‘Super Bowl Status’

2,300 Volunteers Personally Welcome 5,000 International Visitors to Phoenix!

PHOENIX — July 30th, 2019 — What does it take for the City of Phoenix and the Sky Harbor Airport to grant an event “Super Bowl Status”? The simple answer is – it has to be big!

Just do the math: 5,000 delegates from 41 countries being served by 2,300 airport volunteers working around the clock. That’s big!

“We want the delegates to see and feel our love,” says Johannes Kor, father of two from Maricopa, Arizona, whose family has spent their free time making banners and signs to welcome visitors who will be attending a global convention event in Phoenix. “We think it’s important for our children to see that love still exists in this world. We want them to experience it for themselves.”

That’s right in line with the theme of the convention, “Love Never Fails,” an international event that will bring nearly 40,000 people to Chase Field in Phoenix, most of them hailing from local towns and cities to join their foreign visitors. The three-day convention runs from Friday, August 9 through Sunday, August 11 and is part of a series of 24 conventions spanning six continents. It is open to the public and free. No collections are ever taken.

“Super Bowl” status permits volunteers to clear security at the airport and greet delegates right at the gate. To make sure no delegate is missed, local volunteers will be on hand at the airport 24-hours a day working three, 8-hour shifts each. “From the time they land to the time they leave, we want our guests to feel the love,” says Timothy Watkins, local spokesman for Jehovah’s Witnesses. “Everyone will get a greeting whether it’s three in the afternoon or three in the morning.”

Most of the delegates are personally unknown to the local volunteers. So why the effort and time? Our brotherhood unifies us no matter where we come from,” says Watkins. “We are all part of an international family.”

For more information, please contact Timothy Watkins at 267-980-5572 or timwatkins.jw@gmail.com.

PICTURED ABOVE: Johannes with daughter Jada, 10, and son Giddeon, 8, doing a walk-thru at Sky Harbor Airport

From Darkness to the Light

Phoenix — August 1, 2019 — For over a decade, Sammy Munoz’ life was in a spiral. His needs came before everything, including his own family. Bad association, alcohol and substance abuse were at his life’s core. “I was in a dark place and somewhere along the way, I lost all care about everything – including myself,” said Sammy.

One day, Sammy joined his wife during a meeting at the Assembly Hall of Jehovah’s Witnesses in Casa Grande just to support her. What he heard during one of the talks, immediately set his life’s new course. “When the brother giving the talk said, ‘You know where home is’ referring to lost sheep that stray from God, it really moved me. I realized what I was doing was not what I wanted for the rest of my life.” Said Sammy Munoz.

Sammy started working to clean up his life emotionally and physically. He also accepted a Bible study with one of Jehovah’s Witnesses and began cleaning his life spiritually. “Sammy’s wife and two boys, ages 11 and 13 have gained a father, the spiritual head of their family and they now have hope for a bright future.” Said Tim Watkins, local spokesman for Jehovah’s Witnesses. “Sammy has made significant changes. He had his first Bible reading at the Kingdom Hall since he was 10-years-old, and 204 were in attendance that evening.”

Sammy Munoz of Phoenix, Arizona will be one of hundreds of baptism candidates on Saturday, August 10, during the landmark International Convention of Jehovah’s Witnesses themed ‘Love Never Fails” at Chase Field.

For more information, please contact Timothy Watkins at 267-980-5572 or Timwatkins.jw@gmail.com.

‘Three Times Around the World’

City and Convention Organizers Plan to Move Thousands around Phoenix

PHOENIX — July 31, 2019 — Buses logging seventy-five thousand miles in 10 days – that’s just one staggering statistic in a comprehensive plan to move nearly 40,000 convention delegates around the City of Phoenix over the next two weeks. It’s all part of a massive effort to host 5,000 international delegates from 41 countries along with nearly 35,000 local attendees who will be attending the “Love Never Fails” International Convention at Chase Field August 9-11. The Chase Field event is part of a global convention series of 24 spanning six continents.

“Simply moving the delegates around the city and to Chase field is a huge undertaking,” says convention transportation coordinator Jesse McDonald of El Mirage. “In just 10 days, buses and shuttles will log nearly 75,000 miles. That’s equivalent to three times around the World!”

For more than two years city officials and convention organizers have collaborated on a plan to help move delegates around the city while lessening the impact on traffic congestion. “It takes years of coordination and planning, with close cooperation between city officials and our team,” said Timothy Watkins, local spokesman for Jehovah’s Witnesses. “Thanks to the plan, most convention attendees will make full use of chartered buses, light-rail, carpooling and walking.”

City police will help direct traffic around Chase Field while City of Phoenix Ambassadors will be handing out water to ensure that all walking to the stadium stay hydrated. And Valley Metro plans to increase the number of trains in use to accommodate the influx of 30,000+ metro trips for the week.  

But that’s not all.  Before and after the convention, thousands of international delegates will enjoy touring various sights in Arizona, requiring 47 tour buses each day to take them as far as the Grand Canyon and Sedona. Nearly 1,700 volunteers will staff the various buses around town. “Our goal is to move people safely and seamlessly,” said Watkins. “We are planning for the maximum positive impact on our delegates and a minimum negative impact on our neighbors in Phoenix.”

The convention is open to the public and free. No collections are ever taken. For more information, please contact Timothy Watkins at 267-980-5572 or Timwatkins.jw@gmail.com.

PICTURED ABOVE: Local volunteer Rich Ruiz of Gilbert trains as a Bus Captain before the arrival of international delegates to Phoenix

Inviting Arizona!

35,000 Volunteers Personally Invite Arizonans to Landmark Global Convention at Chase Field

PHOENIX — July 25, 2019 — For the next several weeks thousands of local Arizonans will participate in a statewide initiative to warmly invite the public to a historic convention in early August.

More than 35,000 local Jehovah’s Witnesses from 217 congregations are personally delivering invitations to their neighbors inviting them to the three-day Global Convention with the theme, “Love Never Fails.” The campaign began on Friday, July 19, three weeks before the opening day of the convention, which will take place at Chase Field in Phoenix, begins Friday, August 9 and runs through Sunday, August 11.

“Volunteers of all ages and in every community are handing out invitations to this exciting event,” said Timothy Watkins, local Spokesman for Jehovah’s Witnesses. “They believe in the message of love and want to extend that to all their neighbors.”

This convention series spans six continents and 200+ countries. It is the first time Arizona will host an International Convention of Jehovah’s Witnesses, which is expected to draw more than 39,000, including 5,000 delegates from some 41 countries. The event will highlight the importance of love through talks, interviews, videos and a 2-part feature film. “There is something for every member of the family,” said Watkins.

Admission is free and no collections are taken.

Read the convention program.

For more information, please contact Timothy Watkins at 267-980-5572 or timwatkins.jw@gmail.com

Hosting a Family of 5,000!

Hosting a Family of 5,000!

Thousands of International “Brothers and Sisters” Coming to Phoenix for Landmark Global Convention at Chase Field

PHOENIX — August 1, 2019 — When out of town family come for a visit, there are usually two big questions: Where do you take them and what should they see?

But what do you do when your “family” consists of some 5,000 “brothers and sisters”?

More than 30,000 Phoenix area Jehovah’s Witnesses have been preparing for more than two years to warmly host 5,000 of their international spiritual “family” from some 41 countries. They will be in the city to attend the “Love Never Fails” International Convention at Chase Field August 9-11.

“We don’t just call ourselves a brotherhood, we truly are brothers and sisters,” said Timothy Watkins, local spokesman for Jehovah’s Witnesses. “It doesn’t matter where we come from, what unifies us is our strong faith and our love for each other.”

Volunteers have postponed vacations and set up spare rooms for their international guests. Cooper Moisuk, a 12-year-old Gilbert, AZ, resident, is one of the thousands of volunteers preparing for the visit. He has spent his summer making decorative tiles as gifts for convention delegates coming from 41 countries. “It makes me feel happy because people from all over the world will have the gifts I made and share them with their friends back home,” he said.

His friend Chael Garcia, 12, agrees. “It’s fun to do and it makes me happy,” he said. “Seeing everyone helping to make these gifts makes me even happier.”

Pictured: Cooper Moisuk, 12, and Chael Garcia, 12, of Gilbert, AZ, prepare gifts for convention delegates

International guests will be touring several locations around Arizona and will take in several performances, all requiring countless hours of preparation by local volunteers.

International Delegate Itineraries Include:

  • Sight-seeing in Sedona
  • Visiting the Montezuma Castle National
  • Monument
  • Learning about Native American culture at the Heard Museum
  • Enjoying marine wildlife at the OdySea Aquarium in Scottsdale
  • Taking in a performance featuring Southwestern culture at the Phoenix Symphony Hall
  • Experiencing a Western themed show in a specially fabricated Old West town in Prescott

For more information, please contact Timothy Watkins at 267-980-5572 or timwatkins.jw@gmail.com.