say ‘thank you, Jehovah!’”
6. How is it possible for baptized youths still in school to auxiliary pioneer?
6 If you are a baptized youth still in school, you too may be able to enroll as an auxiliary pioneer. Like those who work full-time, you will probably utilize primarily the weekends for your schedule for the ministry. Perhaps you can also go out for an hour or so after school on some days. Is there a school holiday that you can use for sharing in the ministry? If you would like to auxiliary pioneer, talk to your parents about it.
7. What may the elders do to build enthusiasm for the ministry during the Memorial season?
7 Build Enthusiasm: The elders can do much to build the congregation’s enthusiasm by their example. (1 Pet. 5:2, 3) They may determine to schedule additional meetings for field service for those who will be sharing in the ministry early in the morning, after school, or after work. The service overseer should make sure that qualified publishers are assigned to take the lead and that there is sufficient territory as well as magazines and literature on hand for these months of special activity.
8. What do we learn from the experience of one congregation?
8 In one congregation, the elders began encouraging auxiliary pioneering several months in advance. They kept the congregation informed each week regarding how many publishers were approved to auxiliary pioneer. This assured those desiring to increase their share in the ministry that they would have good support. Additional meetings for field service were arranged for the early morning and the evening. The result was that 53 publishers auxiliary pioneered in April, almost half of the congregation!
9. Why is the Memorial season an excellent time, for those who qualify, to begin publishing the good news?
9 Help Others Preach: When new ones and youths qualify to begin publishing, they may be invited to work in field service with experienced publishers. Such an opportunity may come during the Memorial season when many in the congregation will be increasing their activity. Do you have a progressive Bible student who has brought his life into harmony with Jehovah’s righteous standards? Do you have well-behaved children who are making good progress but who are not yet publishers? If such ones have expressed a desire to become unbaptized publishers and you feel that they qualify, then let one of the elders know. The presiding overseer will arrange for two elders to discuss the matter with you and your child or student.
10. What can the elders do to assist those who are inactive?
10 The coming months would also be an excellent time for those who have become inactive to resume their activity with the congregation. Congregation Book Study overseers and other elders should make a concerted effort to visit such ones and extend a warm personal invitation to work with them in the ministry. If they have been inactive for a long time, two elders should first speak with them to determine if they qualify.—km 11/00 p. 3.
11. What is the greatest expression of “the undeserved kindness of God?”
11 Prepare for the Memorial: The ransom is the greatest expression of “the undeserved kindness of God.” (Acts 20:24) Millions of appreciative people around the world will gather on Saturday, March 22, after sundown, to observe the Memorial of Christ’s death. We want to invite and help all honesthearted ones to attend this important occasion that bears witness to Jehovah’s undeserved kindness toward mankind.
12. Whom should we invite to the Memorial?
12 Make a list of those you want to invite. No doubt your list will include relatives, neighbors, acquaintances from work or school, past and present Bible students, and all others whom you visit on a regular basis. If some you invite have questions about the Memorial, you may find it helpful to use the appendix article regarding the Lord’s Evening Meal on pages 206-8 of the Bible Teach book. This may even open the way for a Bible study, since it will give you an opportunity to introduce the publication we use to conduct Bible studies.
13. How did Jehovah bless the efforts of two publishers who made it a point to invite others to the Memorial?
13 One sister made a list of 48 families to invite. As she invited them, she crossed off their names and wrote down the date she invited them. How happy she was that 26 people she invited came to the Memorial! A brother who owns a store invited an employee who was formerly a priest. The man attended and afterward exclaimed, “I learned more about the Bible in one hour than I did in the 30 years I spent in the Catholic Church.” Soon after the Memorial, he accepted a study in the Bible Teach book.
14. What earth-wide campaign will begin on March 1?
14 Campaign: Beginning on Saturday, March 1, and continuing to March 22, a special invitation to the Memorial will be distributed earth wide. All will want to have a full share in this important campaign. It is better to give the householder an invitation personally than to leave one at the door. However, if you have a large territory, the elders may determine that invitations can be left discreetly at not-at-homes. On the weekends we will also be offering the current magazines.
15. How may we present the Memorial invitation?
15 Since we have a limited time to distribute the invitations, it is best to have a brief presentation. Be friendly and enthusiastic. You might say something like this: “We want to make sure that you, your family members, and your friends are invited to an important event being held on March 22. Here is your invitation. The details are printed on the invitation.” The householder may have questions. Or he may accept the invitation and even express that he will be present. Make note of the interest shown, and arrange to call back.
16. What experience illustrates the value of the campaign to invite people in the territory to the Memorial?
16 Last year a soldier found the invitation to the Memorial at his door. He decided to attend but had to get permission from his sergeant. When he showed the invitation to the sergeant, the sergeant became quiet and then said that his parents are Witnesses and that he used to attend meetings with them. Not only did he give permission for the soldier to attend but the sergeant accompanied him to the Memorial!
17. How do we demonstrate that we have not missed the purpose of God’s undeserved kindness?
17 Manifest Appreciation: As the 2008 Memorial season approaches, may each one of us reflect on the undeserved kindness of Jehovah in our behalf. The apostle Paul wrote: “We also entreat you not to accept the undeserved kindness of God and miss its purpose.” (2 Cor. 6:1) How do we demonstrate that we have not missed the purpose of God’s undeserved kindness? Paul wrote: “But in every way we recommend ourselves as God’s ministers.” (2 Cor. 6:4) Therefore, we demonstrate our appreciation for Jehovah’s gift by our good conduct and zealous preaching of the good news. This Memorial season we will have an excellent opportunity to increase our activity, bearing thorough witness to the good news.
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Who May Be Included Among Those Able to Auxiliary Pioneer?
◼ Those who work full-time
◼ The elderly and infirm
◼ Those in school
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When Distributing Memorial Invitations:
◼ Be brief; speak with enthusiasm
◼ Make note of interest and call back
◼ Offer magazines on the weekends