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Early Preaching Methods

Early Preaching Methods

Radio Broadcasts

IN 1933, the brothers arranged for a radio station in Jakarta to broadcast English recordings of Brother Rutherford’s radio lectures. Additional lectures in Dutch were read over the airwaves by a man who was interested in the truth. The broadcasts aroused a great deal of interest and helped the brothers to place more literature in the field.

When the radio station aired Brother Rutherford’s forceful lecture “Effect of Holy Year on Peace and Prosperity,” the Catholic clergy had had enough. * Working through their minions, they had Brother De Schumaker, who had supplied the recording, charged with “slander, ridicule, and animosity.” Brother De Schumaker vigorously defended the charges but was fined 25 guilders * and court costs. Three major newspapers reported on the trial, resulting in an even greater witness being given.

The Lightbearer

On July 15, 1935, the Watch Tower Society’s 52-foot (16 m) ketch Lightbearer arrived in Jakarta after a six-month voyage from Sydney, Australia. Aboard were seven zealous pioneers who were determined to spread the good news throughout Indonesia, Singapore, and Malaysia.

For more than two years, the pioneers on the Lightbearer visited large and small ports throughout Indonesia, distributing vast quantities of Bible literature. As the vessel entered each small port, “the crew would turn on the transcription machine and play one of the lectures of J. F. Rutherford, then president of the Watch Tower Society,” related Jean Deschamp. “Imagine the surprise of isolated Malay villagers on seeing a large yacht arriving in their port and hearing such a loud, powerful voice coming through the air. A flying saucer could hardly have aroused more interest.”

Enraged by the brothers’ bold witnessing, the clergy eventually pressured the authorities to ban the Lightbearer from entering many Indonesian ports. In December 1937, the Lightbearer returned to Australia, leaving behind an outstanding record of missionary activity in Indonesia.

Crew members on the Lightbearer

^ par. 2 Brother Rutherford’s lecture exposed the corrupt spiritual, political, and commercial dealings of the Roman Catholic Church.

^ par. 2 The equivalent of about $300 (U.S.) today.