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Jehovah’s Witnesses return to door-knocking in Wasatch Back and worldwide

jehovah photo.jpg
Jess Ruby
/
Jehovah's Witnesses
File photo of Jehovah's Witnesses paying a visit to talk about the religion.

Thursday, millions of Jehovah’s Witness followers began knocking on doors to spread messages on their religion for the first time since before the COVID-19 pandemic. That includes Summit County and Wasatch County.

The religious group says it has about 130 members that local residents can expect to see in the Wasatch Back again. Jehovah’s Witnesses spokesperson Aaron Purvis says they’re more likely to range in age than other door-to-door missionaries, since some followers do the work throughout their lives.

“This is a commission that Jehovah's Witnesses take very seriously,” Purvis says. “It is a courageous act to knock on someone's door, but make no mistake, it is an act of love.”

Purvis says to expect them in urban and rural areas of Summit and Wasatch counties. Some speak Spanish as well as English.

He also says Jehovah’s Witnesses train for when conflict arises in their interactions with strangers.

“Typically, we’re received very kindly — meaning people that are hostile or violent is a rarity, if ever,” Purvis says. “However, when you engage in a public ministry like we engage in, you learn very quickly to take your leave, or how to de-escalate a situation. However, most people know who we are, and they have respect for what we do.”

Purvis says there are about 1.3 million Jehovah’s Witnesses in the U.S. and more than 8.5 million worldwide, all of whom were encouraged to return to door-knocking Thursday.

Ben Lasseter reports for KPCW in Wasatch County. Before moving to Heber City, Ben worked in Manti as a general assignment newspaper reporter and editor.