“I salute your organization’s members for their desire and passion for serving God’s kingdom. Your philanthropic efforts and contributions to fellow Jehovah’s Witnesses and community are very much valued and appreciated.”

So said a letter from Kasim Reed, the mayor of the city of Atlanta, Georgia, U.S.A. The letter welcomed Jehovah’s Witnesses to three large conventions that were to be held there.

Likewise, the Atlanta City Council issued a proclamation welcoming the convention delegates. It said: “There are nearly eight million Jehovah’s Witnesses worldwide, comprising . . . hundreds of ethnic and language backgrounds, yet . . . you are united by common goals . . . [You] want to honor Jehovah, the God of the Bible and the Creator of all things.”

Three conventions were held there in July and August 2014, two having the program in English and one in Spanish. Delegates came from at least 28 countries, and the English programs were simultaneously interpreted into Russian and Japanese for the benefit of delegates speaking those languages. The total attendance for the three conventions was 95,689.

During 2014, Jehovah’s Witnesses held 24 large international conventions in nine countries, including 16 in various locations in the United States.