APRIL 1, 2022
In January 2021, the Governing Body announced the release of a new Bible study aid, Enjoy Life Forever! a How did you react to the announcement? Matthew, from Canada, says: “I was excited! And my excitement grew during the talks and videos that explained why the publication was developed and how it had been tested. I couldn’t wait to see it and to start using it.”
Enjoy Life Forever! introduced a new method of conducting Bible studies. However, that is not the only difference between the new book and previous study aids. If you use a printed copy of Enjoy Life Forever! you may have noticed that it also feels different. To see why, let us take a closer look at how the book is made.
A New Book With a New Feel
Heavier paper. Why was this necessary? Enjoy Life Forever! has over 600 colorful images, nearly ten times more than the Teach Us book! The new book also has more white space—areas without text or artwork—on its pages. These two factors present a problem: When the paper is thin, images on the reverse side of a page may be seen, even if only vaguely. To avoid this, brothers in the International Printing Department (IPD), in Wallkill, New York, U.S.A., tested four types of paper that we are currently using in our printeries. The Writing Committee of the Governing Body examined each sample and selected the least transparent paper. Although this paper costs about 16 percent more than the paper we use for most of our other publications, it allows Bible students to read each page of Enjoy Life Forever! without being distracted by images on the reverse side of the paper.
Different cover laminate. The cover of the new book feels different from the covers of our other books because it is finished with a different laminate, or protective film. Instead of the normal gloss laminate, the new book has a matte finish, which makes the cover artwork stand out. The laminate also helps to protect the book from the signs of wear that result from frequent use. However, matte laminate can cost up to five times more than gloss laminate. So several branches collaborated to obtain a less costly matte finish.
Why were these more expensive materials chosen? A brother who works with IPD explains: “We expect this book to be well-used, so we want it to retain a dignified appearance despite repeated use.” Eduardo, who works in the Printery Office at the Brazil branch, says: “We are very glad to see how Jehovah’s organization has used quality materials to make this book beautiful, durable, and pleasant to handle, while also making wise use of donated funds.”
Printing During the COVID-19 Pandemic
We began printing Enjoy Life Forever! in March 2021. This was during the COVID-19 pandemic, which created challenges. As a result of the Bethel lockdown, our printeries could not rely on the help of Bethel commuters, nor could they invite new brothers to serve as Bethelites. As a result, some printeries did not have enough personnel, and others were temporarily closed because of government mandates.
How were these difficulties overcome? When the printeries were able to operate, brothers and sisters from other Bethel departments were temporarily assigned to help with the printing. “Their self-sacrificing spirit and their willingness to learn new assignments were invaluable in getting the work accomplished,” says Joel, who works with IPD.
Despite the challenges, we have already printed millions of copies of Enjoy Life Forever! Producing them calls for a wide variety of materials, including printing plates, laminate film, paper, ink, and adhesive. In just the first five months of printing, over $2.3 million (U.S.) was spent on materials alone. To conserve costs, we have been careful to print only the number of books that congregations actually need.
“It Is a Work of Art”
How do Bible teachers and their students feel about this new Bible study aid? Paul, a brother in Australia, says: “Enjoy Life Forever! is so enjoyable to use that I get excited about conducting Bible studies. The book’s layout is very appealing and truly interactive. It has an excellent combination of clear information, heart-motivating questions, videos, pictures, charts, and goals for the student. It is a work of art that motivates me to improve my teaching.”
A Bible student in the United States says: “I really like the new book. The artwork helps me understand the main points. The videos touch my heart and motivate me to act.” This student is studying twice a week and regularly attends congregation meetings.
Millions of copies of Enjoy Life Forever! still remain to be printed in many languages. In fact, to date, the Governing Body has approved publishing this book in 710 languages, 340 more than were approved for the Teach Us book!
How are the printing costs covered? By donations to the worldwide work, many of which are made via donate.jw.org. We appreciate your generous spirit, which helps us produce Bible study aids for those who want to learn about Jehovah and to “enjoy life forever.”—Psalm 22:26.
a It was released on JW Broadcasting during the spiritual program held in conjunction with the annual meeting.