Jehovah’s Witnesses could get $1 billion for NYC properties

//Jehovah’s Witnesses could get $1 billion for NYC properties

NEW YORK (AP) — The Jehovah’s Witnesses, the door-knocking religious group that’s been based in Brooklyn for a century, is selling its headquarters and other properties for an expected price tag of $1 billion or more.

The Witnesses’ move to a town about an hour north of New York City will likely mean the end of the complex’s most well-known feature, the neon “Watchtower” sign advertising the church’s flagship publication. But it will free up hundreds of thousands of square feet for businesses and apartments in a now-trendy neighborhood at the foot of the Brooklyn Bridge.

“It’s going to be incredibly transformative,” said Alexandria Sica, executive director of the DUMBO Improvement District, a business group.

Jehovah’s Witnesses spokesman Richard Devine said the move will allow the organization to operate more efficiently. The church had owned 36 separate Brooklyn properties before it began selling them off in preparation for the move upstate to Warwick. The printing plant where the Witnesses produce Bibles and religious tracts moved from Brooklyn to the town of Wallkill in 2004.

“As we’ve grown as an organization we’ve had to buy scattered properties wherever we could find them,” Devine said. “With a big, scattered campus like that it’s challenging to administer and to maintain.”

The Witnesses bought their 733,000-square-foot headquarters from Squibb Pharmaceuticals for $3 million in 1969. It was placed on the market this month along with a nearby apartment building and a 135,000-square-foot lot. Despite the prominent “Watchtower” sign, the building has no historical designations that would place restrictions on the buyer.

The church has not announced an asking price but Tucker Reed, president of the Downtown Brooklyn Partnership, called $1 billion “a conservative estimate” for the Witnesses’ real estate portfolio.

Read more: Business Insider

2015-12-14T08:16:40+00:00 December 14th, 2015|JW News|19 Comments
  • Maybe they will donate there winnings to the millions of JW ‘s that are barely getting by and on the verge of bankruptcy. Or better yet the widows and fatherless children that doesn’t know where their next meal is coming from.

    • e.v.g

      We have faith and hope that something better will come according to God promises otherwise we would not have good expectations, poverty is unfair, the Kingdom of God is the only hope we have, because some wicked men are going to make things worse, including inside of God’s people. we must seize the light that remains and be prepared for the Kingdom of God.

      • Sam

        “we must seize the light that remains and be prepared for the Kingdom of God.” wonderful thought to keep in mind 🙂

    • Merton

      Come on. Having 11 kids when your ‘deep in the time of the end’ isn’t really that sensible, even with 2 parents around.

      Still, the congregation should have helped you out with basic needs.

      • Umm, they had all the kids in the 1950 & 60, we were a big Catholic family from the north east and it was common to have big families & it only took one parent to work and pay all the bills, imagine that! It wasn’t until my dad pasted away and we moved to the south when my mom and most of the kids started studying with the witnesses.

      • D34D 4L!3N

        which Hall? hardly and no.
        not sure what ur getting at by having a lot of kids not sensible. u mean to say that isnt the reality of familys who are even reconized by Jehovah as his? the family arangment has been way out of wack an witnesses arnt much exception. from experince i can say getting basic needs from the Hall is a joke. if not for Jehovah i wonder where id be

    • Brian

      I wouldn’t be counting on that happening

    • sad to say but I wouldn’t count on it any time soon.

  • Baruq

    So, with all this $$, they’ll be able to give money in India and not ask them to give money to the Watchtower:
    What do you think about this, Basavaraj? We heard that for Indians nothing more shall be printed, but brothers should download from the site the publications and print them for the public.

    • Basavaraj Of North Karnataka

      To Dear Brother Baruq:
      Yes brother it is true that in India nothing more shall be printed, but brothers should download from the site the publications and print them for the public. But I don’t think so that they will give that money for printing in India but will used for compensation for Child abuse cases elsewhere, that is what is going to happen.

  • ewatchman

    Just to let everyone know the e-watchman site has some technical problems. WordPress is notorious for going wonky. You might notice that things are slow or don’t look right. We are working on it. But it may take awhile. (It’s always something.) Hopefully there will not be any disruption of service.

    • Sam

      yeah, i thought something was up with it earlier. Makes a change for a tech fault not to be on my end lol

    • ewatchman

      As a follow-up, I hired a WordPress geek squad to fix the problem in the coding. Hopefully they can.

  • Basavaraj Of North Karnataka

    No! I am very sure that much of this amount will be spent to cover-up the Child abuse cases.

  • Bklyn Kevin

    These properties were something dedicated / “devoted” to Jehovah unconditionally by his faithful servants through financial donations.
    And now the bible quite clearly states ”

    [ That ] no devoted thing that a man devotes unconditionally to Jehovah from his belongings may be “sold or bought back”, whether from mankind or animals or the field he possesses.

    Every “devoted” thing is something most holy to Jehovah.
    Leviticus 27:28.

    Yet the watchtower is clearly violating Jehovah’s Decree by selling off the many properties that were dedicated / devoted to Jehovah.
    The answer becomes obvious when we read about the chieftains of old who were manipulating the scales as to defraud people out of their inheritance

    “This is what the Sovereign Lord Jehovah says: ‘You have gone far enough, chieftains of Israel!’“‘Put an end to your violence and oppression, and do what is just and righteous. Stop seizing the “property” of my people,’ declares the Sovereign Lord Jehovah. ‘You should use “accurate scales”, an accurate e′phah measure* and an accurate bath measure. Ezekiel 45:9-10.

    “Woe to those who scheme what is harmful,Who work out evil on their beds!When morning light comes they carry it out,Because it is in the power of their hand
    They desire fields and seize them; Also houses, and they take them;They defraud a man of his house, A man of his inheritance.
    Micah 2:1-2.
    Now If one does a little research they will soon find out that the watchtower now owns a majority of the properties including kingdom
    halls Throughout the world due to their cunningly. manipulating legal contracts in their favor.
    And at this very moment they / the watchtower corporation are consolidating numerous congregations to share other congregations so that they can defraud Jehovah’s people by selling off the excess and make untold millions if not billions.

    • Kevin b

      Something has to wake up the rank and file, maybe this could be it. Have you heard about what happened to the Menlo park congregation a few years ago? Jehovah sees all of their dirty deals.

      • Bklyn Kevin

        No I haven’t heard, so please in your leisure time inform us. I would appreciate. ty.

        • Kevin b

          It’s been a few years. If I remember correctly the CO wanted them to do an unneeded remodel. When you do a new build or remodel the branch does away with the three trustees and forms a Corporation in the name of the branch. The local hall is no longer owned by the local congregation, the branch owns it. They weren’t gonna have it. Well the branch removed all the elders and would not back down, it got really ugly. I believe this hall was some high priced real estate in California. They wanted to get control of the assets. You can google it or learn more on

  • this is interesting.


    Brooklyn, NY. A Bethel insider reports a closed meeting was held at the World Headquarters of Je…hovah’s Witnesses last night and announced the releasing of 108 elderly Bethelites. Many of these longtime, full-time volunteer workers who committed their lives to”Jehovah’s Organization” may be facing homelessness. Most of these Older Jehovah’s Witnesses are of the “Anointed Class”.

    It was suggested in this meeting that the elderly Witnesses may be able to get help and support from the congregations in their hometowns. Many of the older ones were never on Social Security and are being encouraged to apply for Social Security Disability.

    I would just like to note that I just got this on my facebook and I am still trying to verify this story. if any of you get verification please inform me thanks.

    the coming judgment will start with gods house first.
    1 Peter 4:17

    17 For it is the appointed time for the judgment to start with the house of God. Now if it starts first with us, what will the outcome be for those who are not obedient to the good news of God?

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