December 27, 2007

Greetings from Charlotte,

This is a busy week as we prepare for the 15th Anniversary activities planned for this weekend. It appears that we will have about 500 people attending Sabbath services here in Charlotte. We will also be conducting a Married Couples Seminar on Friday afternoon and a Singles Seminar on Sunday in addition to other activities. We are also currently planning budgets for the coming year and preparing for Spring Semester classes to be offered through Living University. Please note the following announcement from Dr. Germano, regarding registration for Spring Semester classes. 

Living University 

Now is the time to register for the 2008 Spring Semester at Living University. Courses include: Camp Leadership, Acts and the Writings of Paul, Introduction to Biblical Doctrines, Christian Leadership, and Archaeology and the Biblical World. Each of these courses carries full academic credit and Church members receive a 50 percent tuition scholarship. 

Consider what our students are telling us. A student wrote: “The interesting thing is that before I was taking this class, people would ask me questions about the Church and I didn’t have the answers to respond in the proper way. Since I have been involved with this class, I have learned so much, it has pushed my learning… and I am not looking forward to ending it. I wanted it to go on...”  

Another writes: “I’m so excited to listen to the lectures. I remember back in 1985 at AC Big Sandy feeling like I could not take notes quick enough to keep up with your lectures. Now I can ‘pause’ you as I type my notes. I can also ‘rewind’ you if I need to re-listen.” Another told us: “This is a great blessing. I am learning many wonderful things in this course.” 

Don’t miss your opportunity to be a part of this extraordinary learning experience. —Michael Germano 

Church Administration 

News from Indonesia 

Mr. Arius Nusantara, our elder in Indonesia, reports: You have probably heard about the flood and the landslides in my island Java. Since it rained in all regions of Indonesia, the disasters are very devastating. Landslides have broken bridges and killed people. Many families lost their houses and family members. We have heavy rains for two days continuously, and it was getting worse at night. Weather forecast announces that there will be another storm in the coming days, so we can expect a very wet new year here.  

Despite all the rain and the damage it causes, the Work has been very positive and good. Our contact with subscribers is getting better and closer. Each week we send e-mails to 298 subscribers informing them of some updates and including comments about Scripture. I usually translate the comments by Dr. Winnail, which we get weekly from Headquarters. Just this month, we have sent out 60 Indonesian Tomorrow’s World telecast audio CDs, 180 Indonesian Tomorrow’s World magazine Asia Pacific, and 800 e-mails. The responses from our subscribers are also increasing. There have been 19 subscribers contacting us via e-mail. We have five new people starting the Bible Study Course.  

This Sabbath we will be celebrating the 15th anniversary by having two services, morning and afternoon. I will plan to give a Bible study about God’s Church through the ages.  

United Kingdom Update 

Mr. Rod King reports: Here in the office we have been compiling end-of-year figures: In 2007 we baptized eight people in the U.K. and Ireland.  Of these, two are the adult children of members, one listened to Mr. Armstrong on Radio Luxembourg in the 1950s and met him at a London campaign in 1958. Another watched The World Tomorrow telecast in Jamaica in the 1980s, and the other four are a direct result of the work done through our telecast presenters. 

Our weekly attendance now averages 110 in the U.K. and Ireland, and about three or four new people a week are requesting information about the Church. As mentioned in my last report, LoveWorld is producing hundreds of responses a week.  Many of these people are from a Pentecostal background, so it takes some time to explain the differences between this way of behavior and the calm, strong way of a true Christian. 

This year, we conducted five Public Bible Lectures in England, Wales and Scotland.  A few have joined us as a result of them, but then many more heard the witness of God’s Word and will respond in time. 

Mail Processing Department 

Our Mail Processing Department now has in place software to track mail delivery times in the United States. Our members can provide a valuable service by logging on to their MyLCG accounts in and clicking on the “Mail Tracking” button.  By letting us know the day you receive any mail from the Church—including Tomorrow’s World magazine, the Living Church News, member/co-worker letters, semi-annual letters, etc.—you will help us identify pockets of slow service which we can report to the U.S. Postal Service in an effort to improve service to our readers. 

Finance Department (Repeat Announcement) 

As we begin December 2007, the income of the Work is slightly below budget. Nevertheless, we hope to end the calendar year with a surplus, as we plan for 2008. 

For those in the USA who do year-end financial planning, any contributions received postmarked prior to and including December 31, 2007 will be included in your contribution receipt for 2007.  Contributions made online by December 31 will also be included in your annual receipt for contributions to the Church.—Davy Crockett 


The Importance of Fellowship:  David wrote, “How good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity” (Psalm 133:1).  Jesus enjoyed, and looks forward to enjoying, the opportunity of future fellowship with His called and chosen disciples (Luke 22:15-16).  He also stated that His true disciples would be recognized by the love they have for one another (John 13:35).  In the same manner, the Apostle Paul urged Christians, “let us consider one another in order to stir up love and good works, not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as is the manner of some, but exhorting one another, and so much the more as you see the Day [of Christ’s return] approaching” (Hebrews 10:24-25).  The Sabbath is a wonderful time to enjoy the opportunity to fellowship with God, with Jesus Christ and others of like mind.   

Have a profitable Sabbath,

Douglas S. Winnail 

News and Prophecy—December 27, 2007 

Islam and the Vatican.  “Attempts to ‘Islamise’ Europe are threatening the Christian character of the continent, the Pope’s closest advisor has cautioned…. The danger for the identity of Europe that is connected with it should not be ignored out of a wrongly understood respectfulness” (The Times, July 27, 2007). The comments come in the wake of Europe’s nations continually accommodating the needs of their Islamic citizens or visitors, and highlight the Vatican’s view of the need to maintain Europe’s Christian roots. Meanwhile, the Pope recently “invited senior Muslim figures for ground-breaking talks at the Vatican.” In his comments, the Pope “emphasized the common belief of Christians and Muslims in one God” (The Times, December 1, 2007). Although the Vatican is leery of Islamic encroachments into Europe, Vatican planners are also looking to a future world where they will be influential and respected by all Muslims. The Vatican’s efforts to foster deeper ties with Muslim nations fits Daniel’s prophecy about a future seven-year treaty that will ultimately lead to the resuming of sacrifices on the Temple Mount—yet this deal will be “broken” halfway into the seven years (Daniel 9:27). 

America and Its Citizens Are Going Broke!  What is your financial net worth? Whatever the figure, subtract $30,000 for each member of your household—which is the current per person amount of America’s $9.13 trillion national debt! The nation’s staggering debt is growing by $1.4 billion per day, or nearly $1 million per minute. The Associated Press reported (December 3, 2007) that mounting debts could choke off the government’s ability to fund new projects and could even force cuts in existing programs. “A major economic slowdown, as some economists suggest may be looming, could hasten the day of reckoning.” As “baby boomers” retire over the next 25 years, increased Social Security and Medicare costs will strain federal coffers and put additional pressure on overburdened workers whose taxes fund these programs. Martin D. Weiss, Ph.D. reported in the December 17, 2007 edition of his Money and Markets newsletter, “The November jump in the U.S. Producer Price Index has exceeded the largest single-month rises of the Bush 2000s... the Clinton ‘90s... the Reagan ‘80s... and even the Carter ‘70s. It is the worst wholesale price inflation since the 1973 Arab oil embargo—over 38% inflation per year….” How might this impact retirees and those holding American dollars? As more money is siphoned out of the economy to cover the nation’s indebtedness, the U.S. will become enslaved to foreign lenders (Proverbs 22:7). 

English Becoming a Minority Language in England.  The UK’s Department for Children, Schools and Families reports that increasing numbers of children attend schools where most students speak languages other than English. The Daily Telegraph reported (December 17, 2007) that in 1,338 primary and secondary schools across England (6.5 percent of England’s total), native English-speakers are in the minority. In 600 of these schools, fewer than one-third speak English as their first language. Dealing with non-English-speaking students undermines educational standards, and “makes it much harder to deliver the curriculum.... The government needs to be looking at funding the employment of teachers or teaching assistants, in addition to the staff they have, who are bilingual or multilingual.”  Mick Brookes, general secretary of the National Association of Head Teachers, told a House of Lords committee that the situation is “out of control.” Teachers’ unions say educating a single non-English-speaking pupil can cost £30,000 (more than US $60,500) per year. God’s prophecies are coming true… “Ephraim has mixed himself among the peoples; Ephraim is a cake unturned. Aliens have devoured his strength, but he does not know it; yes, gray hairs are here and there on him, yet he does not know it. And the pride of Israel testifies to his face, but they do not return to the LORD their God, nor seek Him for all this” (Hosea 7:8-10).—Don Davis, Daniel Bennett, Scott Winnail

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COGwriter 2007