Greetings from Charlotte! 

Several of us are back at Headquarters after having traveled to different parts of the world to visit our brethren and to celebrate God’s Feasts of Passover and Unleavened Bread. It was truly an inspiring Holy Day season; we feel rejuvenated and energized to continue with our mission.  

Mr. and Mrs. Meredith will be returning to Charlotte tomorrow afternoon after spending the Feast days in Europe. Dr. Winnail will remain in Europe until next Wednesday to conduct the United Kingdom Regional Ministerial Conference, which will take place next week in North Wales.  

Mr. and Mrs. Ames returned yesterday to Charlotte, after a very successful trip to Corpus Christi, where they kept the Last Day of Unleavened Bread with the combined southeastern Texas congregations. Mr. and Mrs. Crockett were in Wisconsin (read Mr. Crockett’s report below).   

My wife and I spent the Passover in Martinique with 18 taking the Passover. At the Night To Be Much Observed and the First Day of Unleavened Bread, more than 30 were in attendance. On April 22, we traveled to Guadeloupe, where I was granted a live 90-minute interview at a local radio station. Eighteen people called the radio station to ask questions about the Bible. The following evening I conducted a public Bible lecture for 40 new people. We spent the Last Day of Unleavened Bread with our enthusiastic brethren in Fort Lauderdale, who gave us a very warm reception.  

Church Administration 

Second Passover 

This year, the Second Passover should be taken shortly after sunset on Sunday, May 18. This Passover is for those baptized members who were unable to take the first Passover due to unforeseen circumstances. The biblical instructions guiding this ceremony are found in Numbers 9:1-14.  

Upcoming Ministerial Conferences 

We are now preparing for the upcoming Council of Elders and Pastors Conferences, which will begin on May 15 and end on May 21. On May 19, during the Pastors Conference, a graduation ceremony will be conducted for the first students of the Living University to complete the Certificate in New Testament Studies.

Living Youth Camp 

Two teen and two pre-teen Living Youth Camps are being offered this year.  Room is still available at the preteen camps in Missouri and Texas and at the teen camp in Michigan.  The Teen Adventure program is currently at capacity.  If you would like to participate at one of these camps, please fill out an application ASAP.  Applications can be found at lyc.lcg.org or see your minister about getting a hardcopy application.  If you have applied as a worker at the Michigan LYC and have not heard whether you have been accepted it is likely that your reference letters have not been turned in.  To check on the status of your application for any of the camps, please call Jenny Penman at 704-844-1960, ext. 237. 

Chattanooga Family Weekend 

The Chattanooga, Tennessee, congregation will be hosting a family dinner-dance weekend in Manchester, Tennessee, at the Manchester-Coffee County Conference Center on May 23-25. There will be a Bible Study on Friday night, May 23; Sabbath services at 1:00 p.m., May 24; and a dinner-dance on Saturday evening. Accommodations are available at the Holiday Inn Express Hotel (931-728-9383), which is connected to the Conference Center, for a discounted rate of $89.99. Let the hotel know that you are with the Living Church of God group when making your reservations.  The costs for the weekend activities are as follow: $25 for adults and $17 for children 12 and under. Children 3 years and under do not pay. For payment instructions and further information on this activity, contact Debra or Ronney Downs at Debrabluebaby810@netzero.net or, by phone, at 423-313-4148 or 423 313-4151. 

United Kingdom Update 

On the week of April 6, Mr. Rod King traveled to Iceland, after being invited by the Gospel Channel for an interview. He reported, “I was interviewed for one and a half hours on the Gospel Channel which covers all of Europe via SKY television. The interviewer was a man who has been a BBC radio presenter… He had visited Ambassador College in the 70s and read The Plain Truth from time to time… he allowed me to talk about and advertise Tomorrow’s World and our booklets Do You The True Gospel and Your Ultimate Destiny…The next day they interviewed me for two half-hour programs that will air later on the Gospel Channel. We discussed marriage and family breakdown, and how God has ordained marriage as a holy covenant between two people, with God as the third Partner. We discussed tithing, the Sabbath, the Holy Days and much more. I was able to correct the notion that many people have about us, that we teach ‘salvation through works.’”  

Passover and Feast of Unleavened Bread Reports 

Mr. Davy Crockett reports on his visit to Wisconsin. “Brethren from three Church areas gathered in Eau Claire, Wisconsin, for the Last Day of Unleavened Bread. The warm hospitality and fellowship of the brethren was in sharp contrast to the late cold snap, which brought howling winds and a light snowfall to the area.  Ninety-one were present in the morning to hear Mr. Sheldon Monson speak on ‘The Forging of Character.’ After a delicious buffet luncheon, I spoke in the afternoon giving an update on activities at Headquarters and a sermon entitled ‘Lessons from Jericho.’ In addition to those in attendance in Eau Claire, about 18 people were on line in Dubuque, Iowa, for the entire service. The enthusiasm and camaraderie of those attending was inspiring to all and a fitting conclusion to the Spring Holy Days.”—Davy Crockett 

Australasia Update 

Mr. Bruce Tyler writes, “All churches in the Australasian region reported having a positive Unleavened Bread week… In Australia, our Holy Day offerings showed a significant overall increase, in spite of the downward economic trend and price increases in so many commodities. This is indicative of our spiritual growth, as it shows our hearts are involved in God’s Work… It’s so vital for us all to keep focused, and to all have one mind in doing God’s Work in this end-time—especially as we see the world heading toward oblivion as it more and more rejects God’s law.” 

Mr. Kinnear Penman’s report: “Members in New Zealand and Vanuatu were joined by eight more who were keeping the Passover for the first time as a result of their baptisms during the year. Numbers were up at Holy Day services throughout the country… we anticipate exciting growth over the next twelve months. Offerings given on the Holy Days were up about 20% over last year, indicative of the enthusiastic involvement of members in God’s Work.” 

Mr. Rajan Moses reports on the Passover in Malaysia and in Myanmar, “We had 12 members in Bahau, 20 members in Kuala Lumpur… I called Thomas Tial Hoe and he informed me that 42 members kept the Passover in Myanmar: seven in Chin state, 16 in Saiging and 19 in Sakahn Gyi village.”  

Mr. Arius Nusantara reports on Indonesia, “Eleven people took the Passover service this year… For the Night To Be Much Observed, 20 people joined together in a nice close by restaurant and had an inspiring night. For the First Day of Unleavened Bread we had a combined luncheon and friendly fellowship, after watching the Indonesian-translated sermon by Mr. Rod King.  On the Last Day of Unleavened Bread we enjoyed another combined luncheon… There has been a of 20% increase in offerings...”   

Mr. Zig Svalbe reports on Sri Lanka, “Passover this year was attended by 25 members in the church house in Colombo. Many of the brethren indicated that this was a memorable occasion because it was rare for them to have a minister conducting this service… The Holy Day offering for the First Day of Unleavened Bread was up by 22% from last year… The political situation in Colombo was, thankfully, very quiet during our visit. Unfortunately, the day after we departed, a terrorist bomb blew up a bus full of people. Events like these have given many of the brethren further resolve to look towards the tremendous promises of the coming Kingdom of God.” 

Mr. Peter Devis reports on Papua New Guinea, “We had a wonderful Passover night. Twenty-eight attended for the First Day of Unleavened Bread. On the Last Day there were 23 in attendance.”  

Mr. Basilio Osillos reports on the Manila area in the Philippines, “We had a very fine Spring Holy Day season. The Quezon City congregation kept the Night To Be Much Observed at sunset right where we had just had Sabbath services. The brethren had extended fellowshipping, which they all loved. Our attendance was excellent—93 on the First Day and 111 on the Last Day of Unleavened Bread. Despite the hard times, we are very grateful that God has provided us with dedicated ‘firstfruits’ who contribute to the Work with their generous tithes and offerings. May I also add that I had already baptized four individuals within the first quarter of 2008. Throughout the year 2007, there were only three baptisms in my pastorate. I believe that this is an indication of positive growth here in the Philippines.” 

Mr. Felipe Casing reports on his area in the Philippines, “We had four locations where Passover was kept and conducted by our ministers… while the rest of the brethren had to keep it in their own homes. On April 19, we had our regular Sabbath service in all scheduled areas followed by the Night To Be Much Observed. On April 20, we spent the First Day of Unleavened Bread in five locations… Some areas have no electricity, so we have to make use of the battery-operated tape players or give live sermons.” 


Internet Update: Bible Study Course in 92 Countries! 

Just last week, a registration from the Turks & Caicos Islands (in the Caribbean) brought to 92 the number of countries where students are participating in the 24-lesson Tomorrow’s World Bible Study Course online. More than 4,600 students have registered for the online course since it was established in April 2007.  For more information about print and online versions of the Bible Study Course, visit www.twbiblecourse.org.–J. Charles Ogwyn 

Feast of Tabernacles 2008 

To Be Announced at Sabbath Services on May 3: Festival Registration Tomorrow, Sunday, May 4! 

Everyone planning to attend the Feast in the U.S. or Canada is invited to register online tomorrow beginning at 12:00 noon (EDT).  Those registering for their assigned site should receive their emailed approval notice soon after registering, and may begin making housing reservations after they receive their notice of approval.  Those wishing to transfer should also begin registering tomorrow—but please wait until you are notified of your APPROVAL BY EMAIL before making housing arrangements.  In most cases, approvals for transfers will not be sent until around May 18.  

If you have any special needs regarding your Feast site, please contact the Festival Coordinator.  If you have difficulty registering tomorrow, please write to festival@lcg.org. To find out more information about the Feast sites, including activities, suggested housing, etc., log onto MyLCG (www.cogl.org) and click on the link, “Feast Site Information” and then “View Feast Sites.” If you don’t have Internet access, please see your local Festival Advisor for site information and paper registration forms.—Rod McNair 

Branson, Missouri 

For those planning to attend the Feast of Tabernacles in Branson, Missouri, the festival website has been updated (as of late Thursday evening) with some very helpful housing information.  Some of the deals that local condos and hotels have made with us are simply outstanding, and you are highly encouraged to take a look before making housing arrangements.  Your wallet will thank you!  The website for the Feast in Branson is www.fotbranson.org.  Simply click on the link for “Housing” on the top of the home page.—Wallace Smith 


The Passover and the Days of Unleavened Bread came and went. But what did they leave behind? Did they change anything in our lives? What did we learn during these Feast days—anything new, anything permanent? To some of us, the Feast days sometimes spell “routine.” We take them for granted.  

One thing is sure; we can’t truly celebrate the Passover and the Days of Unleavened Bread without showing love and mercy toward our neighbor. As Christ said, “if you forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses” (Matthew 6:14-15).  

It is not only during the Days of Unleavened Bread that we should put spiritual leaven out of our lives—leaven symbolizing sin in every sense of the word—including boastful attitudes, pride, vanity and lethargy. In this world of corruption, Satan is eager to discourage us, to put fear in our hearts, to make us believe that God does not mean what He says in the Bible. But Christ Himself commands us to be courageous. He said, “In the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world” (John 16:33).  

If we understand the true meaning of the Passover and of the Feast of Unleavened Bread we just celebrated, we will not let doubts and fear influence our minds. Let us constantly have our eyes on Jesus Christ—our hope and our Savior—who grants us the supreme privilege to live with Him and with our Father forever.  

Have a wonderful Sabbath,

Dibar Apartian

News and Prophecy—May 1, 2008 

Who Owns Britain? In the last couple of decades, Britain sold off many of its major assets: Jaguar and Land Rover were just bought by an Italian group which also owns Tetley Tea; Rolls-Royce is made by BMW and Bentley by Volkswagen (both German firms); Scottish and Newcastle ale companies are being divided between Carlsberg and Heineken; Thames Water is owned by the Australians (just sold to them by the Germans) and Wessex Water is owned by Malaysia. Most British electric companies are owned by the French or Germans—Scottish Power is now owned by the Spanish. The city of London, Britain’s “jewel,” is now mostly foreign-owned. Royal Ordinance was recently sold off, requiring all military munitions to now be acquired from “the continent.” In the words of one sobered author, “So, if this picture of national decline tempts us to shoot ourselves, we will first have to buy the bullets from France” (Sunday Telegraph, March 30, 2008). A well-known scripture comes to mind here, “The alien who is among you shall rise higher and higher above you, and you shall come down lower and lower” (Deuteronomy 28:43). The sobering question is: When might the following scripture also come to pass? “A nation whom you have not known shall eat the fruit of your land and the produce of your labor….The LORD will bring you and the king whom you set over you to a nation which neither you nor your fathers have known, and there you shall serve other gods—wood and stone” (vv. 33, 36). 

A Future “Brotherhood” of France and Britain? In a recent speech to the British Parliament, French President Sarkozy outlined the need and opportunity for “a new Franco-British brotherhood for the 21st century.” In his speech, Mr. Sarkozy stated: “Together we are necessarily stronger than standing side by side, let alone standing against one another.” He also pointed to the powerful future role Britain and France could play together reforming global organizations like the UN, IMF, and the World Bank. Mr. Sarkozy also called Britain and the U.S., France’s “natural allies” (The Independent, March 27, 2008). French President Sarkozy’s recent comments speak to the blood ties between France, Britain and the U.S. that go back to the twelve tribes of ancient Israel (see Genesis 48-49). All three nations are truly brothers and will likely stand together again as such on the world stage. Mr. Sarkozy’s recent overtures towards Britain and the U.S. demonstrate this ancient tie. Just how this “brotherly relationship” will play out in end-time prophecy remains to be seen. 

North America, Get Ready to Rock and Roll! An April 18 earthquake along the legendary New Madrid fault in Illinois is renewing concern about seismic activity in the region. Three earthquakes on the New Madrid fault nearly 200 years ago topped 8.0 in magnitude and were felt from Canada to New Orleans, and all the way to the Eastern Seaboard.  Terrain was disfigured across 3,000-5,000 square miles, as fissures and up-thrusts destroyed and created lakes and swamps. Forests were laid waste, and rivers’ courses were changed. Damage was widespread at a time when the area was a sparsely settled wilderness with only a few small towns. Today, tens of millions of people live in the region, concentrated in population centers such as St. Louis and other Mississippi and Missouri river cities. In 2005, University of Memphis researchers estimated a 7% to 10% probability that the New Madrid fault would unleash another 8+ magnitude quake before 2055. Other scientists forecast a 25 to 40% probability of a 6+ magnitude quake before 2057 (Livescience.com, April 18, 2008). Missouri University researchers, looking at data from an 1895 quake in Charleston, Missouri, suggest that because of soil conditions in the flood plain of the Missouri River, quakes there can be magnified 600% beyond similar quakes in California, such that a major Midwest temblor could bring down most existing long-span bridges. “And there will be great earthquakes in various places…” (Luke 21:11).—Don Davis, Daniel Bennett and Scott Winnail