[R5826 : page 8]

1915--FOREIGN BRANCH REPORTS--1915

REPORT OF BRITISH BRANCH

Dear Brother Russell:--

It is our pleasure and privilege to send you another Annual Report of the British Harvest work. We are very thankful to the Lord for the continued opportunities of service during a time of uncertainty and of the world's strife. The accompanying figures show that the war has not shut the work down, though it has interfered with its progress. On a broad summary it may be said that our output of books and tracts for the year is about two-thirds of that of last year, and not much less than that of the year 1913. During the current year we have circulated in Britain 90,700 of the STUDIES IN THE SCRIPTURES, and 64,300 books and booklets (SCENARIOS, MANNAS, and the pamphlets, TABERNACLE SHADOWS, Hell, etc.). The free distribution of Volunteer matter, free SCENARIOS and B. S. M. amounts to nearly eleven million copies.

COLPORTEUR WORK STIMULATED BY DRAMA

The Colporteur work has been greatly aided by the PHOTO-DRAMA. Indeed had it not been for the DRAMA the output of books would, to all appearances, have been very much less. The regular Colporteur work lost some of its most successful workers soon after the outbreak of the war, when the first pinch of money was felt. We cannot but feel sorry for this, for the country recovered from its panic when the demand for war material began to be felt, and since then there has been plenty of money in circulation, and the people are perishing for need of the Truth. We still think there is plenty of room for good Colporteurs, and it is still true that ground already gone over can again be canvassed to advantage.

The Volunteer work has gone on well. Of the various issues provided for this privilege of service, the friends have distributed about seven and a half million copies. There is, however, a drop in the numbers of B. S. M.; for the Class-extension work was almost discontinued after the war began and after the advent of the DRAMA. There are some indications of the work reviving.

There have been 207 exhibitions of the PHOTO-DRAMA, and the recorded attendance is 593,659, and there have been signed cards at the Finales to the number of 26,860.

The number of Associated Bible Classes has greatly increased during the year and appreciation of the Truth is being maintained in them. The younger brethren show keen interest in the glorious Hope and are making advancement in knowledge and piety, whilst those more advanced are remaining steadfast in the faith and are rejoicing continually. All the classes are receiving Pilgrim visits as regularly as the circumstances permit.

Many newspapers continue to publish the sermons, and the message continues to do a good work, as is seen by many evidences.

The office work continues brisk, as the above figures will show. The letters in and out for the year total 53,995. There are prospects of work for some time to come before us, and we continue to serve and wait.

Ever praying the Lord's blessing for yourself, we are, dear brother,

Your servants in the Lord,

MANAGERS OF BRITISH BRANCH.

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BRITISH BRANCH ACTIVITIES FOR 1915 SUMMARIZED

Volumes of SCRIPTURE STUDIES........... 98,410
MANNAS, SCENARIOS, etc................. 64,305
Free literature, B. S. M., etc.........10,784,871
Letters received and sent out.......... 53,995

REPORT OF AUSTRALASIAN BRANCH

Dear Brother Russell:--

It is with gladness that we can again report a year of progress; in fact, it is the best year yet, and much better than could have been expected in many ways. The circumstances of the year have, of course, been exceptional all over the world; but besides the dislocation of trade and unusual conditions through the war, there was the [R5827 : page 8] severe drought to contend with. Thousands of cattle and sheep were lost, or sold to be slaughtered and put in the refrigerators; thus the price of meat was kept up. Expensive horses were simply given away to save them from starvation. Foodstuffs for cattle brought enormous prices, and of course provisions went to great prices; for instance, butter reached 60 cents a pound. There was lack of employment, and hard times seemed upon us. The war, however, has kept certain trades busy, such as clothing, munitions, etc. At the same time the war has taken many men out of the country; their wives and dependents being provided for, so much distress has been averted. Counteracting the scarcity of money and uncertainty of things, the Colporteurs have found that these strenuous times (this terrible war and universal trouble which so clearly mark the ending of the "Present Evil World" and the inauguration of "the World to come wherein dwelleth Righteousness") have made people begin to consider and inquire as to the Divine Purpose. Had not some of our best Colporteurs been taken from their work to help the PHOTO-DRAMA OF CREATION for a time, many more volumes would have been placed.

ALWAYS OPPORTUNITIES IF WE WATCH

We still have a noble band of Colporteurs, and the work goes well, even over ground which had been covered several times before. While some have seemed to slacken in their zeal, as though they had made up their minds that the work ought to stop now, because they had expected it would, others take the wiser view, namely, that it will be time to stop when we cannot go on. No doubt the Lord can and will stop the work in His own due time; but even if the general Harvest work should stop, it would seem that the Lord will never leave His people with nothing to do. Surely there will always be some opportunities of service if we watch for them! When the Harvest ends, it will soon be time to "turn the pure language [message] to the people," whoever may be here to do it.--Zephaniah 3:9.

"So on we go not knowing,
We would not if we might;
We'd rather walk in the dark with God,
Than go alone in the light."

PHOTO-DRAMA: In Australia there have been about 286 exhibitions, with a total attendance of about 295,000. In New Zealand 63 exhibitions with attendance of about 50,100. In Fiji, 25 with an attendance of 6,800.

These figures may seem small to you as compared with the U.S.A. and England, but our conditions are so different. Our territory is larger than the U. S. A., and yet the population of Australia is only about five millions, a little more than the population of Greater New York.

The one DRAMA operating in Australia has traveled some 5,000 miles to visit from Queensland to West Australia. Good work has been done, and while it is surprising how many can see it without seeming lasting good, yet there are some in every State now rejoicing in the Truth and giving evidences of thorough consecration as a result of this work.

The friends everywhere have contributed to this feature of the work generously, and what is included in the statement does not take into account several hundred [R5827 : page 9] pounds which have been spent in this connection by the Classes. The Perth Class ultimately paid all the expenses of producing the DRAMA for West Australia; the Adelaide friends did the same for South Australia, and New Zealand practically did the same for that country. The other classes also did remarkably well according to ability.

PATIENTLY WAITING FOR THE LORD

Notwithstanding all the extra expense of the DRAMA, the contributions to the general Tract Fund and Good Hopes have been maintained; thus you will be pleased to see how much in earnest the Australasian brethren are.

There has been considerable growth in grace as well as in numbers. While possibly one or two here or there may seem to have slackened in interest, because they expected to have been with the Lord by this time, it is beautiful to see in others the opposite effect, the mellowing of character, the submission to and patient waiting for the Lord, willing to serve Him either here or there, this or the other side of the veil, simply biding His time.

There has been more than usual response to the general distribution of the papers, throughout the year, but if as you intimate, we are to make this Branch self-supporting in future, we may have to curtail our expense in this direction. However, it is good to realize that the Lord is overruling the work, and is able to provide what is necessary to the accomplishment of His will, and we desire to do no more than pleases Him.

We desire a continuation of your prayers and the prayers of all the Lord's people, that we may have wisdom and Divine guidance as we seek to continue the work to the Lord's glory and to the assistance of the Body waiting for the Deliverance.--Romans 8:23.

With Christian love to yourself and all coworkers,

Yours in the Service of Christ,

AUSTRALASIAN BRANCH.

P. S.--WATCH TOWER subscribers number 1,150. B.S.M. subscribers number 1,350.

Many of the latter subscribe for hundreds and some for thousands of copies monthly.

PHOTO-DRAMA is now having a splendid run at Sydney.

SUMMARY OF AUSTRALASIAN WORK

STUDIES IN THE SCRIPTURES (cloth).......... 37,419
" " " (paper).......... 3,026
Booklets................................... 3,517
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Total.................................. 43,962
PEOPLE'S PULPIT (B. S. M.), free...........1,192,930
WATCH TOWER................................ 6,411
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Total..................................1,199,341
Letters received........................... 4,388
Letters sent out........................... 5,315

EXPENDITURES

Deficiency to Brooklyn to October, 1914..1482:11: 2
Cost of Free Literature.................. 337: 2:11
Postage on same.......................... 39:12: 9
Freight, postage, etc.................... 70:18: 1
General Expense: Gas, Rent, etc.......... 43:15: 0
Pilgrim and extension work............... 92: 9: 4
PHOTO-DRAMA Operations................... 876: 3: 7
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2942:12:10

RECEIPTS

Donations received:
Tract Fund............................. 560: 3: 2
Special for PHOTO-DRAMA................ 422:15: 5
Deficit due to Brooklyn.................. 1959:14: 3
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2942:12:10

SWEDISH BRANCH REPORT

Dear Brother Russell:--

As the season for our yearly balancing of accounts has come round again, and we--contrary to earlier expectations of many in our ranks--still are human beings, and still, while in this "weak" condition, have the blessed privilege to partake in the service of the Truth and in the wonderful joys and sufferings connected with that service, I have herewith the great pleasure of sending you some statements from the work accomplished through the Society's Swedish branch during the last year.

Looking around us in this part today, we cannot but feel very, very humble and thankful indeed, seeing how merciful and good the dear Heavenly Father has been toward His people in this country, amongst whom we have the greatly appreciated privilege to serve as a representative of yourself--His chosen and faithful servant.

The fact is, that in spite of the many hindrances and difficulties (financially and otherwise) directly and indirectly caused by the present European war, the Lord has held the "doors" of opportunity wide open for us during the whole year, and never in the past did so many of the Swedish people in one year have the true explanation of God's Word set before their minds. We have also in this year witnessed very encouraging proofs that this labor has not been done "in vain." A good number of the Lord's people in "Babylon," as well as some out of it all over the country, have got their eyes of understanding opened to see the wonderful Plan of God. Nearly a hundred of these have already symbolized their full consecration to the Lord and to obedience to His holy will.

One of the primary means to accomplish these results was your wonderful PHOTO-DRAMA OF CREATION, which has been publicly presented in from one to five places at the same time on 279 days out of the 365 of the year, with a total attendance of more than 400,000. Although our economic circumstances caused the stopping of the DRAMA a few weeks ago, we have still a good hope, D.V., to be enabled to start this branch again very soon. The dear Colporteurs have also, by their energetic and faithful labor of love for the Truth, succeeded to such an extent that we have circulated 8,157 more cloth-bound copies of STUDIES IN THE SCRIPTURES than we did during the previous year. One single Colporteur sister--physically not very strong--has sold 5,962 copies of the STUDIES this year. During the last three years and three months this same sister has sold 18,662 copies.

The free Tract distribution, the Newspaper work and the regular Pilgrim service have also been carried on [R5828 : page 9] with the usual success. Six Swedish brethren have taken part in the Pilgrim service, and their work has been highly appreciated among the friends everywhere. The same can be said also respecting our Conventions, quite a number of which have been held in different parts of the country. Although a considerable decrease in the number of foreign subscriptions on the Swedish WATCH TOWER has taken place in the year, still the total number of its subscribers has not decreased in the least, but exceeds all previous figures.

Our office work has grown immensely. As the book stock here was nearly exhausted just after October, 1914, we have during this year republished all six volumes of the STUDIES (in seven editions, or 73,500 copies), the MANNA book (4,000 copies), the DRAMA textbook (two editions, 13,000 copies), the free SCENARIOS (four editions, 248,000 copies), pamphlets, etc. The correspondence has also grown to a considerable degree. The following figures will show you as to the exactness of these things. [R5828 : page 10]

Respecting the future of our work, the outlook is (as we have chronologically passed our last Scriptural "landmark," and are surrounded by the roaring of the towering waves in the eddy of which present governments and institutions, already shaking and trembling, will soon be overthrown) more hidden than at earlier times, and our prospects are correspondingly in a still fuller degree built wholly and only on faith. Yet, we are of good courage, knowing that the Lord Himself shall never leave nor forsake any of those who are truly His, but shall overrule and make all things serve their highest and eternal interests, according to His own wisdom and love. Today the Truth friends in Sweden are not less (but probably more) determined than ever by the Lord's grace to remain faithful toward Him and His Cause, and to use all opportunities still remaining to proclaim His glorious Truth, until the final end, that we also, with yourself and all of His faithful followers, "in due time," may hear His blessed "Well done, good and faithful servants."

We are continually more grateful than words can tell you, our beloved Brother Russell, for all the blessings and helps we have received through your faithful and important ministries in the Lord. You have indeed a large room in our hearts, and you are always with thankfulness and joy included in our prayers before the Throne of Heavenly Grace.

Humbly but heartily conveying to you the warmest Christian love and greetings from all the Swedish brethren, I am

Your brother and fellow-servant in the Lord,

AUG. LUNDBORG.

SUMMARY OF THE SWEDISH WORK

STUDIES IN THE SCRIPTURES, circulated at
cost..................................... 41,280
DRAMA SCENARIOS............................ 11,993
Various other books and booklets, MANNA,
TABERNACLE SHADOWS, etc.................. 7,134
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Total.................................... 60,407
EKO FRAN TALARSTOLEN (BIBLE STUDENTS
MONTHLY), issued free.................... 370,560
Other free tracts and copies of the Swedish
WATCH TOWER.............................. 69,286
DRAMA SCENARIOS in Paper form, free........ 295,600
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Total.................................... 735,446
Amounting in tract pages to................18,309,024
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Subscribers to the Swedish WATCH TOWER..... 2,363
Sets of the SWEDISH TOWER, cloth bound
and unbound.............................. 480
Subscribers to EKO FRAN TALARSTOLEN........ 262
Regular subscriptions for the Sermons in
Swedish Newspapers....................... 1,208
Meetings held under the auspices of the
Society.................................. 1,557
Public PHOTO-DRAMA presentations........... 1,256
Miles traveled in preaching tours.......... 177,399
Letters and cards sent out................. 10,104
Letters and cards received................. 8,434
Total number of various sendings out from
the office............................... 62,608

EXPENDITURES

Pilgrims, Conventions and
other meetings............Kr. 9,942.58 = $ 2,687.18
Translations, printing, binding,
paper, etc................ 51,835.43 = 14,009.58
Freight and postage......... 5,632.71 = 1,522.35
Helps to poor Colporteurs... 2,246.82 = 607.25
The newspaper service....... 1,444.30 = 390.35
Office expenses, rent, light,
heat, etc................. 7,121.32 = 1,924.68
The PHOTO-DRAMA service..... 49,457.12 = 13,366.79
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Total.....................Kr.127,680.28 =$34,508.18

RECEIPTS

Voluntary donations to
Tract Fund................Kr. 26,413.03 =$ 7,138.65
Voluntary donations to
DRAMA service............. 12,653.64 = 3,419.90
Swedish WATCH TOWER
subscriptions............. 5,960.98 = 1,611.08
Sold books, pamphlets, etc.. 50,524.08 = 13,655.16
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Total.....................Kr. 95,551.73 =$25,824.79
Deficit................... 32,128.55 = 8,683.39
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Kr.127,680.28 =$34,508.18

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REPORT FROM FRANCE AND SWITZERLAND

The Society's representative in its Geneva Office writes as follows:

Dear Brother Russell:--It is with great joy and heartfelt gratitude toward our God and Father and toward our Savior Jesus Christ that I forward to you the yearly Report of the French work. We have learned in Christ's School to love our brethren. Our great wish is to progress in this line and, above all, to love the one whom our Savior has chosen as our Pastor to give us "meat in due season." We have at heart the French work, which we both cherish. It is, therefore, with special gratitude that we are able to thank our God, who has deigned to allow us to glorify His holy name amongst His French children, and to gather by means of the sharp sickle of Truth all those who are desirous of making a Covenant of Sacrifice. (Psalm 50:5.) This last year shows an increase in every branch, especially as regards public lectures, the total attendance being 30,795. Below find a statement of the Society's work during the past fiscal year:

Letters and cards received................... 2,320
Letters and cards sent out................... 1,397
Volumes of STUDIES IN THE SCRIPTURES sold.... 854
Various booklets sold........................ 5,200
Bibles and Concordances sold................. 102
Free literature (B. S. M.) distributed....... 83,000
Public meetings held......................... 209
Numbers in attendance........................ 30,795
Expenditures for public meetings.......2,811 Frs.
Total cash receipts...................16,303.76 "
Total expenditure.....................16,237 "
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Balance cash on hand................ 66.76 Frs.

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REPORT FROM BIBLE STUDENTS, HUNGARY

Beloved Brother Russell:--

I am very glad to write you, by the grace of the Lord, regarding the spreading of literature and books this year (1915), and of the many joys and blessings which God has bestowed on us in all the trials and testings of the past:

SUMMARY

Books circulated......................... 1,650
Booklets................................. 600
WATCH TOWERS............................. 6,000
BIBLE STUDENTS MONTHLY, etc..............40,000

The issuance of Vol. II.--THE TIME IS AT HAND (Hungarian)--is in progress. Incoming letters, 957; outgoing, 725.

207 have made a covenant with our Lord.
Public meetings held..................... 90
Parlor meetings.......................... 4,700
Meetings in the country.................. 30

A good number of Rumanian publications were circulated.

We have received the books sent, and are very thankful.

With great love, hope and faithfulness,

Your colaborer and brother,

CHARLESZ SZABO

[R5828 : page 11]

JAMAICA MISSION REPORT

Number Pilgrims at work................. 5
Places visited (no classes)............. 7
Public meetings held.................... 17
Total attendance........................ 777
Number semi-private meetings............ 300
Total attendance........................ 2,944
Number parlor meetings.................. 104
Total attendance........................ 810
Number of miles traveled................ 3,471
Volumes of STUDIES IN SCRIPTURES sold... 500
Free matter--BIBLE STUDENTS MONTHLY..... 60,000

[R5829 : page 11]

WORK FOR THE BLIND

GOULD FREE LIBRARY FOR THE BLIND, S. BOSTON, MASS.
(WATCH TOWER Supervision.)

Chapters of SCRIPTURE STUDIES loaned out. 10,654
WATCH TOWERS, Pamphlets, and BIBLE
STUDENTS MONTHLY....................... 3,174
Weekly Sermons........................... 2,581
Letters received......................... 1,484
Letters sent out......................... 2,176
Sermons mailed to England................ 3,833
Expenses.................................$1,073.90

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