More than 1,000 charities have unified in one of the largest voluntary sector mergers in history. Earlier this year, 1,279 Jehovah’s Witness congregations merged into national charity the Kingdom Hall Trust. Charity Commission records show this is by far the largest merger of 2022 and it is likely to be one of the largest mergers ever. The merger has contributed to a year-on-year rise in charities removed from the register already in 2022, with four months left to go. Financial implications The Kingdom Hall Trust was originally named the London Company of Kingdom Witnesses when it was set up in 1939. It registered as a charity in 1978 and changed its name in 1994 after gaining status as a trust corporation. The trust, which aims to advance the Christian religion practised by Jehovah’s Witnesses, has seen its income grow sharply in recent years as former congregations have merged into it.
JW Watch reported that in 2019 a letter to congregation members suggested the merging of the charities. In the year to August 2021, 354 congregations merged into the trust, while 1,269 integrated into it the year before. As these mergers took place, from 2018-19 to 2020-21, the trust’s income rose from £7m to £133m.Source Civil Society News
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