Recently I was looking at the statistics in the latest Yearbook for Jehovah's Witnesses and noted that the Worldwide Memorial Attendance in 2019 was 20,919,041. In the USA it was 2,416,752 and in the UK it was 222,033. This year the memorial is scheduled for Tuesday 7 April at sundown.
The Memorial of Christ's death is the most important annual event for Jehovah's Witnesses. Those who belong to the "anointed remnant" - those with a heavenly hope - partake of the bread and the wine. The last statistic I have for memorial partakers is 2018 when 19,521 Witnesses ate the bread and drank the wine. Witnesses do not use the expression "communion", but I've had to use that tag because it's the only one I could find that is relevant to taking the bread and wine.
I have statistics for memorial partakers going back to 1935 (when 52,465 partook of the emblems) and, as far as I am aware, the only year when there were no statistics for memorial partakers was in 1937. If that is not the case, I would appreciate being corrected.
Given the current pandemic with most of Europe and the U.S.A. in a virtual lockdown, and public gatherings of more than 10 people banned in the U.S.A. (more than 2 in the U.K.), how are Jehovah's Witnesses going to commemorate the death of Christ this year? This is of particular importance to those who belong to the 144,000, the "anointed remnant".
I would ask my local friendly Witnesses, but they can no longer display their literature in the town square and their Kingdom Hall is closed. Neither have they posted a memorial invitation through my letterbox. I've been told that the Governing Body has issued a video telling all Witnesses to follow the directions of government authorities, but also to obey Jesus’ command (in Luke 22:18) to celebrate the Lord’s evening meal.
Has the memorial been cancelled this year? If not, how will it take place and how will the statistics be recorded?
EDIT to provide updated information on the 2020 Memorial Service from the official Jehovah's Witness website: https://www.jw.org/en/search/?q=2020+Service+Year+Report
The 2020 Memorial Service took place worldwide in spite of Covid restrictions. Here are a few important statistics and a comparison with 2019 statistics:
2020 Grand Totals: Memorial Attendance: 17,844,773 (2019 was 20,919,014 attendance)
Memorial Partakers: 21,182 (No figures for 2019)
Average Monthly Publishers: 8,424,185 (2019 was 8,471,008 publishers)
Total Number Baptized *: 241,994 (2019 was 303,866 baptized)
Percentage Decrease Over 2019: 0.6% (2019 was Percentage Increase of 1.3%)