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Jehovah’s Witnesses

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2014 Yearbook of Jehovah’s Witnesses

 HIGHLIGHTS OF THE PAST YEAR

Dispatches—News From Around the World

Dispatches—News From Around the World

The Police Helped to Unload the Blocks

In Kutaisi, the second-largest city in the Republic of Georgia, assemblies were held for 13 years in a dilapidated, old champagne factory. Plastic sheets were hung above the seats to keep rainwater from pouring onto the audience. Now the brothers have a suitable, new open-air expandable Kingdom Hall for assemblies and conventions. During construction, 50 volunteers were unloading cement blocks from a truck when policemen came by to see what was happening. Impressed by the joy and diligence of the workers, the policemen commended them and then helped unload the blocks.  They invited the brothers to call them if anyone bothered them. The policemen promised to attend the first convention held at the new Assembly Hall.

He Sold His Bicycle

Malachi, an elder who lives in Burundi, earned his living by farming and by transporting loads on his bicycle. In order to support their Kingdom Hall construction project, Malachi decided to be at the construction site every day. To do so, he needed money to care for his family during the two months of construction. So he sold his bicycle and gave part of the money to his wife for his family’s needs, and he put the rest of the money in the contribution box to help with the construction costs. As a result of his efforts, he received good training from the Kingdom Hall construction servants. After the Kingdom Hall was completed, Malachi was able to find construction work because people saw what a skilled builder he was. In the meantime, Malachi has been able to buy himself another bicycle!

They Were Motivated to Help

Building Kingdom Halls in remote areas of Malawi presents unique challenges. During the past service year, one hall was built in an area where the roads are particularly bad. Using vehicles with four-wheel drive, brothers from the branch delivered construction materials to the building site. The local brothers said that people in the community were very interested in the project. Many non-Witnesses in the area offered to help and worked late into the night unloading sand, quarry stone, bags of cement, and iron roofing sheets. In fact, there were times when the non-Witnesses  outnumbered the Witnesses! Impressed with the effort that Jehovah’s Witnesses are making to build dignified places of worship in remote areas like theirs, the local residents felt motivated to help.

The Children Sold Toffee

A special pioneer couple in Côte d’Ivoire studies the Bible in Bete, the local language, with a couple who have ten children. In May 2013 the first assembly in Bete was to be held in the town of Daloa, and all in the family wanted to attend. However, the cost of transportation was 800 CFA ($1.60 U.S.) per person round-trip, and the father could not afford to take his large family. Determined to attend, he came up with an idea. He gave 300 CFA ($.60 U.S.) to his oldest daughter and suggested that she sell toffee, so she did. She made enough profit to pay for her trip. The father did the same with the other children—he gave each one 300 CFA to start a little toffee business until they all had enough to pay for their transportation. Finally, along with some others, they attended the assembly. How thrilled they were to follow the program in their mother tongue!