Jehovah's Witnesses gather in Nanaimo for annual convention

Thousands of Jehovah’s Witnesses will gather in Nanaimo this weekend to celebrate and share their faith.

An estimated 3,200 Jehovah’s Witnesses – from Nanaimo to Port Hardy and Powell River – will attend the annual district convention held at Frank Crane Arena from Friday to Sunday (June 1-3).

The Nanaimo convention is being held in conjunction with other gatherings across Canada and around the world. In Canada, there will be 51 conventions in 21 cities, with an estimated 175,000 people expected to attend. Attendance is free.

“Everyone is welcome to come out and attend any session,” said Leif Rosvold, Nanaimo district convention spokesman.

This year’s theme is safeguard your heart and various symposium discussions held throughout the convention will discuss how protecting one’s figurative heart can enhance the quality of their lives and preserve the prospects for life in the future.

“The spiritual heart, symbolic heart, we feel it is very important,” said Rosvold. “The Bible talks a lot about it – to safeguard your heart.”

Morning sessions begin each day at 9:20 a.m. The Friday afternoon session starts at 1:50 p.m., Saturday’s begins at 1:35 p.m. and Sunday’s is 1:25 p.m.

Just like taking care of your health through exercise and proper nutrition, people also have to ensure they have a 'good spiritual diet', Rosvold said.

The Saturday discussion will examine a number of issues dealing with the theme: Do just as you have resolved in your heart. Saturday’s events also include a morning baptism session. Sunday features further discussions on the convention’s theme and includes a live play in the afternoon. The play depicts four young people as they come to grips with the question what is true love?

The mid- and north-Island congregations are also working on the construction of a Kingdom Hall in Nanaimo on Old Victoria Road. Sidewalks and curbs are being constructed and work on the building is expected to begin in September.

The project will be completed by volunteer labour from members of the mid- and north-Island congregations.

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