Columbia Jehovah’s Witnesses Return to Door-to-Door Ministry After 30-month Pandemic Pause
Over 2,800 of Jehovah’s Witnesses in the Columbia area will resume their trademark
door-to-door ministry beginning September 1 when a two-and-half-year suspension of the
work is officially lifted, just in time to begin a global campaign featuring a new interactive
Bible study program.
The decision to resume their door-to-door ministry marks the complete restoration of all
pre-pandemic in-person activities for the 1.3 million Jehovah’s Witnesses in the 13,000
congregations in the United States. Houses of worship (called Kingdom Halls) were
reopened April 1, witnessing in public places resumed May 31, and in-person conventions
are once again being planned for 2023.
The suspension of the public ministry was a proactive response by the organization to
keep communities and congregants safe. The move was also unprecedented. Jehovah’s
Witnesses had been preaching from house to house without interruption for more than
100 years through an economic depression, two world wars and global unrest. But
COVID-19 demanded a different response.
“We believe that the early decision to shut down all in-person activities for more than two
years has saved many lives,” said Robert Hendriks, U.S. spokesperson for Jehovah’s
Witnesses. “We’re now ready and eager to reconnect with our neighbors once again –
person to person, face to face. It’s not the only way that we preach, but it has historically
been the most effective way to deliver our message of comfort and hope.”
The move coincides with a global campaign to distribute a new interactive Bible study
program available in hundreds of languages at no cost. The program comes in the form
of a book, online publication or as an embedded feature within the organization’s free
mobile application, JW Library. Released in late 2020, the interactive study platform
combines text, video, illustrations and digital worksheets to help learners of all ages.
“This new study program is designed to match the learning needs of the 21st-century
student,” said Hendriks. “We’re excited to begin sharing it with our neighbors as we return
to making personal visits.”
The pandemic forced Jehovah’s Witnesses to quickly pivot to virtual meetings and
conventions while conducting their ministry exclusively through letters, phone calls and
virtual Bible studies. This has led to growth in meeting attendance and the number of congregants, with more than 400,000 newly baptized witnesses joining the ranks of
120,000 congregations globally in just the first two years of the pandemic.
For more information about Jehovah’s Witnesses, their history, beliefs and activities, visit
their official website, jw.org, with content available in more than 1,000 languages.