December 28, 2006

Greetings from Charlotte, 

We really enjoyed having more than 30 young people here in Charlotte for the Living 4 Tomorrow program last week in addition to more than 30 who participated in the Singles Seminar.  It was also encouraging to have more than 250 people from various parts of the country attend services in Charlotte last weekend, with the majority staying for the Headquarters dinner-dance that followed.  This weekend, Mr. and Mrs. Crockett and I will be traveling to other destinations for services.  Mr. and Mrs. Charles Ogwyn have arrived in Charlotte and Mr. Ogwyn has already assumed his new duties working with the Internet program.  Mr. Rick Stafford is now in Little Rock, Arkansas (see details below), and has begun working with the congregations that were formerly pastored by Mr. Ogwyn. 


Mr. and Mrs. Paul Shumway are currently visiting our brethren in Barbados. They will spend the Sabbath there and will fly to Puerto Rico on January 1, where they will conduct a Bible study for the local congregation.  

After an “exciting” journey from Oregon to Arkansas, Mr. Rick Stafford arrived safely in Little Rock to assume his responsibilities as Area Pastor of Arkansas and Memphis, Tennessee. He reported about his trip, “I was able to push on through Denver to Limon (1,000 miles that day). I got up at 2:30 a.m., saddled up and drove five hours into Kansas through the blizzard of ice, wind and snow before they shut down the freeway!” 

Spanish Web site Update 

New features have been recently added to the Spanish Web site, In addition to offering the Spanish version of the Tomorrow’s World magazine, booklets and broadcasts; the Spanish Web site now also offers instant messaging (or “chat”), the public domain Spanish Reina Valera 1960 translation of the Bible with large print characters, and television news about the Middle East. 

Mr. Mario Hernandez will be with our brethren in Guatemala this weekend. 


As we come to the end of the calendar year, we are busily tying up loose ends and settling accounts so that we can close the books on 2006.  Income has been good.  Through Thursday, December 28, our annual increase compared to 2005 is 8.2 percent. While the final number may fluctuate a bit, it should be close to that amount. We are deeply grateful for the sacrifices made by our members and our growing number of co-workers that make it possible for us to meet the growing needs of the Work God has given us to do.  

Charles Ogwyn is settling in at his home and in the office.  He is already involved in a number of projects involving our Web sites, domestic and international. The year 2007 should be an exciting one as we make progress in this important area of the Work.  If you have suggestions or ideas for improving our Web sites, or if you have expertise in this field and would like to be involved as a resource, please send your ideas and/or your qualifications to 

Last Sabbath, services were held at the Uptown Crown Plaza Hotel in Charlotte with 254 people present. Mr. Meredith gave the sermon. Afterwards, everyone enjoyed a delicious buffet meal served by the hotel. Then, the congregation and guests experienced a delightful evening of dancing to music provided by J. R. Wells and his band from Baton Rouge in a beautifully decorated hall with the theme of “Moonlight and Roses.” On Sunday, Family Day activities were held at the Headquarters building. More than 150 people had great fun playing games and fellowshipping.  At noon, a great lunch of chili and all that goes with it, prepared by local ladies, was served. The activities were over at 4:00 p.m., but many were reluctant to leave and fellowshipped on into the evening. Truly, God’s people are “given to hospitality.” Romans 12:13.—Davy Crockett  


Responses to Semi-Annual Letter. As of today, we have received at our Headquarters office 19,665 responses to Mr. Meredith’s latest semi-annual letter offering the booklet Prophecy Fulfilled: God’s Hand in World Affairs. More responses continue to come! This figure represents a response rate of 7.7 percent for the Headquarters-based mailing list.  Additional hundreds of responses have also been received at our various international regional offices where, according to reports, responses have been higher than expected.  

Have a profitable Sabbath,

Douglas S. Winnail 


NEWS AND PROPHECY—December 28, 2006 

Saber Rattling in the Middle East.  “Egypt rebuked Iran’s president on Monday for claiming his state is ‘a nuclear country’—a comment that touched a nerve among Iran’s neighbors in the Middle East… Iran’s decision to declare itself a nuclear power could undermine Egypt’s campaign to get the Middle East to declare itself a zone free of nuclear weapons… Many Sunni Arab states, including Egypt, Jordan and Saudi Arabia are worried about the growing influence of Shiite Iran in Iraq, and its potential for stirring up religious tensions between the region’s Shiite and Sunni populations” (Associated Press, December 25, 2006).   End-time prophecies indicate that Egypt will play a prominent role in world events, and that Egypt—not Iran—will ultimately be involved in a critical clash with the king of the North (Daniel 11:42-43).  

Ending the “Peace of America.” In a recent Newsweek article, author Robert Samuelson used Romanesque language to describe the end of an era—the fall of America—“The End of Pax Americana.” Samuelson reviewed America’s major role in world affairs over the last 60 years—from stabilizing nations, to feeding the hungry, to disseminating technology and industry. Primarily through America has the standard of living dramatically increased around earth in the same period: “Since 1950, average incomes have multiplied about 16 times in South Korea, 11 times in Japan and six times in Spain… From higher bases, the increases were nearly five times in Germany, four in France and three in the United States… The trouble is that strength—measurable and impressive—does not translate directly into power. Power is the ability to get others to do what you want. Here, America is weaker” (Newsweek, December 13, 2006). God said that “in you [Abraham’s descendents] all the families of the earth shall be blessed” (Genesis 12:3)—which has definitely happened through the U.S. and British-descended people. God also predicted that the pride of the power of these Israelite-descended nations would be broken for rejecting God (Leviticus 26:19). This Newsweek article sadly punctuates the reality of the prophesied decline of the U.S.—a decline that has been preceded by a time of great peace and prosperity—the Pax Americana. 

Drought and Heat Ravage United States and Australia. Exceptional heat and a lack of rain combined in 2006 to cause a record wildfire season in the U.S., with 9.5 million acres burned. The National Climatic Data Center reported that 2006 will likely be the third-warmest year on record. Half of the U.S. experienced moderate to exceptional drought during the first seven months of 2006. Then, when above-average rainfall came to many areas from August through November, some harvesting activities were disrupted and the Pacific Northwest suffered extensive flooding (Associated Press, December 14, 2006).  Australia also suffered an exceptionally hot and dry 2006, experiencing a short El Niño drought on top of a gradually declining average yearly rainfall. These conditions affected almost all of Australia’s crop belt, and the nation’s winter cereal harvest was the worst since 1994. In the midst of this drought, however, Adelaide, northern New South Wales, northeast Queensland and Katherine, in the Northern Territory, suffered flooding rains (Australian Broadcasting Corp., December 15, 2006). God clearly prophesied these extreme weather conditions:  “I also withheld rain from you, when there were still three months to the harvest. I made it rain on one city, I withheld rain from another city. One part was rained upon, and where it did not rain the part withered” (Joel 3:9-10, Amos 4:7). God does control the weather and clearly prophesied these weather extremes at the end of the age.—Don Davis, Scott Winnail, Ben Whitfield

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COGwriter 2006