Church of God News

Is Nuclear War Between Russia and Germany Imminent?  (Standing Watch) 11 mins.
Is Christ a Begotten, a Created or a One of a Kind Son? (Third Angel’s Message) 25 mins.

The Biblical Calendar for 2023 is now posted.

The January-February 2023 issues are now on-line:
Bible Sabbath Association :
Sabbath Sentinel
Church of God 7th Day (Denver) :
Bible Advocate
Church of God 7th Day (Salem) :
Advocate of Truth
Church of God International :
International News
Church of God a Worldwide Association :
Living Church of God :
Tomorrow’s World
United Church of God :
Beyond Today

United Church of God and the Hebrew Calendar
Is the Council of Elders being disingenuous about the Hebrew Calendar?
In 2015 United Church of God minister Jonathan Garnant published a paper on an academic website titled,
Hebrew Calendric Postponements, stating:
… it is clear that it is not until the late 300s, 4th possibly 5th century CE that we see the first vestiges of the Postponements. Prior to this, no authoritative record exists that discusses postponing any Holy day for cultural considerations.
The Summary of the Hebrew Calendar Doctrine Study Paper (approved by UCGs Council of Elders, December 7, 2021 and published August 18, 2022), which Doctrine Committee member Rex Sexton said is the product of 6 years research, contradicts Jonathan Garnants findings:
There are a number of historical references which indicate that calendric calculations and even postponements, when warranted, were done in the first few centuries and even before Christ’s time.
The Council
s evidence regarding postponement rules comes from quotes in the book, Calendar and Community, by Sacha Stern:
12. “According to the Palestinian Talmud, indeed, the rule was firmly established that Yom Kippur [the Day of Atonement] could never occur on Friday” (p.136). “… The day of Atonement cannot occur on a Friday or on a Sunday. This rule is mentioned in the Palestinian Talmud as well as in the Babylonian Talmud …” (p.166 and related footnotes 44 and 45).
13. “The present day prohibition of Rosh ha-Shanah [day of Trumpets] on Sunday draws its origin from another passage of the Palestinian Talmud (Y. Sukkah 4:1 (54b))” (p.194) …
14b. Postponement rules were already in place before the time of Hillel II [A.D.358] to ensure that the Day of Atonement would not fall on a Friday or a Sunday. Therefore, the postponement rules were not added centuries after Hillel II, as some opposing the postponement rules claim.

This is the opposite of what Sacha Stern
s book actually says.
The quote taken from p.166 is the portion underlined below. The text is extended to the bottom of the page.
Another rule, that appears to have only emerged in the Amoraic period, is that the Day of Atonement cannot occur on a Friday or a Sunday. This rule is mentioned in the Palestinian Talmud as well as in the Babylonian Talmud, although the latter remains uncertain about its extent – for instance, whether it also applies to other festivals. Reasons for this rule are given in the Babylonian Talmud: it was difficult to keep fresh food (ʿUlla’s opinion) or an unburied corpse (R.ʾAḥa b.Ḥanina’s opinion) over two consecutive days of forbidden work.
This rule is unknown in the Mishnah
(published c.200AD), where the possibility of the Day of Atonement’s occurring after the Sabbath or vice-versa is completely taken for granted.
The quote taken from p.194 is also only part of a sentence. We need to read from the start of the sub-section on p.194 to get the context.
4.4.3 The Rule of lo ADU (i.e. the 1st day of the Hebrew calendar year – Rosh ha-Shanah – Day of Trumpets – cannot be on a Sunday, Wednesday or Friday)
The same passage from the Palestinian Talmud (Y. Megillah) informs us that already in the later Amoraic period, Rosh ha-Shanah could not occur on Wednesday or on Friday. But this implies that Rosh ha-Shanah could occur on any other day of the week, including Sunday (as noted above, section 4.3.1).
What does section 4.3.1. say?
4.3.1 Evidence of Divergences from the Present-Day Rabbinic Calendar
Although a fixed calendar had begun to take shape by the fourth century CE, it was not identical with the Jewish rabbinic calendar of today. A number of documents and texts from the Geonic period reveal that the rabbinic calendar was reckoned differently till as late as the ninth century. It is only in the tenth century, in R. Saadya Gaon’s extensive correspondence with Ben Meir, that we find evidence of the rabbinic calendar in its full present-day form.
Continuing section 4.4.3, with UCG’s selected quote:
The present-day prohibition of Rosh ha-Shanah on Sunday draws its origin from another passage of the Palestinian Talmud (Y. Sukkah 4:1 (54b)), where R. Simon prohibited the Day of the Willow (21 Tishre) from being set on the Sabbath (hence, Rosh ha-Shanah on Sunday).
What is the Day of the Willow, and why is it prohibited from being on the Sabbath?
The Jewish Book of WHY, p.228, by Alfred J. Kolatch, explains:
If Hoshana Rabba were to fall on the Sabbath, this would interfere with the ceremony of beating a bunch of
hoshanot (willows) during the synagogue services, an action forbidden on the Sabbath. Beating the willows was an act of self-flagellation and a sign of remorse, similar to the malkot ceremony practiced on Yom Kippur.
Ex-Worldwide Church of God leaders avoid admitting to the existence of the Day of the Willow, and use instead a reason supplied by WCG historian Herman Hoeh as to why Rosh ha-Shanah cannot be on a Sunday – that it would be wrong to have the Sabbath and an annual holy day on successive days. This reasoning would only work, however, if Pentecost were postponed from Sunday to Monday. The 1st and 7th days of Unleavened Bread would also sometimes have to be postponed.
Continuing in section 4.4.3, p.195:

But evidence from the Palestinian and Babylonian Talmudim (not least, the passage from Y. Megillah itself) suggests that in the Talmudic period, this rule was not consistently obeyed. Later evidence confirms that the occurrence of the Day of the Willow on the Sabbath was still possible as late as the sixth century.
Continuing on p.195 with the postponement rule of:
4.4.4 The Rule of Molad Zaqen (i.e. if the molad – i.e. the conjunction – of the 7th month occurs on or after midday, Rosh ha-Shanah – New Year’s Day – must be postponed)
The origins of the rule of molad zaqen are as obscure as is its rationale. However, we know that its introduction into the rabbinic calendar was relatively late … (p.196) That molad zaqen was not observed is confirmed beyond doubt in the exilarch’s letter of 835/6 CE … this demonstrates that as late as 835/6 CE, the rule of molad zaqen was not yet observed.
4.4.5 The 19-Year Cycle
Evidence of a 19-year cycle of intercalations (above, section 4.4.1, rule (vi)) is totally absent in early rabbinic sources … The earliest mention of the 19-year cycle is in Pirqei de-R. Eliezer, a work which is generally dated to the eighth or ninth century (Strack and Sternberger 1991:356). It is also mentioned in the Kiddush Yeraḥim of R. Pinhas, which was written not earlier than the mid eighth century. It is then found in later sources, such as al-Khwarizmi’s monograph on the Jewish calendar, dating from 823/4 CE.
Sacha Stern’s book is replete with evidence confirming Jonathan Garnants findings, but UCGs doctrine committee has chosen to pluck from it parts of sentences that suggest the opposite – and the other members of the Council of Elders have approved this deception.
In the
COE meeting on December 6, 2022, the Council unanimously approved the withdrawal of all Hebrew Calendar papers previous to the current one. The COE is still reviewing the current paper, and says that the full paper will be released by Passover 2023.
So what does Sacha Stern say about Hallel II, who purportedly published the Hebrew Calendar in its present day form in 358/9AD?
4.2.4 The Hillel Tradition
It is widely accepted that the fixed rabbinic calendar was instituted by Hillel the Patriarch in 358/9 CE. This institution, however, is not mentioned or recorded in any of the contemporary rabbinic sources, such as the Palestinian or Babylonian Talmud. The earliest reference to it appears in a responsum of R. Hai Gaon (early eleventh century) cited by R. Avraham b. Ḥiyya …
until the days of Hillel b. R. Yehuda in the year 670 of the Seleucid era (358/9 CE), from when they did not bring forth or postpone, but kept to this cycle which was at hand
The topic of R. Hai’s responsum is the 19-year cycle of intercalations, and this is clearly what this passage refers to. Thus it cannot be inferred from this passage that the fixed calendar in its entirety was instituted by Hillel. Even after the adoption of the 19-year cycle, new months could still have been set on a purely empirical basis, following the procedure of the Mishnah.
Later medieval authors, however, understood this tradition to mean that the entire fixed calendar, in its present-day form, was instituted by Hillel in 358/9 CE.
The Jewish tradition of Hallel II was introduced into the WCG by Herman Hoeh, whose writings were accepted automatically as truth.

United Church of God minister “forced to retire”
The following has been received from a member re Randy Stiver’s retirement:
Mr. Randy Stiver, long time minister, Council of Elders member and teacher at Ambassador Bible College, has been forced to retire from the ministry of the United Church of God. Mr. Stiver had been assigned to pastor UCG’s South Dakota congregations in the spring of 2021.
Some members of the eastern South Dakota congregations began a campaign of opposition to Mr. Stiver early on, messaging their grievances to the Church’s Operation Manager, Ministerial and Member Services Director Mr. Mark Welch and others. The opposition reached a peak shortly after the Feast that year when members of that group solicited support from other members for the purpose of presenting an organized unified front. The result was a visit to the eastern South Dakota congregations by Mr. Welch and Regional Director Mr. Mitch Knapp. Many members were unaware of what had been happening, but as those loyal to Mr. Stiver became aware of the situation they began to make their support known to home office leadership including then Church President, Mr. Victor Kubik.
The division over Mr. Stiver’s leadership continued through the spring holy days and into the summer of this year. Mr. Kubik was replaced as UCG President by Mr. Rick Shabi. Mr. Shabi was informed of the situation by those on both sides of the issue. He visited the churches this summer, giving a sermon to the combined congregations and holding an open bible study soliciting input from members. Two weeks later Mr. Shabi visited again this time accompanied by the current UCG Council President Len Martin. They delivered split sermons to the combined eastern South Dakota congregations urging reconciliation by all parties. Shortly after that it was announced that Mr. Stiver was retiring and being replaced by long time South Dakota elder Mr. Ken Skorseth. Several families within the congregations loyal to Mr. Stiver are now reassessing their relationship with UCG.

So what’s all the fuss about?
A group of people didn’t like that Mr. Stiver was old school in his structure of the local congregation. They just didn’t like him being in charge from the start. They are more ecumenical and liberal (even Protestant if you will). They had been given positions of influence by the former Pastor and Mr. Stiver wanted to restructure the group. They were able to gain the ear of Mark Welch and then Mr. Shabi and Mr. Martin. Mr. Stiver wouldn’t budge on the administrative structure he wanted locally.
Mr. Stiver is a long-time minister going back to the 1970s. He was NOT introducing any new or controversial teaching or doctrines. He supports United’s
Fundamentals of Beliefs. He has served on their Council of Elders and taught at Ambassador Bible College in Cincinnati. It’s a case of the people rule. Some would say laodecian. It wasn’t doctrinal, but personality based.
Shabi, Welch and Martin are part of a liberal movement in United and didn’t like Mr. Stiver being
old school. They went along with the locals.
Bizarre as it sounds, it’s as simple as that.
Mr. Stiver is NOT totally retired. He has been given Rapid City, SD to pastor and a limited stipend. Rapid City was part of his original South Dakota circuit. Interestingly, they did not and do not have a problem with him. Just the influential group in Eastern South Dakota. United is experiencing a shortage of ministers. He is being monitored by Shabi and has to be careful about what he says and does.
United has many younger ministers in charge who don’t have a sound foundational understanding for what the “Church of God” is. Locals describe it as a “church home”. More local people throughout the congregations are becoming cognizant of United’s liberal ecumenical trend.
Mr. Skorseth, the new minister in charge, is being monitored closely by Shabi, Welch and Martin. He gets approval from them as far as the speaking schedule and has orders about how to proceed.
The situation in the South East South Dakota congregations remains unresolved. We’ll see.

2022 Winter Weekend
Christmas Day falls on a Sunday in 2022.
Common Faith Network is organizing its annual weekend gathering for independent congregations at the Griffin Gate Marriott in Lexington, Kentucky, December 23-27.
The United Church of God cancelled its weekend festival in 2020 and 2021, but this year will be holding its main event at the Holiday Inn, Cincinnati N, December 23-27. There will also be a weekend event at the Holiday Inn, Portland, Oregon, December 23-26.
Church of God a Worldwide Association will be holding its winter festival as usual at the Galt House Hotel and Conference Center in Louisville, Kentucky, December 23-27.
Members of the Church of God Assembly will again be gathering in the Embassy Suites in Murfreesboro, Tennessee, December 22-26.

The Living Church of God will not be meeting at its HQ in Charlotte, North Carolina, but will have several small sites this year, which are for members only.

United Church of God
Prayer request from Jorge de Campos, senior pastor, Portuguese language areas:
In the last few years, the Angolan government set up a law entitled the “Law on Freedom of Religion and Worship” which requires any new religious organisation to meet certain requirements to be able to exercise its religious duties. As the Church in Angola has not been registered, it was deemed to be a new religious organisation. One requirement to be registered is that the Church must have 60,000 signatures of members (over 18 years old) who are willing to have their names publicly listed as members of the organisation. 94 religious organisations in Angola are listed as not recognised, and God’s Church in Angola is one of those.The Church has applied for that recognition with the help of an attorney organisation. After a number of years of waiting for a decision, finally such decision was reached by the governing authorities and the Church’s application for recognition was refused.In a letter received just after the Feast, the governing authorities recommended that the Church “join a recognised religious confession whose doctrine and principles relate to the religious beliefs and practices identified with your denomination” and furthermore stated that “you must immediately close down the activities of your Church, under penalty of disobedience, in the general terms of the applicable law.”The penalty for disobedience to this “Law on Freedom of Religion” would involve closing of the Church’s halls and the associated minister or pastor being placed in jail. We are working with the Angolan leadership and are ready to assist them in their endeavours to look for a solution. We will do what we can do, but the key factor is in our Heavenly Father’s hands and subject to His miraculous intervention according to His will.As such, we request your prayers to our Heavenly Father, through His Son and our Saviour, Jesus Christ, for His intervention in this most difficult trial.
Please note that the school we have sponsored in Angola is not affected, as it falls under a different government department and will be able to continue to provide its service to the community.

Pastor David Schreiber writes, 3rd of November 2022:
After spending a couple of days after the Feast in Agra, India, with our brethren there, Jolinda and I took a flight to Aizawl in the state of Mizoram. Christianity is the largest religion (87%, predominantly Presbyterian) in Mizoram. We’ve had a relationship with the Mizo people for many years. They contacted UCG originally back in 1996. We have a friendship and a working relationship with them, as they believe and teach most all of the doctrines we see in the Bible. They have accepted our fundamental beliefs and have been approved by UCG
IA to translate our booklets into their Mizo language.
The leadership in UCG Mizoram has a desire to reach out and unite Sabbath-keeping churches in their state of Mizoram, and for the past decade they have been doing just that. They have several small churches with 400-plus members in the state all under the name “United Church of God Mizoram.” There are now seven congregations who are part of UCG Mizoram with about 420 total members. The last time I visited here three years ago, there were four congregations. God has blessed these people as they strive for unity and desire to collectively find ways to preach the gospel.

COGWA Festival Site at Fort Myers
Jim Franks writes:
I know that all of you are aware of the severe damage that was done by Hurricane Ian in southwest Florida and especially in the Fort Myers area. The satellite Feast site in Fort Myers has served the Church well for the past several years, but sadly,
we are forced to cancel the site for this year. The damage in the area around the Holiday Inn, where services were scheduled, is just too severe to hold the Feast in that area, and at this late date, we felt it impractical to secure another location in Florida. It is the severe devastation in the area—along with the fact that many of you booked accommodations on the beach or near the beach, which was severely damaged or destroyed—that leads us to make this decision.

Biblical Calendar
Monday, the 26th of September, is Rosh Hashanah (New Year
s Day), the 1st day of the 7th month in the Hebrew calendar.
Surely the
Jewish calendar year should begin on the 1st day of the 1st month?
“1st day of Tishri or Tishrei = New Year For Years (i.e. this is the date for when Creation occurred in Jewish tradition, that is, the creation of the world and of Adam and hence is the date for when the year number changes in the Hebrew/Jewish calendar) …
Originally, the Civil New Year occurred on the 1st of Nissan or Nisan, when the reign of kings was dated beginning on the 1st day of Nissan or Nisan. Later on, after the exile of most of the Jews who lived in the Kingdom of Judah to Babylonia by the conquering Babylonians … the practise of observing the New Year For Kings and Festivals on the 1st day of Nissan or Nisan was ended and the Civil New Year was changed from the 1st day of Nissan or Nisan to the 1st day of Tishrei (or Tishri), that is, on Rosh Hashanah.”

(Elimelech David Ha-Levi, Jewish (Hebrew) Calendar – Origin And History)
The Jewish Calendar is calculated from Rosh Hashana, which begins on the day of the Molad Emtzai (conjunction) of Tishrei, the 7th month. Four postponement rules could delay the 1st of Tishrei by 1 or 2 days, so it could fall at the time of the sighting of the new moon or a day between that and the conjunction.
There is no molad for the other 11 new moons – 29/30 days are counted forward and backward from Rosh Hashana. In 2018 this resulted in the 1st month beginning on the evening when the old waning moon of the previous year was still visible – technically a new moon, but in reality a patent absurdity.
The nascent Sanhedrin is practising sighting of the new moon in anticipation of a return to this method, but unity and tradition must prevail until an official Sanhedrin can be established, so the Jews must for the present adhere to the way the new moons are currently calculated.
Herbert Armstrong consistently taught that:
The first day of the new year always begins with the day nearest the spring equinox when the new moon is first visible to the naked eye AT JERUSALEM (not in the United States).
The Jewish calendar as used by Jews today is correct.

How Often Should We Partake of the Lord’s Supper? (1971, last paragraph)
Also in 1971 the Worldwide Church of God published a booklet by its designated calendar expert, Kenneth Herrmann,
God’s Sacred Calendar 71-72, “the true calendar for all mankind.”
The beginning of this month and all God’s months is determined by the appearance of the first faint crescent of the new moon in the west just after sundown (Observed from Palestine).
Whatever discussions transpired about the calendar among WCG’s hierarchy in Pasadena, one outcome is known. Craig White records, in Pioneers of the Worldwide Church of God:
“In 1972 Mr. Herrmann was put on extended Sabbatical leave due to political problems in the Pasadena administration and transferred to the Big Sandy area.”
The Crescent New Moon Maps show that the new moon will be clearly visible in Hawaii on the evening of the 26th of September 2022, and in Israel on the evening of the 27th.

Tabernacles/Sukkot 2022
Most of the festival sites have been announced, and venues, festival and visitors information for all these can be found at

Letter from Bill Goff, Kenya Hands of Hope, 12th of August 2022:
I have something sad to report on and bring to your attention. I’m hoping that you will pray about it, because it’s a very serious matter.
A while back I reported that Fred Coulter stepped in and joined hands with us in helping our impoverished brethren, and it was a wonderful thing, we were able to assist more of our suffering brethren by working together. Sad to say, that help came to an abrupt end yesterday. Apparently someone informed Fred that my beliefs differ from some of what he teaches. There are a number of doctrines that not only I, but other members of the Body of Christ differ on, but that shouldn’t stop us from helping our brethren who are suffering and literally starving to death at this time.“Mark them which cause divisions and offenses contrary to the doctrines which ye have learned; and avoid them”.
Too many pulpits in the church of God are too quick to terminate all relation, and sever ties because of differences in beliefs. Now there are Scriptural instructions concerning this matter, and times when some do need to be dealt with, like in Romans 16:17 where we are told to .
Let us be sure we understand what the Scripture is saying here: that word “divisions” means disunion, dissension, division, sedition. Sedition means to conduct or speech exciting people to rebel against the authority or a state or monarch, and division means disagreement between two or more groups producing tension or hostility.
Brethren, I don’t think I fit into that category. We had no hostility or tension, and there was no rebellion against any authority. On the contrary, we were working together quite well. Fred was even sending me all of the contacts he receives from people in various countries on the continent of Africa, and I was checking them out. Even that was working out quite well.
As I said, there was no problem between Fred and me, things were going on quite well. There was no contention or hostility between us, fact is there was much good fruit being produced, especially in assisting our impoverished widows and orphans who have been suffering significantly.
Christian Biblical Church of God joining hands with us in assisting our suffering brethren was a wonderful thing, it was answered prayer. We have been praying for more to join hands with us to help our suffering and starving brethren. Whoever approached Fred, and caused him to stop assisting our suffering brethren should be ashamed of themselves. The sad part is that now more of our brethren will continue to suffer. Please pray that Fred will continue to assist them. Those funds go directly to our starving widows and orphans, no doctrinal issues should come between us in helping our brethren who are
literally starving to death at this time. (This attempt to divide us is the work of our arch deceiver.)
When the Good Samaritan came upon the suffering man who fell amongst thieves and was left to die, he didn’t ask which church he attended, or how he counted Pentecost, he just stepped in and helped. Here it is our brethren (our fellow members of the household of faith) who are
literally dying right before our eyes. I beg you brethren; let us continue helping them before more of them die.
Lord told us that “Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friend”. Brethren, we are not asking you to lay down your life here, and we are not asking help for just a friend. We are asking help for your suffering and dying Brethren. Please don’t turn your back on them like so many of the so called “leaders” of many of the “churches” of God have done.
And again let me mention here as always that this plea for help is
not for those brethren who have already been going above and beyond in helping our impoverished brethren for a long time now. They have already been giving their all. This plea is for others to join hand with us in helping, because the need is great.
In Luke 9:49-50 we are told about a time when the Apostle John himself (the apostle of Love) was turning away from a person that our Lord was working with, and our Lord corrected John, and told him that those who are
not against us are for us, or on our part.
This is a time for the true members of the Body of Christ to come together. We need to be sheep, not goats. We need compassion here, we need the most important thing of all, we need to have Love one to another.

United Church of God
A member of the UCG has forwarded a table of full moons for the Festival of Tabernacles up to 2040. “This will reveal the truth about the actual alignment of the Full Moon with the 15th of Tishrei. See the inconsistencies in this alignment, exposing the long-held MYTH …. “The first day of the Feast (15th of Tishrei) falls on the Full Moon.”
This table is produced from data provided by Time and Date, which show that there will be a full moon on 15th of Tishrei in only 7 of the next 19 years.

In an article, Galaxies, the Moon and the Feast, July 15th, UCG’s new president, Rick Shabi, waxes lyrical about the full moon and its importance to “The Feast.”

“If you were outside last night you saw another amazing, beautiful and significant work of God a full moon … Three months from today, when the sun sets, the Feast of Tabernacles begins.
On the third full moon from now we will be right where God wants us to be, on the day He proclaimed as an “appointed time” … where God has placed His name. He says to be at “that place” by the time the Feast of Tabernacles begins. That’s at sunset that begins the 15th of the seventh month on the sacred calendar.”
The UCG teaches that there is always a full moon on the first evening of the Feast of Tabernacles in the Hebrew Calendar. Rick Shabi goes further, castigating those members who would dare to think about starting the Feast of Tabernacles one or two days after the full moon, likening them to the foolish virgins who will be shut out of the marriage feast.
“Would you dare be late to an assembly the Great God of this universe has called the God who has offered us eternal life if we follow Him and earnestly, diligently and carefully learn and keep all His ways? God sees our hearts by how we observe the Feast of Tabernacles.
As we prepare for the Feast, bear in mind that you are also preparing your heart for how you receive God’s Kingdom. Will you be late, asleep or unprepared like the five “foolish virgins” of
Matthew 25?
Or will you be
ready? Will you be at the Holy convocation of God as the Feast begins in the very first service at the site you will be attending?“
In 2023, according to the Hebrew Calendar, the Feast will start one day later than the full moon. So what will Rick Shabi do next year?
“Judge not, and ye shall not be judged: condemn not, and ye shall not be condemned: forgive, and ye shall be forgiven.”
(Luke 6:37)

Burmese Civil War and the Brethren’s Safety
David Bensiger reported on the 9th of July 2022:
The civil war rages on, but in the midst of tragedy some positive news sets root. Unofficial reports imply that the People’s Defense Force (PDF), which organized in response to the military junta just over a year ago on the 1st of February 2021, is beginning to successfully push back the military’s forces in parts of the country. The Irrawaddy, an independent English and Burmese news agency, has reported that up to 3,000 military officers and soldiers have defected to date. Battalion commander Lieutenant Colonel Myo Min Tun’s high-profile defection in February was the latest. Defecting soldiers are in danger and the PDF and National League for Democracy (NLD), the democratic government formed by the protestors opposed to the military government, have established a reputation of accepting these military soldiers and helping them hide. Recently the Australian government announced its intention to provide asylum to defecting Myanmar military soldiers. Since many soldiers do not want to fight their own people, this may encourage defections and further weaken the military.
To be sure, war’s atrocities continue. The military bombs, burns villages and arrests individuals who threaten the military’s rule. As an example, The Irrawaddy reports that the military focused efforts in Khin-U township in the north central part of the country in March. This resulted in nearly 750 homes being burned, about 7,000 residents homeless, and more than 30,000 displaced. In all, nearly 9,000 homes have been burned down in this area. Of course, the PDF counter attacks in response. And these conflicts increase the death toll. 
At this time, our brethren in Myanmar are safe, but the situation is challenging for them. Inflation has set in. Fuel costs have doubled. Data costs have doubled (most Burmese have cell phones, but not data plans – they buy data as needed), hindering communications. All banks, and most offices and services, remain closed. The majority of people do not have jobs now.
United Church of God brethren along with Living Church of God brethren are mostly in the southern delta region. This area is generally free of conflict, as it benefits by being flat with open rice fields, which makes it difficult for either the military forces or the PDF to operate without notice. A deacon there reports the safety of the brethren.
The members have been able to gather for services throughout most of COVID-19 and this civil war, which is a blessing. The village headman (like a mayor) gave approval for the Church to stay open for services initially in groups of 10, but now the entire group can meet. In the same village, the Baptist church has been closed since COVID-19 started. Davidson Leh Bey co-ordinates a Karen (pronounced care-in; the language and name of one of the largest ethnic groups in Myanmar) Zoom service each Sabbath with the UCG brethren in Myanmar and with their family members in Singapore and other locations.
Members continue to plant rice, although inflation has driven the input costs higher. With the military government being the largest and often mandated buyer, it is feared the market price during the next harvest might decline. Some of our young adults wish to work in Malaysia and Singapore on two-year contracts (a common occurrence for Myanmar youth). This would be good, as it will provide a safe haven for them during the civil war. However, there has been difficulty getting these work contracts and the required paperwork from the military government to leave. Interestingly, there is discussion that the military may start extending the paperwork faster to these young people. The reasoning is that, if the young people leave, then they won’t fight alongside the PDF. But fear of conscription still hangs over our young people. They must be careful navigating this process.
Moving four hours north to Yangon, the largest city in Myanmar, we have UCG, COGWA and Church of God, Myanmar, members. Members report that they must be careful both in where and when they go, and what they say on their phones. That later was emphasized on a recent phone call with one of them, where I asked a specific question to which they would not reply, citing concerns over monitoring. Death on the streets is a frequent occurrence. The military reportedly has solid control of the city at this time and any civil disobedience is quickly quelled. The northern part of the city seems to contain more PDF and PDF sympathizers, and periodic forceful fighting occurs in this area. Continued prayers for God’s protection are needed.
We do also reach out to a prospective UCG member there. He came to us by writing to the home office more than two years ago. A planned visit during the Spring Holy Days in 2020 was intended when COVID-19 canceled travel into and out of the country. He spends a great deal of time working with the poor, widows, orphans and others who need help. He and we are anticipating the time when we can meet. This man’s self-taught English is very good. He is a Sabbath-keeper, but is still learning about the Holy Days. When COVID-19 broke out, he lost his job. We hired him to translate the UCG Holy Days booklet into Burmese, and Davidson confirmed his translation was very good. So, we hope to engage him more in this way once we can figure out how to get more money into the country safely – a complex problem.
Our friends at Church of God, Myanmar, about four hours north of Yangon also remain safe to date. I was able to have about an hour-long conversation with the elder there this past week. He recently baptized seven young adults who have been attending the school and Church there for many years. We rejoice with our Father, Elder Brother and these young people! The school remains open and they continue to plant and improve their agricultural land that many UCG members contributed to help purchase. They have also recently acquired a few head of cattle. Of course, they continue to be an example in the community serving all and teaching God’s way.
However, their compound is within 10 miles of the third-largest military base in Myanmar and about a mile off the main road upon which the military travels often. While they are okay, it is clear that the constant concern for his family and students weighs heavily on the elder’s mind. But their faith and trust in God is strong.
Prayers to our Father and Jesus Christ for continued safety and help for our brethren and prospective members are welcomed and appreciated.

United Church of God
Mark Welch writes, 7th of July 2022:
Two ministers, Carmelo Anastasi from Italy and Dwaine Hudson in Kansas City, have died. Yesterday, Carmelo’s family conducted a small family funeral service according to his desires. We appreciate so much the service that these men have provided in their areas. They have served God well, and we look forward to seeing them in the resurrection.
Both teen and pre-teen camps have been held, and a retreat was held for the pastors in the Northwest region.
While the first camps of the year were successful and a joy for everyone, COVID-19 has “reared its head” and was disruptive at our Northwest Pastoral Retreat, where more than half of those who attended came down with COVID-19 (all cases were comparatively mild and everyone is recovering well).
The decision was made to close Camp Pinecrest when a few campers came down with COVID-19. The staff did their very best to ensure no one had COVID-19 upon arrival at camp. But, despite following many protocols, the virus showed up just two days into the camp.

Death of Calvin Burrell
Loren Stacy, General Conference President of the Church of God 7th Day (Denver) wrote on June 29th 2022:
“With much sadness, we announce the death of our dear brother, Elder Calvin
Burrell, a great man of God.
Elder Burrell served Christ and our Church in just about every role possible, including General Conference President, Bible Advocate Editor, Director of Missions Ministries, and so many more. We will miss him until Christ comes and reunites us with him. (Memorial Services for Elder Burrell are pending.)”
His wife, Sister Barbara Burrell shared:
“Calvin passed away peacefully, surrounded by our children and grandchildren at 9:30pm on June 29 in our home. He passed as we were singing ‘The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases’.”
Elder Burrell’s oldest daughter, Debbie Hawkins, wrote:
“Dad (Calvin Burrell) passed away peacefully last night while surrounded by his wife, kids, and grandkids. He was ushered into the hands of Jesus as we were singing. God was so kind to us in the timing and ease of dad’s transition. A huge thanks to all those that have sent cards and messages to our family. Reading these over the past couple weeks have been so healing.
We can’t imagine life without dad, but we know God will see us through. In dad’s words, ‘You will cry and then you will laugh again’.”

Church of God International
The CGI in the UK ceased to exist in 1997, fragmenting into small independent congregations. In 2017 a new CGI congregation was established in the London area by George Ramocan, a Jamaican pastor.
He will return to Jamaica at the end of June, and has ordained Gary Monks to replace him.
CGI UK holds its Sabbath meetings in Radlett, which is near the old Bricket Wood campus.

Continuing Church of God
Bob Thiel writes, 16 June 2022: “According to written and oral reports I have received from Africa this month, we now have over 7,500 congregants around the world (includes children and other unbaptized persons) in the
Continuing Church of God.”
Most of the congregants live in Africa (only 100-200 elsewhere), and the high numbers are mainly due to the support given to evangelist Evans Ochieng and local African pastors, and willingness to publish literature in many African languages.

End-Time Prophecy and Homer Simpson
Yet another end-time prophetic date is due to fail on Wednesday, June 15th 2022.
The Return of the King predicts that the Rapture and the start of the Tribulation will happen on June 15th 2022, at 5.18am Jerusalem time.
One video explains how The Rapture 2022 was inadvertently but correctly prophesied by Homer Simpson to be 3 15 05 18.
Homer incorrectly misreads this as 3.15 on May 18, whereas the correct interpretation supposedly should be the 3rd month of the Hebrew calendar – June – the 15th day of the month – at 5.18am Jerusalem time.
Mixing biblical revelation with astrology, numerology, blood moons etc., has found a large and enthusiastic audience, even a few sabbatarian ministers, and made people like Mark Biltz of El Shaddai Ministries rich.

Tomorrow’s Church of God
The church leaders have decided to discontinue using the Calculated Hebrew Calendar, and will instead start each month at the sighting of the new moon.
This means that its Festival of Tabernacles will begin on October 12th, and not the 10th (the conjunction) as on the calculated calendar.

Why the Hebrew Calendar is wrong and how the Sanhedrin want to fix it …. but don’t.
The beginning of our redemption from Egypt began with this,” Rabbi Hillel Weiss, spokesman for the Sanhedrin, told Breaking Israel News.
“Reinstating the new month and witnesses appearing before the Sanhedrin will be the true beginning of this redemption.”
But ….
“Even though the calendar needs to be adjusted, unity is of the utmost importance,” the rabbi said. “Jews are required to adhere to the calendar accepted by the entire nation.
Until a formal Sanhedrin is accepted by the nation, Jews must use the established calendar and observe the holidays on the days mandated by rabbinic authorities,” he concluded.

Pentecost – Shavuot 2022
The festival falls on the 5th of June this year (later dates for a few who calculate it differently).
For those who wish to gather in person (for 2-5 days in the USA), this year there are an increased number of festival sites.
For those at home, there will be many services streamed live, and some timings will be different from the Sabbath. There is a list of starting times on the Live Broadcasts page.

Legacy Teaching Institute
Gloria Sexton writes, 20th of May 2022:
We are so excited to share with you seven baptisms in Jawk Taing. Our young people are growing up in the truth and have decided to follow the way of God! Also, some of the others attending for quite some time have given their lives to God. The angels are singing in heaven!

In Chiang Mai (Thailand) and Burma, all came together for special meals on the Night to be Much Observed. This year for the first time, we came together on the day of First Fruits. Leon wrote a short sermon about Jesus being THE FIRST OF THE FIRSTFRUITS! Now we wait our turn at His second coming.
In Yangon, our members were also keeping the Passover and Days of Unleavened Bread.
Zin Muang Zau wrote to Leon and me saying that they were very sad not to be able to come to Taungoo and be with the brethren at the COG compound, as they did traditionally for so many years previous to the covid and coup. It is not safe on the streets of Yangon.

U Myo Zaw (father of Zin and Bo Bo Zaw) comes from the state of Magway, and it is burning! BoBo Zaw wrote: “There is a war in Magway, and the military was losing, so they torched the villages but not his (dad’s) village.”
A friend of theirs lost their home due to the fires. Burma is not at peace
there is now civil war throughout! The various hill tribes and even the Burmese themselves are fighting the Burmese military.
The Free Burma Rangers, who are on the ground serving and giving their
lives, stated the following in an April report: “The Burmese Army is increasing its attacks against civilians all over Karen State and in every area of Burma. Our teams are with these people giving medical care, food and praying and staying with them as the attacks continue.”
We who have not gone through any wars have not walked in their shoes. We can vicariously sympathize and put ourselves in those shoes but it is NEVER the same. We have all heard and read the horror stories. Now Burma and Ukraine, and so many other areas of the world, can feel each other’s pain, suffering, and so much loss, destruction, and death!
Agenda and wars will not stop until Jesus comes back
no matter how much peace is touted or what political system thinks they can bring it about. Jesus will bring it and, finally, it will be known! That is why we and the whole earth are groaning whether we realize it or not. Deep in our souls, we know! Deep in our souls, we know something great is coming!
We continue dear brethren to pray for you as we march onward as Christian soldiers. One day it will be finished. Many
so many are going through severe trials! Our lists for each other keep getting longer and longer.
Yes, the devil tries to wear us down; but with God we stay and get stronger than ever!!!! We THANK YOU, Beloved Brethren and Fellow Laborers, for your ongoing powerful prayers and kind support. God provided exactly for March and April! Praise God the Almighty!
Above all, we send our prayers of gratitude and great thanks to our Father! Even thanks during difficult trials. God helps us go through these with Him; and together, with each other as His body
His Bride, making us ready for the great wedding feast with our Lord, Master, and Teacher Jesus the Christ Our Savior, the Anointed One King of Kings and Lord of Lords!
Come, Jesus!

United Church of God
Len Martin writes today, 18th of May 2022 :
Council of Elders (Council) has concluded the Process and Timeline for
Selection of President, which we began in March of this year. The Council would like to thank all of the ministers and members for your prayers during this process.
After weeks of prayer and periodic fasting, this morning the Council selected Mr. Rick Shabi to serve as the next president of the United Church of God, an International Association.
Mr. Shabi’s three-year term begins immediately and we ask for your prayers and support.”
Rick Shabi was ordained an elder in 2000 and, after a career in corporate hospital finance and administration, he became a pastor in January 2011. He has also served as the treasurer for the United Church of God from 2013 to 2022.
will be giving the sermon on the 21st of May at UCG’s HQ in Cincinnati, and some other UCG congregations will be streaming this broadcast (which starts at 2.30pm ET) instead of their normal services.
Len Martin has been re-appointed as Chairman of the Council of Elders.
Following the untimely death of Shawn Cortelyou, the Council of Elders has seleced Ryan Hall to replace him as Council Reporter.

Dynamic Christian Ministries
Wes White writes that, although many historians say that the Roe v Wade leak is unprecedented, the Court had a similar scandalous leak in 1856, concerning the infamous Dred Scott ruling.
He will compare these two situations on “Start Our Sabbath”, which begins at 9.00pm eastern time, Friday, May 6th.

“The Worldwide Church of God STILL EXISTS”
It exists in the form of a website … being
“a spiritual organism not a Physical Organization.”
“This archive has been used by God to preserve God’s Truth as taught “THROUGH” Jesus Christ’s Chosen Apostle Mr. Herbert W Armstrong.”

All the available publications of the Worldwide Church of God already exist at so why the need for a second archive? They have two objections to

“Hwalibrary is a website and a sole proprietorship corporation owned by Mark Scarborough, which is his DBA, aka another name for himself doing business. They have set this up in order to handle monies collected from people wanting to. In this, they collect God’s tithes and offerings, when they are not God’s ministers.”

The people behind admit on their website that “we are not ordained ministers”, and that setting up their website has been “made possible through the generous tithes, offerings and donations of members of the Worldwide Church of God and other supporters.” Why then is it unacceptable for Mark Scarborough to do the same?

“They also hold up Garner Ted Armstrong up above Mr. Herbert W Armstrong, and still promote his teachings. Mr. Armstrong said that we are not to listen to his son, Garner Ted Armstrong, because he was marked and disfellowshipped from the church for rebellion against God …
So Hwalibrary has promoted and placed and set up a NON-BELIEVER up as a teacher and minister for God’s people.”

This is’s response

Hwalibrary has not discriminated, but has published everything available, enabling researchers to make up their own minds about the Worldwide Church of God (and the various church leaders who claim to be its successor).

Biblical Calendar 2022
The crescent new moon of the 1st month of the biblical year was easily visible over most of the earth on the evening of Saturday, the 2nd of April (as shown by these graphs).
There was, however, haze over the whole of Israel, so for those who observe calendar
[7] and who require actual sighting of the new moon over Israel, the 1st day of the new year will be Monday, the 4th of April. This not only changes the times of Passover and the Festival by one day, but also affects the counting to Pentecost, which will now be on Sunday, the 12th of June, instead of the 5th.
This difference has been accommodated by creating a separate column for calendar
[8] – because most groups observing calendar [7] will accept sighting elsewhere.

This year the list of Festival of Unleavened Bread sites for people wanting to keep the festival for the full 7 days includes a site for those scattered messianics that believe in a Lunar Sabbath, i.e. that the weekly Sabbath is not always Saturday, but is governed by the new moon, with each Sabbath being on the same day as the new moon day (i.e. 8th, 15th, 22nd & 29th). When a month has a 30th day, it is not counted. The Sabbath day therefore changes from month to month.
Although the Lunar Sabbath calendar year begins like biblical calendars [5] or [6], they diverge when it comes to Shavuot/Pentecost, and disagree with one another as to how to count to this festival.

Miraculous Birth and Tragic Death of Naomi Irion
Jim Franks of Church of God a Worldwide Association, wrote on the 31st of March 2022:
“I believe most of you are aware (from social media and local prayer requests) of the tragic situation that has developed in Nevada with the kidnapping of 18-year-old Naomi Irion. Her mother and father, Diana and Hervé Irion, are Church members who live and work in South Africa. I have a special connection with the Irion family, having been their pastor when young Naomi was born. I have been in contact with Naomi’s mother, Diana, to offer encouragement and help from the Church.
Currently, the family members in Nevada include Hervé and Diana Irion and Diana’s daughter, Tamara Cartwright, and son, Casey Valley. They also have with them their three adopted sons from Ukraine. As you can imagine, a family of this size needs a lot of help just taking care of their daily needs. I am very pleased to report that our congregation in Reno has been actively involved in caring for the family. Members there not only found them a rental home, but fully furnished it within a matter of two or three days. It was amazing to see this unfold from a distance. I want to thank all the members in Reno for their outstanding work and example.
I mentioned a special connection with the Irion family from our days together in Houston, but I need to explain more, to let you know what happened when Naomi was born. I performed the wedding for Hervé and Diana, who brought her two children (Tammy and Casey) into their marriage. Not too long after they were married, Diana became pregnant with Naomi. Then, well into the pregnancy, they received some very bad news. The baby’s lungs and other organs were not developing as they should. Diana was told that there was a good chance the baby would be stillborn. This remained the same diagnosis throughout the pregnancy, and as she got closer to her due date, it was more and more obvious, from the doctor’s perspective, that the baby would not be born alive. Diana and Hervé asked me to be present at the hospital at the time of Naomi’s birth, in order to anoint her right away. I agreed and was waiting outside the delivery room, not knowing what to expect.
To everyone’s amazement, upon birth, Naomi let out a shrill cry! The doctor declared it a miracle since the last ultrasound had shown very little lung development. In order for her to cry, her lungs clearly must have developed, and her organs were all fine. The doctor was amazed and
came out of the delivery room to tell me I could come in and pray for the baby. His message to me was that the baby was perfectly healthy, and that a miracle had taken place. This was not the outcome that had been predicted by the doctor.
I arrived home very early the next morning, and I couldn’t even explain to my wife what had happened! I was as numb as the doctor. Whenever our paths have crossed over the years, Diana has reminded me of this amazing night. Of course, we all learned a great lesson that night – never underestimate what God may choose to do in our lives.
But now, I must announce the sad ending to this story. I am heartbroken to announce that Naomi’s lifeless body was discovered on Wednesday, March 30. She had been murdered. The police and FBI believe they have the perpetrator in custody, but that will be determined by the judicial system.
It is surreal for me to know that I prayed over Naomi when she was born and now I will be praying over her at her death. It is probably the darkest moment in this life to lose a child and especially in such a senseless manner. Please remember the Irion family in your prayers. They are struggling to understand what has just happened to their family. After more than two weeks of searching for her in hopes she was still alive, this news has been devastating.
I have received a number of requests from the brethren wanting to know what we can do as a Church and as individuals. Through a “GoFundMe” account and the generous contributions of members, their financial needs have been met to date. The Church will cover any additional cost to make sure the needs of the family are met. The family can be reached through their various social media accounts if you desire to communicate with them directly about their plans and to receive any updates they may have. Plans are being made for a funeral and/or memorial service for Naomi. I plan to be at either or both, depending on the timing.
Each day in America several thousand people, mostly children, are abducted and murdered, but when you know those involved, you feel it in a deeply emotional manner.
I believe that with everything that is happening in the world and the various trials among the brethren, we have even more reason to focus on this coming Passover and what it means for all of us.”

Victor Kubik, President of the United Church of God, writes March 18th:
As Ukrainian refugees increase to three million, I am in daily contact with people in several regions there. The “safest” region is in Transcarpathia in the far west, but Russians have attacked the outskirts of Lviv close to the Polish border. In Transcarpathia, we are actively providing resources to churches to care for homeless refugees pouring in from the east.
The Sabbatarian churches there have transformed their meeting halls into temporary refugee shelters. When one leaves his home with a small suitcase, he or she will never know if and when they will return, and to what they will return. I have been told that only women and children and men over age 60 are allowed to leave as refugees. Men are expected to defend their country. How will the women leaving be treated? Will they be reunited with their husbands? This is so emotionally painful for me personally.
Thanks to all who have contributed to this relief effort through We are humbled and grateful to see the broad level of support.
I continue to have intermittent contact with people in Chernihiv, 120 miles north of Kyiv, close to the Russian border. This city is where we have worked and helped establish the Revival Center of Rehabilitation for Disabled Children. I would like to share parts of a letter from Dr. Vasyl Pasichnyk who founded and manages the Center.
“Dear friends Victor and Beverly!
“We are writing this letter as explosions are heard all the time outside the window (at a distance of about 1–2 kilometers from us).
“From the first day of this disgraceful invasion of Ukraine, our beautiful city of Chernihiv has suffered from ballistic missile attacks, cruise missiles and the hail of airstrikes.
“On the first day, administrative buildings and military facilities were completely destroyed or damaged. Enemies approached the city but met with formidable resistance from our defenders, so the invaders were determined to change tactics. On the second day, in the city began massive airstrikes on peaceful objects—homes, schools, daycare centers. All this cannot be considered accidental, because there are no military facilities nearby. Our city is on fire with lots of smoke.
“Since yesterday, residential areas—high-rise buildings and private houses—have been shelled with severe brutality. Many civilians were killed but some were rescued. The house of our pediatrician/head of the department was destroyed. Fortunately, she and her two daughters and four grandchildren survived in a shelter.
“We do not understand how such cruelty and lawlessness can take place in the modern civilized world! The hypocrisy, lies and cynicism of Putin and his entourage know no bounds!
“There are 36 employees who work in the Center. One died in an explosion. We provide assistance to 50 children (mostly with psychoneurological disorders) and their mothers. As of yesterday, we have taken in babies with their mothers. Many residential buildings in the city lack electricity, gas and heat.
“People are stressed, but they work to help children and support each other. We remember your help. Thank you and the Lord God for everything.
“We believe that God will give us the opportunity to live on this earth and meet you in a peaceful and rebuilt Chernihiv!
“With love, Vasyl and Natalya”
This is a time for us to sigh and cry, as Ezekiel wrote about the evils of his time (Ezekiel 9:4). Jesus Himself wept concerning the future of Jerusalem and the world:
“And when he drew near and saw the city [Jerusalem], he wept over it, saying, ‘Would that you, even you, had known on this day the things that make for peace! But now they are hidden from your eyes. For the days will come upon you, when your enemies will set up a barricade around you and surround you and hem you in on every side and tear you down to the ground, you, and your children within you’” (Luke 19:41-44 English Standard Version).
Let us pray for the people of Ukraine. Let us pray for our spiritual brothers and sisters. Let us pray earnestly for the Kingdom of God to come!

United Church of God
In his Personal from the President on March 3rd, Victor Kubik writes:
As many know, my wife Beverly and I went through a major change in our lives this week. Len Martin, chairman of the Council of Elders, earlier announced that I was not reconfirmed by the Council to continue as President of the United Church of God.
To be certain, Bev and I are praying for a peaceful transfer, and that God will inspire and lead the new president. We ask and pray that you will do the same.
To be honest, Beverly and I had wished to continue in this role and complete some projects that were in progress. But we accept this decision graciously. We are so thankful to have served nine years at the helm of the United Church of God. We will forever be thankful to God for this extended period of peace and stability in the Church of God.
I plan to retire from full-time work for the Church after the new president is named. As Mr. Martin mentioned in his letter, Bev and I founded LifeNets International 22 years ago, a humanitarian 501(c)(3) organization that has helped many thousands of people—including many Church members—around the world. We have been privileged to help so many people with education, habitat, mobility, food security, agriculture and fresh water—things that are easy to take for granted. We will continue that work.

Len Martin, Chairman of the Council of Elders, writes on February 28th:
After nine years of a successful presidency directing the United Church of God,
an International Association (UCGIA), through some difficult times, the Council of Elders has decided in its normal three-year reaffirmation process it is time to plan for a transition to a new president. The Council will be discussing transition details with Mr. Kubik.
Thanks to God, the Church has enjoyed a time of peace under the leadership of Mr. Kubik. He was instrumental in the foundation of UCGIA in Indianapolis, Indiana. He served on the Council for many years, and was the operation manager for Ministerial and Member Services before serving three terms as president.
Victor and his wife, Beverly, have served the Church with many projectsdirecting UCGIA in all its facets. The LifeNets foundation they started 22 years ago has been very helpful to many people, and they will continue in those humanitarian efforts.
We thank the Kubiks for their many years of dedicated service.

Biblical Calendar 2022
We are near to the end of the 12th biblical month. For those observing calendar [7], all the reports and photographs posted on the Abib of God website  recently confirm that the biblical season in Israel is not close to changing from winter to summer. A 13th month must therefore be added.
The Festival of Unleavened Bread will thus begin in mid-April for all the main calendars utilized by Church of God groups. For those wishing to celebrate the festival for more than the two high days, information on the festival sites so far announced is on this link.

The Hebrew Calendar & the Worldwide Church of God

The 2022 Biblical Calendar provides a brief history of how the Church of God 7th Day and the Worldwide Church of God came to utilize the Jewish (Hebrew) calendar.

How many are aware of how little was understood by the 19th century church leaders?
How many are aware that those in the WCG who were responsible for teaching about the calendar disagreed with what each other wrote, and even contradicted their own writing? (Quotes from various publications below are in red.)

In 1940 Herbert Armstrong declared in his Good News Letter that …
There is NO BIBLE AUTHORITY WHATSOEVER for figuring the 1st day of the 1st month from the new moon NEAREST the Spring equinox!
… the Hebrew calendar has been preserved correct by the Jews.

Then in 1950 he contradicted himself: The first day of the new year always begins with the day nearest the Spring equinox, when the new moon is first visible to the naked eye AT JERUSALEM (not in the United States). The Jewish calendar as used by Jews today is correct. How Often Should We Partake of the Lord’s Supper (1950, p.7).

Did anyone remind him of what he had said 10 years earlier? If so, it made no difference. His 1952 booklet, How Often Should We Partake of the Lord’s Supper contained the same wording.

Kenneth Herrmann, an astronomer and one of Ambassador Colleges pioneer students, wrote three articles in the 1950s. In the first he reverted to what Herbert Armstrong had said in 1940:
Some believe the ancient reckoning of Passover was from the actual sight of the new moon NEAREST the vernal equinox and cite Josephus, a Jewish historian … Writers of profane history only contradict themselves. They can not be depended upon. God’s Sacred Calendar (Good News magazine, March 1953, pp.7-9)

In Prove God’s Calendar Correct! (Good News, October 1957), he declared boldly:
What are God’s instructions? If the people of Jerusalem, where God’s permanent headquarters are to be, cannot see this crescent of the moon following sunset, then the entire world east and west of that city must delay beginning the month till the following sunset. This is the ordinance as it was given by God. We are not free to begin earlier because of the way we see it.

In 1969, and now the church’s designated expert on the Hebrew calendar, he responded to one of probably many letters on the Hebrew Calendar.
He addressed
the question of why the new moon dates on God’s Sacred Calendar will at times follow a day or two after the astronomical new moons.
Notice the phrase “at times”. The new moon dates on the Hebrew calendar will at times be a day or two after the astronomical new moon – but not always. At other times they will be the same date as the dark new moon – contradicting what he said in October 1957 were God’s instructions.

Kenneth Herrmann continues: The question of whether God’s Church might just be keeping God’s Holy days a day or two days or a month late is just not a proper question. God’s Church follows the Oracle that God guides the Jews to preserve.
The WCG was interpreting the Hebrew Calendar as being part of the oracles in Romans 3:1-2).
An Oracle is a God-given communication. It has God to back it up. Thus if God’s Church is following that Oracle faithfully, it is completely impossible that we would be wrong on any of these dates for the Holy Days. That one basic fact every Church member must know and trust.

In 1971 Kenneth Herrmann published God’s Sacred Calendar 71-72, the true calendar for all mankind … The beginning of this month (Nisan) and all God’s months is determined by the appearance of the first faint crescent of the new moon in the west just after sundown (Observed from Palestine). (p.4)
The 1st of Nisan in 1971 was the 27th of March. The new moon should therefore have been visible on the evening of the 26th. The astronomical new moon was at 7.23pm (Universal Time) on the 26th, so it would have been impossible to see the new moon on that evening, whether in Palestine or California.

In March 1971 How Often Should We Partake of the Lord’s Supper? was published again in the Tomorrow’s World magazine. The first day of the new year always begins with the day nearest the Spring equinox, when the new moon is first visible to the naked eye AT JERUSALEM (not in the United States). The Jewish calendar as used by Jews today is correct.

Meanwhile, Ambassador College students were receiving different tuition from:
The Hebrew Calendar: A Mathematical Introduction, by John A. Kossey.
Editor: Herman L. Hoeh. Ambassador College Press, Pasadena, California. 1971, 1974.
TISHRI is the seventh month of the sacred calendar. The computed time for the conjunction of the sun, moon, and the earth is called a MOLAD … Molad of Tishri is the computed time of the new moon of the month of Tishri … the molad Tishri is also the calculated astronomical commencement of the year.

Ambassador students in that decade (a number of whom are leading ministers in the WCG offshoots today) naturally wanted to understand from Kenneth Herrmann how to reconcile his statement of the visible new moon being an ordinance of God with John Kosseys statement that the Hebrew calendar year begins at the conjunction.

Whatever arguments transpired in private, one public outcome is known …
Craig White records, in
Pioneers of the Worldwide Church of God:
In 1972 Mr. Herrmann was put on extended Sabbatical leave due to political problems in the Pasadena administration and transferred to the Big Sandy area.

Both students and ministers at Pasadena now knew that the Hebrew calendar year begins not when the new moon of the 1st month is visible in Jerusalem, but instead at the dark new moon of the 7th month. It was not until 1981, however, that Herman Hoeh explained this in The Hebrew Calendar – Authoritative for God’s Church Today!

He regarded both Herbert Armstrong and his successor, Joseph Tkach, as ‘God’s Apostle’, and he wrote articles supporting their contrary doctrines. He was subtle in countermanding what Herbert Armstrong taught, praising his achievements, such as the facts about the Hebrew calendar in his 1940 Good News Letter:
Mr. Armstrong wrote that ‘many of the brethren are in doubt and want the facts.’
And he gave them facts – in detail.
He implies that Mr Armstrong got ‘the facts’ right, but Herman Hoeh is about to deny them.

What prompts this article is the fact that the Passover this year, 1981, is the eve of April 18. It falls on the eve of a Sabbath. It is not common for the Passover to occur Friday night.
This obscure fact was not the reason for his article. It was a diversion to deflect attention from his admissions that:
It is not required that the first faint crescent visible in Jerusalem always be declared the new moon …
the new moon of the seventh month … determines the character of the preceding months of the year.
The new moon of Abib does not determine the character of the year.

He explained that the Pharisees held the authority to determine the Hebrew calendar, and the people had to keep those days holy.
And the Pharisees, too, sat on Moses’ seat. It was their court that determined the Hebrew calendar. It was their court’s decision that determined which day was the beginning of each month. Once that was determined it was the people’s responsibility to keep holy the days God made holy.
– but then he contradicts himself, saying that the Pharisees authorized the wrong days, because they did not understand the importance of the postponement rules, and so God had to correct them!
… the Day of Atonement on the Hebrew calendar does not fall on a Friday – the preparation day for the weekly Sabbath. If Atonement were to fall on Friday, housewives would have to prepare food for the weekly Sabbath on a Thursday. And that is exactly what the Pharisees anciently required be done! The Pharisees put major emphasis on precise visual observation of the first faint crescent of the new moon … They were more concerned with the visual appearance of the moon’s first crescent than they were with the spiritual requirements of the Day of Atonement.
God, of course, had to correct that – and He did! The Romans finally put an end to visual observation of the new moons by the Jews.

Through which Jewish authority did God (re)institute the authority of the fixed calendar we know today as the Hebrew calendar?
The Jews’ chief leader, Hillel II, whose responsibility it was to regulate the calendar, was forced to issue a decree for the year A.D. 358-359 to (re)institute the authority of the fixed calendar we know today as the Hebrew calendar. And one of the rules of that calendar is based on Leviticus 23:26-32. Hillel II realized that these verses require that the Day of Atonement should not fall on Friday, the preparation day of the Sabbath.

What historical evidence is there for Hillel II doing this?
Note that, although Hillel II is reputed by tradition to have developed the modern Hebrew calendar, no mention of this exists in the Talmud, which itself was completed around 500 C.E.
Hai Gaon (969-1038), the head of the Pumbedita, Babylonia Jewish academy of learning in the 11th century was the first person to mention that Hillel had formed the modern Hebrew calendar.
(Elimelech David Ha-Levi, Jewish (Hebrew) Calendar – Origin And History)

The theory of the Hillel calendar derives entirely from a paper written seven centuries later by R. Avraham b. Hiyya, in which he quoted R. Hai Gaon (early 11th century) as saying: “… until the days of Hillel b. R. Yehuda in the year 670 of the Seleucid era (358/359AD), from when they did not bring forth or postpone, but kept to this cycle which was at hand …”

This brief remark is the only scrap of evidence for the existence of Hillel II. There is no record of him in the Talmud as being the head of the Sanhedrin in 358/359AD, nor of any significant event concerning the calendar at this time.

Continuing Church of God
In July 2020 we reported that
Bob Thiel had launched a new website: –
Church of God 7th Day Sabbath Observing Christians,
which is very similar to –
Church of God 7th Day, based in Denver,
which is the largest ‘Church of God 7th Day Sabbath Observing Christian’ group.
The new website stated that it “… is intended to help people who wonder about the seventh-day Sabbath as well as those interested in learning about the different groups that claim Christ, but who also keep the seventh-day Sabbath.”
Bible Sabbath Association, established 77 years ago, does exactly that, believing in “promoting fellowship and co-operation between Sabbath-keeping people of various groups; on a non-denominational basis; to restore respect and honor for the Ten Commandments as a whole (with emphasis on the Fourth).”
The purpose of the new website, however, appeared to be to draw to it people searching the internet for the words and phrases in its website title, or mistyping – then explaining the supposed doctrinal errors of other groups, and promoting the CCOG.
On the 2nd of February 2022 CCOG’s founder, Bob Thiel, wrote that he “had began to embark on a potentially large expansion for the website.” So now that there is much more information on the new website, is it non-denominational, or a CCOG website in disguise?
The home page on the menu bar has the title, Sabbath Keeping, Prophetic, and Church of God Resources, which suggests that the website is non-denominational, but all of the links on this page go to, which is Bob Thiel’s personal website that he has run since the time he was in the Living Church of God. His beliefs are those of the LCG, plus some additions where he says the LCG is wrong.
Clicking on History on the menu bar takes you to the Continuing Church of God website.
Clicking on Books provides a list of Books all written by Bob Thiel.
Clicking on 7th Day Churches provides a list of various Sabbath groups, but the links all go either to or his Youtube channel.
Clicking on Sermons provides a list of Sermons all given by Bob Thiel.

Death of Carl Franklin
Carl Franklin died on the 14th of January 2022, and his funeral service was held on the 22nd, with close friend Tom Fletcher officiating.
The video obituary includes a written eulogy from Fred Coulter, who graduated from Ambassador College, Pasadena, at the same time, June 1964.
They worked together on many projects concerning biblical history at college, and through the years afterward.
In 1983 Carl and his wife Jeannie helped Fred Coulter establish the Christian Biblical Church of God, which is now one of the larger offshoots of the Worldwide Church of God.

Philadelphia Church of God
PCG is switching its emphasis in Jerusalem from biblical prophecy to biblical history.
On Monday, 17th of January 2022, the church launched a website for the new Armstrong-Mazar Institute of Biblical Archaeology, to promote biblical archaeology in Jerusalem and Israel.
Gerald Flurry has also changed the name of its magazine,
Watch Jerusalem, to Let the Stones Speak.

Church of God Assembly
Sheldon C. Monson, Pastor, announced 8th of January 2022:
We are saddened to announce that Daryl Monson has been marked for cause. We pray he will repent and change soon so that he can be restored to fellowship and membership in the Church.
According to Scripture an individual must be “marked” for causing strife or division among members because not doing so will destroy the faith of others.
Romans 16:17 states: “Now I beseech you brethren, Mark them which cause divisions and offenses contrary to the doctrine which you have learned and avoid them.”

Death of Richard Close
His daughter Elizabeth wrote on the 3rd of January 2022:
“We just received word from the hospital that dad died shortly after midnight. We appreciate your prayers on his behalf.”
He wrote the following about his time in the Church of God:
“My wife Colleen and I were married in 1959. First heard Herbert W. Armstrong (HWA) on Memorial Day in 1960. We were both drawn to what he had to say.
Got literature and the 57 lesson Bible C.C. and soon I quit attending the Methodist church.
Attended my 1st Sabbath service the week before Passover 1967.
I was baptized post Feast of Tabernacles in 1967 by Walter Sharpe. Attended the Feast of Tabernacles in 1968 in Minehead, England. Colleen and I were ordained deaconess and deacon at a combined service (Binghamton and Elmira NY) in 1989.
I have attended UCG primarily since post FT 1995, although I have firmly believed since leaving WCG that, as Mr. Armstrong taught – the physical corporation is not the body of Christ – the body of Christ is a spiritual entity, and as such is not separated by man’s physical corporate divisions.
In 2015, I noticed enough about the Continuing Church of God to get me to attend its Feast of Tabernacles’ site in Niagara Falls, Ontario, Canada, in 2015. After attending, I decided this is where God wanted me to mainly serve.”
Robert Thiel of the CCOG writes:
“Our family first met him at the Feast of Tabernacles in 2015 in Canada.
We worked together on many matters since then.
Richard Close had been the main leader to do counseling and baptisms for the CCOG in the USA and Canada. He will be sorely missed.”

Philadelphia Church of God
No longer is Gerald Flurry leading his dwindling flock into the Family of God – it’s now the God Family Empire.
In a long article, ‘Churchill and the God Family Empire’ (Royal Vision, Nov-Dec 2021), he compares Winston Churchill and the British Empire to himself and the God Family Empire.
“God’s Family is an empire! God is an empire builder. He wants to instill empire thinking in His people. The British Empire can teach us some outstanding lessons.
Understanding more about Churchill and the empire he loved will help us understand and love the empire of God …
If we want to be a great Church and have a great impact on this world, we must exercise the faculties and qualities that made Britain a great people when the empire was at its peak …
The God Family Empire has a message of law. This Church is delivering a message around the globe that’s going to straighten out all the problems in this world forever! That is quite an empire!”

Death of Del Leger, Pastor, Christian Church of God, Grand Junction, Colorado.
It is with a heavy heart that I share the news of the passing of our Pastor, Del Leger, on December 21st at about 2:30 pm. Del’s wife Louise and daughter Tracey were able to be with him. Please pray for their family during this time.
Del’s impact on those he encountered in his life (and many he never met) will be felt for years to come. Please know we are not alone in our grief as we reflect on the life of this wonderful man.
God Bless, Mark Dalgart, Elder.

Church of God, a Worldwide Association
Message from Jim Franks, 9th of December 2021:
… the two words I used to describe the Church to the MBOD at this point in our history are extremely blessed. Our financial position is very good and beyond what we anticipated. We paid off two mortgages this year and are now completely out of debt. That alone was quite an accomplishment, saving the Church annually more than $238,000. During the course of this year, the Church has been the recipient of several unexpected donations, but two stand out because of the stories behind them.
The first one was a property donation from a group in Portland, Oregon, that is not associated with the Church. It came as a big surprise. Earlier this year, our pastor in Portland, Jon Pinelli, was contacted by the board of the church where our local congregation meets for services and informed that, with the death of their pastor and only three or four members attending, they wanted to donate their property to COGWA. They were disbanding as a 501(c)3 nonprofit and wanted to donate the property to another 501(c)3. They explained to Mr. Pinelli that they chose to donate the property to COGWA because of their relationship with us and because of the example our members had set. This was truly unexpected. The property consists of a nice church building that can seat about 100 people, with a full kitchen, classrooms and other meeting rooms downstairs. In addition, there are two houses on the same property that will be part of the donation. Given the price of real estate in the Portland area, this was a substantial donation to the Church.
The other story I want to share is equally inspiring. For me, the story began during the summer when I received a two-page letter from someone I had never met, letting me know that he was sending a rather large donation of cash to the Church. In his letter he wrote about his brother-in-law and sister, who were members of COGWA in another state. He wrote in glowing terms, describing his brother-in-law as being more like a father to him. Over the years he had spent a lot of time with the couple, even attending church services a few times. He wrote that he had never known people who truly lived their religion as his sister and brother-in-law did, and as those he met while attending did. Because of the examples of his sister and brother-in-law, and the local COGWA pastor and congregation, when his brother-in-law died, he decided to send us a large cash donation in his brother-in-law’s name to express appreciation. This, too, was totally unexpected. I wish I could share his letter with all of you. It brought tears to my eyes to read how this individual’s life was profoundly affected by the example of his sister, brother-in-law, and the pastor and members of a local congregation.
I am often asked by members what they can do to help further the mission of the Church. It is easy to overlook the one thing we can all do – live the life that we profess, thereby becoming lights in the darkness.

2021 Winter Family Weekend
Christmas Day falls on a Sabbath in 2021. Despite widespread sickness at the Festival of Tabernacles this year, the United Church of God is the only group to have shown caution and cancelled the Christmas weekend.
Church of God a Worldwide Association will be returning to the Galt House Hotel and Conference Center in Louisville, Kentucky, December 24-28.
Common Faith Network is organizing its independent weekend gathering at the Griffin Gate Marriott in Lexington, Kentucky, December 23-27.
The Living Church of God has decided to have several small sites this year (for members only). Those currently being planned for December 25-26 are: Charlotte, North Carolina – Ocala, Florida – Montgomery, Alabama – Big Sandy, Texas – Kansas City, Missouri.
Members of the Church of God Assembly will again be gathering in the Embassy Suites in Murfreesboro, Tennessee, December 22-26.  

Dynamic Christian Ministries
After a hiatus of 2 months, Start Our Sabbath returns at 9pm eastern time, Friday, October 29th. Wes White writes: “It’s been a tough last couple of months. Nancy and I both had Covid.
But even worse, we lost a brother in Christ (the webmaster), Carl Nachtrieb.
Carl was a great co-worker. So many of us will miss him greatly.”

From Tom Kerry, Pastor, Church of God Ministries International
“My case became extremely serious as I eventually spent nine days in ICU.
I was told that I came within one day from potentially losing the battle. It is humbling to come face to face with someone telling you that “this is the night, that you must fight as hard as you can, or you might not leave this hospital.” What I did not know was that the nursing staff, and in particular, one incredible nurse, who gave me one of those “come to Jesus talks, or you are going to die;” and the Doctor had called Audrey, my wife, to prepare her that nothing was working. Fortunately, God intervened that night, and four days later I was out of ICU.
My story isn’t unique. It is a story being played out across the nation by many brethren and families from ‘ALL’ the churches of God communities. There are many brethren across the nation, and around the world who are in their life and death fight for survival. Our prayers for one another, for God’s intervention and the healing power of our great Healer, Jesus Christ needs to be the cornerstone for the church at this moment of time. Without Him, there will be no future.”

Church of God Assembly
Members have been fasting and praying because of the ‘unprecedented’ number of church people who have recently fallen sick due to Covid-19 and other illnesses.
Sheldon Monson’s nephew, Michael Case, died just before the festival, and there have been 4 deaths since then, including his own sister, Anne Burns.

United Church of God
“We have now experienced the death of a beloved longtime pastor, Randy D’Alessandro, directly stemming from the pandemic. We are all stunned, shocked by this death, as he was doing fine just a few short weeks ago.”
The Winter Family Weekend has again been cancelled, as has the Winter Camp planned for December.

Covid-19 at the Festival of Tabernacles
Hundreds of brethren at festival sites across the USA have contracted the infection, and there have been several deaths.
The greatest number affected was at COGWA’s feast site in Rapid City, South Dakota, where 90 people (out of 650 attending) tested positive for Covid-19 on arriving home, and 4 have been hospitalized.
Perhaps the Living Church of God escaped with few or no infections, as Gerald Weston did not refer to any in his update, indeed he said that the Council of Elders are discussing having winter family weekends again this year at Kansas City and Charlotte.

Biblical Calendar 2021
Devorah Gordon reports that “the New Moon was sighted from Israel this evening, Thursday, 7 October, 2021!
* From Jerusalem at 6:46pm by Devorah Gordon, followed by Gil Ashendorf.
* From Tiberias at 6:35pm by Dennis Chkolnik, followed by Maureen Chkolnik.
* From Haifa at 6:44pm by Ephraim Amnon.
This means that sunset on October 7th, 2021, marks the beginning of the new month.
Be sure to keep track of what number month this is, based on when you started the new year.”
The festival of Sukkot/Tabernacles will thus begin on the evening of the 21st for those going by biblical calendar [6]. For those going by the conjunction, the festival will begin on the evening of the 19th.
Links to live services will be posted on the Live Broadcasts page. 

The 1st day of the 7th month in the Hebrew calendar is Yom Teruah (Day of Shouting), but for most Jews it is Rosh Hashanah (New Years Day), while those who were in the Worldwide Church of God call it the Feast of Trumpets.
No postponement rules apply this year, so the 1st day is at the Molad (conjunction), which is on the 7th of September.
When Jesus worshipped at the temple in Jerusalem, the start of the month was determined by the sighting of the new moon, as described by the Temple Institute
: For this reason an increasing number of people now rely on sighting reports from Israel, while a few others go by first sightings anywhere in the world.
The Crescent New Moon Maps show that the new moon in September will be visible over part of the Americas on the evening of the 7th, and over the whole world on the evening of the 8th.
A few will therefore be keeping the holy day on the 8th, but for most it will be the 9th.
Karaite Jews in Israel have confirmed:
“The New Moon was sighted from Israel this evening, Wednesday, 8 September 2021!
* From Jerusalem at 7:06pm by Devorah Gordon, followed by Gil Ashendorf.
* From Tiberias at 6:59pm by Dennis Chkolnik, Maureen Chkolnik, and Or Rorriguez.
* From Nahariya at 7:12pm by Jonathan Haber.
This means that sunset on 8 September 2021, marks the beginning of the new month.”
(There are some who are observing the annual holy days a month later this year, i.e. starting the biblical year at the new moon after the equinox, so will be keeping these days in October.)

Church of God Ministries International
Update from Tom Kerry on Hurricane Ida, September 10th:
“Many in the local church have experienced some damage, some more than others. Many are still waiting on power, and a few members are still unable to return home.
Alex, one of our members, and also the primary rebuilder when we bought the building in 1996, has been repairing the hole in the roof to mitigate the damage. 100% of our equipment and 100% of our studio were spared. Praise God.
The most immediate need at present is for members displaced during the hurricane. The most disappointing thing of all of this is the lack of assistance from FEMA to those who have lived in the path of the hurricane. As of Thursday, not one member I’ve spoken to has received any assistance, other than lining up for hours for ice, water and MREs.
Wow! If they were illegals, they’d get $1,000.00, food and a temporary place to stay. (Sorry – pet peeve).”

“We here at headquarters would like to thank everyone for the thoughts, prayers and concerns for the brethren in the New Orleans congregation.
All our members are safe. We had a number of them which had been ordered to leave.
As to our weekly Sabbath Live Broadcast, there will not be any broadcast from our Gretna church building until after the Feast of Tabernacles, this being due to the major damages to the general area, and loss of the major supply line for powers. Local officials along with the power company are saying it could take up to 3-4 weeks to restore power to the area.”

United Church of God
“In October 2021 the United Church of God will launch an ambitious print promotion campaign. Over 50,000,000 advertisements, placed in Sunday newspaper inserts, will reach households in large and small cities and rural areas from coast-to-coast in the United States. People will have the opportunity to request a free one-year subscription to
Beyond Today magazine and our free Bible study aid, Angels: God’s Messengers and Spirit Army. After having previously test-marketed this study aid and employed it in previous campaigns, we found it to be one of our best responding ads.

Church of God Assembly
Sheldon Monson writes 27th August 2021:
“Last week’s sermon on
Will We Place Our Faith in a Vaccine or in God? was pulled from YouTube within an hour of posting the edited version. YouTube gave us a Red Flag citing that it violates their medical misinformation policy. If we post content that “encourages the use of home remedies, prayer, or rituals in place of medical treatment such as consulting a doctor or going to the hospital”, the video will be banned and you will receive a red flag. If we receive another red flag, YouTube will ban us from streaming for at least one week. We’ve known that this day would come, and have been preparing a back-up plan. Going forward we will begin including a link to LIVE stream on a platform called Twitch. It is a gaming platform, so it will look and feel a bit different, but most importantly we will not have a disruption in the regular streaming weekly LIVE services.”
He comments at the 28 minute mark that he had been healed of stage 4 cancer (in May 2015), and in January this year he was at home with Covid-19 for 10 days, then spent 5 days in hospital with double pneumonia, but he never thought that he would die.

Intercontinental Church of God
The church is in the midst of a long overdue make-over of its websites for The ICG and the Garner Ted Armstrong Evangelistic Association – but will there be any changes to reverse the decline of the ICG itself?
A list of congregations has now been added, only 18 now remain, all in the USA, and one of these –
Austin, Texas – defected over a decade ago.
The Australian website shows that there remain one weekly fellowship group meeting, in Sydney, plus two more meeting occasionally. New South Wales is currently in lockdown, and the venue for the Festival of Tabernacles in Nelson Bay is closed.
When Garner Ted Armstrong died in 2003, the ICG had around 90 congregations and was on around 30 television stations and cable outlets. His son Mark took over the day to day operation of the church and the production of the television outreach program. He was not ordained, and had no interest in ministry.
Under his leadership, 80% of its congregations have been lost, and there has been no television outreach program for years. His personal involvement is a weekly political diatribe and an occasional article for the quarterly magazine, both lacking in Christian content.
Tom Kerry and a number of other ministers considered him unqualified for Christian leadership and left in 2004 to form the first split in what eventually became known as
Church of God Ministries International.
The UK festival site
is independent, and is listed by the ICG probably because it used to have a link with the House of God group.

United Church of God
From Fred Kellers, elder, Murfreesboro, Tennessee congregation:
Gary Petty reports: “I was finally sent home from the hospital today. A number of the nurses and doctors told me that I was a ‘blessed man’ because my COVID could have been much worse than it was. It has been a difficult illness and I am still very weak.” Gary’s wife, Kim, also had COVID-19 but was not as seriously ill. She is also doing better.
Regarding the other members of the Murfreesboro congregation, the status changes daily but most are at varying degrees of recovery from ages 22–84. We have 25 affected that we know of. It’s been difficult to find out exactly who is sick. Those who were hit harder are farther behind in recovery. One member in her early 50s was hit hard; her mother also had a tough time. Leo and Barb Sancho are in their 80s and having a tough time. One member, Don Smith, did not survive; he was about 83 – but a pretty robust 83. Another member age 83 recovered well and was canning tomatoes a week later; he was vaccinated, but whether that helped or not, time will tell. We think that in total about 55% of the members in the congregation have been affected.
Thank you for your prayers for the Pettys and our precious little congregation.

Church of God Assembly
The church now has 18 congregations in the USA and 2 in Canada.
Two Festival of Tabernacles sites are being planned in Alberta and Ontario.

Living Church of God
Gerald Weston said in his Covid announcement last week:
“My wife was hit pretty hard this time. She’d had Covid before, but we believe this was the delta variant. It is certainly more contagious. Carol got it and had a number of very unpleasant symptoms. I did call her doctor and gave some statistics on her blood oxygen level. She wanted her to go to the emergency room, and called in advance that she would be coming in. Carol was very unco-operative on that – she did not want to go to the hospital – never the less I took her to the hospital.”
However, she decided to return from hospital about 1.30am and, he said, she got six hours of good solid rest without coughing.
He commented that he was doing reasonably well, but his condition seems to have deteriorated, as his report this week was written by Richard Ames in his stead, who stated that several headquarters employees are under quarantine and working from home.

Christian Fellowship Ministries
Update July 30: He will be in the hospital over the weekend. We are waiting to see what happens as far as any rehab that his insurance will approve. The doctors state that he will need intensive rehab because of the fractures in his back. He wanted me to tell you all how much he loves his church family and how grateful he is for all of your prayers.
Update July 25: The neurosurgeon said that he will probably have to be on anti seizure medication for a while. Definitely not a stroke. The EEG showed that he was born with a predisposition to have seizures, but they don’t know what caused them to start now.
He is still in ICU and in a great deal of pain.
Jannetta wrote, July 23: I am asking for prayers please for Dr. Keith Slough. When we spoke this morning he couldn’t put 5 coherent words together. I made a beeline for his house and found him on the floor in his study. He didn’t know how he ended up on the floor and still wasn’t making sense. He had dried blood on his chin & undershirt.
EMS came and brought him to the hospital. He has had 2 seizures since he has been here. They sedated him and put in a breathing tube. They are moving him to ICU and will hook him up to an EEG to monitor him. They think he had a seizure at home before I got there. The blood was coming from where he bit his tongue. I am pretty sure I got to him within an hour of the first thing happening. He had been up and writing in his journal.

Church of God Summer Camps
Announcement from Gerald Weston, Living Church of God, 22 July 2021:
By this time all of you are aware that we had to shut down the teen camp in Texas.
Tuesday morning we had a case of Covid from one of the ladies. We quarantined several of the ladies downtown in separate hotel rooms for several days as a precaution. One of those ladies, my wife, came down with Covid. The others seem to have escaped it, for which we are thankful that it was not any worse. The regular camp program began Wednesday morning. We seemed to be containing it, but then on Thursday and Friday we had several other cases … it seemed like there would only be about five total. Never the less, we could see a trajectory that, if we got into the next week, it could escalate significantly. It has, because some have come home from camp with it, so we know that more people were exposed, more people have caught the virus than we knew of for certain on Friday.
Friday I called a meeting for all our department heads and all our our ministers … We realized that either we take control of the situation, or this could get out and outside authorities could take control of it and shut us down, so we decided to shut it down ourselves.
We are not going to hide the fact that there was a Covid outbreak. We could have decided not to test and simply say there was some sickness, but the fact of the matter is it was Covid, we tested for it when somebody got sick.
This camp in Athens, Texas, has also been utilized by COGWA, which had one report of Covid during camp.
Victor Kubik, United Church of God, writes 22 July 2021:
Bev and I are driving three teenagers to Camp Woodland in Georgia this week. Our teens are so happy to be able to have a camp experience this year after last year’s cancellations.
We are aware that a number of staff and campers who returned from Camp Pinecrest tested positive for COVID-19. As a result, anyone who was at Camp Pinecrest, as well as anyone who has come in direct contact with someone who was at Camp Pinecrest, should NOT attend services this coming Sabbath. Please pray for the safety of our children for the remaining camp sessions that are and will be in progress.
Sheldon Monson of Church of God Assembly says there were no cases of Covid at their Summer Camp. 

Spiritual Vision Women’s Conference
This event, to be hosted by the Church of God 7th Day in Tyler Texas and
sponsored by the Ronald Dart Evangelistic Association, was set for Saturday, August 21st, and Sunday, August 22nd, at the Big Sandy Civic Center, Texas.
Brandy Webb writes, July 19th, It is with a heavy heart that I have to announce that the Spiritual Vision Women’s Conference is canceled. Below is a message from minister Wes White.
Dear brethren—
I have been watching the news with concern. Covid cases are rising again.
Summer camps across the US are closing because of outbreaks. The news tells of situations where an outbreak will close a camp and they will send kids and staff home to be quarantined for 14 days.
My concern for our Women’s Conference is this: Suppose we have an outbreak. Some of the sisters will be coming from far distances. Do we tell these ladies who may or may not be infected to go home after an outbreak? Do we tell them to drive long distances where they will visit truck stops and gas stations and possibly infect others? What about anyone who flies in? If they are infected, they might be refused entry on to the plane. What do we do with these sisters who require quarantining? Would we take them into our homes for 14 days?
Clearly, this could get messy. This disease is still dangerous.
For these reasons, we must once again cancel our Women’s Conference. Please share this cancelation with others. I apologize to all who have been inconvenienced.

United Church of God – 2021 Festival of Tabernacles
Due to continuing uncertainty and the possibility that visitors from outside the nation of Estonia might be required to go through quarantine it has been decided to cancel the Feast in Estonia for the year 2021.

If you have considered attending the Feast in France, there are still openings for this year. Due to previous uncertainties about travel to Europe this summer, which have now been resolved, the Feast site on Lake Annecy is currently below capacity and has about 25 openings. Non-stop air-travel is affordable and there is no vaccination requirement to travel to France from the U.S. – only a negative COVID test prior to boarding your flight. The Feast site is a short walk from beautiful Lake Annecy in the French Alps. We need to fill the remaining openings, so if you haven’t finalized your plans, we hope you will consider joining the French brethren for the Feast this year. Please visit our website at to register or contact the Feast in France planning team at with any questions.

Festival of Tabernacles 2021 – UK
Peter Hawkins stated on 15th of July that Torquay, Devon, is the UK festival site for 2021.

According to COGWA’s festival website, the UK festival will be at the same hotel in Torquay, Devon, as it was in 2020.
However, Peter Hawkins, the pastor for its two congregations in the UK, states that nothing has ever been settled. Torquay is only one of the sites under consideration, “which oddly enough was mistakenly put into the
One Accord member magazine earlier this year as our site.”
The problem for COGWA (and also for the United Church of God) is the UK government’s confused and ever-changing Covid-19 pronouncements.
“As we continue to search for a suitable feast site for 20-28th September, we await replies from several hotel and community contacts. Hotels with meeting rooms are unwilling for us to book them until more clarity comes from the authorities. Social distancing and the uncertainty of flow of business have a big impact. They cannot hire staff to look after the conference facilities and service their guests until there is more clarity.”
Peter Hawkins writes, 3rd of July:
“We are close to signing the hire of the Torbay Suite at the Imperial Hotel (in Torquay) for the Feast this year. There are still so many uncertainties with the way in which lockdowns are being handled, and we wait for details this coming week from the Prime Minister, Boris Johnson.”
UCG’s festival last year had to be cancelled, and the same hotel in Southport was re-booked for 2021. Registrations began being accepted in the wake of the government’s promise to relax restrictions soon. (The other sites are smaller and unaffected by staffing requirements.)

Philadelphia Church of God
Gerald Flurry wrote on the 25th of January:
“Two months ago I wrote an article titled
Why Donald Trump Will Remain America’s President … The word “remain” is an important part of that article and its title. I apologize for creating confusion there. But as I want to show you … (it) might not actually be a mistake.
I based my forecast about President Trump on two prophetic passages I have repeatedly emphasized over the past four years. I know these prophecies will be fulfilled …”
Five months later he has worked out an unintelligible solution to justify this prophecy and placate his devoted followers –
A Prophesied Gap in Trump’s Presidency.
Verse 28
(of 2 Kings 14) indicates a pause in President Trump’s hold on power.
“How he warred and recovered Damascus and Hamath” refers to him fighting in some way to reclaim his stolen election – and not by being voted back in at a future election. The book of Kings is one of the former prophets. It is primarily prophecy for this end time.
The other key passage regarding Jeroboam is Amos 7:8-9:
“And the Lord said unto me, Amos, what seest thou? And I said, A plumbline. Then said the Lord, Behold, I will set a plumbline in the midst of my people Israel: I will not again pass by them any more: And the high places of Isaac shall be desolate,
and the sanctuaries of Israel shall be laid waste; and I will rise against the house of Jeroboam with the sword.”

This passage, I believe, includes
another indication of this pause in President Trump’s power that I did not see before.
… verse 9 speaks of a time of desolation, wasting and the sword. God says that He Himself “will rise against the house of Jeroboam with the sword.” That is a very different picture than you get in verse 8!
I believe there is a pause in the events between verses 8 and 9 of Amos 7, and that we are in this prophesied pause now.”

United Church of God
Victor Kubik writes: “This week we were in Dallas for the annual National Religious Broadcasters conference June 21–25.
We live in a time like no other with divisions, anger, intolerance and indecency. Yet, in the midst of this darkness and morass there is hope – as not all are duped. A study has shown that 80% of unchurched people – people who don’t attend or belong to a church – are well aware that “something is out of control” in the world and are looking for someone to give them answers. Can we be the ones to do this?
We in the United Church of God are blessed with superb media resources. We have well-trained ministers and writers. We have a state-of-the-art television studio that will soon also have the capacity to produce animated presentations. But, after listening to media professionals objectively talk about the various platforms that other churches communicate on, we need to consider and appreciate the astonishing clutter in today’s marketplace.
It is common knowledge that Herbert W. Armstrong effectively tapped the communication tools and platforms of his day to preach the gospel in an unusual and powerful way.
That media environment has changed dramatically. Where powerful clear-channel AM radio stations or terrestrial-only television once reached millions of people, today there are hundreds – if not thousands – of religious TV programs cluttering the airwaves. Whole cable channels (including satellite) today exist that broadcast nothing but religious programming. Back in the 1930s-1950s, it was quite different in terms of content and approach.
Further, Mr. Armstrong deployed then-modern advertising techniques where he could. I believe we need to deploy this same strategy in 2021 and beyond! We especially must explore and create a new robust digital platform, using the foundation of our current experience and content on

Continuing Church of God
Evangelist Evans Ochieng reported 19th June 2021:
I have been busy visiting the congregations in Kenya and co-workers. And since the congregations in Kenya are so many now I couldn’t manage to visit all of them. I can’t continue to visit since there is a big problem of Covid-19, which has increased so much in Kenya, especially Nyanza and Western Kenya. These areas have a curfew and nobody is found outside from 7pm till 5 am. The Covid-19 cases are so many now in these areas and part of Rift Valley.
So things have become so difficult in these areas heavily. And these are the areas where most of congregations are located. So we need more prayers to brethren and Kenya at large.
The work in Kenya has expanded and the doors are open for the work.
We have 23 congregations in Kenya with 4,022 people.

Summer Camps & Covid-19
We have been told that, “the first COGWA live summer camp since 2019 has ended with at least one positive COVID-19 result. A staff member became ill this past week at Camp Lone Star, Athens, Texas – then tested positive afterward for COVID. They’re waiting now to see if anyone else has developed the virus.”
It was no surprise to hear that Sheldon Monson of Church of God Assembly would be going ahead with summer camp this year. He was camp leader when with the Living Church of God, which he was forced to leave in August 2020, as he was not prepared to compromise with LCG’s cautious approach to Covid-19, in particular wearing face coverings and not singing in services.
This year’s youth camp will also be at the Lone Star Camp, Athens, Texas, and will run for 2 weeks from Sunday, July 20th. The camp is for all ages under 18, and over 200 people are expected to attend.

Church of God Ministries International
The Festival of Tabernacles at Daytona Beach, Florida, has been cancelled.
No explanation has been given.

Church of God International – Medina, Ohio
Update June 2nd to Pastor Bill Watson’s post, May 26:
“As has been mentioned for some weeks now and as of the May 26 posting, we have alerted you of a variety of different sickness that have emerged among us. Unfortunately, a few have been hospitalized, while others are in varying degrees of recovery at home with their families. As with any group situation, be it at church, work, school, or just out and about, it becomes important we remember to maintain precautions we originally have been adhering to for the last 18 to 20 months.
During the service in Medina Ohio on June 5th, Bill Watson went through many prayer requests for healing. He continued to avoid the phrase Covid-19, instead referring to respiratory challenges. One exception was for a lady with “respiratory complications due to the contraction of the CCP virus.” 

Christian Educational Ministries
“Michael Porter leads our radio outreach in the Benin Republic and adjoining countries. He is a former Muslim who heard about the Sabbath and the Gospel message through the 7th-Day Adventist Church. He then came into contact with Margaret Dyer-Forster. She sent him a Ron Dart audio disc and, after hearing the message, his eyes were opened spiritually as to who Jesus truly is and to God’s Law, holy days, and so much more. He recently updated CEM on the results of the sponsored Born to Win radio program aired there in the Benin Republic.
argaret Dyer-Forster sponsored the Born to Win program on CAPP FM from 2005 until January 2018. Due to current life changes, she can no longer wholly sponsor the program. Because of other dedicated listeners, we were able to keep the program on the air through this year, but we will need more assistance to keep the program on the air. As the only Sabbath radio outreach in the whole of the region, we are praying that God will provide sponsors through CEM for this life-changing radio outreach for at least another year or two.
Will you help us reach people around Africa with the saving message of Jesus through the life-changing teachings of Ronald L. Dart?
If you would like to help, send your contributions to CEM and mark them for Benin.

United Church of God
Festival of Tabernacles in Bend-Redmond:
“The new attendance limit will be 450 and there will not be a wait list, so when it fills, it fills.
In the event that things don’t relax more fully by September, this capacity increase will enable us to allow the most brethren attend, while still managing our numbers in accordance with Oregon mandates in order to keep the Feast in Bend-Redmond. If you’re planning to attend this fall in the Bend area, and have not yet registered, please register for the Feast as soon as possible.”

Church of God International
Bill Watson, pastor of the Medina, Ohio, congregation, writes May 26th:
“Over the last couple of weeks, an increased amount of sickness has moved within the congregation. The number of people has continued to grow as others are in different stages of recovery. In light of the fact that the Church building may be in need of some good disinfection, it’s been decided to go-ahead and do that as soon as we can. Arrangements have been made to conduct this service this week. However, doing this will cause us to cancel services this coming Sabbath. We will play a prerecorded sermon for the internet webcast.
As of now, Sabbath services will resume live on June 5th, Sabbath after next, unless otherwise noted. Thank you for your patience and do keep our brethren in our prayers as they go through these difficult times.”

Philadelphia Church of God
PCG offered £4.5 million for the property in Bricket Wood that was formerly the Worldwide Church of God’s college campus in the UK., in order to “raise the ruins
of the Ambassador College campuses, but was rejected by the developer. (If you fancy living in Hanstead House itself, there is one apartment left, which would cost you just £995,000.)
Undeterred, PCG looked around for cheaper properties, and in November 2014 purchased Edstone Hall, near Stratford-upon-Avon, for £2.8 million.
The UK’s office was transferred there, a broadcasting studio was built for Stephen Flurry, plus classrooms and accommodation for US students.
A post in February 2016 by Brandi Davis announced: Edstone Welcomes Six New Residents – that’s six pregnant Suffolk sheep, not students.
Mr. Macdonald (PCG’s Regional Director) chose this breed because they are a large breed, good for barbequing on the spit … Mr. Macdonald also plans to add chickens to Edstone’s agricultural program in the spring.”
Why would Old Macdonald want a farm? … “having a small flock of sheep on the rural English campus is another way Edstone seeks to raise the ruins of the Ambassador College campuses. Ambassador’s campus in Bricket Wood, Hertfordshire, also had an agricultural program, of which Mrs. Howard’s brother (uncle of Edstone’s office manager) was head cattleman. The 1,600-acre Ambassador campus in Big Sandy, Texas, also had a large agricultural program.
Agricultural investment is continuing, according to a post on Exit & Support Network, 21 May 2021: “PCG doesn’t seem to be lacking money, especially for their farm in Edstone, which is forging ahead with animals, fowl, gardens and pastures, with little thought about tomorrow or how GF has constantly said “Christ is returning soon.” (That farm, by the way, reminds me of Ambassador College’s farm in Big Sandy, TX, back in the day.)”

Pentecost 2021
Pentecost is the only one of Gods three annual festivals that is shared by mainstream Christianity, which will observe Pentecost on Sunday, 23rd May 2021. The Churches of God who start each month according to the sighting of the new moon will also celebrate the festival then. Links to live streaming of Pentecost services on this day are listed on the Live Broadcasts page.
There was confusion with some Facebook users searching the internet for the date, and later discovering that WCG’s version of the Jewish calendar places the festival on Sunday, 16th May.
There are some Jewish calendar followers who will observe the festival on Sunday, 23rd May,  because they believe that the count begins on the Sunday after the weekly Sabbath that is within the days of unleavened bread in the Hebrew calendar (not the first Sunday), so the count begins on the next Sunday, which is outside the seven days of the festival.

Herbert Armstrong kept Pentecost on Monday for the majority of his ministry, but he suddenly changed to Sunday in 1974 (see explanatory article on the Pentecost page).
There were those who argued that Gods apostle”, who in his own words (p.1) – neither received it of man, neither was I taught it, BUT BY THE REVELATION OF JESUS CHRIST” – could not change what Jesus Christ had revealed to him. They were expelled from WCG.
A Monday Pentecost was unique to Herbert Armstrong, so the number of adherents to it has naturally declined over the decades. The Bethel Church of God has been the only one in recent years to provide live broadcasts on the Sabbath and holy days, but 2020 was its last year of operation. The largest church remaining (perhaps the only one) is Church of God the Eternal, founded by ex-WCG evangelist Raymond Cole, which does not do live streaming.
Churches that start the biblical year on the day of the new moon following the Vernal Equinox are one month later this year, and will observe Pentecost on 20th June 2021.

Living Church of God
Rod McNair reported to Gerald Weston last week on his visit to the congregation in Knoxville, Tennessee, where there was a service in the morning and a Tomorrow’s World presentation in the afternoon. He was struck by how many were there in the morning whom he did not recognize from last time, including a number of individuals who were young people in WCG days, and have come back in the last few months or weeks.
Gerald Weston commented that the same activity is being seen elsewhere, with people also coming from other Church of God groups. He added that people seem to be recognizing the fact that the LCG is where God’s work is mainly being done.
This churning is not limited to the LCG, and the return of disenchanted young people who left the WCG decades ago is more likely driven by what they perceive to be the ‘signs of the times’.

How and Why Herbert Armstrong changed from a Monday Pentecost
Herbert Armstrong, for the majority of his ministry, held to a unique doctrine – a Monday Pentecost.
He declared that
God would not allow any of His holy days to fall on Sunday, the day of pagan worship. (He also taught that the resurrection was not on Sunday, to negate any reason for keeping Easter Sunday.)
Secondly, he argued that Pentecost must be on a Monday, because:
“In ENGLISH, 50 days FROM a Sunday can be counted NO OTHER WAY than that ONE day FROM Sunday is Monday, and 50 days FROM Sunday always falls on a Monday.”
He held firmly to this view, despite many protests:
“Time after time, Mr. Armstrong refused to give up a Monday Pentecost. In the late 1940s and early 1950s, the protests of half the Eugene church – over the counting of Pentecost – resulted in Emil Heibel’s leading off the dissidents, who formed a separate church believing in a Sunday Pentecost. There were many attacks, from all across the nation, leveled against a Monday Pentecost.” (The Doctrine of Pentecost, How and Why it was Changed, p.2)
So why in
1974 did he suddenly change to observing Pentecost on a Sunday? … read more

Think Red Ink Ministries
“Our founder, brother and co-laborer, Don Harris, died on the 27th of April 2021 of a stroke.
He is now sleeping and awaiting the resurrection. We will miss him sorely.”
About Don Harris, by Don Harris
“Before I founded Think Red Ink Ministries, I was a man who felt like I had all the answers. I set upon my career as a pastor, thinking I knew what I was doing. While directing a Christian children’s home, I was as typical as any preacher, teacher or radio/tv evangelist out there. I’m not proud of that history now. Then things began to change. For several years, during my early morning time alone with God, I felt that, rather than getting answers to the questions and requests I would present to God – I was being directed to consider answering some questions FROM God to me.
I decided to take a closer look at the messages that Jesus preached all those years ago in Galilee. What I noticed was this: Jesus often attempted to teach his followers by asking questions. And as I tried to answer some of those questions as I discovered them – I found that my memorized “answers” just didn’t fit – they didn’t work any more.
Somehow, I began to understand that what I had been taught was wrong … (my thinking changed.) At the same time, I found that the doctrines, the rules, the apparently contradictory issues that no one wanted to talk about because they just couldn’t explain them – just vanished or cleared themselves from my head.
The false “traditions of men” and the profit-motivated explanations that have found their way into our everyday lives became exposed and were dealt with one by one through the study of these “red letter” questions – these questions of Jesus that many Bibles print in
red ink.
That’s how I began the journey that got me here today. I hope you’ll take the time to critically examine this website. I challenge you to test the statements and teachings that are presented here. And remember, we don’t charge for our materials – because God didn’t charge me for them.”
Fondly and Friendly, Don Harris.

United Church of God
The 2021 General Conference of Elders was held over the internet. The Strategic Plan, Operation Plan and Budget were all passed by ballot of the elders.
At the Council of Elders meeting, Scott Ashley and Len Martin were re-appointed to the Council, and two new Council members, Brian Shaw and Paul Wasilkoff, were appointed.

United Church of God
“What’s on deck for the United Church of God in 2021?
Watch Church President, Victor Kubik, outline a vision for the Church this Sabbath, beginning at 2:30 p.m. (Eastern Daylight Time).
Church Treasurer, Rick Shabi, will also present a message prior to Mr. Kubik’s sermon.
The live presentations and Church service are part of the Church’s annual General Conference of Elders, which is taking place this year in a virtual format.”

Death of Worldwide Church of God Pioneer
Doris Cole posted the following on the Ambassador College Pasadena Forum, April 26th, 2021:
I just had a call from
CHARLENE SMITH to tell me that NORMAN SMITH died early this morning. He had been in a coma for several days and had not eaten since last Tuesday, April 20th. This is very sobering news to us as NORMAN was WAYNE’S roommate and CHARLENE was my roommate at AC and we have re-connected in recent years. I spoke with her for about 30 minutes yesterday as I knew she would be having a very difficult time. I am very pleased that ESTHER COLE GLOVER is near by and assisting them at the Funeral Home. The family is not planning a funeral service but I will give their mailing address for anyone who wishes to mail a card to them. Their son KEVIN has been with them for several years and has done a fabulous job in caring-giving. Please keep them in your thoughts and prayers.
The Grace Communion International website states:
Norman Smith was born on the family farm near Burnt Prairie, in Southern Illinois on February 18, 1930. He lived there until at age 20 he left to attend Ambassador College in Pasadena, CA. Norman’s wife, Charlene also enrolled in Ambassador in 1950. They began dating in their sophomore year and married in their senior year. Their daughter, Deborah, was born in 1954, their first son, Kevin in 1956, and son Kyle in 1960. The Smiths have two grandchildren.
Norman was baptized in 1950, and has served the church in various capacities ever since. He began working in the church’s recording studio in 1951, which soon turned into a full time job that continued during his last two years of college. He was made director of the broadcasting studio in 1952, and after graduation in 1954, became manager of the church’s radio and television production facilities. He was ordained an elder in 1955, regularly giving sermons to various congregations in Southern California.
As an associate member of the Society of Motion Picture and Television Engineers, the Audio Engineering Society, and the Acoustical Engineering Society at the time the Ambassador Auditorium was being designed, he played an important role in the design of the lighting and sound system in the Auditorium. He obtained a master’s degree in management science from West Coast University, Los Angeles in 1976, and later completed a Master of Science Counseling Psychology program at California State University, San Bernardino in 1993 to facilitate counseling and training in the areas of alcoholism, addiction, and child abuse.
In 1976, Norman was assigned to pastor the Chico, CA, congregation and be the Area Coordinator for ministers in Northern California, Oregon, and Washington. In 1980, the Smiths were transferred to San Diego – Norman’s first pastorate with no other responsibilities. The couple then transferred to the San Bernardino congregation in 1987. Norman thrived in his pastoral responsibilities, delighting in performing weddings, anointing and praying for people and seeing God bless and protect them through their trials. He delighted in counseling with people, seeing them develop a trusting relationship with Jesus Christ and make changes in their relationships with others. His “pastor’s heart” always led him to be alert to people’s needs and find innovative ways to help them.
Norman stated in a 1994 interview, “I attempt to look at both the great progress the church has made since I have been a part of it and also admit the mistakes which have seriously hindered some people’s ability to see the love of Jesus Christ. Admitting the mistakes does not mean to dwell on them. But, admitting the mistakes is a form of reaching out to those who have been hindered and have faltered.”
Norman retired in 2005 and has served as Assistant Pastor in the Eugene, OR, congregation to the present. He was a member of the church’s Advisory Council of Elders for several years and has served on the GCI Board since January 2015.

Biblical Calendar 2021
Listed on the Passover & Festival of Unleavened Bread page are those assemblies keeping the festival in person for the full week, one month later than the others, i.e. according to Biblical Calendars [5] & [6]. Links to the daily live broadcasts have been added. The Third Angel’s Message has been banned from YouTube for two weeks, so is broadcasting its festival messages on daily at 7.30pm ET.

Kenya – Hands of Hope
Bill Goff writes, April 15th:
We are asking prayers, the orphanage was attacked last night by thieves. Last time we were attacked three men stormed and broke through our main gate, but our guard was able to fight them off, although he sustained a broken arm.
But this time there were many thieves. Haron and guard tried to fight them off, but were over powered. Haron woke up in hospital with concussion and back injury. Our guard is still unconscious and undergoing surgery. He was apparently stabbed in abdomen. One thief was killed, but the rest got away.
All the children are okay. Haron was able to inform them during the attack to stay locked and barricaded in their houses. The orphanage was ransacked; they stole much, including the well pump.
Update April 17th:
Want to thank you for your prayers. Haron has been discharged from hospital and is now back home. The Soldier is also doing well, and expected to have a full recovery.
We praise our Heavenly Father for this.
New update posted at Kenya – Hands of Hope

Philadelphia Church of God
A letter to ESN lists PCG’s 2021 Festival of Tabernacles sites. There will be as usual six sites in the USA, but members now have to pay for feast activities, e.g. $50 each for the Older Singles and Younger Singles Events – and single members are not allowed to consort with non-members.
Only three international sites are listed: Tobago, Philippines and Australia.
In previous years PCG has had two in Canada and one each in South Africa and England.
Are the members there to be left to organize and pay for their own festival sites?
What is the future for Edstone Hall, England? In addition to the capital outlay of £2.8 million, money was lavished on landscaping the grounds, buying livestock for Old MacDonald’s Farm, installing a broadcasting studio for Stephen Flurry, creating office facilities and classroom space and equipment for visiting American students etc.
The purchase of Edstone in November 2014 was supposed to “transform the PCG’s work in the United Kingdom and Europe”, yet it appears that the PCG does not have enough members in the whole of the continent to justify a feast site in 2021.

Biblical Calendar 2021
We are listing on the Passover & Festival of Unleavened Bread page those assemblies keeping the festival in person for the full week, one month later than the others, i.e. according to Biblical Calendars [5] & [6]
Links to the daily live broadcasts have been added.

This will also be the time for those needing to keep the Second Passover –
Biblical Calendars [2] [3] [4] & [7].

For those following Biblical Calendar [7], i.e. determining the 1st month of the year – the Month of the Aviv – by the barley harvest, Devorah Gordon reported on 5 April 2021:
“We looked at three fields in the Jordan Valley, all of which had finished developing, and the heads have since shattered. This means that the earliest fields were harvest ready by Yom HaNafat HaOmer (The Day of the Wave Sheaf Offering), and
you should have started the New Year on March 14, in the evening.

Abib of God have a picture of a field of maturing barley at Re’im in the Negev (north-west of Be’er Sheva, near the Gaza border) on Sunday, March 14.
Yoel Halevi reported on his trip to the Negev on March 12:
Nahal Gerar – Considerable amounts of barley in the aviv stage and advanced dough stages.
Tel Gamma – Considerable amounts of barley in the aviv stage or even shattering with the remainder in an advanced dough stage on both the upper and lower portions of the tel. This includes some patches of 100% aviv or even more advanced stages including stalks that are already shattering. There is every reason to believe there will be entire fields of harvestable barley before the date for the waving of the sheaf.
Devorah’s Date Tree found 16% and 17% aviv barley in Lower Galilee and Northern Negev, but did not visit Tel Gamma, for reasons stated in the report. Devorah Gordon’s opinion is that there would need to be entire harvestable fields by wave sheaf day, and has doubts that there would be.
The new moon was sighted in in the south of Israel by several witnesses on the evening of 14th March. Cloudy weather prevented sighting of the new moon in the Jerusalem area.

Church of God International
The bad weather in Texas in mid-February caused a broken water pipe, resulting in lots of water damage at the church in Tyler. The church has not been able to use its building since then, and has been meeting at another church. Live broadcasts have now been resumed, but the start time has had to be changed temporarily from 12 noon to 2.00pm (ET).

United Church of God
Victor Kubik wrote in his Personal, 4th March 2021, about Digital Censorship:
“A most disturbing trend has arisen: indiscriminate censorship of online information is underway, including censorship both by national governments and by the Internet companies themselves!
While we in the Church of God fellowship still print and distribute thousands of physical Bible study guides, magazines, booklets and letters, we today conduct much of the Work in this online environment that is now being subjected to capricious censorship.
One of these alarming acts of digital censorship is called “de-platforming.” U.S. and European governments have severely criticized and investigated the tech giants of the Internet, including Amazon, Google, Apple, Facebook and others for both allowing false, misleading, even harmful information to spread like wildfire and to indiscriminately collect and use data.
These companies responded by independently censoring online information. Major figures have since been “de-platformed,” drawing criticism from world leaders in Europe and elsewhere. All companies, to one degree or another
and including the United Church of God conduct major parts of their work online.
Further, as has been established, these companies have also unilaterally censored or removed information that does not square with their political and social thought.
This censorship has spread to disabling entire websites and social media platforms like Parler and individuals and organizations on Facebook and Twitter. Now, more and more people and organizations are silenced without warning. This includes churches who openly preach what the Bible says about certain sins.
We have seen other evangelical organizations recently have messages “shadow-banned,” particularly on YouTube. The URL of the message remains online, but it is delisted so it cannot be found on search engines. Both being “de-platformed” and “shadow-banned” could happen to us. There are many who would want to silence our voice of “showing my people their sins” (Isaiah 58:1).
Here in America, we have been blessed with the highest degree of protection for religious freedom in history, but it appears to be eroding rapidly. When I looked up a certain biblical phrase online in preparation for this column, I was advised by my browser that this was “content not suited for everyone”!
In addition to Internet censorship, we are seeing new laws being considered in the United States and abroad that could have dramatic and far-reaching negative impacts on the Church of God fellowship.
Current federal legislation called the Equality Act is anything but that. If passed by the Senate and signed into law, it could deliver a stunning blow to religious freedom.
Among other things, the Equality Act offers federal protection to those who would discard the biblical standards of man and woman, male and female. Under this potential law, so-called “gender identity” would be arbitrarily determined by individuals, not by physical genetics. It could throw all current standards into calumnious disarray. For example, boys who “identify” as girls could compete in women’s sports, despite physical differences. More ominously, men who “identify” as women would be legally free to use women’s restrooms and other protected areas. This has already resulted in grievous harm.
Further, some legislatures in Australia, Canada and elsewhere have adopted or are considering laws that legally prohibit any attempt to “deprogram” those who have artificially identified as a member of the opposite sex. Incredibly, in some instances, that ostensibly includes even
praying for those individuals to recover!
When people
even major figures object, they are instantly subjected to vile derision and ad hominem attacks, which often follow a destructive pattern of “name, shame, cancel, repeat.”
(In this Personal, he wrote about the disappearance of Brenda Howard – whose dead body has since been found – see Linda Benton’s post on Facebook.

The report of the Council of Elders meeting on February 22-24 included the following:
Starting this Sabbath, February 27th, the Cincinnati webcast wil be streaming a church service once a month, aimed equally at members and those online who read Beyond Today.
Victor Kubik and Darris McNeely are the speakers on the 27th.
Terry Franke is the new Senior Pastor for Hong Kong to replace the recently deceased Earl Roemer.
A survey was sent to all elders in the U.S. to see if they planned to come to the General Conference of Elders meetings in person. 72 elders said yes. 126 elders said no.
The Council agreed to have it online like it was last year.
With the recent news about organizations being deplatformed on the Internet, there was a broad discussion on how UCG could expect to be impacted and general plans on managing an interruption to the website presence.
Vaccination issues: Larry Darden, as legal counsel, stated that all states now allowing an exemption for personal or religious reasons do so solely based on personal beliefs of the one seeking exemption, and do not require some sort of expression of support from a Church. Members can request information from him about State forms that may be available for requesting exemptions.

Dynamic Christian Ministries
Wes White writes: “I just got a call from the manager of the building where our Start Our Sabbath studios are. She said the place is flooded from the storm we just endured.
For this reason, there will be no Start Our Sabbath this Friday night.
Fortunately, none of our equipment is damaged. After each show, we take home our cameras, laptops, and i-Pads. All that stays there permanently are the TV, the conference room table, and all wiring/cabling. That stuff should be ok.
Hopefully, we will be back on the air in two or three weeks – depending on how much repair work needs to be done to the facility.
Can’t we do it out of our home? Unfortunately, no. Our hill billy, country internet doesn’t have enough upload capability.
Can you please pray for this situation? Thanks.”

Church of God a Worldwide Association
In Accord update:
“Because of the massive winter storm and record-setting cold temperatures, everyone in the North Texas area, including Dallas and McKinney, has been asked to stay off the roads and to conserve electricity. Millions are without power in the state of Texas creating, a very dangerous situation – even life and death for some – and a new storm is predicted to go through the area on Wednesday. Although we have power at the Church office, we have closed the office for Tuesday and Wednesday and will decide about Thursday once we see the road and power conditions.
Due to these circumstances, we will not be able to produce an
In Accord this week. We plan to be back on schedule next week with a new In Accord posted on Thursday evening.”

Continuing Church of God
Dr Anthony Fauci has been awarded the £1 million Dan David prize for “courageously defending science in the face of uninformed opposition during the challenging Covid crisis,” the awards committee said.
Robert Thiel, being a member of the “uninformed opposition”, will not be happy to learn this, as he considers himself more qualified than Dr Fauci. He wrote an article on February 15th, titled: ‘Covid-19 conspiracies, but it fails to report on major vitamin D study’, in which he quotes an AP report:
“Legitimate questions about the virus created perfect conditions for conspiracy theories. In the absence of knowledge, guesswork and propaganda flourished. College professors with no evidence or training in virology were touted as experts.”
He is aggrieved at having been ignored, commenting:
“The AP and many others have put their hope in lockdowns, masks, social distancing, fear, and vaccines.
But it could have looked into telling the public how to help their immune systems.
Now before going further, let me state that 1) I have been trained in virology 2) the National Institute of Allergies and Infectious Disease twice concluded that my work with herbal, glandular, and vitamin therapy had ‘significant scientific merit’ against the HIV coronavirus in the 1990s, 3) I do have a Ph.D. in a biological field, and 4) I have successfully treated people with a variety of viruses with natural interventions for about thirty years (this is not something that people like Dr. Fauci, whom the AP has repeatedly promoted as an expert has done).
But the AP was not interested in reporting views of people like me, despite the fact that I meet their stated criteria for being qualified on this topic.”

Social Media Misinformation Detectors
Twitter’s Unclean Bird Watching – Misinformation Detectors
Third Angel’s Message) video – 39 mins.
Ths video was uploaded on February 12th and banned by Youtube on the same day, due to “medical misinformation”.
David Barron is awaiting clarification from Youtube of the issues that Youtube has, and he has uploaded a
short explanatory video.
The original video has now been uploaded to :

United Church of God
Update by Aaron Dean, Feb.11th, on the congregations in Myanmar (Burma) following the military coup:
“As the result of a coup that began at the beginning of this month, the elected leader of Myanmar, Aung San Suu Kyi, was removed. After decades of military rule and “closing” the country, she relaxed rules for visitor visas to Myanmar when coming to office in 2016. This allowed Michelle and me to travel there for the Feasts in 2017; the Jennings brothers, Aaron and Austin, were able to travel there in 2019. The changes also allowed for Davidson Lay Beh, who had been living as a refugee with his family in Sheffield, United Kingdom, to return to live in his home country of Myanmar – but COVID-19 has delayed their move.
Davidson, son of deceased Worldwide Church of God elder Saw Lah Bey, who came into the Church in the 1970s, has translated many UCG sermons into the Karen and Burmese languages, as well as the hymnal into Sanskrit. He has been conducting services via the Internet to members in the church in Sakhangyi for the past year or more. He has also built a Myanmar website to publish the booklets he has translated. Along with this southern UCG church, there is another Church of God group 120 miles north of Yangon that has been serviced by Leon Sexton and the Legacy Institute.
As always with any coup, the first thing the leaders try to control is the media. With this coup, phone service was cut off and many Internet functions stopped. However, for some reason, the Facebook Messenger app was still working. This past weekend, however, all Internet connections were shut down and the webcast church service could not be done. Web and phone access was cut off, but seemed to be largely restored on Monday and Tuesday this past week, and we have been able to communicate with our brethren. When the Internet goes dark, our members are cut off from the outside.
Most banks have ceased to operate, but LifeNets was able to find one and sent about $3,000 to the Sakhangyi group so money would be available to our members in addition to UCG funds previously sent. It is likely that this bank will stop international transfers soon, so it seemed best to give some cushion to these members while we could.
God has continued to be with these members. Both groups were able to acquire about six acres of land. In the south, the members were having a difficult time on farms, because owners wanted them to work on the Sabbaths. Some rice land came for sale for about $5,000 that was within walking distance for our members in Sakhangyi. We purchased it and the land has provided work and yielded food for our members. In the north, our brethren in the U.S. and Hong Kong have helped in similar fashion. The timing of these purchases and the help it gives to our members make us confident that God had a hand in putting this all together, knowing what was to come.
In some areas of the country, it is not safe to go out at night. The Sakhangyi group in the south is fairly isolated, being a village accessible by boat. In the capital, Yangon, where we have some prospective members, life is difficult amid the protests.
Although the military has stated that they will allow an election in a year, we do not know if that will happen. Please pray for God’s people in Myanmar, that the Internet will once again continue to allow for services and that travel visas will again be able to be issued so that our brethren may be visited.”

Newsmax TV
The Living Church of God and the United Church of God have been ruing the ending of their very successful – but very short – relationship with Newsmax.
Gerald Weston expressed his regret that LCG’s Tomorrow’s World program was “too hot to handle for Newsmax. They have dropped us from their schedule … We don’t like being cut from stations, and that was a very fine station, no doubt about it. It was growing, and the cost per response was very, very low, but never the less, using a war analogy, if you’re not taking any flak, you’re probably not over the target. And so we know that we’re going to be cancelled from time to time. We do need to be on the edge enough that we are cancelled, but we don’t want to be cancelled from everything.”
Gerald Weston might like to think that the LCG is on the leading edge of preaching the gospel to the world, so that it is “too hot to handle” even for an extreme right wing TV channel like Newsmax. The truth, however, is that Newsmax TV has cancelled ALL religious programming, because it wishes to focus strictly on news alone.
Back in November UCG’s Peter Eddington reported that the program, “Are the United States and Britain in the Bible? produced … the highest-ever response and the lowest cost-per response for any Beyond Today television program – going back to 2006 when telecasting of our programs first began on commercial television! Why did this happen? Evidently, during the week of the election, Newsmax TV experienced viewership numbers spiraling upwards to three times what they were at the end of October. In addition, in an after-election twitter post, U.S. President Donald Trump re-tweeted a supporter’s comment saying he was Moving to Newsmax!”
UCG reports that it’s able to continue its 2-5 minute BT Daily videos on Newsmax TV at various times throughout the day, at the rate of about a dozen per week, and says the responses to these have been very favorable for the money spent.

Death of Earl Roemer
Announcement from the United Church of God:
Earl Roemer, longtime pastor and servant to many congregations in the U.S., the Philippines and Hong Kong, had a massive brain bleed that proved inoperable and unrecoverable. He died in his home state of Alaska.
Earl was ordained into the ministry in October 1967 and was known for his dedication to God and his service to our brethren. He will be greatly missed until the resurrection to eternal life in a much, much better world. The family appreciates your love and support. In lieu of cards, feel welcome to go to Earl’s Facebook page and share a story.
Gloria Sexton of Legacy Institute writes:
Leon, I, and all of Legacy are very saddened by the death of Mr. Earl as we called him here in Asia. He will be missed greatly until our reunion and rejoicing at Jesus’s return.
Mr. Earl first came to visit Leon and me in Chiang Mai, Thailand in 2018 upon learning we were unable to travel after Leon had suffered a severe stroke and congestive heart failure.
Mr. Earl, along with his son-in-law David Bensinger, arrived during an overwhelming time of trial and need. Mr. Earl came to our rescue by joining with pastor Gum Seng Aung in Myanmar (Burma) in service to God and the Myanmar congregation for Passover and Unleavened Bread.
Through his understanding of Asian culture, having served the Philippine and Hong Kong brethren for over 20 years, he was the right man for Burma. Mr. Earl served God’s people worldwide with a SERVANT’s heart for over 50 years.
Even at Mr. Earl’s age of 75, he volunteered to travel to our brethren in the small jungle village of JawkTaing, where our pastor Seng Aung and his wife Seng Pan oversee a small growing congregation.
Mr. Earl’s life is a legacy to all of us as he shepherded over his spiritual families by his humble, kind, and powerful example! His light will continue to shine on, and on, and on into eternity! We wait with the joy of expectation!

Philadelphia Church of God
“I made a mistake – but actually I might not have done!”
Gerald Flurry writes, January 25th:
“Two months ago I wrote an article titled Why Donald Trump Will Remain America’s President. Yet last Wednesday, Mr. Trump flew to Florida, and Joe Biden was inaugurated president.
I have received some criticism for what I wrote. Perhaps some of it is justified. I made a mistake, and I don’t want to act like there was no mistake. I understand why some people were confused or upset …
I am not trying to defend myself – but I am trying to defend God and faith in God.
The word “remain” is an important part of that article and its title. I apologize for creating confusion there. But as I want to show you, even with Mr. Biden now in the White House, Why Donald Trump Will Remain America’s President
might not actually be a mistake.
I based my forecast about President Trump on two prophetic passages I have repeatedly emphasized over the past four years. I know these prophecies will be fulfilled, I am 99.9 percent sure my understanding of them is correct, and anyone can prove them!
One is in Amos 7 … based on this prophecy alone, we can be sure that God is going to give Donald Trump that office of presidency of the U.S. sooner or later. As much as the radical left wants it to be otherwise, Jeroboam is not gone from the scene.
One thing is for sure: God is going to bring Mr. Trump back. It will happen
at most in four years – yet I can’t conceive of it being anywhere near that length of time.”

In the January 2021 issue of the Philadelphia Trumpet magazine, Gerald Flurry wrote:
“By most appearances, Joe Biden will be America’s next president. But I absolutely do not believe that at all …
Regardless of what the media says or how things look right now, I am confident Donald Trump will remain president …
Why? Because a Biden presidency is contrary to Bible prophecy.”
Two days after Biden’s inauguration PCG posted a link to Gerald Flurry’s article, The Day Hope Died. Was this Flurry’s admission that he is a false prophet?
No. The link is to an article in June 1998 about the assassination of John F. Kennedy – who, Flurry writes, “not only inspired hope in America, he inspired hope over much of this earth …
President Kennedy captured the world’s attention and gave them hope. The world had a stronger vision of peace. President Kennedy became a force around the world.”
A much different style of writing to his strange outpourings of recent years.

Church of God a Worldwide Association
Jim Franks wrote on January 8th:
“After the scenes of chaos at our nation’s capital on Wednesday, Jan. 6, the Ministerial Board of Directors and the administration of the Church of God, a Worldwide Association, feel it is necessary to remind each of us that, based on biblical principles, we are adamantly opposed to becoming involved in the politics of this world. The events in Washington, D.C., are further evidence of why this is so important. Scriptures admonish us not to love this world or be a part of this world. There is nothing more “of this world” than its political systems, and they are therefore something with which we should not be associated (2 Corinthians 6:16-18). Christ stated clearly, “My kingdom is not of this world. If My kingdom were of this world, My servants would fight, so that I should not be delivered to the Jews; but now My kingdom is not from here” (John 18:36). We are instructed that our citizenship is in heaven and not on this earth (Philippians 3:20). Because of this, we should continually check ourselves to make sure we do not fall into the divisive and quarreling attitudes we see all around us.”

Biblical Calendar 2021
Devorah Gordon writes from Jerusalem:
“After three weeks of unbelievably sunny weather, it started pouring while we were looking for the new moon last Thursday evening and has barely let up. And now we just had a burst of heavy hail in Jerusalem! I don’t expect the hail or the cold weather to hurt the barley crop, but it’s definitely a reminder that we are still in winter, despite the nice the weather we enjoyed earlier.”
Soon, however, winter will change to summer, and a new biblical year will begin:
For, lo, the winter is past; The rain is over and gone;
The flowers appear on the earth; The time of the singing
of birds is come,
And the voice of the turtle-dove is heard in our land; The fig-tree ripeneth her green figs,
And the vines are in blossom; They give forth their fragrance.
(Song of Solomon 2:11-13, ASV)
The Abib calendar
[7] is not fixed, like the other biblical calendars, but is dependent on the change of season from winter to summer, so those observing it will be looking for the readiness of the barley harvest for the wave sheaf offering and other signs that summer is on the way, e.g.
“Now from the fig tree learn her parable: when her branch is now become tender, and putteth forth its leaves, ye know that summer is nigh.” (Matthew 24:32, ASV)
Yea, the stork in the heavens knoweth her appointed times; and the turtle-dove and the swallow and the crane observe the time of their coming. (Jeremiah 8:7, ASV)

Church of God Cincinnati
Jim O’Brien writes, January 13th:
During the past few months the world we live in has changed dramatically. Formerly we were accustomed to living in a country with freedom to worship God, where leaders invoked the Bible, the name of God, and revered the God of the Bible. All those freedoms are now being threatened …
God has blessed us with the freest country ever to exist in which to live. We have lived in wealth without threat from foreign enemies. We have been blessed with justice. Therefore, we take wealth and justice as a natural part of life – we take them for granted without considering the urgent need to “cry out to God” as Moses and the Prophets did.
Now these blessings are threatened. Many of us feel that we are becoming captives in our own country. It is time for us to seek God in urgent prayer. Let us do what Solomon said, turn back to God “with all of our heart and soul.” For this reason many of us have agreed to join together in fasting and prayer to seek God. Let us confess our sins, recognize the flaws we have as individuals, as a nation and as a church.
Let us commit ourselves to repentance asking God to restore the church, His people, to a place of worship that honors the God who gave us life and blesses His people with liberty.
We have set aside this Sunday, January 17 to fast and pray.
Here is a partial list of congregations and groups participating in this fast. Here is a partial list of congregations and groups participating in this fast:
Atlanta Independent Church of God; Bible Home Fellowship Jonesboro, AR
Bible Sabbath Association; Cana Christian Fellowship Virginia
Celebration Church of God Idaho; Christian Church of God Jackson, MS
Christian Educational Ministries; Church of God Beth El Nashville
Church of God Big Sandy; Church of God Central PA
Church of God Cincinnati; Church of God International
CGI Dallas Ft. Worth; CGI Tyler Texas; CGI Atlanta; CGI Metro Detroit
Church of God Kansas City; Church of God Ministries, Spanish Fort, AL
Church of God Parkersburg, WV; Church of God Rocky Mount NC
Church of God Southern California; Common Faith Network
Common Ground Christian Ministries; Fellowship of the Word Flatrock, NC
Hungry Hearts Fellowship Jackson, TN; Fairview Texas Church of God
Independent Church Fellowship Portsmouth OH; Lexington Church of God
Katy Christian Fellowship Katy Texas; Life Resource Ministries
Living God Ministries Montgomery; North Texas Fellowship
Oak Stone Christian Church; Our Father’s House Sacramento
Outreach Ministries Scotts Bluff, NE; Pleasant Hills Church of God
Rock Valley Christian Church; Seventh Day Christian Assembly, Knoxville, TN
Terre Haute Church of God; West Tennessee Sabbath Ministries

Philadelphia Church of God
January 16th, the anniversary of Herbert Armstrong
s death, is to Gerald Flurry a day filled with miracles – he even has a booklet: January 16: God’s Miracle Day.
Stephen Flurry referred to the current situation in his daily radio broadcast, January 13th, as The Darkness Before Dawn. Despite everthing that is happening, they are still looking for a miracle on January 16th, that will enable Donald Trump to serve a second term, as this is necessary to fit in with their view of end-time prophecy.

Church of God a Worldwide Association
In the first In Accord weekly update in 2021, President Jim Franks reflects on 2020 and looks forward to 2021:

“If you look back to March of this past year of 2020, it was impossible to envision all of the things that would happen over the next ten months. In fact, it would also be impossible to envision all the things that didn’t happen over the next ten months, when you consider all the things that were cancelled this past year.
Of course, as we look forward to this new calendar year, we have a lot of high hopes and anticipation for some things that we didn’t do last year to be able to do this year.”
Covid-19 was declared a pandemic by the World Health Organization on the 11th of March 2020, and a lockdown was promptly imposed in the USA.
Yet it was
impossible in March to envision what would and would not happen?
The new variant Covid virus is more transmissible, and
cases are rising sharply in many countries. Yet Jim Franks has a lot of high hopes and anticipation for 2021?

United Church of God
“[JANUARY 6, 2021] The United Church of God is delighted to report that its
Beyond Today television program, Beware the Mark of the Beast, which aired December 27, 2020, through January 2, 2021, has eclipsed recently reported record high response. In acquiring 2,728 literature requests, this program (hosted by Gary Petty), surpassed by 523 the results generated by the previous top-responding program, Are the United States and Britain in the Bible? which aired on Newsmax TV during the week of November 8-14, 2020. Besides obtaining the highest-ever viewer response, “Beware the Mark of the Beast” produced the lowest cost-per response for any Beyond Today television program since broadcasting began on commercial television in July 2010.”
Newsmax is an ultra right wing news organization, which reaches 70 million households on cable, satellite and broadcast stations.

Bible Sabbath Association
The BSA has a brand new booklet available for FREE download:
How Did Sunday Become the First Day of the Week? by Kelly McDonald, Jr. (BSA President)
“How did a day, which was unnamed in the Bible, come to be called Sunday? In this work you will learn the four factors that contributed to this development, which impacted the seventh-day Sabbath.”

Dixon & Linda Cartwright
Dixon and Linda Cartwright celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary on December 30th.
They began publishing The Journal newspaper in February 1997, following the demise of John Robinson’s In Transition.
In the first issue Dixon Cartwright wrote:
“At the risk of seriously understating the situation, there isn’t all that long a tradition in the Churches of God of writers being able to write actual news.
Acknowledged, there will always be a need for in-house magazines and newsletters and certainly an excellent reason for controlled publications whose purpose is to preach the gospel.
But, if there cannot be church-member reporters asking real questions of other church members and writing real articles, we’ve got a problem …
Even though we’re in a hundred (probably closer to a thousand) organizations and groups, in a sense we’re more unified than we were. The brethren are free to read a paper like
The Journal, which means they are free to fellowship with their brethren, wherever they may be.
That, brethren, is encouraging evidence of at least a kind of unity. If we are more free to fellowship with our brethren, surely we are more unified.”
In the final issue, January 2018, Linda Cartwright reflected on their time in the Worldwide Church of God and then publishing The Journal:
“The best way to describe our feelings about our religious affiliation when Dixon and I began publishing THEJOURNAL is to quote from Charles Dickens’ book A Tale of Two Cities:
“It was the best of times, it was the worst of times,
it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness,
it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity,
it was the season of Light, it was the season of Darkness,
it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair … ”
Publishing THE JOURNAL has been our effort to keep the avenues of communication open between us and all of our brethren in the Churches of God after the doctrinal upheaval in the Worldwide Church of God. We have also wanted to provide a forum for people to air their points of view on doctrinal issues, who would never have been able to while in our former affiliation. You have not needed to have ministerial credentials or approval to get an article published in THE JOURNAL. We didn’t have to agree with your article. Our basic requirement was civility in your presentation.”

Congregational Fellowship
Dan Difranco’s Bible Study has been postponed till next week.
On Friday, 1st of January, there will be a Current Events Discussion on the video by Catherine Austin Fitts, Planet Lockdown, from a Biblical perspective.

Lifenets International
Beverly Kubik writes:

As the year 2020 draws to an end we want to share with you some of the highlights. 
What a year it has been! It has actually been a good one for LifeNets and we want to wholeheartedly thank our donors who have generously supported LifeNets scholarships and projects. You have provided us with the ability to keep up with our commitments to help as we are able.
Thank you for your prayers and interest over the past year. Please pray for God’s continued blessings and protection for the work that we do. As you can see in these stories, our supporters have made a life-changing difference in the lives of these people. Thank you for your support.
With love and appreciation to all of you,
Beverly Kubik, LifeNets President.

Kenya Hands of Hope
Bill Goff writes, 25th of December 2020:
Haron Mokoro is one of the humblest persons I have ever worked with. He has suffered for the work for a long time, from motor bike accidents while headed to visit various groups (but recovered from all of them). He was robbed numerous times, even had his neck cut two different times, as the robbers attempted to cut his throat (again he was protected, only sustained minor injuries and
no funds were lost to the thieves.)
One time while visiting brethren in Bomet, Kenya, thieves placed a bag with some kind of chemicals over his head rendering him unconscious (they were looking to kill him and sell his organs to the local hospital). BUT once again he was protected, thanks to the prayers you have been lifting up for him. He also suffers from Leukemia, so your prayers for him are much appreciated.
We are obligated to employ a ‘guard’ at the orphanage. Anyone in that position in East Africa is referred to as a ‘soldier’. The work day in Kenya consists of 12 hour shift, so he is presently guarding our camp each night from 6pm till 6am. He has to stay alert, because there are many thieves that prowl around at night looking for easy pickings. We have had attempted robbery numerous times, the latest was on November 25th at 3am, three men stormed our front gate. They were pretty powerful and strong because they managed to breach the steel gate and enter the compound. But they didn’t get far, our soldier is quite tough and was able to fight all three of them off, and they fled. (Although he sustained a broken arm.) The entire camp has its perimeter walled seven feet high with broken glass on top (another requirement of the Kenyan Government.) But it is your prayers that continue to protect us time and time again. Praise God for that.

Philadelphia Church of God
PCG posted the following on December 23rd:
Servant Leaders
Tomorrow morning, 83 ministers and their wives will listen to Pastor General Gerald Flurry deliver the first lecture of the 2020 Philadelphia Church of God ministerial conference. (Fifteen ministers are unable to attend in person due to coronavirus restrictions and other obstacles, but will hopefully be able to receive recordings.) In Edmond, 42 ministers from Canada, the United Kingdom, the Philippines, South Africa and 13 American states will hear 28 hours of lectures over four days from Mr. Flurry and other leading ministers about how to better serve thousands of PCG members and contacts around the world.
A search on PCG’s website for material on “servant leaders” or “servant leadership” does not bring up any results that include these phrases.

United Church of God
The report of the Council of Elders meeting on December 7-8 included the following:
A brief review by Victor Kubik of the Festival of Tabernacles 2020.
Current statistics of elders and baptisms by Mark Welch
Media statement by Peter Eddington, “During our time on WGN America, Nielsen figures showed an average of 40,000 people watching our program on Sunday morning … For Newsmax TV, Nielsen metrics show that on any given Sunday since November 16th, there is an average of 81,000 adults age 25+ viewing during the 9 a.m. to 9:30 a.m. half hour. So, for less expense we are reaching a larger audience.”
Treasurer Rick Shabi “noted that the Church’s financial condition continues to remain strong, with income for the fiscal year ended June 30, 2020 exceeding $20 million and total assets increasing by over $1 million.”

Continuing Church of God
According to Bob Thiel, the
Continuing Church of God now has 5,275 people, over 5,000 of whom are in Africa:
Australia 6, Austria 1, Canada 10, Colombia 2, Ethiopia 88, Ghana 400, Haiti 20, India 80, Ireland 1, Kenya 3280, Malawi 804, Mozambique 281, Netherlands 1, New Zealand 6,
Philippines 12, Serbia 6, South Sudan 50, Tanzania 65, Trinidad & Tobago 1, Uganda 8,
UK 4, USA & Puerto Rico 99, Zambia 50, TOTAL 5275.
There are additional people in those nations that we have not counted who have expressed interest, but not enough to be counted by our leaders yet. Furthermore, we have groups or individuals in Algeria, Bangladesh, Brazil, Burundi, Nigeria, Peru, and South Africa who have stated that they are (or want to be) with us that we have not been able to visit and have not counted. There is also a significant group in France that we have long maintained a relationship with, but they have not committed to being in CCOG. Overall, we have supporters in at least 30 nations.
While there have been some small losses of congregants from time to time, the CCOG has grown every year since our corporate declaration December 28, 2012. The
Continuing Church of God has been the fastest growing of all COG groups in the 21st century whose main leaders were once part of the old Worldwide Church of God.

Philadelphia Church of God
You might have thought that Gerald Flurry would regret publishing the January 2021 issue of PCG’s Trumpet magazine in November 2020, since its cover and lead article declares that Donald Trump will remain president – because biblical prophecy requires it.
Not at all. On December 2nd PCG announced an advertising campaign on Newsmax and RealClearPolitics (Fox News is now a little bit too left wing for PCG):
“Visitors to the Newsmax and RealClearPolitics websites right now are seeing advertisements stating “Why Donald Trump Will Remain America’s President.” Both ad campaigns, which went live yesterday afternoon, link to
Philadelphia Trumpet editor in chief Gerald Flurry’s article forecasting, “Bible prophecy shows that God still has plans for Mr. Trump.”
Newsmax and RealClearPolitics users who click on the ad and read the article will see some of Mr. Flurry’s boldest forecasts, beginning with:
“By most appearances, Joe Biden will be America’s next president. But I absolutely do not believe that at all. Mr. Trump will weather this storm too. Regardless of what the media says or how things look right now, I am confident Donald Trump will remain president.
“I am also certain that we are about to see some of the biggest frauds exposed perhaps ever!
“Why? Because a Biden presidency is contrary to Bible prophecy.
“The Bible has a lot to say about Donald Trump and his presidency. The main prophecies are in the book of Kings and in Amos 7, and several other passages speak more generally about America under his leadership. God cannot lie! These end-time prophecies
must be and will be fulfilled!
“The prophecy in Amos 7 is crucial to understanding the 2020 election. It is about Mr. Trump, and much of it is yet unfulfilled!
The advertisements will appear 319,000 times within the body text of articles on Newsmax and 83,000 times as a banner on Real Clear Politics.
The campaign also includes a “Sunday Main Exclusive” e-mail that Newsmax will send to its 753,000 e-mail subscribers next week. Under Newsmax’s banner and explanation that the e-mail contains sponsored content, the rest of the content will be written and designed by the
Trumpet staff.
Online marketing staff member Edwin Trebels, who is coordinating the campaign under Evangelist Stephen Flurry and United Kingdom-Europe Regional Director Brad Macdonald, said that the Sunday e-mail was personally approved by the Newsmax chief executive officer, Christopher Ruddy, and noted that he is a confidant of President Donald Trump. Newsmax is a rapidly rising competitor to the largest politically conservative media empire, Fox News, especially after Fox biased some of its main presidential election coverage toward Democrat candidate Joe Biden.
This advertising campaign represents one of the larger efforts by the Philadelphia Church of God’s online marketing department since it began in 2007. The current campaign’s RealClearPolitics homepage component alone reaches twice the users that homepage currently reaches. The Newsmax homepage component reaches 7.5 times the users.
The campaign is currently scheduled to run through December 8. Trebels said he is gathering advertising information for other conservative news websites for reference in the future.”

Exit & Support Network reports, December 2nd: “Evangelist Alex Harrison died Sunday morning, a few days after arriving from Australia to Edmond. He had served in the ministry for 34 years as a local elder, pastor, regional director and member of the Council of Elders.”

2020 Christmas Weekend
As the ‘winter family weekend’ for independent congregations could not be held this year in Lexington, Kentucky, the Common Faith Network has organized a weekend gathering at the Tanglewood Resort in Pottsboro, Texas, December 23-27.
The Church of God Assembly will be holding its first ‘family weekend’ at the Embassy Suites in Murfreesboro, Tennessee, from Christmas Eve to Sunday, December 27th.
The Living Church of God’s Charlotte weekend and the Kansas City Family Weekend (for members only) have been cancelled owing to increasingly restrictive local government Covid-19 regulations.
LCG hopes to be able to re-schedule both events for later this winter.
Both the United Church of God and the Church of God a Worldwide Association have previously cancelled their Christmas weekend plans.

Legacy Teaching Institute
“We had the Feast of Tabernacles in Yangon, JawkTaing, and NaMawn, Myanmar (Burma). Sadly, Burma was in lock-down with the second wave. Churches were closed with attendance limitations.
In JawkTaing, SengAung and SengPan made special food and shared this with 18 families that were not allowed to come to the church compound.
Inserted with each food package were the Feast sermon notes! What was awesome was that they also shared this special food with their neighbors that are not in the church.
We THANK YOU, Fellow Laborers, for helping so many brethren (who, in turn, shared their special FOT food with others). Jesus also gave bread and fishes. One day they will understand the ‘other’ food.”

Intercontinental Church of God
Mark Armstrong’s weekly updates have been right wing political diatribes, rarely saying anything about the church or the bible, but he writes on November 20th:
“You can look forward to these updates being dialed back somewhat. Our beliefs and doctrines certainly don’t hinge on my attitude, which has admittedly become somewhat jaundiced. But it does get a little tiresome, having a lot of tripe jammed down the throats of us all. We seem to be well down the road from a situation where the “truth has fallen in the streets.” None plead for justice, surely not from any mainstream networks or social media titans.
When you look at the priorities of those promoting fear, it feels a lot like they intend to rule over what we can and can’t know, and what we will or won’t do. If the tech bosses have their way, we’ll know only what they want us to see. Everything else will come with a warning or be banned from their platforms.
My first reaction is to rebel against their authoritarian tendencies, and admittedly the envelope has been pushed. But the stakes are high. The idea that foreigners in lavender headgear and too much makeup will not only lecture us, but have their socialist sensibilities forced upon a nation that may well be the last bastion of freedom on earth is a reprehensible thought. But you’re free to disagree. We don’t issue edicts, or expect that everyone will react the same.
My Dad founded an organization based on the FREE MORAL AGENCY of the individual.
You’re not held responsible for my attitude, or vice versa. We’re all responsible individually before God, and that’s how that works. Having said that, we all want the best for those we love and it surely looks as if everything we value in this human life is about to be lost.”

United Church of God
“The escalation in Newsmax TV viewership was instrumental in dramatically boosting
Beyond Today Internet response.”
Peter Eddington writes: “
The Beyond Today television program, “All About Grace,” hosted by Darris McNeely, generated 932 responses throughout the week of November 1-7 (the week of the U.S. election). In addition the program “Are the United States and Britain in the Bible?” hosted by Steve Myers, produced 2,205 responses during the week of November 8-14, 2020. This is the highest-ever response and the lowest cost-per response for any Beyond Today television program – going back to 2006 when telecasting of our programs first began on commercial television!
Why did this happen? Evidently, during the week of the election, Newsmax TV experienced viewership numbers spiraling upwards to three times what they were at the end of October. In addition, in an after-election twitter post, U.S. President Donald Trump re-tweeted a supporter’s comment saying he was “Moving to Newsmax,” as reported by the Sun Sentinel.
The escalation in Newsmax TV viewership was instrumental in dramatically boosting Beyond Today Internet response. For example, on November 8 we experienced over 20,000 more page-views over baseline (a 33% increase over a normal day). Obviously we are extremely pleased with the overall development, while thanking our great God for it and praying it continues.”

Philadelphia Church of God
Gerald Flurry is so weary of long-time members ‘murmuring and rebelling’, that he is condemning to eternal death those who continue to do so, and turning instead to PCG’s youth.
His latest revelation is for the ‘Sons of Zadok’ and their Irish dancing.
“In Moses’s day, God warned that those who didn’t stop murmuring and rebelling would die (
Numbers 17:10). That is what God says to us spiritually. At some point you must stop the murmuring and rebelling, or you’re going to die! That is the opposite of the total trust God is building in His people. This is about eternal life and eternal death.”
“Enemies … will probably say people who hear a voice belong in insane asylums, and it is crazy to follow someone to a place of safety who says he is a king. They will compare us to cults like Jim Jones, which committed mass suicide.”
(PCG’s Royal Vision magazine, July-August 2020)
In the September-October 2020 issue, he gives his new revelation:
“God has given me new understanding about Ezekiel 43. This chapter is about the sons of Zadok. It is important for all of us – especially the sons of Zadok today – to understand what is revealed in this chapter.
This new revelation came two days after our youth arrived for the Summer Educational Program and two days after the last performance of our recent Irish dance production,
Celtic Throne. God timed this precisely to show how important our youth are to Him! …
We need to do like David did when he was bringing the ark back to Jerusalem: Dance with all our might, sing with all our might, get behind God’s work with all our might! It will change your life and change this Church!
You could see this in our Irish dance production of
Celtic Throne.
We had some of the sons of Zadok up on stage at God’s house dancing, singing and playing music with all their might, in the spirit of David! On the stage we had a throne with Herbert W. Armstrong’s prayer rock underneath it – the new stone of destiny, a symbol of Christ – there with the sons of Zadok! Everything revolved around that throne and stone.
Celtic Throne was a production about God’s throne …
We are giving the world a picture of what it’s like when God has a Summer Educational Program for the youth, what it’s like when God has a college – what it’s like when God has a whole Church of the sons of Zadok! This world will ask us to show them what’s that like – and we will!”
Gerald Flurry issues a warning of eternal death to the ‘murmuring’ elders in PCG:
“Notice what God records about the man who gave us the prayer rock:
Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet before the great and terrible day of Jehovah come. And he shall turn the heart of the fathers to the children, and the heart of the children to their fathers; lest I come and smite the earth with a curse. (Malachi 4:5-6).
This is the harshest warning in the Bible. God says about as strongly as He could,
If these ministers don’t turn the heart of the fathers to the children, and the heart of the children to the fathers, they are going to lose their eternal lives!

Church of God, Preparing for the Kingdom of God
In his sermon on November 7th, Pursuing a Heart Like David’s, Ron Weinland discussed the sin of self importance. Was this hypocrisy, or a public admission of his own failure to be one of Revelation’s Two Witnesses and the last apostle before Christ’s return?
Having had three heart attacks and currently recovering from Covid-19, he stood in sombre mood in the basement studio of his house and, in the middle of his sermon, he said:
“It’s a horrible trait of human nature to want to be seen by others as being important. If you ever see that in your life, run from it. Ask God for help. Do everything you can to fight against it, because it’s ugly. To be seen of others, to be looked upon by others as being important, it’s a sick, sick spirit. It’s repulsive in every way. It works against God, it works against God’s spirit, and it’s something we should be on guard against, because it’s a way of human nature, it’s a way of the human mind. If it reveals itself like that, we need to see how ugly it really is.
It’s destroyed a lot of people in God’s church, it really has. A lot of people have succumbed to that, given in to that, never conquered it, never come to deal with it, and it’s a horrifying thing that takes place.”

Living Church of God
Gerald Weston reports a big increase in the number of people wanting to attend services, as a result of a change of approach, no longer vetting new people so much.
“In the last quarter, July-September, we had more people request to come to Sabbath services than any quarter since the Living Church of God began – that exceeded our 2015 record by 36%. Now there’s a reason for that. It isn’t just the normal situation. We have changed the way, what we require of people when they ask about Sabbath services. For example, when they go online, we used to ask a lot of questions that were unnecessary. And so we’ve cut it down to the bare minimum …
We want to screen them a little bit. We don’t want some nut out here coming to services, someone who’s going to be causing a disruption, but we want to be a little bit more friendly and, for those people who are more shy about giving out information … We don’t want to scare them off before we have a chance to engage them. We do ask them about why they came to the decision to attend services, but that’s optional, and that comes after we already have some other essential information.”

Philadelphia Church of God
Gerald Flurry, PCG’s 85 year old pastor general, announced his forthcoming marriage in ‘The Friday Philadelphian’, October 30, 2020:
Dear brethren: I have been meeting with Vicki Barreiro for one year. It all started with ministerial counseling. We both developed feelings for each other in that process. We have been dating exclusively for the last four months. We plan to marry in a private wedding with only our immediate families on November 16. – Pastor General Gerald Flurry
(Posted from Exit Support Network

Living Church of God
Gerald Weston writes: “We have significant personnel needs and are working to fill some of those positions in the field ministry and in understaffed departments here in Charlotte.
Beginning in 2021, the
Tomorrow’s World English-language magazine will increase from six issues (one every other month) to ten issues per year. This is a major step forward! This will give subscribers more regular contact with the Church. We will drop four pages, from 36 down to 32, and make some other alterations, but overall there will be more content each year.”
Why has such a large proportion of ministers and HQ staff left (for Church of God Assembly?) that LCG now has significant personnel needs? Disquiet among employees is not recent but goes back to the time of
Roderick Meredith, who employed members of his family in positions which appeared not to be merited. He also showed partiality toward people he knew and liked, such as the three who joined from David Hulme’s church, and were immediately employed as full time ministers – and exactly one year later all three were promoted, much to the dismay of long-time ministers.

Covid-19 & Festival of Tabernacles 2020
Jim Franks, Church of God a Worldwide Association, has stated that there were no cases of Covid-19 confirmed during the festival, but 10-12 members who attended the festival in Tucson tested positive afterwards. One stayed in hospital for a couple of days, owing to underlying health problems, otherwise all are fine. It is impossible to know for certain where they contracted the virus – whether at the festival or afterwards.
Victor Kubik reports that, “Over 6,000 people attended live services in the United States and Canada, but less than half of one percent of our members [30] have informed us that they tested positive for the virus after their return. Only about half of those [15] said they displayed symptoms.”
From Cogwriter: “Received a report from an attendee at the COGA Feast of Tabernacles site at the Lake of the Ozarks. He stated that nearly 400 were in attendance and hundreds watched online. He said it went well and that there were a lot of families there.”
The original meeting hall for Church of God Assembly held 900 people, and the re-arranged venue was said to be bigger. As there were a lot of families, there should have been ample space for social distancing.
The Living Church of God Branson #3 site reportedly suffered an infection rate in double figures.

Kenya Hands of Hope
2020 Festival of Tabernacles Report
“We want to thank our Heavenly Father, and His Beloved Son for the wonderful Feast of Tabernacles you donors have provided our impoverished East African Brethren. Just over one thousand Brethren attended this year’s Feast, with a total of ten separate sites. The Feast was a total success, with not only plenty of Spiritual food thanks to all the timely teachings, but also an abundance of physical foods to satisfy everyone’s stomachs. Your Brethren thank you for supporting this year’s feast from the bottom of their heart.”
Report from Haron Mokoro, overseer at Sengera House Orphanage:
It is another moment God has set apart to say thanks and showing much appreciation for standing with us for financial aid towards Feast of Tabernacles. It was much happy moments. We meet up with different people and enjoyed wonderful meals which came through you, and various angry stomachs were fed.
We had different speakers who spoke from various biblical topic to enlighten and keep us focused on soon coming Son of God who is our Savior the Lord Jesus Christ who will soon establish the Kingdom of God here in earth.
We also had ten FOT sites in various parts of the country, and we thank almighty God for good health provision. Among the sites we had no COVID19 or other diseases case. We were much congested but God protected us. Widows and orphans got much advantage for getting well balanced diet meals. For 8 days we show healthy changes among most poor brethren who came skin and bone.
We appreciate for offering us nice and cool sleeping places, through KHOH providing building we were able to accommodate more visitors. The old man from South Mogirango was first time enjoyed a hot shower which has never experienced it for the last 80 years. It was wonderful and happy time various brethren enjoyed new environment.
Again with aid of rocket stoves from idea of elder William Goff helped mothers to make nice coffee and tea within short period of time.
Thank you Donors for Feast of Tabernacles support and may God bless you. Mokoro Haron.

Restored Church of God
An ex-RCG member began uploading sermons by David Pack onto Youtube, beginning with the Day of Trumpets. Pack has now had these videos removed, but the content of his latter sermons has been leaked.
Why should he want his announcements concerning the soon coming of Jesus Christ to be suppressed?
He had declared that Jesus Christ’s second coming would not initially be to Jerusalem but to RCG’s HQ in Wadsworth Ohio, and that would now happen on the last day of the Festival of Tabernacles, so the congregation there would not be returning to their homes.
With no sign of Christ on the seventh day … or on the Eighth Day …
“Would God suspend the watch for a whole year? … Watch, watch, watch … suspended … I don’t believe that at all.”
As time ran out, he admitted the reason for suppressing his prophecy …
“An unnecessary reproach would come on the church with me saying things too early or God saying things too early.” Unnecessary?
“This may go longer than we think. Even longer than Mr. Pack thought.”
There’s one part of his prophecy that he is still hanging onto:
“October 18th, 19th, is the the day of Christ.”
According to Pack, Jesus Christ is to announce his arrival to the world on the last day of Tishri, which is October 18th – or maybe the 19th, depending on which side of the international date line you are on.

In the wake of yet more ministers leaving the RCG at Trumpets, David Pack has given a sermon about all these “antichrists”, claiming that none of them has ever taken any members away with them.
He also spoke about the 6 or 7 who had left in the Spring – despite believing absolutely that the RCG is the True Church of God – but they had the audacity to tell him that they could lead the church more correctly.
In his Day of Trumpets message, ‘Pastor General’, David Pack, gave the latest in a weird series of prophecies about the soon coming return of Jesus Christ.
In December 1998 he gave a prophetic warning about himself :
“I want to make a statement about me now. If I become deceived, I will never tell you what I’m going to tell you now. I am telling you, if I go off into strange ideas, misconduct, rebellion, you name it, don’t follow me. I want to tell you that now, because if I start doing that, I’m gonna try to get you to follow me! I’m gonna come to you and tell you it doesn’t apply, it doesn’t mean me. No, no, no, no, no, no, it’s ok to follow me, because ABCD and XY and Z. Do you understand what I’m saying? Listen to me now, when I tell you, don’t follow me if I go off into weird ideas, or if I get off into other things that are total absolutely unscriptural conduct, because if I do, I’m gonna paint it with a different face and try to get you to follow me. Do you understand what I’m saying, brethren? Please remember that, because I promise you that, if I become deceived, I’ll forget it, and I’ll want you to forget it. And I hope you’ll remember it well enough to quote it right back to me.”
On the same day Brian Kaidannek and his son Gregory Kaidannek explained why they had eventually decided to leave the RCG, two of many ministers who have left in recent years.

Church of God Assembly
COG Assembly was forced to move its venue for the Festival of Tabernacles away from the Margaritaville Resort in Osage Beach, Missouri, because the management staff there was being subjected to a stream of hateful telephone calls and e-mails about the church from other ‘christians’. COG Assembly was, however, able to arrange larger facilities elsewhere, yet at the same prices.
Meanwhile, on the 1st day of the Restored Church of God’s festival, David Pack was bemoaning the most recent group of ministers who have been rebelling against him.
“The Living Church of God just ruptured, and lost upwards of a thousand people … One minister rebelled, started a new group, and men with us started to contact that group.”
Referring to one unnamed minister, “We were paying him thousands of dollars every month, when he had already bought a home in Ocala, Florida, and was going to move down there and was already in contact with another minister. He wasn’t planning to leave even yet, but when two other ministers, father and son (Brian and Gregory Kaidannek), left, he realized nobody was going to follow him, so he came home on Trumpets (the day that the Kaidanneks resigned), wrote them, tried to recruit them, so he could take some scalps with him to the new group.”

A number of COG Assembly congregations have already been formed, several having over 50 attending.
Sermons and sermonettes from its Sabbath services are being uploaded weekly to its
Youtube channel, and there is now a skeleton website.
Several hundred people have registered for the Festival of Tabernacles.

Rosh Hashana
Thursday, September 17th, was the day of the conjunction and thus the 1st day of the 7th month for some. The Hebrew calendar is calculated from the conjunction (i.e. the ‘molad’, which is slightly different to the astronomical conjunction), but this year there are two postponements, pushing Rosh Hashana to Saturday, September 19th. For those starting the month at the sighting of the new moon, the crescent new moon maps show that the new moon will become visible over almost the whole world shortly after sunset on Friday evening, making Saturday, September 19th, ‘Yom Teruah’ – the Day of Trumpets.
The new moon was sighted from Israel on Friday evening by several reliable observers.

United Church of God
Alicia Kunkle started a petition (now withdrawn), Muffled Joyful Noise, “asking the United Church of God to withdraw this requirement for any feasts sites not required by a state or federal mandate. To allow each member to make their own personal choice to wear or not wear a mask during the song service.”
This was in response to the UCG’s update on September 10th:
“Some sites have local regulations that do not require masks; however, those sites will provide a section of the meeting room for those who prefer to wear a mask.
Regardless of whether a person sits in a mask-free section or not, all attendees will be required to wear a mask during hymns. This decision allows for the greatest number of people to attend live services and feel safe to be there, since singing is considered to spread the COVID-19 virus far more than speaking.”

Festival of Tabernacles 2020 – Update September 25th
Church of God Ministries International The Fort Walton FL meeting hall was flooded by Hurricane Sally, and there wasn’t enough time to get another suitable local venue, so the festival is moving to the church building in New Orleans (Gretna) LA.
United Church of God The festival site in Midland, Ontario, has been cancelled.
The venue in Branson, Missouri has been changed to “the Mansion Theatre, 189 Expressway Lane, which allows us to have greater seating capacity than our prior location. This will help us to properly adjust for social distancing for services and for the masking ordinance currently in place for the city of Branson. We are permitted to remove masks during services, but expected to use them in entering and moving around in the theater and in all other local businesses.”
Intercontinental Church of God The festival site at King’s Beach, CA, has been cancelled.
Alaskan Seaside Feast
has changed location to the Diamond M Ranch Resort in Kenai.
Points of Truth Ministries
We will be hosting Tabernacles at our church building in Russellville, Arkansas, and some will be camping on Mount Nebo. We will resume at Camp Wyldewood in Searcy in 2021.
Church of God Toledo has cancelled its festival site in Walnut Creek, Ohio. Its members will be attending with the United Church of God at its satellite site in nearby Berlin.
Intercontinental Church of God
The festival site at Nelson Bay, New South Wales, Australia, has been cancelled due to Covid-19 restrictions.
Mark Harris & Family: the festival has been relocated from Texas to North-eastern Ohio.

United Church of God
The 2020 Winter Family Weekend has been cancelled.
“We’re saddened to report that this year’s Winter Family Weekend had to be cancelled. Major factors leading to that decision include the difficult restrictions of the sports facilities, hotels and the State that would have made it almost impossible for us to assemble together. We are certainly disappointed but look forward to getting together next year for Winter Family Weekend.”

Living Church of God
Gerald Weston and his Council of Elders are so worried about the high number of people who are following Sheldon Monson, that they have posted 3 study guides on face coverings and singing:
1.Singing, Masks, Livestreaming, and Faith, by Mr. Wallace Smith.
Does Psalm 81 contain a commandment for singing? by Mr. Dexter Wakefield.
Masks and Singing – Is one forbidden at Sabbath Services while the other is commanded? by Mr. Peter Nathan.
Are hundreds of people really leaving solely over this issue
or is it a symptom of a wider problem, the inflexible authoritarianism of Gerald Weston?
He could have allowed Sheldon Monson’s congregation to hold services in the open air or in a marquee, but he wouldn’t.
He could have allowed Sheldon Monson and his supporters to hold a separate LCG festival site, but instead retorted, “Did God ordain you with the responsibility to decide where Christ is going to place His name? If you do that, you are doing so at your own peril.”

Festival of Tabernacles 2020 Update
Sheldon Monson – Living Church of God
Sheldon Monson confirmed in his announcements during the Sabbath service on August 29th that he is starting a significant breakaway group from the Living Chuch of God, referring to the several hundred people watching online, and that “many of you are meeting in homes, some of you in church halls already.”
A Festival of Tabernacles venue has been organized at Margaritaville Lake Resort, Lake of the Ozarks, Osage Beach, Missouri. He said that the meeting space booked will hold up to 900 people, and they would
not have to wear masks and could sing.
The situation outside the meeting hall is different. The Resort’s Health & Safety Update, August 11th, states:
Face coverings will be required for all guests and team members age two years and older in our indoor public spaces and common areas.
Due to our concern for public health and the well-being of our guests and associates, we have adjusted our normal operations in order to promote social distancing.

Church of God Ministries International
Owing to COVID-19 restrictions, the festival in Kalamazoo, Michigan, has been moved over the border to the church’s building in Syracuse, Indiana.
Church of God a Worldwide Association
Owing to the Covid-19 restriction on numbers, only 4 sites are currently open:
Erlanger, Kentucky (near Cincinnati airport); Myrtle Beach, South Carolina; Kerrville, Texas; and Post Falls, Idaho.
Post Falls has been added this week to replace Victoria, British Columbia, which was cancelled because of the closure of the Canadian border. The venue in Post Falls had been booked by a small local church, the Pacific Church of God, who cancelled in July due to the pandemic.

Living Church of God
Bob Thiel, in his Cogwriter blog, quotes from Gerald Weston’s letter, August 19th:
“God tells us that He hates the sowing of discord (Proverbs 6:14, 16-19). We are instructed in Romans 16:17, “Now I urge you, brethren, note those who cause divisions and offenses, contrary to the doctrine which you learned, and avoid them.”
As most of you already know, Mr. Sheldon Monson has chosen to leave the Living Church of God ministry, walking contrary to the wisdom of the Council of Elders, which did their best in a loving manner to help him see he was on the wrong path …
Recent events indicate he has made the further decision to start his own work, effectively causing division within some families and congregations. We must therefore inform you that Mr. Sheldon Monson is, by his actions, causing division, and according to scripture, we are to take note of such individuals and avoid contact with them.”
Bob Thiel comments: “Without using the term “marked”, that looks what Gerald Weston has done related to Sheldon Munson.”
This is confirmed by Dexter Wakefield in his article, Disfellowshipping and Marking.
He quotes several versions of Romans 16:17, and then writes:
“This is why the ministry, after careful consideration, will sometimes announce to a congregation or to the Church as a whole that someone may potentially do harm and needs to be “noted” or “marked.” When the word
mark is used, it’s in the sense of, “Mark my words.” This is done when you need to be warned, and the person taken note of can be anyone who poses a threat of some kind, spiritual or otherwise.”
Sheldon Monson made it clear in his sermon on August 22nd that he did
not choose to leave the Living Church of God ministry – Gerald Weston fired him.

It used to be possible for anyone to view LCG’s live Sabbath services, but one of Gerald Weston’s first actions on taking control of LCG was to deny access to non-members.
Soon afterwards he took this a stage further: “
We ask you, brethren, please do not share passwords outside of your area.”
In his sermon on August 8th he announced his intention to cut off livestream services even to members … “when this whole thing is over.” (The World Health Organization hopes that Covid-19 will be over by the end of 2021.)
“Some who are healthy, some who really could go to the feast just think, well, it’s just an option. Yes it is an option, in the sense of you have to make up your mind what to do. But there’s coming a time, brethren, when we have to come out of our basements, and there’s coming a time, when this whole thing is over, we’re going to have to cut off the livestreams to just anybody.
And I think we’ll have to do that because otherwise people will say, oh, I’m so comfortable here at home. Why do I have to dress up and go all the way over here? I would maintain that, when we assemble together over the internet, because everything is closed down, I’d say that’s still assembling together … but this is not what we want to do forever.”
Why not … if it’s still assembling together? What is he worried that his members might be doing?

Sheldon Monson and Jason Fritts have been fired from the ministry of Living Church of God, for wanting face coverings to be removed in church services so that their congregations could sing hymns. There would normally have been little public comment by the leadership, but this time it was necessary because Sheldon Monson was widely respected and had been a member of the Council of Elders for many years.
Most of the weekly video update on August 6th by the ‘Presiding Evangelist’, Gerald Weston, was spent on the subject of face coverings in church.
Then the Sabbath service on August 8th, streamed live to all congregations – sermonette from Wallace Smith and sermon from Gerald Weston – was devoted to explaining why church members are required to obey all leadership decisions, and therefore comply with the new (temporary) normal in hymn singing, i.e. “for those of you at home, you will be singing along, and those at services will be contemplating and humming along as we can.”
Gerald Weston referred to Wallace Smith’s sermonette, noting, “these were not decisions made by lay members, but by duly ordained leaders and judges that God had placed in a position of authoritative judgement. We have a situation today where people are saying, well, if I can’t sing, I’m not going to go where the church has placed its name for the feast. We’re just going to have our own feast. Did God ordain you with the responsibility to decide where Christ is going to place His name? If you do that, you are doing so at your own peril.”
At 2.00pm (ET) on the Sabbath of August 15th, Sheldon Monson gave his side of the story, and he intends to have a livestream service at the same time each week.

Festival of Tabernacles 2020 : Updated August 25th
Church of God International (UK) is delighted to be able to hold a small Feast of Tabernacles in a rural setting in the county of Suffolk. It promises to be an ideal setting for our small group, and we are very thankful to God for providing such a peaceful and picturesque venue at such short notice in these unprecedented times. There is space for a few more visitors so please contact us if you desire to worship with us, but please bear in mind accommodation on site is already fully reserved.
NorthWest Church of God (aka Maranatha Ministry)
The Feast Of Tabernacles 2020 is still ON here in Scotland. The brethren of the NorthWest Church will be keeping the feast at what has become our usual feast site, Linnhe Lochside Holidays, Corpach, Fort William, Scotland.
The feast site has two main restrictions for those camping or in motor-homes: there will be no washing/showering/toilet facilities open, and there is no facility for toilet waste disposal open.The site shop is also closed.
If you rent a lodge or a static caravan, then these restrictions will not affect you, although now, you will have to walk into Corpach (about half a mile or so) if you run out of milk etc.
United Church of God
This is the link for Covid-19 regulations at the various UCG sites in the USA
Osoyoos, BC, Canada To those who have registered for this site: British Columbia Health Services has issued a Mass-Gatherings restriction of 50 persons per event. So this year we have no choice but reset Osoyoos Lake as a regional feast site. It is now only available to BC residents. We are very saddened to have to do this. But it is in the effort to submit to every ordinance of man for the Lord’s sake. (1 Peter 2:13)
We may be setting up a satellite site or two in other BC communities to make more spots available.
USA  The following festival sites have been cancelled:
Bend/Redmond, Oregon; Lake Junaluska, North Carolina;
Oceanside, California; Steamboat Springs, Colorado.
The following n
ew sites are open for registration:
Gatlinburg, Tennessee; St. George, Utah;
plus two sites that were previously only satellite sites:
Rapid City, South Dakota; Tucson, Arizona.
England The festival in Southport, Lancashire, has been cancelled.
Estonia Due to citizens from the United States and other countries being restricted from entering any European Union nation, the Festival in Estonia is canceled. If you have registered for the Festival in Estonia, please follow the instructions outlined here to change your household’s registration:
France We are unable to provide English translation of services and arrange for shuttles and tours. We therefore request our international visitors to make alternative arrangements for the Feast this year. French-speaking, European brethren will be keeping the Feast in Roquebrune-sur-Argens as planned.
The Italian government for preventative measures has now extended the state of emergency to 15 October 2020. This means that U.S. citizens can neither travel to/from Europe nor attend the Festival of Tabernacles in Italy as tourists. Also, any U.S. citizen attempting to enter Italy through other European countries would be put in quarantine or sent back.
Therefore, if you are a U.S. citizen who has registered for the Festival in Italy, your names are being canceled from our Italian festival site and you should quickly register at a UCG festival site within the United States.
To change your registration, please follow the steps outlined here:
Australia The Sunshine Coast Feast site has essentially become a local site.
All who enter the country must go through a mandatory 14-day isolation.
New Zealand Local members plan to attend the Feast at Lake Taupo, since internal COVID-19 restrictions have been removed. The international border is still firmly shut and no international visitors are likely to be allowed into New Zealand, so this has essentially become a local site.
The Philippines will not be able to have face-to-face meetings. A national webcast is being planned to provide services each day to members scattered across the islands. International visitors are not allowed into the Philippines at this time.
Sri Lanka International travel is not advisable. We are still planning to observe the Feast of Tabernacles at the Habarana Village by Cinnamon, for local brethren only.
Brazil Cancelled. In Rio de Janeiro, deposits are valid for Feast 2021.
South Africa Likely will be held for local brethren only. The borders are closed and inter-provincial travel is currently prohibited, with church services limited to 50 people or less. We are going ahead with planning the Feast at Mossel Bay for members in South Africa, and will continue to adjust plans as the Feast gets closer.
Grenada It will not be possible to hold the Feast in Grenada this year.
According to the sales manager for the Royalton Grenada Beach Resort, the Royalton is ready, but the Grenadian government is proceeding very cautiously in opening the country to overseas visitors (especially from the USA and Canada), and she does not foresee it happening until 2021.
Church of God, a Worldwide Association
Originally, we had 245 U.S. members registered for Victoria and 74 for Quebec, but because of the border closing, we have canceled Victoria and will limit Quebec to Canadians. For those in the northwestern part of the U.S. who were planning to attend in Victoria, we are in the process of locating a new site that should be announced in a few more days. We are also making alternate plans for the members in western Canada who cannot travel to Quebec.
In the case of other international Festival sites, most will now become local sites, since people from outside the individual countries will not be able to travel to those countries. This list includes France, England, New Zealand, Fiji, Australia, India, Sri Lanka, South Africa, the Philippines, and all countries in Latin America and the Caribbean. If you live in the U.S. and were planning to travel outside the country for the Feast this year, we advise you to make other plans.
Peter Hawkins says: “In the UK we are currently in contact and assessing conditions for the site in Torquay to see if it is still viable, and also with Shorefield Caravan Park near Bournemouth, where we celebrated the Feast in 2012 and 2013.”
Sukkot in Melrose, Florida: “We are temporarily suspending the large in-person gathering we normally do every year. However, we are working on an exciting alternative that everyone can safely participate in, Virtual Sukkot! We will travel to various locations where you are safe-distancing in your camp, and do a live teaching from your Sukkah!”
Providence of God Outreach Network
“The Branson site has been cancelled. The Tulsa Church of God will be the new location for the Feast of Tabernacles celebration this year. The same leadership team and the same Spirit will be at work in the planning and providing for the festival.”
The Land Between the Lakes Festival of Tabernacles at Kentucky Dam Village, co-sponsored by the Church of God International and Christian Educational Ministries, has been  cancelled.
The CGI has also decided to cancel its festivals in Maryland and at Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, one of the major destinations for feastgoers.
Meanwhile, Mark Armstrong of the Intercontinental Church of God has no worries about the Coronavirus, since it’s all media hype.
His weekly update, 24 July 2020, states:
“Some of us have been highly suspicious of the media reporting about the Chinese virus. Yes, we do know of a handful of people who are said to have tested positive. But none of them died, and for some it was a matter of something like the common cold. For others we know it was like a bad flu, but they survived it and are doing fine. Nevertheless, every news report claims a new spike in cases, and proceeds to lecture that you must be afraid.
News anchors across the board read the “wire,” claiming that cases are “exploding” in state after state, county after county, city after city. You must proceed with fear, assuming you proceed at all.”
So ICG’s festival at Kentucky Dam Village will not be affected then?
“It looks as though we’ll still be able to keep all our Feast sites running. Of particular concern was the one at Land Between the Lakes. But that was a false alarm and we are secure in that location.”
But on 20 July 2020 … “Gov. Beshear announced that the Cabinet for Health and Family Services has issued a new order that pulls back on guidance covering social, non-commercial mass gatherings. On June 29, the original guidance was eased to allow for gatherings of 50 or fewer people. Today’s order returns the guidance to allow only for such gatherings of 10 or fewer people.”
Are we to conclude that no more than 10 people have registered for this ICG festival?
Guardian Ministries The Caribbean Cruise for the 2020 festival has had to be cancelled. It will now be in Prescott, Arizona, where it was held in 2019.
Pacific Church of God has cancelled its festival site in Idaho.

Church of the Eternal God
Norbert Link says, “The return of Christ is near. The Great Tribulation is upon us. But the world is asleep. Are YOU asleep too?
In this program (Standing Watch – see above), we just focus on ONE prophesied sign of the wrath to come upon mankind – the severed bond of friendship between the USA and Europe under German leadership. This hostility will lead soon to a nuclear world war during which the USA will be DESTROYED.”
He says that all this is in the Bible (at 7 minutes in, but doesn’t quote chapter and verse). Aren’t America’s lawmakers destroying the USA? Will its enemies need a nuclear war?

Continuing Church of God
Bob Thiel has launched a second website: –
Church of God 7th Day Sabbath Observing Christians,
which is very similar to –
Church of God 7th Day,
based in Denver, which is the largest ‘Church of God 7th Day Sabbath observing’ group.
The new website states that it “… is intended to help people who wonder about the seventh-day Sabbath as well as those interested in learning about the different groups that claim Christ, but who also keep the seventh-day Sabbath.”
The long established Bible Sabbath Association (1945) does exactly that, believing in “promoting fellowship and co-operation between Sabbath-keeping people of various groups; on a non-denominational basis; to restore respect and honor for the Ten Commandments as a whole (with emphasis on the Fourth).”
The purpose of the new CCOG website, however, appears to be to draw to it people searching the internet for the words and phrases in its website title, or mistyping – then explaining the doctrinal errors of other groups, and promoting the CCOG.

Philadelphia Church of God
Gerald Flurry admits that there is dissension within the PCG over his declaration that the rock at which Herbert Armstrong prayed for a few days in the 1930s is ‘The New Throne of David’.
Gerald Flurry has
written an article for the July-August 2020 issue of the Royal Vision magazine – a foundational lesson we must learn in order to build up the throne of David. The magazine article includes a correction box, explaining that his level of authority in the church is far above that of the other ministers.
CORRECTION: An article in the July-August 2003 Royal Vision, titled, “Was Peter the Chief Apostle?” stated: “Peter alone is given the ‘keys’ to the kingdom of heaven! Later, the authority to ‘bind’ and ‘loose’ was given to the other apostles as well (see Matthew 18:18), but only Peter was given the ‘keys’ …”
Actually, the authority to bind and loose given to the other apostles was not the same authority given to Peter to bind and loose. Peter, as chief apostle, had the sole authority to make judgments and decisions, or policies, that affected the
entire Church. No one else was given that level of authority – to make judgments that amplify God’s law in particular circumstances that would apply to the entire Church.
The context of Matthew 18 shows that other ministers were given authority to bind and loose in order to make judgments, or decisions, regarding people in the Church who were not getting along as they should (see Matthew 18:15-18). These were more “localized” judgments to bind and loose regarding contentions or offenses between brethren, not at all on the same level as the authority given
only to the chief apostle.
This is similar to a declaration by Herbert Armstrong in 1980:
The title, and the keys, passed from chief apostle to chief apostle, from Peter to Peter.
Each chief apostle was the new Peter.
Now I am the chief apostle, and I am the Peter.
Whatever I bind is bound in heaven, and whatever I loose is loosed in heaven.
The Day of Pentecost is now on Sunday. But, since I had made the decision to observe Pentecost on Monday, for years the Day of Pentecost was actually on Monday.
Similarly, Gerald Flurry claims the authority to declare that Herbert Armstrong’s ‘prayer rock’ is the new Stone of Destiny and the Throne of David, but for a long time it was actually the Stone of Scone and the coronation stone of British monarchs.
He writes on page 117 of his book, The New Throne of David:

In the past, when God has given me new revelation, words flowed into my mind and entered my thought process, often leading me to certain scriptures. But with the revelation about the new stone and throne, it was different. This time, I heard a strong voice. It was more powerful. I don’t think anyone else would have heard anything, but I certainly heard it. It really startled me, as I think it would anyone. That was the first time I had ever experienced anything like that.
That voice left me somewhat shaken, but in a good way. As soon as I heard it, I started studying the Bible; I wanted to prove that revelation from God’s Word. After studying, I began to see that Jesus Christ was establishing a new throne, just like that voice had said. I began to find all the scriptures and put them together. You can do the same thing: This book goes through many scriptures that prove this truth. You don’t just have to accept my word for it: You can prove that voice came from God.
I understand why some would question this, if I just heard a voice and didn’t have any proof from the Bible. But when you put all this evidence together, it proves that I really did hear a voice from God! The proof is all laid out in the Bible. You don’t want to follow someone who has simply heard a voice – I certainly don’t! It requires study, prayer and meditation on your part. There are also voices coming from the devil.
Voices from God or the devil? In his article Gerald Flurry gives a warning to those who have studied the ‘proofs’ in his book, but are murmuring against him:
Numbers 16 and 17 record a disagreement over who should be in charge in Israel. Without clear government, authority and leadership, you have murmuring and problems; that is human nature. So God instructed Moses to have the leaders of each tribe submit a rod, and then said, “And it shall come to pass that the mans rod, whom I shall choose, shall blossom: and I will make to cease from me the murmurings of the children of Israel, whereby they murmur against you. (Numbers 17:5)
What do you do if there is murmuring against God
s leader? Somehow you have to convince them they are wrong, or they are going to be put in the outer court …
In Moses
s day, God warned that those who didnt stop murmuring and rebelling would die (Numbers 17:10). That is what God says to us spiritually. At some point you must stop the murmuring and rebelling, or youre going to die! That is the opposite of the total trust God is building in His people. This is about eternal life and eternal death … Some of Gods people will soon present that throne to Jesus Christ at His Second Coming! How can someone do that if he doesnt really understand these things?
If doubting PCG members “are going to be put in the outer court”, what reason do they have to remain in the PCG?
(On July 24th the PCG re-published Gerald Flurry’s video, The New Throne of David, that was originally broadcast in 2018.)

Church of God a Worldwide Association
Covid-19 Update, 16th July 2020:
When we began reopening services, the number of COVID-19 cases was dropping, and it appeared that the end of this threat was in sight … that is no longer the case. While some states (mostly in the Northeast) have continued to show declines, to date, 35 states are reporting an increase in cases, and in some states the daily increase has more than doubled in less than a month. In some major cities the hospitals are quickly reaching capacity.
When we began to reopen in May, only 10 states had a face mask requirement. Currently, 47 states have such a mandate … Only three states have no mandates for face coverings at all – Iowa, Montana and South Dakota. But even these three strongly recommend wearing a face covering when you are in a group, especially in a closed room. The fact that all 50 states are in agreement on a health issue, including all national and state health agencies, has caused us to consider what our approach should be for face coverings while at church services.
We have 75% of our congregations already wearing face coverings because of state or local requirements. After considerable thought and discussion, the administration of the Church has reached the decision that face coverings (shields or masks) will be required for all our services. There are three reasons for this decision:
1. It is our desire to follow the state requirements and recommendations. In some states churches are exempt, but not all. Given the change that has occurred in the past two months, we believe that we should abide by these requirements and recommendations.
2. It is our desire to create the safest environment possible in all our congregations. We believe we should err on the side of caution.
3. It is our desire to promote unity in all our congregations. Given the fact that most of the United States is still fighting the virus and that cases are increasing, we believe that all our congregations should be united in our approach to stopping the spread of the virus.
As more and more cases are identified, we are seeing more members becoming infected. For the past two weeks, we have been informed of two or three cases each week. So far, all have been mild. In three cases we canceled services for two weeks, per our protocol, to make sure no one else was infected.
Because of these factors, the Church is issuing the following combined statement from the administration and the Ministerial Board of Directors: Effective this Sabbath, July 18, 2020, and until further notice, we are asking that everyone over the age of 10 (this is the age set for Texas – please check with state and local authorities for the age requirement in your area) in attendance at one of our services come with a mask, a cloth face covering or a face shield (where accepted by state or local authorities).
We are asking that you wear them coming in to services, while fellowshipping prior to and after services, while exiting the room, and while singing. As long as the seating allows for a minimum of 6 feet separation, there is no need to wear them while seated during the actual service unless required by the facility or governmental authority. Where local restrictions are more restrictive, we should comply with the local or state mandates.
If you have a medical condition that prevents you from wearing a mask, please consider using a plastic face shield instead (recommended by the CDC if you have such a condition). But if this is not possible because of your condition, you will not be required to wear a face covering. Please inform your pastor if this is your situation.
Wearing a face covering or a face shield does not replace the need to maintain the social distance of 6 feet between you and other members who are not part of your immediate family. We should also, for the time being, refrain from hugging and shaking hands.
If you are sick, we request that you stay at home and not attend services until you are well. If you have symptoms of the COVID-19 virus, then you should be tested to determine if you are infected, and if the test is positive, you should quarantine at home for at least 14 days. You should also notify your pastor as to the last time you attended services prior to the development of symptoms and subsequent positive test. (also video by Jim Franks)

Doug Horchak has announced that the festival sites in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, and Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, are now full. Of the 5 remaining sites in the USA, 3 are satellite venues.
Jim Franks writes, July 9th: “Our largest group of members outside the U.S. is in Latin America. As of this date, none of our congregations in this region are able to meet for services, but must rely solely on webcasts. And, sadly, several governments there are stating that in-person services may not be permitted until September, if then! If this is correct, we will be facing issues with the Feast of Tabernacles in Latin America that we have never faced before.

United Church of God
Festival of Tabernacles Announcement, 8th July 2020:
At this time most of the U.S. Feast sites will be able to accommodate the registered number of people for that specific site. However, yet to be determined is whether social distancing will be mandated at some sites. There is also the possibility that some states might require wearing
masks during Church services. Three U.S. Feast sites are under consideration for cancellation or reducing attendance to accommodate social distancing. A decision on those sites will be announced next week, as negotiations are still in progress.
With a few hundred Americans not being able to attend the Feast internationally, it might be necessary to open up a couple of new sites. Right now there is enough room to accommodate all U.S. citizens. Montana, Texas and probably Daytona Beach have ample room for additional people and will probably be less restrictive at Feast time.
Webcasting daily live services will be available in at least two different time zones.
It is with great regret that a decision has been made to close the Búzios Feast site in Brazil due to both current COVID-19 travel restrictions to Brazil as well as the continued postponement of facilities opening up in Brazil. However, we are pleased to announce that we have booked the same facility for next year’s Feast, God-willing. The hotel has agreed to the same terms and
conditions, and all who have booked this year will have their deposits valid for next year.
The first week of August, all Canadian sites will announce the details of expected restrictions, if any, and the schedule of activities so members can make a decision as to whether they want to attend that site under those conditions. Some members may prefer to attend a site that is more open and normal. Some members might feel safer at services where social distancing and masks are required. All that information will be available to review.
Given continued travel restrictions, as well as our limited human resources, we regret to announce that the Feast in France this year is unable to provide English translation of services, as well as make arrangements for shuttles and tours, and must thus request our international visitors to make alternative arrangements for the Feast this year. We are saddened by this necessary change, and look forward, God willing, to being able to host international brethren in France once again next year.
Due to travel restrictions into Europe, citizens from the United States might not be able to attend the Feast in Italy. Travel restrictions between Italy and the USA will be updated every two weeks on the Italian Feast webpage. Travel restrictions may ease in August, but with so much uncertainty those restrictions might continue into October.

Church of God 7th Day (Denver)
Dealing with Covid19 – message from Loren Stacy, President, July 8th:
“Some of our congregations have begun to worship together in their buildings
again and others are hoping to do so as soon as possible. I’m writing to urge all of our congregations to exercise the utmost care as they return to normal.
While there are many competing theories about the Covid 19 virus – its dangers, the effectiveness of wearing masks, etc. – the truth is that many of our members have experienced severe physical difficulties as a result of contracting this virus and many have died. I am receiving reports of congregations that re-opened and then closed again because many (in one case, all) of their members, soon became very ill. Those who have recovered from severe symptoms of Covid–19 agree: you don’t want to repeat their experience or to cause someone else to do so.
As your District Superintendent has already communicated in his own
similar messages, the leaders of each congregation have the authority to decide when to re-open and they bear the responsibilities for their decisions. In their decisions and in each individual’s decision as to when he or she decides to return, I urge everyone to carefully consider personal practices and risk factors. Senior citizens and individuals with other health issues appear most vulnerable. Please take care of these people. Please don’t put them or anyone at needless risk.
Social distancing, the wearing of masks when in proximity to others outside
of our immediate families, bumping elbows instead of shaking hands or hugging, washing our hands every time we turn around – what a hassle! But even if we eventually discover that all of this was unnecessary, for now it is the loving thing to do. Self-sacrifice is at the heart of Christ-like love, right? Let’s love like Jesus loved. Let’s respect the decisions of others and resist the temptation to shame those who make decisions different from our own. With a little common sense and a lot of Christ-like love, we’ll get through this. In every circumstance, Focus on Jesus and Follow His Plan.”

Festival of Tabernacles 2020
Owing to Covid-19, the following festival sites have been moved:
Church of God International: from Arkansas to Springfield, Missouri.
Common Faith Network: from Fort Walton Beach to Miramar Beach, Florida.
Truth on the Web Ministries: from Kentucky to Lake Delton, Wisconsin Dells.
The Seasons of Our Joy festival in Texas has been cancelled.
Our Festival of Tabernacles page has been updated.

Church Government
In the July 2020 issue of the Phildelphia Trumpet Magazine, Stephen Flurry attacks the late Roderick Meredith because:
“When he left the WCG to start a new church in 1992, he wrote a booklet called Church Government and Church Unity. In it he rejected the way Mr. Armstrong had governed the WCG; he said the Church had seriously misunderstood church government.
“Meredith said that, over time, this form of government led to all sorts of hardships and abuses.
But wasnt Roderick Meredith himself a major abuser in the WCG, according to Herbert Armstrong, who wrote to him in March 1980:
“You were a harsh task-master over the ministers. You, yourself, find it difficult and perhaps impossible to TAKE what you dished out. Dozens of ministers would testify to that. You rubbed the fur the wrong way! That has been your life-style!
Did he repent of this attitude? Continuing Stephen Flurry’s article, after Roderick Meredith left the WCG late in 1992 to establish the Global Church of God, he said:
“God guided many apostles and elders to work in a brotherly, non-threatening, collegial atmosphere, and no single one of the apostles towered over the others.”
According to Meredith, this collegial “New Testament” approach is what the Church failed to grasp during the days of Mr. Armstrong. “I’ve learned the right approach in
servant leadership,” Meredith said at a ministerial conference in July 1993. Later he added, “Let’s try to do it right this time, as shepherds with a loving approach.”
The inescapable implication is that Church government under Mr. Armstrong was not loving, not shepherding, not servant leadership, not brotherly, but dominated by one man towering over the others in a threatening atmosphere.”
No wonder Stephen Flurry is livid. Its as if the PCG under Gerald Flurry is also being accused of not loving, not shepherding, not servant leadership, not brotherly, but dominated by one man towering over the others in a threatening atmosphere.
What is the testimony of PCG members who have left?

When Roderick Meredith left Global to start the Living Church of God, he discarded what he termed the “democratic approach, and installed himself as the Presiding Evangelist, i.e. exercising authority over the others.
In order to make sense of this contradiction, we must look at what Herbert Armstrong taught about church government before he set up Ambassador College, where Roderick Meredith was one of his first students. I
n an article for the Good News magazine in 1939, Did Christ Reorganize The Church?, Herbert Armstrong wrote:
There is not one single HINT in the New Testament of any Church BOARD with authority to rule, to govern, to decide doctrine, or to handle tithes and church finances (the whole church). In the later number we shall devote an article to explaining Acts 15, which certainly sets no such example.
Jesus never organized, or re-organized His church! There is NO SCRIPTURE for it!
All authority and power to rule is limited solely to each LOCAL congregation. But there is NO BIBLE AUTHORITY for any super-government, or organization with authority over the local congregations!
The plain teaching of Jesus is JUST THE CONTRARY! Listen! “Jesus called them unto Him, and saith unto them, Ye know that they which are accounted to RULE over the Gentiles exercise lordship over them; and their great ones exercise AUTHORITY upon them, But so shall it NOT be among you. (Mark 10:42).
The AUTHORITY – the GOVERNMENT – the RULERSHIP – was turned over to the Gentiles for 2520 years – until Christ RESTORES the kingdom at His Second Coming!
How then, did ORGANIZATION, and the idea of CHURCH GOVERNMENT get into the Church?
It came out of BABYLON! Spiritual BABYLON – that is, ROME! The same as nearly all other false doctrines of Satan.
Continuing Stephen Flurry’s critical article:
“… after Mr. Armstrong was gone, Mr. Meredith tried to spin a confusing and deceitful web. He said Mr. Armstrong supposedly knew God did not work through one man. In his booklet, Mr. Meredith said he and fellow minister Herman Hoeh were largely responsible for the top-down government Mr. Armstrong adopted.
Even after several years of guiding the college [which began in 1947], Mr. Armstrong still did not understand much about Church government,” Meredith wrote. “Consequently, in the early to mid-1950s, Herman Hoeh and I each were inspired to write articles along this line.”
According to this story,
Mr. Meredith and Mr. Hoeh were the ones responsible for helping Mr. Armstrong set up the government structure. Mr. Meredith noted that “all of us leading ministers” understood that for the WCG to do God’s work, it needed to be unified. He wrote that as long as there was a dedicated man like Mr. Armstrong at the top, a hierarchical government would best preserve unity.
So Meredith and Hoeh persuaded Herbert Armstrong to adopt the doctrine of one man rule and top-down church government in order to preserve church unity rather than for biblical reasons?
“Meredith’s description was that the leading ministers devised this pyramid structure and wrote about it in articles; then, “Mr. Armstrong accepted these articles and immediately published them in the Good News.”
In the first of these articles, Government In Our Church, August 1953, Herman Hoeh plants the first seeds of one man rule and ministerial authority.
The word APOSTLE means “one sent bearing authority.”
Among the twelve apostles, Peter was pre-eminent, although they all held EQUALITY OF OFFICE … Yet Peter was their LEADER because he was born with special leadership qualities and ability to make decisions.
So Herbert Armstrong was the modern day Peter?
Among the twelve there must have been such a spirit of peace and love that they had perfect harmony without jealousy in equality of rank and office.
Really?   Mark 9:33-35   Luke 9:46-47   Luke 22:24
There are many other Good News articles on the HWA Library website about church government that contradict what Herbert Armstrong originally taught, e.g.
Does God Have a Headquarters Church Today? Herman Hoeh, October 1953
Judging and in God’s Discipline Church Roderick Meredith, November 1953.
Should you assemble without a minister? Herman Hoeh, June/July 1954.
wrote again on this subject in March 1957, October 1957 and June 1959.
Government in Our Church, Herman Hoeh, June/July 1958.
Judging and Discipline in God’s Church, Roderick Meredith, August 1958.
How Far Does Church Government Extend Into Your Life? Herman Hoeh, January 1961.
How Church Government Really Works, Roderick Meredith – March 1964.

Dynamic Christian Ministries
Message from Wes White, Friday, June 26:
“I am sorry, but we are cancelling “Start Our Sabbath” tonight. Please permit me to explain why.
I thought this Covid thing was slowing down. In fact, Nancy and I were thinking of having one of our infamous July 4th blow-out bashes at our house this year. The church brethren are chomping at the bit and were ready to party. Nancy even had bail money set aside. 🤪
That last sentence was a joke.
But the Covid numbers in Texas are now spiking!
Now, I did not expect this. I thought things would be Improving over the summer with all this warmer weather. Instead, Nancy and I are going to continue with our cautious lifestyle.
We have not been to church since early March. We have not been to a restaurant or a movie or anything since early March. We even do curbside pick-up for our groceries. And, when we venture out, we always do social distancing while wearing masks.
We do this not only because our age puts us in a high-risk bracket. We also go thru this because there is NO WAY Nancy is going to put the grandbabies, Winston and Spencer, in jeopardy.
Now let’s talk about our SOS studio. You probably already know that our studio really isn’t a full-fledged studio. It certainly isn’t a $1,000,000 studio like the big church organizations have. Actually, our “studio” is in the corner of a real estate office that is closed on Friday evenings. It’s a perfect fit because SOS uses the place when the office is closed. Ideal symbiotic relationship.
Well, we have noticed that this real estate business is blowing and going these days. The couple who own it are real go-getters. We admire their work ethic. And we are happy for their success. But, at this time, we are uncomfortable going into the studio with all the increased business traffic the couple has been blessed with.
So we are going to put SOS on hold for a few weeks to see how the Covid plays out in Texas. We’ll keep you posted.
Please keep us in your prayers. Thanks for your understanding. We will miss “seeing” you on Friday evenings.”

United Church of God
President Victor Kubik writes, 25th June 2020:
“Already devastated by dual crises of pandemic and racial unrest, the year 2020 saw another major upheaval detonate in mid-June, this time with potential direct implications for the Church of God community. The outcomes strike at the heart of key fundamental biblical teachings on how gender – male
and female – is defined. Experts note that the ruling will likely result in a dramatic adverse effect on religious and other freedoms in the United States.
While championed by some as a victory for individual rights, it is anything but that.
The far-reaching decision handed down by the U.S. Supreme Court dramatically – and inappropriately – expands legal definitions contained in Civil Rights legislation enacted well over half a century ago. The original legislation itself was devoid of any of the language or intent now artificially attached to it.
How did this come about? The Court reviewed an appeal of a controversial case – Bostock v. Clayton County – and its majority binding opinion now unnaturally expands federal law regarding possible “discrimination” against human-defined sexual orientation and gender identity.
One of the Supreme Court justices who voted against the opinion formally objected that the majority opinion entered into the realm of the “preposterous.” In his formal dissent the Justice criticized the assumptions of the opinion, noting that it displayed “breathtaking arrogance.”
The ruling in effect directly attacks biblical truth regarding both behavior between men and women and the very definitions of the same. The majority opinion reflected what a New York Times headline read:
“What does Sex Mean? The Supreme Court Answers.” The reporter rightly wondered whether the ruling will further inflame the cultural war engulfing America …” [continued]

Christian Educational Ministries
Due to the COVID-19 virus there is a dusk-to-dawn curfew in Kenya with no meetings allowed, thus no weekly church services. The Kenyan government closed all schools and universities including Wisdom Academy. The high school students have returned to the orphanage and are doing their studies via TV. The college students returned and are keeping up with their classes online. So far, we have not had any cases of the virus and the children remain healthy.
Police brutality is rampant and people are being shot if found outside after curfew. Police showed up a few Sabbaths ago after seeing a group at the Faithful Children’s Centre. Richard Mogendi stopped his message to address the officers’ questions. He told them that these people were simply all of the orphans and staff. They were satisfied with his explanation of the situation and told him all of the orphans should be wearing masks. Masks are being made by the two women who had been sent to tailoring school.
The brethren can’t work during quarantine. This is especially devastating for the widows who are no longer allowed to do the $1-per-day jobs that helped them provide for their families. Recently, 18 church families have been displaced by rains and mud slides that destroyed their homes. They are currently waiting for government approval to move into temporary shelter while plans to rebuild and/or repair their homes are being made.
If you would like more information, please visit Tabitha Outreach Foundation.

Michael Porter leads the Christian outreach in Benin Republic and adjoining countries. He is a former Muslim who heard about the Sabbath and the Gospel message through the 7th-Day Adventist Church. He then came into contact with Margaret Dyer. She sent him a Ron Dart audio disc and, after hearing the message, his eyes were opened spiritually as to who Jesus truly is and to God’s Law, holy days, and so much more. In the Born to Win monthly newsletter, we print some of the comments about the program’s effect in the Benin Republic. Margaret Dyer-Forster sponsored the Born to Win program on CAPP FM from 2005 until January 2018. Due to life-changes she can no longer do this. We thank the individuals who stepped up in 2018 to sponsor the radio program for the past two years. As the only Sabbath radio outreach in the whole region, I am praying that God will provide sponsors through CEM for this life changing radio outreach for at least another year or two. Will you help us reach people around Africa with the saving message of Jesus through the life-changing teachings of Ronald L. Dart? If you would like to help, send your contributions to CEM and mark them for Benin.

United Church of God – Festival of Tabernacles 2020
Carmelo Anastasi writes:
“To this date, all of our Italian brethren are free from coronavirus.
The majority of Feast applicants have confirmed to attend the Feast in Sabaudia, because the COVID-19 lockdown in Italy is now almost over. The northern Italian regions like Lombardy, Veneto and Piedmont were the ones hit by the coronavirus, but today they have almost zero infection. The regions in south and central Italy, such as Tuscany, Latium, Rome and our feast site (Sabaudia) have zero virus infection at present. In fact, our feast hotel with its sandy beach is already preparing for the summer season, which is very encouraging.
In June the borders will be open again allowing airlines to land at the FCO airport near Rome and Sabaudia. We realize that this may not be the case in your country by the time of the Feast (or the pre-Feast). Therefore, to protect your money, we have come to an exceptional agreement with the Feast hotel which is outlined in the email you should have recently received regarding your registration.
In any case, our advice is that you should travel to Italy only if you really want to celebrate the feast of God with us in Italy and if you are willing to eventually comply with the sanitary precautions – although these may be no longer necessary by October. For those who decide to celebrate God’s feast with us in Italy, we look forward to welcoming you at the feast in Sabaudia!
Therefore, if you have not yet done so, we remind you to 
secure your bookings as soon as possible through our website for either the Feast of Tabernacles or the pre-Feast Tours in Tuscany. Please note that, because of the delay caused by the quarantine, the deadline to secure your feast (and/or pre-feast) bookings is now July 15. If you have already chosen another destination for the feast, please let us know.”

“With the current uncertainty over worldwide travel restrictions due to the COVID-19 pandemic, and after consultation with the members in Southeast Asia, the Festival Planning Team in Australia has made the difficult decision not to conduct an official Feast site in Penang, Malaysia in 2020. The members in South East Asia are still looking forward to the Feast this year, and they also eagerly anticipate restrictions being lifted with the hope of resuming a full Feast site in Penang in 2021.”

From Tim Martens, Assistant Feast Coordinator for Estonia:
“The Feast in Estonia is still OPEN! The host venue (Georg Ot Spa Hotel = GOSPA) will be open on June 1st to take reservations. Because we are not yet able to make plane reservations, GOSPA has agreed to NO penalty for canceling hotel registrations. Travel has already opened up between the Baltic countries – Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania for the local citizenry. We are quite hopeful that the Feast of Tabernacles will go on as planned.”

Osoyoos Lake, British Columbia, is now full, but the other U.S. and Canadian Festival of Tabernacles sites are all still open.

The festival site in the Netherlands has been cancelled.
“National restrictions regarding “social distancing” now limit the number of people allowed in the meeting hall for the Feast of Tabernacles to 100 people from the originally anticipated 300. Even though we will be limited to 100 people at the Feast, the hotel has also informed us that our costs for various services (hall rent, etc.) will not be reduced accordingly.
When the UCG-Netherlands National Council decided last September to host a Dutch feast site, the decision was based on a cost calculation with 300 people in attendance and the expenses being covered in part by our many international guests. With the capacity limitations now imposed on us by “social distancing”, our cost calculation is obviously no longer valid. For that reason, as much as we regret it, we have decided to cancel the Dutch feast site in Zandvoort.”

The Puerto Vallarta festival site has been cancelled.
“After much deliberating, praying and assessing the pros and cons since March, including discussions with the Hotel Friendly administration, the local Mexican pastor and the U.S. festival co-ordinator, we have come to the regretful decision of canceling the feast in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico for 2020. The main factor is that our current registration numbers are well below what we have had in the past so we do not have enough attendees to meet the minimum requirements. Only a fourth of the normal number has signed up compared to previous years, along with lower numbers from the Mexican brethren as well. This is not a decision taken lightly, but many factors have forced us to make this decision.
Moreover, the feast in Puerto Vallarta is different from most other feast sites, since it relies on a large room block contract to secure affordable pricing and exclusivity of the hotel. Yet this special pricing comes with payments that are due months in advance. For the majority of feast sites, members can reserve directly with the hotel and have much more flexibility on their cancellation policies. But for this site, due to this large prepayment, we lack the flexibility for last minute changes. This means that we are unable to provide refunds once those bulk payments are sent to the Hotel Friendly, Puerto Vallarta.
The contractual obligations we must meet to make this feast site feasible forced us to make the early decision of canceling this site. In this way, members can plan accordingly and we still have time to amend the contractual obligations with the hotel.”

The Shining Light
Post from David Malm, son of James Malm, 5th June 2020:
“Hello Dear readers, with a very heavy heart, I tell you I found my father and best friend James Malm passed away this morning, James for those who don’t know had been struggling with diabetes, high blood pressure, And failing eyesight for years. He was trying very hard to get better eating less and trying to control his BP. He wanted to see me happy one day in the refuge. I just cannot believe this nightmare I am in, he cared for me so much and tirelessly tried to warn the church of the state of pure idolatry that its in today. My father James had a vision once in a hotel room his troubles almost overwhelming and an angel said to him [This is the time my son this is the time be strong and persevere]. Well this is still the time! His struggle may be over but he fought like a soldier for me and for all of you and I pray for him this beloved teacher and mentor my good friend and teacher in the faith who did persevere and was strong!”

Christian Biblical Church of God
Fred Coulter has posted the following concerning his wife, Dolores:
“It is with a heavy heart that I tell you that Dolores has passed away. She died peacefully in her sleep and Jonathan was with her. We appreciate everyone’s prayers and cards and thank you for your love.”

Church of God a Worldwide Association
The Festival of Tabernacles sites in Jordan and Greece have been cancelled.
“Because of ongoing uncertainty in both international travel restrictions and in-country restrictions due to the Covid-19 pandemic, we have had to make the difficult and disappointing decision to cancel the Jordan feast site in 2020. We are currently evaluating when we plan to offer this site again to the brethren, and priority will be given to those who applied and were accepted for the 2020 site.”

“Based on several factors and the information currently available to us, we believe it is prudent to postpone having a Feast site in Greece until 2021. The government of Greece required all hoteliers to give tourists a voucher extending to 18 months the time in which they may use their deposit. Vouchers have been sent to the members registered for Greece who had made their hotel reservations. If the voucher is not used within 18 months, the deposit will be refunded.”

United Church of God – Festival of Tabernacles 2020
Report of the Council of Elders meetings on the 4th and 5th of May.
There are two incoming Council members, John Elliott and John Miller.
Donald Ward has come to the end of his tenure as chairman. The new chairman is Len Martin, and the deputy chairman is Aaron Dean.

Philadelphia Church of God
The PCG is continuing to lavish money on Irish dancing.

Dancers, instructors, costumers, musicians, technicians, stage crew, artists and marketers are counting down the weeks, practices, rehearsals and days until the premiere of the PCG’s Irish dance show, Celtic Throne [5th of July].
Dancers have already spent dozens of hours practicing technique and choreography, and hundreds of additional hours have been spent sewing costumes, buying and creating props, planning lighting, and making other preparations.”
From Golden Globe-nominated composer Brian Byrne (Heartbeat of Home) comes a majestic new musical score for a brand-new Irish dance production from Herbert W. Armstrong College and Armstrong Dance.
Celtic Throne explores the ancient origins of Irish step dance and celebrates the millennia-long journey of a music-and-dance-loving people as they migrate from the ancient Near East to Ireland, Scotland, England and the United States. Infused with innovative choreography, dazzling costumes and spectacular lighting and projection, Celtic Throne is Armstrong’s most electrifying, edge-of-the-seat production to date.
Celtic Throne combines Byrne’s powerful, cinematic musical score with hard- and soft-shoe Irish dancing, all set against epic imagery of Ireland, the Scottish Highlands, scenes from the British Empire, and traditional America. “This show is a stonking celebration of the British Isles and the United States. It is guaranteed to leave audiences thrilled and inspired,” said co-director Brad Macdonald. “Bring the entire family for an unforgettable experience!”
Golden-Globe nominee Brian Byrne is a multi-award winning film and television composer, songwriter and producer. Byrne composed music for Heartbeat of Home and has collaborated with some of Hollywood’s biggest stars, including Katy Perry, Bono, Barbara Streisand, Josh Groban, Sinead O’Connor, Kelly Clarkson and Sarah McLachlan, to name a few. Byrne is married to a native Oklahoman and splits his residence between Oklahoma, Los Angeles and Ireland.”
We are optimistic the show will go on as scheduled, and we will follow the State guidelines for Covid-19.

PCGs treasurer Andrew Locher was able to announce on April 25th that, under the recently passed CARES Act, the PCG had received a loan of $1,100,000 from the government (i.e. the American taxpayers).
He said that the money will not have to be paid back if the church follows the government
s rules – which it will. He likened the receipt of the money to the day when Egypt was spoiled by the Hebrew people.
The money was deposited on April 10, and “we started spending it that day.”
Does this mean that the financial oppression on its members can be reduced? No – “don’t let down on your financial offerings, on your obedience to God’s financial laws … step out in faith, do your part, show your faith by your works, and give generously to God’s Work, and He will bless us like we can’t even imagine.”

Church of God Big Sandy
The church has decided to resume attendance at Sabbath services beginning May 2nd – but with precautions due to the coronavirus.
“Based upon the recent guidelines given by the Texas governor, the congregation will be removing the 10-person restriction in our church building today.
We understand that some of you may choose to delay coming to the building for church at this time, and we certainly support your freedom of choice.
Consider if you are in the high-risk population
Consider how you are feeling
Here are some reminders for people who choose to attend the church service in the building:
We have hand sanitizers in the building.
We do not provide masks or gloves. If those are important to you, please bring your own.
We expect attendees to make good use of our spacious hall. Some recommend sitting with two empty chairs on either side and sitting in alternative rows.”

Church of God a Worldwide Association
Treasurer Britt Taylor has announced that, despite the current financial environment, income for the first quarter is up by $46,000, an increase of 2% over 2019.
This Sabbath, May 2nd, the earliest dates to resume regular Sabbath services will be given, the dates varying according to the local circumstances for each congregation.

Philadelphia Church of God
The Pathetic Membership Numbers of Philadelphia Church of God, posted by Banned By HWA on Friday, April 17, came from a page on the Exit and Support Network website (which ESN removed on Saturday, April 18).
This indicates that the PCG now has only 700 members in the western states of the USA. The chart states that the membership numbers are “current as of April 2020. They are for the entire West Coast USA.”
If the list were the membership for the PCG’s Western region, which comprises 21 states, why does it include the eastern states of Illinois and Ohio? PCG has 1 congregation in each state, which are part of the PCG’s North-eastern region, and obviously must have more than the 2 and 1 members respectively shown in the list. (A letter to ESN dated April 18 says Ohio has around 100 members.)
Several comments on the Banned by HWA post suggest that it is actually a feast attendance list. The numbers could be those attending the West Coast USA sites for the Festival of Tabernacles in 2019, which were in Blaine, Washington and Indian Wells, California. The high numbers listed for Washington state and California support this. Texas has the highest number in the list, but there was no feast site in the south-east in 2019, other than at HQ in Edmond, Oklahoma.
There were 12 feast sites in total, 2 others in the USA – Pennsylvania and Wisconsin – and 7 elsewhere in the world.
So how many active members does the PCG have?
Stephen Flurry admitted in 2015 that PCG membership had “leveled out” at around 5000. The total ‘expected attendance’ for the 2016 Feast of Tabernacles (all PCG members and families are ‘expected to attend’) was 4200.
The ESN chart included a column for ‘suspended members’ – who would not be allowed to attend. A former disfellowshipped member of PCG wrote to ESN on April 18: “When the PCG counts members they count in ones that are suspended and haven’t even attended for many years. They keep their names as members unless marked. So I am still a member in their books. A friend of mine who has been out 9 years is still a member. I wouldn’t use any info the PCG puts out.”

These are the numbers that PCG have assigned to attend the Festival of Tabernacles in 2020. The total of around 4,230 is similar to previous years.
: Edmond OK (HQ) 650; Welches OR 225; Cranberry, PA 325;
Lake Geneva WI 275; Greenville SC 550; Phoenix AZ 350.
Invermere BC 200; Sault Ste. Marie ON 225.
Stratford-Upon-Avon, UK 220; Plantation Estate, Tobago 200;
Jerusalem, Israel 60; Tweed Heads, Australia 350;
Baguio, Philippines 400; Buffelspoort, South Africa 200.

United Church of God
The 2020 annual meeting of the General Conference of Elders will be held on the 2nd and 3rd of May. The meeting will of course be webcast this year, with consequently a substantial saving on the costs of air travel, accommodation etc.
Perhaps the Council of Elders (and the leaders of other corporate churches) will consider continuing video conferences and how, if at all, the functioning of their church is improved by ministers travelling to headquarters to meet in person.

Ronald L Dart Evangelistic Association
Announcement from Wes White :
“We have been getting a lot inquiries over a change that has been made to our leadership team. We are excited about things that are happening.
First of all, we are pleased that Joe Limon has been added to our board of directors. I have known Joe since he was the assistant pastor of the Church of God Seventh Day in Oak Cliff, Texas in the 1990s. As you can see from his bio on our website, Joe is now pastor of the Church of God Seventh Day in Cedar Hill, Texas.
Joe brings a wealth of knowledge and pastoral experience to RLDEA. Joe is not a pastor in the traditional sense of the word. Joe is truly a servant pastor. Joe is a volunteer pastor who receives no salary for his service. He has always been just a volunteer. Joe is now retired and works full-time serving his church.
The other new exciting development has to be prefaced with a bit of history. Before Allie died, she and I spent a lot of time talking to me about how she would like the money from her estate disbursed. As you know, most of it went to RLDEA.
First, Allie made clear that she wanted Ron’s works promoted. We feel RLDEA is doing a really good job of that thru our social media efforts. Promoting the Gospel of Jesus thru Ron’s material has always been our top priority and it will always be our top priority.
Second, Allie made it clear where she did NOT want any of her money to go. She made mention of several religious organizations that RLDEA was not to donate to.
Third, Allie made it clear that she also wanted money to go to charities. She specifically mentioned St Jude’s Children’s Hospital and the American Cancer Society. I am sorry we have not, up to this point, done anything in the area of charitable giving. But this changed on April 5 when we made donations to St Jude’s Children’s Hospital and the American Cancer Society. We will continue to support these two charities.
Further, because of the hardships caused by the corona virus, we are researching to determine which charitable East Texas organizations we might possibly send donations to – organizations that assist people thru these difficult times.
For example, right now we have a problem in that kids can’t go to school. They are supposed to do their studies on line. Many kids in our area don’t have tablets and don’t have access to the internet. So we are making donations to local schools to help kids get tablets.
We are also having an internet service installed at our Tyler Church of God Seventh Day building. We are going to then invite kids in our neighborhood to access this internet so that they can do their homework there. Even though no one is allowed in our building at this time, we have a nice front porch and yard where they can sit so they can access the internet to do their homework. We are long overdue in our efforts to helping local people.
And let’s be clear that any contribution sent by the leadership of RLDEA is not something that we will be rewarded for when we stand before Christ. It is Allie who will be rewarded for directing us to do this. It was her money and we’re trying to spend it the way she directed.
So again, we are excited about these new developments and ask for prayers that God will guide us into doing good works at RLDEA.”
Wes White: e-mail

Guardian Ministries
Molly Antion, wife of pastor David Antion, suffered a stroke on Tuesday, April 7, and died in the early morning of the Sabbath, April 11.
David Antion writes :
“Dear Brethren and all who offered prayers for my wife, Molly.
Right now it is a little after 5 a.m. here in Pasadena. I have been awake since a little before 3:30 a.m. But at 3:30 I received a phone call from Huntington Hospital telling me that wife, beautiful, loving, faithful wife of 60 years and 8 months is now sleeping in Jesus. “For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so, them (including Molly) also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with him” (1 Thess. 4:14 KJV).
Please forgive me if I can’t take all of your calls or answer all of your texts, Facebook comments, and emails at this time. Today is the Sabbath and now Molly is enjoying that Sabbath rest (Hebrews 4:9).
I was scheduled to be on the streaming video for the sermon this morning but I am unable to do it. Therefore our elder here, Gary Wannlund, will be taking the sermon.
It has been a very long week for me. Tuesday morning when Molly got up I was preparing her coffee. She came over to the sink counter to get it and suddenly said I have to go sit down. I said do you feel weak and she answered yes. I said hold on to me and I help you to the chair. When she sat down she slid down and I said you are sitting on your tailbone, do you want to sit up. She said, “I’m comfortable.” I then said I will get your coffee. I went to get it and back with the coffee in my hand and said, “Here’s your coffee.” No response. Said it again. Put the coffee on the bar and came back talking louder, “Molly do you hear me?” No response.
I called 911. The rest is that they thought she suffered a stroke and wanted to give her a powerful blood thinner to dissolve the suspected blood clot. I talked it over with my son, he said he thought we should do it. I talked the pros and cons with the doctor. Then gave permission as it has a 94% positive function and 6% chance it would cause the brain to bleed. The drug caused massive bleeding. The doctor told us the blood covered most of the brain almost to the brain stem. She was able to breathe on her own and with just heart and lungs functioning. My son and I cried almost all day Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday. But with this COVID-19 we were not allowed to go in and only one could go it at that. On Wednesday, my sister suggested I talk to a nurse and ask her to put the phone up to Molly’s ear. I did and talked while crying telling her how much I loved her. I did it again on Thursday morning.
Then I asked them if I could come to see her. I am her husband! They gave permission which is rare. So I was in the room with her Thursday and again on Friday. They only allow about 30 minutes but they tell me she can hear even if she cannot respond. So I told her how many people love her and are praying for her. How much I love her and what a great wife she has been. I told her funny stories. Rimiest about our many memories together. I asked her to respond in some way — move a finger, squeeze my hand. But no response. I prayed to God for His merciful healing for her. I realized that if she dies, she had made it. I was praying for myself. I want her back. I know God is in charge.
Word spread to Brethren everywhere and we believe God can do miracles and He could reverse any damage. So many calls, emails, texts, Facebook communications came in saying that they were offering up prayers.  My brothers and sister expressed grief and were praying. People from various church groups were marshaling their “prayer warriors.” It strengthened my faith.
So, with much anguish and pain, I must accept God’s will or God’s okay. I don’t think God had a will that she die but He might say it is ok and she has run the course and finished the race. There comes a time when we will say what Paul said, “For I am already being poured out as a drink offering, and the time of my departure has come. I have fought the good fight, I have finished the course, I have kept the faith” (2 Timothy 4:6-7 NAU)
She is the single greatest woman I have ever known. I am sure that all you husbands reading this would argue with me and that would make me happy to know you love your wives like I love Molly. I was her husband for 60 years and 8 months. She was to me a woman who fulfilled the Proverbs 31 passages. I could wish that every husband would feel this way about his wife. But here are the Scriptures that I think fitted Molly. Verse 11: “The heart of her husband trusts in her and he will have no lack of gain.” Verse 12: “She does him good and not evil all the days of her life.”
And Proverbs 31:25-31 fit her so well.
My Molly was not necessarily a person give to crafts — making things, sewing, artsy stuff.  She was a businesswoman would buy the field and sell it. She was a wonderful people person and consummate hostess.
She was kind and tender and hated violence of any kind.
I will grieve because I have lost my greatest human gift — Proverbs 19:14:  “House and wealth are an inheritance from fathers, But a prudent wife is from the LORD.”
Regarding death these passages come to mind: “… and the day of one’s death is better than the day of one’s birth” (Ecclesiastes 7:1). She died a peaceful death without pain or suffering for which I am grateful to God. If she were a bad wife and a shrew, nagging, quarrelsome or ill-tempered it wouldn’t be so hard to get over her. But my Molly was the kindest, most caring and loving person who loved me for over 62 years which includes our courting time.
In this COVID-19 pandemic time, we can only have 10 or fewer people at the mortuary and gravesite. But that is not our goal. My son and I have decided we went to celebrate her life: “Give her the product of her hand and let her works praise her in the gates (community)” (Proverbs 31:31). We will let all of you know when we can all join in a location and CELEBRATE Molly’s “dash” — October 12, 1938 — April 11, 2020.
“I read of a man who stood to speak at the funeral of a friend. He referred to the dates on her tombstone from the beginning … to the end. He noted that first came the date of her birth and spoke of the following date with tears, but he said what mattered most of all … was the dash between those years.
For the dash represents all the time that she spent alive on earth and now only those who loved her know what that little line is worth. For it matters not how much we own, the cars … the house … the cash.
“What matters is how we live and love .. and how we spend our dash.”
We will celebrate how Molly spent her “dash.”
Thank you and may God’s peace be with you and me too.”

Molly Antion was the sister of Buck Hammer, who donated the land that eventually became the core of the campus of Ambassador University in Texas. When this closed, she wrote in The Journal about her life in the Worldwide Church of God from the time her father first heard Mr. Herbert Armstrong in about 1947, until the devastating day in 1979 when:
“At the end of the church service they disfellowshipped Wayne Cole, Ben Chapman, Robert Kuhn and David Antion. I’m still not sure how or why that could have happened. We were never spoken to personally and were never allowed to ask why.
We were devastated. We had no idea. It was just like a bomb had been dropped on us. Everything I had ever known since I was 9 years old had been Worldwide Church of God. It had always been what my family did. Our entire family was always involved; it was everything David and I had ever done. Our son had been reared in the church, gone to Imperial School. Our whole life was the church. We were so totally devastated.
All of our friends were forbidden to talk to us. We never got to understand what or how they thought or felt or let them understand how we felt. We were caught in the eye of a tornado. To say we were devastated in an understatement. But that was the way it was! Every friend we had was in the church; our job was here. But we found out that David no longer had a job. There was no severance pay. We didn’t get paid for our vacation time that we had accrued. We did not receive our last paycheck.”

United Church of God
“With deep sadness and great sympathy for his family, we report that Ossie McKay in the Ballymena, Northern Ireland, congregation died of COVID-19.
He was hospitalized on
Thursday, March 26, and died Friday, April 3.
He was on a ventilator. No one was allowed to
visit him, including his wife Elizabeth, son Richard and daughter Lorraine.
Pastor David Fenney could not get to Northern Ireland to visit and anoint him because all flights were suspended. They were not able to get an anointed cloth to him until just minutes before his death.
He was in his mid-seventies, but in good health. He was a pillar in the Ballymena congregation and worked closely with pastor David Fenney in overseeing the congregation of 20-30 brethren.
The funeral was conducted on Tuesday, 7th of April, by longtime church member Raymond Moore, and only a very few were allowed to attend.
This is a great loss for Ballymena, our congregation in Northern Ireland. Mr. McKay had been a member of the Church of God for over 30 years.
The family thanks everyone for their prayers, cards, and messages. Please keep them all in your thoughts and prayers during these coming difficult days.
Cards for the family may be sent to the UK Church office address, from where they will be passed on:- McKay Family, c/o United Church of God, P.O. Box 705, Watford, WD19 6FZ, United Kingdom.

Ossie’s widow Elizabeth and son Richard are both suffering from the symptoms of Coronavirus and are in isolation. 

Festival of Passover/Unleavened Bread 2020
Links to live streaming by churches and fellowship groups for each day of the festival are being listed on the Live Broadcasts page.

Philadelphia Church of God
PCG says that Gerald Flurry will broadcast a live presentation this Sabbath – his presentations online have previously always been recorded.
“The world is panicking and locking down. Is the world about to end? Is there hope? The
Trumpet’s editor in chief will answer this, Saturday, March 28.
7 a.m. (PDT)   9 a.m. (CDT)   10 a.m. (EDT)   2 p.m. (GMT)”

Hope in the Present Distress
“What stands in the way, they said, is the proclivity of leaders to delay whatever is not politically expedient.”
David Hulme (president of COGIC and ex-president of UCG 1995-1998) posted this article, 26th March 2020, on his Vision website:
“The World Health Organization has just announced an alert for what they call Disease X. This is to warn us to be aware of the arrival of something we haven’t seen before. It could be the result of a pathogen jumping from animal to human.”
That’s what we said two years ago in “Cities at Risk,” a short video on our YouTube channel. It was part of a series on global existential threats and focused on the burgeoning growth of cities, their food and water insecurities, and problems of pollution, waste and ill health. The last category included the possibility of global health crises: “Imagine if an equivalent pandemic [to the 1918–20 flu] would break out today, when international travel is so immediate and frequent.”
And here we are, a century later, at war with the novel coronavirus that may sicken the world for at least another two years … Where does our hope lie?

Biblical New Year 2020
The new moon was sighted from Israel on Wednesday, 25 March 2020:
* From Jerusalem by Karen Andrews at 6:32pm, followed by David McKnew, Gil Ashendorf, and Devorah Gordon;
* From Beer Sheva by Yochanan Zaqantov at 6:28pm

For those groups starting the new year at the astronomical conjunction, this occurs on Tuesday, the 24th of March.
For those starting the new year at the sighting of the new moon, the crescent new moon maps show that the new moon will be visible over most of the world, including Israel, on the evening of the 25th of March, making Thursday the 26th new year’s day.
The Hebrew calendar has a double postponement this year, which moves the start of the year from the 24th to the 26th.

Dynamic Christian Ministries
So we have Christian preachers who are using the coronavirus situation to make money. Yes, Jim Bakker is at it again.
Then we have Christian politicians who are promoting conspiracy theories. Ron Paul (who once ran for President) stated that Dr. Anthony Fauci (Donald Trump’s leading scientific voice on the coronavirus task force) is “part of a plan to institute martial law and permanently strip Americans of their rights.”
Then we have Sabbatarian churches who have either instructed or suggested that their congregations temporarily cancel Sabbath services for the next few weeks. And what a hue and cry that caused with the membership!
We’re going to try to put this coronavirus pandemic into perspective this Friday evening on Start Our Sabbath. You won’t want to miss this.
On this next show, we are going to read some of the actual complaints made by church members who are upset at the temporary suspension of Sabbath services. We are going to talk about how this new disease is going at affect the Churches of God.
So please join us this Friday evening on Start Our Sabbath as we examine this topic and more!
We start at 8:00 pm Central time US. You can watch SOS on Facebook or by picking up our Youtube link at or
Since this is a live show, your comments and questions are welcome in real time.
One more thing: The Ronald L Dart Evangelistic Association is going to broadcast a live sermon this Sabbath at 2:00 pm. The topic will be: “Lord’s Supper or Passover or Seder?”

United Church of God
The Council of Elders met by video conference on 16th March and resolved that:
1. The General Conference of Elders (GCE) and its related meetings will not be held face to face or in person this year;
2. Instead, an abbreviated GCE business session and reports will be held on Sunday, May 3, via webcast with the Sabbath services of May 2 to be via live (or prerecorded) webcasting;
3. The Council meeting scheduled to May 4-6 will be held by teleconference;
4. Balloting packets which are being sent out will include instructions that all ballots are to be sent in by absentee ballot (via mail, fax or other electronic means) with subsequent reminders from home office that all ballots cast are to be via absentee ballot;
5. With regard to the New Testament Passover, each family in the United States will be advised to keep that Passover at home via a local webcast or using instructions and other materials needed for the same to be distributed by Ministerial and Member Services at the home office. In areas outside the United States how they wish to handle their Passover service will be left up to them.
The instructions for keeping the Passover service at home are on the Church’s members website, along with a video which may be played or downloaded.

Donald Ward, UCG Chairman, writes, 18th March 2020:
“I believe we are living in that time described by Jesus in His sermon on the mount called “the beginning of sorrows” (Matthew 24:8). As the old saying goes, “we ain’t seen nothin’ yet.” These “sorrows” are but a prelude to what the world will eventually be facing when the Great Tribulation smacks them in the face. Remember, the Great Tribulation begins after the abomination is set up in the holy place (Matthew 24:15-21).
As frightful as COVID-19 is, it is not the beginning of the Great Tribulation. The Jews have not built an altar or temple for the reinstitution of temple worship – which includes animal sacrifices. So this trial will pass if we are patient and call upon God in faith. Remember the words of the apostle Paul: “For ye have need of patience, that, after ye have done the will of God, ye might receive the promise” (Hebrews 10:36).
The Church of God still has a lot of work to do. It is a time to sigh and cry. But it is also a time to shake off the malaise that might be gripping you and sapping your spiritual energy and will. The trial that is upon us now can be a wakeup call for each one of us to get our spiritual house in order and fill our lamps with oil. We must not be like the 10 foolish virgins. We must not fall prey to the attitude of the Laodiceans. Jesus the Christ is saying to each one of us right now, “Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me” (Revelation 3:20).
God and Christ are now knocking on our doors and tugging on our spiritual heart strings. Will we seek Him with our whole heart at this time and focus on the hope of glory, honor, immortality and eternal life in the Kingdom of God? Each one of us must personally give an account as to how we respond at this critical time in history. Hopefully, we will meet the challenge and respond to the challenge that Mordecia presented to Queen Esther: “And who knoweth whether thou art come to the kingdom for such a time as this?” (Esther 4:14).”

Church of God a Worldwide Association
Coronavirus Update from HQ, 17th March 2020:
Sabbath Services
Even though this COVID-19 outbreak has disrupted life on every level, and circumstances are changing daily from country to country, in God’s Church we know we have the stabilizing factor of His presence with us. And even though convening for services in our local congregations is canceled for the next couple of months, one of the most stabilizing factors is that every seven days we will still able to come together as one body, through remote services, to worship God on His Sabbath.
The Church’s administrative team has established a plan for conducting services remotely for the next eight weeks, which includes Sabbaths, the Passover and the Days of Unleavened Bread. For your planning, here is the schedule for the next few weeks:
Sabbath services will be provided via webcast from the Church’s headquarters office in McKinney, Texas, on March 21, at 12 noon Central Daylight Time.
Sabbath services will be provided via webcast from the Church’s headquarters office in McKinney, Texas, on March 28, at 12 noon Central Daylight Time.
Beginning, April 4 local congregations will be prepared to provide their own remote Sabbath services via webcast and phone hookup. Your pastor will provide information beforehand on how to connect.
The Passover should be observed shortly after sunset on Tuesday evening, April 7. It now appears highly unlikely that in the U.S. we will be able to hold the Passover service with all the brethren in physical attendance, but each pastor will arrange to conduct the service via webcast or phone hookup. Members can arrange to get together and tune in to a Passover webcast conducted by their local pastor. Each pastor will provide you with instructions for connecting and the time that services will commence. (If you are unable to tune in to the webcast of the Passover services, we have DVDs of a full service that you can play. We also have written instructions on how to take the Passover at home if you were to have difficulty with the DVD. Your pastor can provide you with the DVD and the written instructions, and he will be able to send someone to help you if there is a need.)
Days of Unleavened Bread
Holy day services on Thursday, April 9, and Wednesday, April 15, will be webcast from the Church’s headquarters office. There will be one service each day at 12 noon Central Daylight Time.
Instructions regarding the holy day offering will be coming.
Connecting to the Sabbath webcast
You can access the webcast from headquarters simply by going to COGWA.TV. No password is necessary. It will also be available on your ROKU channel.

Living Church of God
The Council of Elders made a very late decision to postpone the General Ministerial Conference that was scheduled for March 16-18 in Charlotte, NC.
Convening 200+ ministers (and wives) would not have been possible anyway, because State Governor Roy Cooper issued an executive order on the 14th of March 2020, prohibiting mass gatherings in the State of North Carolina.
“A mass gathering is defined as any event or convening that brings together more than one hundred (100) persons in a single room or single space at the same time, such as an auditorium, stadium, arena, large conference room, meeting hall … the provision of this section shall be enforced by state and local law enforcement officers.”

Coronavirus (Covid-19) Announcements
Church of God a Worldwide Association HQ, 13th March 2020
“In lieu of local congregational services in the U.S. tomorrow, March 14, the Church of God, a Worldwide Association, will be webcasting a live Sabbath message at 2 p.m. Central Daylight Time. Doug Horchak, Ministerial Services operation manager, and Jim Franks, president, will be presenting the messages.
You will be able to access the webcast simply by going to COGWA.TV. No password is necessary. It will also be available on your ROKU channel.
The impact of the coronavirus outbreak has proven to be an extremely fluent situation, with circumstances changing by the hour. Taking all things into consideration, we (the Church administration team) have decided to ask all of our U.S. pastors to cancel meeting for Sabbath services tomorrow, March 14.
We realize this is very short notice. However, out of concern for the safety of the brethren – and given the mounting number of emergency declarations and restrictions from an increasing number of state and local governments throughout the country – we feel it is best to ask all of our U.S. congregations to cancel Sabbath services tomorrow.
Some of our pastors are already reporting local restrictions on meetings. For example, many area schools are being shut and our services are being canceled anyway. Various counties are also restricting meetings effective today. There are reports that President Trump will be declaring a national emergency this afternoon. This will further restrict our ability to hold services.
The administration team will meet again on Monday, March 16, to further discuss the ongoing impact of the coronavirus outbreak and how it will affect our church services in the weeks that follow. From this meeting, we will develop further guidance and recommendations for all of our pastors early next week about the following Sabbaths, upcoming Passover and holy days. We appreciate the patience and co-operation of our ministry and members as we work to give guidance and direction during this unique and uncertain time!”

Vance Stinson, Church of God International, 12th March 2020
“In response to the increasing concerns surrounding the coronavirus, the Executive Committee for the Church of God International is recommending that our churches and fellowship groups consider cancelling meetings and church services for the immediate near future. This action is being taken out of concern for the potential associated with the spread of this highly contagious disease. Individual congregations are certainly able to decide what’s best for their members and are advised to do so with the consideration shared from the home office. Please be sure to check our website in the coming weeks for updates.
The webcast from Tyler will not be available this Sabbath, but we will webcast services at 11:00 AM central time from Atlanta. Regular viewers are also encouraged to view the webcast from Medina at 10:00 AM central time (”

Victor Kubik, United Church of God, 12th March 2020
“In an effort to limit the spread of the coronavirus, several governments (including state and federal authorities in the United States) have either encouraged or required people to isolate or self-quarantine themselves. This month, many colleges, universities, businesses and organizations – including churches – temporarily adopted a policy of working from home and avoiding large gatherings, including church services, sporting events and similar gatherings. This may be disappointing, but it serves an important purpose. As U.S. President Donald Trump addressed the nation on March 11: by “continuing to take these tough measures, we will significantly reduce the threat to our citizens and we will ultimately and expeditiously defeat this virus.”
Following this presidential directive of taking “tough measures” is compatible with our church teachings, as the apostle Paul writes: “Let every person be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and those that exist have been instituted by God … rulers are not a terror to good conduct, but to bad” (Romans 13:1, 3, English Standard Version).
For the moment, we are going to temporarily do the same with our weekly church services (including our smaller congregations). Since a large percentage of our church members are in the high-risk range (ages 70 and above), it is prudent that we not inadvertently expose potentially vulnerable people to the virus, especially as they travel through public places. There is still no vaccine available for this virus and we are not certain what direction it will take in terms of spreading. We do not want to take unnecessary chances.
Therefore, in consultation with Donald Ward, Chairman of the Council of Elders, we are suspending Sabbath services in the United States and abroad for at least the next two weekends. This is an action taken after much prayer and receiving counsel from a variety of competent sources.
On those Sabbaths, in Cincinnati we will be telecasting special Sabbath services (beginning at 2:30 EDT) minus the physical attendance of brethren. Anyone can access these online services at through PCs, tablets or smartphones. We invite any and all from all fellowships of the Church of God to join us. Congregations who have local hotlines set up to reach members should activate them at this time.
The act of isolating or quarantining people against the possibility of mass infection represents a sound response to diseases that are known or suspected to be deadly. The book of Leviticus records several such directions, where people with infectious diseases are required to stay apart from others. A variety of infectious diseases are discussed in Leviticus 13. In the case of an infectious leprosy condition, verse 46 describes the outcome: “He shall remain unclean as long as he has the disease. He is unclean. He shall live alone. His dwelling shall be outside the camp” (ESV).
It is our earnest prayer that this crisis spawned by the novel coronavirus will quickly abate. Especially on these two Sabbaths, we ask that you devote special time to praying for each other. You may also choose to fast sometime in the next few weeks as we approach the Passover during these uncertain times. We ask that you call or contact your brethren – especially the elderly who may be isolated already to a certain degree. As Jesus commanded us all, we are to love one another (John 13:34). In this challenging time, let us redouble our efforts and ask God to help us raise our personal spiritual efforts in demonstrating the divine love that is given to us through the Holy Spirit of God (Romans 5:5). Finally, as Paul encourages us, let “supplications, prayers, intercessions and thanksgivings be made for all people, for kings and all who are in high positions, that we may lead a peaceful and quiet life, godly and dignified in every way” (1 Timothy 2:1-2, ESV).
Now is the time to be personally responsible and to trust God, seeking the refuge that He promises (Psalm 91). Please take deliberate action to sensibly protect yourselves.”

Seventh-day Adventists, Roman Catholics and Evangelicals Sign a Historic ‘Ecumenical Charter’ that Affirms Faith in ‘One, Holy, Catholic Apostolic Church’
Many people were alarmed by this headline news over an article by Andy Roman in the Advent Messenger, Thursday, 20th February 2020.
This Ecumenical Charter was signed by faith group leaders in Bologna, but Tom Kerry of Church of God Ministries International heightened the importance of this local event in his God’s Unchanging Word broadcast of the 28th of February (recorded 2 or 3 days earlier):
Pope Francis Uniting Religions – One World Religion?  (start at 11min.30sec.)
On the 24th of February, Adventist News Network, the official news service of the SDA world church, clarified the situation with the following press release:
“On Saturday, 25 January the pastor of a local church congregation in Italy signed a joint declaration with other faith groups which, while focused on respectful dialogue among and between different religious denominations, contained some statements which run counter to Seventh-day Adventist principles regarding inter-church relations.
The administration of the Inter-European Division (EUD) disapproves the signing of the ecumenical charter, and reaffirms its position concerning the involvement of church entities and representatives in ecumenical endeavors …”

Biblical Calendar 2020
The crescent new moon maps show that the next new moon will easily be sighted on the evening of the 25th of March, so that Thursday, 26th of March will be the 1st day of Abib.
For those starting the biblical new year on the day of the astronomical conjunction, this occurs on the 24th of March at 11.38 Jerusalem time. which is 13.38 Universal (a.k.a. GMT or London UK) time.

For those observing the Abib method [7], and unsure if the next new moon will begin the calendar year, here are Gisela’s pictures and findings in Israel on February 18th, and Brian & Linda Convery’s report on March 3rd.

Brian Convery will be providing Abib reports over the next month:
“Linda and I will conduct a full barley inspection of all our traditionally early volunteer fields on Tuesday the 25th in the South, Central, and North, of Israel. And as usual we will be reporting on any of the other 9 signs/witnesses in creation which attest to, or against, the change of the year in the Land from winter to summer.
This year we will be staying for over a month and will document the maturing locations through pictures and videos in an effort to give you a more realistic understanding of the entire growth process and how weather can affect it in dramatic ways. We should be posting them every 4-5 days if not earlier.
Hopefully this will help you to live the actual experience over that time-frame, and no doubt will increase your understanding of it without actually having hands on in the Land.”

United Church of God
Here is the report of the Council of Elders’ Quarterly Meeting, February 24-26.
The official 2018-2019 Financial Statements can be viewed on pp.12-14 of the January-February 2020 issue of United News.

UCG Members in Reno, Nevada, leave for COGWA …
because the UCG was planning doctrinal changes? No, it was ‘fake news’.
The following was posted by James Malm on his ‘God Our Light’ website, Saturday evening, 8th of February 2020.
(Underneath this is a comment on the 11th from someone involved in the debacle, and after that an update on the 13th, the information for which came from Aaron Dean. In his 16 Feb update James Malm gives his overall view of the situation.)
After Joe Horchak was fired from UCG for the second time, Mark Fike was made interim pastor of Reno and served from August until Aaron Creech arrived as senior pastor in Sacramento/Reno last November.
For several years the clique now running the CoE in UCG has been slowly and subtly conditioning brethren, especially in their home areas and areas run by their close associates, to accept various doctrinal changes. Aaron Creech and his brother Joshua Creech are very close to Victor Kubik.
Once established in Sacramento/Reno, Aaron Creech began indoctrinating people and preparing them to accept the coming changes, but it seems that he was not as subtle as his associates.
Since then, 29 people have left UCG-Reno due to claimed doctrinal / false teaching issues. One should remember that these are strong UCG loyalists who refused to follow Ken Geise in 2010.
Not counting the Creech family that travels from California to Reno twice per month, only 12 UCG members remain and that could change.
Pastor Mark Fike resigned last Wednesday and all local speakers, song leaders and the area elder have chosen to exit. 25 persons have chosen to affiliate with COGWA. The 25 new COGWA members left UCG within the past month.
UCG is trying hard to put a lid on this news, but rumors are swirling across UCG and COGWA. In fact UCG/COGWA people in Sacramento know what is going on with Aaron Creech and in Reno; and the information is spreading as people tell their friends. Is this a taste of what will happen after UCG reinvents itself in May? This memo to the new Reno COGWA members was sent from their new COGWA Reno Pastor – Dave Register:
Hi Everyone,
We had a wonderful first “official” Sabbath service in Reno last Sabbath with 24 attending!
Thank you to everyone who had a part in putting the service together! A special thanks to the Yutzys for finding a meeting room (and guest room for parents/children) at the Hampton Inn, and hosting our first “pot luck” Saturday evening at their home! I hope you all got to taste Craig’s “award winning” chili! Everything was delicious! Thank you all, again!
 I am also pleased to announce we have made arrangements to meet each and every Sabbath at 2:30 pm in the conference room (and guest room down the hall for parents/children) at the Hampton Inn Reno West! I hope you will make every effort to be there each Sabbath for important fellowship and worship together, as we establish our new congregation!
You will also be receiving the Pastors Weekly Update that I send to everyone on my NorCal email list. But, I wanted to let you know that Mr. Clyde Kilough, Mr. Doug Horchak, and Mr. Jim Franks are all enthusiastic about the start of our congregation in Reno, and they have all agreed to come and visit in the near future! Mr. Clyde Kilough (Media Operations Manager and previous Reno Pastor) is scheduled to visit Reno on the Sabbaths of March 7th, and May 30th, Mr. Doug Horchak (Ministerial Services Operations Manager) is planning to come to take the Passover service on April 7th, and Mr. Jim Franks (COGWA President) is tentatively scheduled to visit on Sabbath, June 13th!

Comment to James Malm’s post from: Wayne Icenhower, 11/02/2020.
I’ve been on the periphery, and in certain cases involved directly with the ongoing debacle. I’ll state here that I (along with a few others) strongly advised UCG administration NOT to promote Mark Fike a so-called interim pastor, as he and others in the local leadership were either a part of the problem, or THE problem. I warned Mark Welch in writing that if he continued with the plan to put this guy in charge, there wouldn’t be a UCG congregation in Reno. It didn’t surprise me at all that he was working to move people to COGWA, even while continuing to deal with UCG. Maybe he thinks they’ll give him a paycheck, to get on the payrolled gravy train (so he thinks).
I’m aware of some “doctrinal disagreements”, one of which is honoring baptisms of SDA members. Not much else. Also, Joe “officially” resigned in August, and was not fired twice. Don’t know where that misinformation came from. COGWA certainly didn’t split from UCG a decade ago for “doctrinal reasons”, so it perplexes me why at least of few of those embarking on this new project really think the doctrines are going to be any different.
I also think the numbers are double the actuals. I’ve attended Reno services a few times in the past, and there weren’t more than 15 or 20 total in attendance at that time. Now, I understand there are 6 to 12.
Seems to be some misplaced hubris on the part of Dave Register and perhaps Franks and others, as this certainly doesn’t rank as earthshaking. They don’t know what they’re getting yet, obviously. Most of these folks are troublemakers – in particular their so called “elder” Fike. This guy, ironically, was ordained by Joe Horchak back in 2010 or so, as a reward for being loyal to UCG during the UCG/COGWA split. I can say, first hand, that since we’ve been associated with UCG in this area, Fike has worked to sabotage church functions for nearly all of that four year period. Joe should have removed his credential long ago for insubordination, but he shied away from conflict.
In summary – with regard to Fike and few other of his close associates and family members — GOOD RIDDANCE. I think it will be a very short honeymoon. I don’t have anything personal against either UCG or COGWA, but I would encourage them to pull background checks on folks going over before promoting them to any type of leadership position.

Reno Update from James Malm 13 Feb 2020:
More information has been coming in and it now appears that Aaron Creech was the victim of a long conspiracy by the local elder Mark Fike who was working to gain a congregation for himself in Reno. It seems that in this case doctrinal issues were largely blown out of proportion or invented. That does not mean that there are no doctrinal issues in UCG.
Mark seems to have made big issues out of every little thing for a very long time including while Joe Horchak was there, in an effort to gain a following and congregation of his own. When Aaron Creech was assigned to take over Reno a great effort was made to undermine him. When only a few would agree with him he opted to lead those who would follow to leave UCG and join COGWA.

Update 16 Feb: Considerably more information is coming in about the Reno situation.
Aaron Creech had nothing to do with this situation which began before Aaron arrived in Reno.
The 13 Feb update was information supplied by Aaron Dean who insisted to me that no doctrinal changes were being made.
Aaron Dean may have regarded the issues as minor non doctrinal issues because they were not on the list of beliefs and saw Mark as politicking, but the issues were in fact doctrinal even though they were not listed in the list of beliefs.
In reality doctrine is the Word of God and everything in it, not some humanly devised list. The UCG list is in fact a fake security blanket to deceive the brethren since items on that list can be reinterpreted, and other items not on the list can be changed at will.
Several persons sent their concerns through the proper process right up to the CoE where they were rejected.
The CoE rejection of the different appeals at the same hearing resulted in people leaving at about the same time.
This appears to be a disagreement over doctrine that the sides failed to resolve as I first posted. Among issues:
Praying directly to Jesus instead of to the Father, which Denny Luker introduced into the CoE.
The Mario Seiglie doctrinal committee position that Christ didn’t fully die, He existed in an “unconscious state” for 3 days and 3 nights.
But above and beyond these, there has been an increasingly mainstream perspective of grace, making it increasingly apparent that UCG either desires to be more mainstream, or to appeal more to the mainstream.
[read full text of post]

Festival of Tabernacles 2020
The United Church of God has announced the following locations in the USA, Canada and the Caribbean. Online registration begins on April 12th.
These will be added to our F.O.T. page as soon as the venues and festival information are known.
Information for European locations is already on the website. Registration for France will open on March 2nd; for the others you may register now.
United States : Bend/Redmond, Oregon; Branson, Missouri;
Cincinnati, Ohio; Glacier Country, Montana; Daytona Beach, Florida;
Lake Junaluska, North Carolina; Lancaster, Pennsylvania;
New Braunfels, Texas; Oceanside, California; Panama City Beach, Florida;
Pewaukee, Wisconsin; Steamboat Springs, Colorado.
Canada : Cochrane, Alberta; Midland, Ontario; Osoyoos, British Columbia.
Caribbean : Grenada; Haiti; Jamaica; Suriname.
A tour of Israel is being organized, for which only a few places remain..

The Church of God a Worldwide Association has announced the following sites:
United States: Branson, Missouri; Fort Myers, Florida*; Kerrville, Texas;
Lancaster, Pennsylvania; Myrtle Beach, South Carolina;
Northern Kentucky*; Orange Beach, Alabama; Park City, Utah;
Tucson, Arizona; Woodbury, Minnesota*
* Satellite Site
Canada: Mont Saint-Anne, Quebec; Victoria, British Columbia
Caribbean: Barbados; Runaway Bay, Jamaica
Europe: Torquay, England; Montagnac, France
Registration will open on the 5th of April.
There will be
two specialty feast locations: on the Corinthian isthmus in Greece, and a tour in Jordan. Registration opens on the 23rd of February.

Israel is building the Third Temple under the Aqsa Mosque”
Breaking News Israel reported on January 29th:
A Palestinian “expert” appeared on official PA television, repeating a libelous claim that has become the battle-cry of terrorists. The “expert” managed to fit several other false claims into his few minutes in the spotlight including misidentifying the Muslim building that stands on top of Solomon’s Temple.
Palestinian Media Watch (PMW), a media watchdog that focuses on Palestinian anti-Israel propaganda, reported on the Arabic language program that was broadcast last month on the official Palestinian television network. The program was an interview featuring Expert on international law Dr. Ibrahim Al-Rabi, who was described as an “expert on international law.”
Official PA TV reporter: There is construction work taking place under the Al-Aqsa Mosque to build the alleged Temple of Solomon …”
Expert on international law Dr. Ibrahim Al-Rabi:Regarding this [Western] wall that the Jews claim is the remains of the Temple of Solomon – it must be understood that UNESCO has said that this wall has no connection to Jews, but is rather an Islamic heritage. In other words, it is subject to Palestinian rule and the Jews have no right to it.”
Unfortunately, Dr. Al-Rabi’s claim concerning the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) is accurate. UNESCO has indeed passed several resolutions claiming that there is no connection, historical or religious, between the Jewish people and their holiest site.
Dr. Al-Rabi’s claim is, however, erroneous regarding a few points. The claim that the Temple Mount has any significance to Islam is inaccurate and deeply insulting to some branches of Islam. Jerusalem only took on any significance in Islam in the late 8th century when the Bedouin Muslims prevented the Damascus Muslims from making
Haj (pilgrimage) to Mecca. As an alternative destination for Haj, the Damascus Muslims decided on Jerusalem, adding a Hadith (oral commentary) shifting the scene of Muhammad’s Night Journey to Jerusalem in order to justify their decision.
The source of the Muslim holiday of “Isra” (journey) and “Mi’raj” (ascension, literally ‘ladder’) and the entire Muslim claim to Jerusalem as a holy site is based on a story in the Quran. According to the Quran, Muhammad traveled from Saudi Arabia to “Al-Aqsa” (the far mosque). From there, he ascended to Heaven, returning to Earth the next day.
Dr. Al-Rabi is also mistaken about the Muslim structures on the Temple Mount. Al-Aqsa is the silver domed mosque on the southern end of the Temple Mount compound. The site of Solomon’s Temple is now covered by a shrine (not a mosque) with a gold dome, called
Qubbat al-Sakhrah by the Arabs.
PMW described this claim of Israeli construction under the Temple Mount as “one of the most lethal recurring Palestinian Authority libels.”
The PA regularly claims that Israel excavates under the Temple Mount, thereby endangering the Al-Aqsa Mosque,” PMW stated. “Many Palestinian terrorists who murdered Israelis have explained that they killed in defense of the Al-Aqsa Mosque…Palestinian Media Watch has documented the dissemination of this libel for more than a decade. Hamas too has repeated it for years.”

Philadelphia Church of God
Grant Turgeon stated in a recent talk, “We also found out toward the end of 2019 about negotiations for a possible property in Jerusalem. Negotiations are still ongoing about that, and we may end up looking elsewhere, if the building we want to purchase doesn’t work out.
But we do know that a prophecy there in Isaiah 40:9 must be fulfilled. And we also know that it has to happen on site in Jerusalem.
So whether that specific building is the one, or whether we have to get another one, we definitely will have a pretty heavy presence in Jerusalem in the coming months and years.”
A PCG breakaway group commented in March 2019:
“Stephen Flurry abandoned his post as Regional Director of the PCG in Jerusalem. His father made great plans of establishing a Regional Office in Jerusalem as well as a base of operations for on-site Trumpet reporting. He was also given charge to undertake the initial steps in establishing a branch of Armstrong College in Jerusalem. The details of this plan were covered in an article in the Trumpet Magazine. Stephen Flurry came to Jerusalem for in early 2012 with all the staff and students to help in pursuing the plan laid out by his father, Gerald Flurry. Things seemed to run smoothly for a while, until we learned later than Stephen had decided to abandon Jerusalem in August 2013. The reason for this abrupt termination of the plans for Jerusalem was obviously Stephen’s burning interest in pursuing another work in England and Ireland. In short, Stephen Flurry chose Edstone over Jerusalem!”
The original intention was to re-purchase the property in Bricket Wood, England, that had been bought by Herbert Armstrong. When that fell through, Edstone Hall near Stratford upon Avon was purchased. Gerald Flurry’s personal jet plane has since drained resources, but it seems that there are now sufficient funds to buy a property in Jerusalem.

“Pastor General Gerald Flurry has drawn attention to a special date: January 16. On this day in 1986, the life and ministry of Herbert W. Armstrong came to an end. In the 34 years since his death, a number of major Church, national and world events have fallen on this same calendar date.
Following are some of the most significant world events.”
Gerald Flurry lists a number of events that occurred on January 16 in subsequent years on the pagan Roman calendar to highlight the importance of the date on which Herbert Armstrong died.
January 16 in 1986 was the 6th of Shebat in the Hebrew calendar that the PCG observes. If Gerald Flurry considers that great significance should be inferred from subsequent events that have occurred on the same day that Herbert Armstrong died, should he not have listed events that have occurred on the 6th of Shebat?

Festival of Tabernacles 2020
The Church of God, a Worldwide Association
has announced a number of locations for 2020 in the USA and elsewhere. Details of these and additional sites will be available in March.
The United Church of God has published information on festival sites in Southport, England and Zandvoort in the Netherlands. The latter has already reached capacity, but 125 out of 300 spaces remain in Southport.
David Antion of Guardian Ministries writes:
In 2020 we have a unique opportunity to take advantage of combining a standard 7-day cruise with the Fall Feast. In 2020 the Feast will run from Sabbath to Sabbath — October 3 to October 10. Some of our Brethren suggested a 7-day cruise for 2020. The cruise begins on Sunday, October 4th and ends on Sunday, October 11, 2020 — perfect timing.
The Royal Caribbean ship leaves out of Houston/Galveston, Texas. Should we host a Feast cruise, we would observe the first holy day services (Oct. 3) in a hotel near the port … Tentatively, we are considering a Four Points Sheraton hotel in Galveston with a room rate of $104 per night for services on October 3 and morning services October 4 before boarding the ship.
This letter serves as a survey, requesting your preference for a feast cruise or traditional site in Prescott, Arizona.
The cruise originates from Houston/Galveston, Texas. It sails through the Gulf of Mexico offering three different ports of call to disembark and explore tourist sites that are safe and interesting. Or you can simply remain on board for various activities and just relax. If you have Internet and email you can view the following YouTube video for more information and see the ship and its activities:
For Prescott: A deluxe room for 2 will cost $ 1084.16 for 8 days including the taxes.
The Suite for 2 will cost $1263.36 for the 8 days including taxes.
For the Royal Caribbean: The inside stateroom: $573 per person including tax and port fees for the 7 days. This includes all your meals & entertainment.
The ocean view room: $700 per person including taxes, port fees, and meals and entertainment.
The balcony room: $970 per person including taxes, port fees, and all meals & entertainment.
PLEASE email us at

United Church of God
Registration is now open for the Festival of Tabernacles site in the UK, which in 2020 will be held at the Prince of Wales Hotel, Southport, England.
The meeting room has a capacity of 300, of which 125 spaces remain
The internationally renowned Royal Birkdale Golf Club is close by.
The nearest transatlantic airport is Manchester International Airport.

Christian Educational Ministries
Two reports from the Festival of Tabernacles 2019 …
by Pastor Richard Mogendi (Kisii, Kenya)
This year the Feast was held at Nyakembene, a very remote area within Kisii county, with beautiful hills as designed by God. It went very well and we thank God for giving us the messages to speak and the accommodations for attendees. More than 1000 people attended the Feast with us and on the Sabbath during the FOT we were not able to count everyone – there were many, many smiling faces. We cooked in a small house and we thank God for the men who were serving the brethren by working in the kitchen.
In the past year many people from other church groups were speaking ill of our beliefs, calling us devil worshippers because we kept God’s Holy days and because we did the Passover at night. I encouraged them to attend this year’s Feast to hear the truth. The impact was awesome. After listening to the messages and writing down scriptures as was taught by God through His servants, all the lies and rumors they were spreading about us are now over. They are now asking us to put together a two week crusade as they want to hear more. They were so blessed to have the enlightenment of God’s truth.
We build this faith, a brick at a time, by loving God with all our heart, by trusting Him with all our being. May the Lord’s bountiful blessings keep on overtaking you and we whole heartedly thank you for being a connecting channel and a support for Wisdom Academy, Faithful Children’s Centre, and the local churches.
by Blake Silverstein (Land between the Lakes, Kentucky)
I am happy to say we had record-setting attendance at LBL this year! The amount of good cheer and support was beyond measure. One of the comments that kept coming up on the festival survey responses was how warm and welcoming it felt at this feast site. I must say I agree. The sermons, music, events, and even the free meals were well thought out and executed efficiently. It was also nice that – although this feast site is shared between Church Of God International, United Church of God, Christian Educational Ministries, and various other independent churches – it felt like one group of God’s children worshiping together. It goes to show that we can work together no matter what difficulties lay in our past.
I’m happy to report that we had a couple of baptisms, several ordinations, and even a couple of first-time Feast of Tabernacles observers. The Spirit of the Lord was definitely present at LBL. CEM is pleased to be involved with its production and happy to see all the fruit it continues to bear for God and all of God’s children.
We will be back at the Kentucky Dam Village State Resort Park in Western Kentucky in October 2020. I strongly encourage any and all to come and celebrate with us –
we would love to meet you.

2019 Winter Family Weekend
Christmas Day is on a Wednesday this year, so it’s awkward to include the 25th in a weekend gathering. The Church of God a Worldwide Association gets around this by declaring, “The Winter Family Weekend runs from Tuesday evening, Dec. 24, through Saturday night, Dec. 28, 2019 – so it’s more than just a weekend!”
The venue for its
WFW will once again be the Galt House Hotel in Louisville, Kentucky, and will be packed with sports and social activities …
“On Tuesday evening, we will start things off with a free pizza dinner and family dance. Wednesday through Friday afternoon will be chock-full of more fun! Attendees will have the opportunity to participate in daily educational seminars, basketball, volleyball and special organized games and art classes for the kids. Other activities include the family fun fair (think large inflatables, mechanical bull, carnival games, etc.!), novelty Olympics, karaoke, jam session for musicians, cornhole, children’s clothing swap, prom dress boutique, family bowling/arcade and several dances. For most, the highlight of the weekend is simply spending time fellowshipping with our spiritual family. This weekend truly has something for everyone!”
There will also be a Sabbath service, and the educational seminars for young adults will presumably have religious content.
The United Church of God will avoid Christmas Day this year, for its winter weekends. The
main WFW will be at the Great Wolf Lodge in Mason, Ohio, running from Friday the 20th to Tuesday the 24th of December. There will be a bible study on Friday evening, Sabbath service, seminars Saturday-Monday, and a full program of sports and social events from Saturday evening onwards.
A much smaller
Northwest Family Weekend in Vancouver, Washington, is also scheduled for a weekend – Friday the 27th to Monday the 30th of December, with most of the time on the first three days given over to bible based events, with sports activities on Sunday and Monday.
The Living Church of God’s Charlotte Family weekend, to be held December 25–29 at the Renaissance Charlotte Suites Hotel in Charlotte, North Carolina. is restricted to LCG members.
“The weekend will begin Wednesday, December 25, with arrivals and possible tours of the HQ office facilities. Thursday will involve family games, volleyball and basketball tournaments, as well as other fun and fellowship. Friday will include morning seminars, an afternoon activity, and an evening Bible Study to begin the Sabbath. Saturday will include Sabbath services and an evening dinner dance.”
The original WFW, now in its 23rd year, is the
Lexington Winter Family Weekend, sponsored by the Cincinnati and Lexington churches, which will be held at the Griffin Gate Marriott Resort in Lexington, Kentucky, December 25-29. It is a gathering of many smaller churches and non-aligned individuals, and is open to everyone.

How Long Should A Sermon Be?
The Banned by HWA website is conducting a poll on this subject, which currently shows that 46% are in favour of 40 minutes.
An analysis of Online Sermons by the Pew Research Center of nearly 50,000 online sermons, published on the 16th of December 2019, reveals differences in their length and content across major Christian traditions.
A breakdown of sermon lengths in 4 major church categories shows that the overall average is 37 minutes, with the Catholic homily averaging only 14 minutes, and the Black Protestant 54 minutes. The sermon length of the latter group is thus 46% above the overall average, however the word count is only 11% more.
Pew says, “This suggests that there may be more time in sermons delivered at historically black Protestant congregations during which the preacher is not speaking, such as musical interludes, pauses between sentences or call and response with people in the pews.”
If the overall average of 37 minutes is increased by 11%, the total is 41 minutes.
This is way below the length of sermons in the Worldwide Church of God, and sermons in the largest ex-WCG churches have consistently been over an hour.
The “must play” sermons by Gerald Weston, Presiding Evangelist of Living Church of God, average 72 minutes. The United Church of God has the highest ranking website of ex-WCG churches, and UCG’s online sermons go back to 2000. These show that the sermon length has been reducing, and most sermons are now well under an hour long. 

Church of God a Worldwide Association
The annual Ministerial Board of Directors convened on December 9-11 at the church’s new HQ in McKinney, Texas.
There was one change in the composition of the board, Lyle Welty replacing the recently deceased Richard Pinelli.
There is far more space than in the previous rented building, which has enabled this annual meeting to be videoed for the first time. The December 12 edition of In Accord provides very brief presentations from the meeting.

COGWA has published its attendances for the 2019 Feast of Tabernacles.
The totals represent the high attendance figure at each festival site.
The total attendance figure worldwide has been in the 9,000-10,000 range since its first festival in 2012. The total for 2019 was 9,886, compared with 9,830 in 2018.
There was a 30% increase from last year in the number of “shut-ins” – the total number receiving DVDs or watching the webcasts – from 841 in 2018 to 1096 in 2019.

United Church of God
The report of the Council of Elders Meeting, December 9-11, included the following:
The Feast of Tabernacles had a total attendance of 13,235 with 64 Feast sites for 2019
People on the USA file associated with the Church (teens, members, associated) is at 12,261
Eleven new ordinations, bringing the total to 399 elders in the UCG:
110 outside the USA, 289 in the USA
75 church pastors and 11 associate or assistant pastors
195 churches and Bible study groups in the U.S. (180 Congregations)
124 baptisms so far in 2019
Average USA Sabbath attendance continues to hold steady is currently ranked the 16th highest Christian denomination website in the world by Alexa (in the past we have been as high as #9), and #46 among all Christian-related websites.
Income for the fiscal year ended June 30, 2019, was over $19 million, about the same as the prior year, and net assets increased, as they have done consistently over the past several years. On the other hand, operating expenses during the year increased significantly over levels seen in prior years. The complete audit report will be printed in the next issue of the United News.
The Doctrine Committee (DC) has completed eight projects this year – no details given of the doctrinal questions raised or the outcome.

Philadelphia Church of God
The 7th of December was High Mountain Cake Day in the PCG.
Thousands of members on several continents celebrated the 30th anniversary of the Philadelphia Church of God on the Sabbath of December 7 … marks the anniversary of Mr. Flurry’s firing from the Worldwide Church of God for remaining loyal to the teachings of Herbert W. Armstrong and writing Malachi’s Message (with a little help from Jules Dervaes).
Members in congregations around the world also celebrated the day with special displays and cakes of their own, many of which were decorated with a theme of a “high mountain,” a reference to Mr. Flurry’s November sermon regarding the Church’s work in Jerusalem.

Living Church of God
Rod McNair writes: “…it has been almost six years since the Living Church of God has had a General Ministerial Conference. We are planning one for March 16–18, 2020.”

Legacy Institute
Leon & Gloria Sexton wrote, 26th November 2019:
Dear Brethren and Fellow Laborers,
We have all been REFRESHED and have REJOICED at the commanded Feast of the Lord! We really didn’t want to see the Feast end! Gloria for one, did not want to come home. We had special western guests (David Bensinger from Idaho; Paul Adcock, who is presently teaching English to 400 students in Korea; and Paul and Rie Sternberg, who live in Bangkok); and all of us here in Burma were so thankful for their serving hearts in this far away country with very strange sounding names to us westerners. We are all back in our homes, and truly look forward to next year, AND, forever look forward to the plan that God has for us and all mankind!
This year Gloria and I traveled to Myanmar (Burma) a bit early for an important meeting arranged by David Bensinger with deacon MyoZaw from Yangon, Davidson HlaBey and SawHlaEh from Sakhangyi, and pastor GumSengAung from JawkTaing. MyoZaw’s lawyer was also there to guide us through questions for which we all needed some answers. Three major questions were in regards to:
1. Land ownership;
2. Was it necessary to register a church in Burma—and would there be any repercussions;
3. Government schools not allowing students off for the Sabbath.
SengAung was relieved to learn that the JawkTaing church compound had the correct land papers for land that had been given by a Karen’ grandmother many, many years ago. It is land that can
only be church land and never changed! Also, in JawkTaing, we had never wanted to register the church so that we would keep a low profile. We learned that this was a good decision. When discussing government schools, the lawyer kept saying “wait until 2020.” It seems there may be better changes coming to Burma. We sure hope so. In the meantime the Sabbath will be kept.
A very great blessing for all our brethren in both Sakhangyi and JawkTaing is that they have been safe from the military activities that still exist continually.

Living Church of God
Gerald Weston writes: “We have put on hold doing any more TWNow programs at this time. Dr. Scott Winnail moderated and coordinated the program, but we have moved him to the day-to-day responsibilities of serving the Charlotte congregation.
Our pastor, Mr. John Strain, was recently diagnosed with lymphoma and will be “out of service” for an expected six months. Please remember him and his family in your prayers.
This change does not allow time for Dr. Winnail’s role with TWNow or for the on-site Living Education program.
In addition, we have been evaluating the effectiveness of TWNow since its inception and we know that many members loved it (I hear this all the time), but our commission is to preach the Gospel to the world, and other initiatives are fulfilling that task more effectively. A typical TWNow program received a few thousand views, but some
Tomorrow’s World telecasts, TW Viewpoints, and TW Whiteboard videos are reaching hundreds of thousands, even millions.”
The average number of views for TWNow on Youtube is 803.
TWNow, LCG’s venture into live broadcasting of its Tomorrow’s World programs, was launched in 2017. Gerald Weston wrote in Church News on the 23rd of March 2017:
“Some of you may have found our new livestreamed program, Tomorrow’s World Now. Thursday at 3:00 p.m. (Charlotte time) was our second attempt at live broadcasting on YouTube and Facebook. We are currently testing it once a week, with an eye to going five days a week in the future, but right now we are having to work through technical challenges, and as we get our feet wet, we are discovering what does and doesn’t work well regarding the format, so if you do tune in, please be patient with us. We believe TWNow has great potential, but we are far from where we want to be.”
Dylan King introduced
this “brand new technology” (brand new to LCG that is) for the test transmission and first full broadcast, which were studio discussions, each participant wearing headphones, reminiscent of those used by Herbert Armstrong in his early radio broadcasts, when that technology was new. The technological problems were solved, but the content remains drab. LCG dispensed with Dylan Kings enthusiastic style of presentation, but retained the ‘talking heads’ studio format.
The test transmission was “found” by 1166 people on YouTube, and 1092 watched the second program. Weston’s announcement of the broadcast boosted the viewing figure for the next program to 2145, after which the viewing numbers quickly fell away …
1. 1166   2. 1092   3. 2145   4. 1973   5. 1452   6. 1422   7. 1312   8. 1136
This sharp decline should have prompted Gerald Weston to review the format.
Perhaps the decision now to suspend TWNow was prompted by negative reaction to LCG’s Behind the Work video for the 2019 Feast of Tabernacles.
Instead of a glossy video about congregations around the world and news of ‘the work’, feastgoers were given an extended version of TW Now, with the Presiding Evangelist, Gerald Weston, in a studio with three other talking heads, having a general discussion on end-time prophecy, and recalling when and how they first came into contact with WCG literature. For Doug Winnail it was when his younger brother handed to him a copy of Herbert Armstrong’s 1975 in Prophecy. Church members were supposed to go to a ‘place of safety’ in early 1972 of course, followed by 3½ years tribulation and the return of Jesus Christ in 1975.
Just as Roderick Meredith was stuck in the 1950s, constantly recollecting his then close relationship with Herbert Armstrong, so these men today remain stuck in the 1960s and 1970s, blissfully unaware that there might be any problems with WCG’s end-time prophecies.

Biblical Calendar 2020
For the first time this century the vast majority of churches will be keeping the annual holy days and festivals in 2020 on the same days.
The Jewish calendar [1] and the WCG Hebrew calendar [2] have a double postp
onement (the reasons for which will be explained when the Biblical Calendar 2020 page is published). This results in the 1st day of the 1st and 7th months being moved from the molad (mean conjunction) to the evenings when the new moon can be sighted in Palestine.
The vernal equinox in 2020 at Jerusalem occurs at 05.49 on the 20th of March, and the astronomical new moon is at 11.28 on the 24th of March – thus the new moon nearest the equinox [3] [4] and the new moon following the equinox [5] [6] are the same.
The calendars using the astronomical conjunction
[3] [5] – which are few in number – therefore start the months 2 days prior to the other calendars.
Biblical calendar
[7] – based on the barley harvest in Palestine – has to be confirmed, but is most unlikely to be different.



[2] [4] [6] [7]

[3] [5]

New Year’s Day




Lord’s Supper/ Passover/Seder
(evening before)




Festival of Passover/
Unleavened Bread




1st Day of
Unleavened Bread




7th Day of
Unleavened Bread




Firstfruits Festival

May 29-30

May 31

May 31

Day of




Day of




Festival of




1st Day of




Eighth Day




COGWA & LCG – Festival of Tabernacles 2019
Jim Franks of COGWA has announced that the total attendance for 2019 was the highest ever, with holy day offerings in the USA up almost 12%.
More people attended than actually registered, he said. At Park City, Utah, two overflow rooms had to be provided, while at Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, registration was closed early at the 1000 mark, but space had to be found for another 100 who turned up.
Maybe some of the extra people came from LCG, as one LCG member reported to Banned by HWA that 800 registered for Pigeon Forge, Tennessee, but only 600 attended.
Another commented that at Branson, Missouri, on the Last Great Day, up to one-third of the feastgoers there had decided not to bother attending the afternoon service.

United Church of God
Peter Eddington, Media Director, wrote, October 29:
We are pleased to inform you that during the recent Holy Day season, phase one of a massive two-part print advertising campaign became operational. From October 6 through November 3, 2019, the United Church of God will have placed 30 million
Beyond Today magazine and booklet (study guide) ads in households throughout the United States. Phase two of this effort will occur in January and February 2020, when an additional 70 million ads will be placed.
This huge advertising campaign in which coupons are placed in Sunday newspaper inserts, highlight two booklet ads—The Book of Revelation Unveiled and Angels: God’s Messengers and Spirit Army. These ads proved highly successful when measured against four other booklet ads during small volume tests that we conducted last year. Since both ads generated excellent cost-per-response in those trials we are confident they will prove successful in the course of each phase of this roll out.
After people respond to our ads and receive their literature, they will have the opportunity to learn from a variety of articles in
Beyond Today magazine. Plus, by reading the booklets they will examine in great detail, biblical information that they may have never before heard, seen or understood.
You may be asking why we selected October, January and February for this major campaign? By the time October rolls around many families, especially with children, have settled into a routine after summer vacations and yet it is prior to the busy Thanksgiving and Christmas holiday season of late November and into December. Also, January and February are generally colder months when many people spend more time indoors and therefore may take a bit more time reading their Sunday newspaper. The opportunity to maximize response is the overall reason why we selected these months for this particular major advertising effort.
Thank you in advance for your excellent, ongoing support and encouragement. We sincerely appreciate your prayers for the success of not only our print ad campaigns but for all the Church’s numerous efforts to reach people around the world with the true knowledge about Jesus Christ and the coming Kingdom of God.

Kenya Hands of Hope
Bill Goff writes, 24th October 2019:
“Hope everyone had a Spiritual and Prosperous Feast of Tabernacles.
At the orphanage in Sengera, there were around 500 men, women and children in attendance. The brethren thank all of you who helped support this year’s Feast, from the bottom of their heart.

We are also happy to inform you that the construction of the new boys’ dormitory is moving right along. As you can see in the picture below, much progress is being made.

I will be returning to Kenya this week. Aside from working with the orphans’ training, and overseeing the building project, we will also be visiting numerous remote church groups. We also have a number of visit requests from prospective members. Yes, our Heavenly Father is still calling people in East Africa. Apparently There is still room in the wedding banquet that He wants filled.” 

Feast of Tabernacles 2019
As in previous years, Branson, Missouri, tops the most popular festival sites with 9, but it now has a challenger – Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, which also has 9 festival sites there.
There will be live broadcasts of services and bible studies from 16 sites in the USA, 1 in Canada and 1 in the UK. Some will be broadcasting on from Sunday evening, October 13th, to the 21st. Links to all the festival sites are listed on the Live Broadcasts page.

United Church of God
Feast of Tabernacles 2020 Announcement :
After a gap of more than 20 years, we are very pleased to announce that the Feast of Tabernacles will be held again in the Netherlands. This time around, it will not be held inland but on the shore of Zandvoort aan Zee, a short 30 minute drive from Amsterdam.
Next to the Dutch brethren, we have room for 175 international transfers. We have plans to offer cultural activities from excursions to Amsterdam proper to an excursion to a traditional Dutch village with wind-mills and its authenticity retained. At this village you can take pictures not only of people in traditional Dutch costumes, you and your family can wear these Dutch costumes yourselves and have your picture taken in traditional Dutch costumes and take pictures home as souvenirs.
Prepare to meet and join in 2020 the Dutch brethren and to celebrate God’s Feast of Tabernacles in the lowlands of Zebulon!
Feast of Tabernacles 2020: Begins at sunset the evening of Friday, October 2, and ends at sunset on Saturday, October 10, 2020.
Location: Strand Hotel Center Parcs, Trompstraat 2, 2041JB, Zandvoort aan Zee.
Zandvoort is best known for the Grand Prix / Formula 1 race circuit, and will become even more well-known if the Dutch racing-driver Max Verstappen wins his first Grand Prix race in Zandvoort before his own fans! That could be the case on 3 May 2020.
Zandvoort aan Zee has a railway station which is only an 8 minute walk from the Feast’s meeting hall. Zandvoort is ideally located. It is not far from Schiphol Airport and is close to the official Dutch capital of Amsterdam. Zandvoort aan Zee also has its own ship museum and natural park. This feast location offers hotel rooms and an adjacent park with cottages of differing sizes. This park also has a subtropical swim paradise.
If you are interested in viewing more details, click on this link:
If you have questions, feel free to email us at:
Marcos Rosales (Feast Coordinator for this site, and an elder of the United Church of God serving the Dutch congregation.)

2019 … “The Best Feast Ever” ??
Victor K
ubik writes: The United Church of God is nearing its 25th anniversary. This time is proving to be one of critical reflection … Where have we been? Where are we now? And perhaps most importantly, where are we going? …
Dr. Ward noted that with the incredible experience of the Church’s youth camps, young people in the Church “may be so excited through their teen years” about biblical truth, but then comes a challenging “transitional period between high school and college and the first year of college” that often proves to be a difficult time to stay grounded and committed to the truth of God. It is during this critical transition time that young people can be in danger of slipping away …
Thursday conferences, as Dr. Ward mentioned to the Council, are open and honest discussions, even to the point of admitting that sometimes the weekly church presentations in our congregations are “stale”. To build more energy and excitement into our weekly church meetings, Dr. Ward noted that “some of those things we could do – shorter sermons and more focused sermons and improving our messages – we really need to focus on … we really need more excitement and energy in the local churches.”
Is Donald Ward correct in supposing that young people in the Church are excited through their teen years about biblical truth, but then slip away when they leave home? Could it be that children get bored much earlier with “stale” sermons and dull music styles, but continue attending until they are no longer obliged to do so by their parents?
What is their fondest memory of the youth camps? – the messages of “exciting biblical truth”, or the sports and social activities? Admittedly, young people flock to the corporate churches’ Winter Family Weekends – but do they go for the services and bible seminars, or for the sports and social activities?
Jim Franks of COGWA said recently that, “For the past 18 months, our unique visitors to Life, Hope & Truth has leveled off at just under 500,000 per month. This is about half the number we were getting at our high point. We are investing resources to develop a strategy to increase our numbers. There are some technical things that we can do with the Internet, but we also realize the need for more compelling articles that get people’s attention …”
Last week Clyde Kilough stated that the number of visitors to the website is now down to between 300,000 to 400,000 per month.
Could the 2019 Festival of Tabernacles become the “Best Feast Ever” with “exciting”, “energetic” music and “compelling” content? – or will the spiritual food be mostly recycled, warmed up messages from previous feasts?

Biblical Calendar 2019
There will be some start time changes for the live broadcasts of services on the Day of Atonement – Wednesday, October 9th.
The new moon was sighted on Sunday, September 29 by many over the Americas, from Jerusalem at 6:54pm, by Devorah Gordon, followed by Rebeca Corlan, Ion Corlan, Cristian Pricop, Dawn Austin, Grant and Reidar, and from the Zevulun Valley at 7:01pm by Yoel Halevi and his son. The Day of Trumpets for biblical calendar [6] is thus confirmed to be on Monday, September 30th. (Sunday, September 29th for [5]).
Almost all Jews celebrate Rosh Hashana – new year’s day – on this day.
Why does the Jewish calendar year begin in the 7th month?
“1st day of Tishri or Tishrei = New Year For Years (i.e. this is the date for when Creation occurred in Jewish tradition, that is, the creation of the world and of Adam and hence is the date for when the year number changes in the Hebrew/Jewish calendar) …
Originally, the Civil New Year occurred on the 1st of Nissan or Nisan, when the reign of kings was dated beginning on the 1st day of Nissan or Nisan. Later on, after the exile of most of the Jews who lived in the Kingdom of Judah to Babylonia by the conquering Babylonians … the practise of observing the New Year For Kings and Festivals on the 1st day of Nissan or Nisan was ended and the Civil New Year was changed from the 1st day of Nissan or Nisan to the 1st day of Tishrei (or Tishri), that is, on Rosh Hashanah.”

(Elimelech David Ha-Levi, Jewish (Hebrew) Calendar – Origin And History)
2019 is one of the 7 years within the calendar’s 19-year time cycle when a 13th lunar month is added in order to keep the calendar synchronized with the solar year.
The calendar year normally begins at the
Molad Emtzai (mean conjunction) – Sunday, 29th of September – but this year a postponement rule applies, which does not allow Rosh Hashana to fall on a Sunday, so the Hebrew calendar year 5780 (2019-2020) begins on Monday, September 30th.
What is the reason for the postponement?
“Rosh Hashana never falls on a Sunday because that would mean that Hoshana Rabba (the last day of Sukkot, which always falls on 21 Tishri) would fall on a Saturday, which would not be desirable. In Talmudic times, Hoshana Rabba was regarded as a day much like Yom Kippur. It brought to an end the long holiday period beginning with Rosh Hashana, and was considered to be the one final opportunity to reverse an unfavorable decree issued against the individual on the High Holidays.
If Hoshana Rabba were to fall on the Sabbath, this would interfere with the ceremony of beating a bunch of
hoshanot (willows) during the synagogue services, an action forbidden on the Sabbath.” (Alfred J. Kolatch, The Jewish Book of WHY, p.228)

Living Church of God
Gerald Weston writes in LCG’s latest update (Sept.19):
“… we notice that when a Holy Day falls between Monday and Friday, our attendances are lower than when a Holy Day falls on the weekend. Everyone should be prepared to take time off from work or school, as this is an annual Sabbath, a Holy Convocation (a commanded assembly – Leviticus 23:4, 23–25). The difference in attendance is not great, but it is noticeable.”
Members are expected to make an offering on every annual holy day in addition to tithing. Not everyone can afford to take all these days off work, or is allowed to take their children away from school, and those who don’t attend might not send in an offering.
And some of those who do pay offerings in addition to tithes cannot afford to do so …

“… we take up offerings on these special days, and I hope all are preparing for this in advance. Sometimes people write checks for money they do not have in their accounts. Sadly, this costs them exorbitant fees, but what many do not realize is that fees are also charged to the Church. Please prepare in advance for these special days and do not give what you do not have.”
The Philadelphia Church of God expressed the same problem in 2018:
“Some members unfortunately have been over-generous. In processing holy day offerings and other donations, the business office has encountered more than 50 returned checks. A returned check ‘bounces’ because the amount written on it is higher than the amount available in the checking account. When banks process these checks, they stop the intended donation from going through and often charge the Church a fee.”

Dynamic Christian Ministries
Message from Wes White: No “Start Our Sabbath” tonight!
I am sorry, but we can’t get the show on the air tonight. For some reason, we can’t get our Mevo camera system to connect with Facebook.
When technology doesn’t work the way it is supposed to, it makes me want to connect some tin cans together with a long string. That 100 year old system of communication may not work well, but at least it works. ?
We apologize for this. We will work on this problem during the week and try again next Friday evening. Thanks for your patience. Have a goooood sabbath!

The main subject in Start Our Sabbath at 9.00pm ET on Friday, Sept.20th, will be “Socialism in the 21st Century”.
This follows up on the post below re COGWA’s annual audit, which shows that a very low percentage of its income is being spent on preaching the Gospel.
Wes White writes:
“Is preaching the Gospel important? You bet it is!
If this is true, then why is it that many of the Sabbath-keeping church of God organizations are now spending only about 25% or less of their income on preaching the Gospel?!?
The reason is simple. They now spend anywhere between 40% to 50% of their income on ministerial salaries and benefits! And why is more being spent on the shepherds than on the Gospel?
The reason is simple. Many of these groups consist more and more of elderly people. Their ministers have an average age of around 65 to 70. These groups are losing their young people and aren’t bringing in new, younger members. And why is that?
The reason is simple. Because many of them preach extra-biblical nonsense! They are making political matters part of their outreach message!
This Friday night on “Start Our Sabbath,” we are going to take a fresh look at the economic system of socialism. Why? Because many COG ministers are spending a lot of time preaching and writing about socialism. (Yes, their new god seems to be politics.).
So on SOS we, too, want to address the issue of socialism — not to promote it or condemn it. But to put it into proper Christian perspective. The church needs more balance on this topic.”

Continuing Church of God
Bob Thiel, commenting on an LCG News & Prophecy article re Hurricane Dorian that mentioned Ezekiel 7:26, writes: “As far as Ezekiel 7:26 goes, it will affect many Christians in the end-times. Here is the entire verse: Disaster will come upon disaster, And rumor will be upon rumor.
Then they will seek a vision from a prophet; [emphasis his]
The people in the Bahamas have had disaster, but have not sought out any true prophet.
Sadly, since Ezekiel 7:26 is directed towards God’s people, based on Jesus’s word in Revelation 3, most Christians will wait until it is too late to flee from the Great Tribulation (cf. Zephaniah 2:1-3; see also There is a Place of Safety for the Philadelphians. Why it May Be Near Petra).
Ezekiel 7:26 actually ends, ‘… But the law will perish from the priest, and counsel from the elders.’
Bob Thiel considers himself to be a true prophet, perhaps the only one in the Churches of God today. A true prophet is not needed to foresee a hurricane – just a reliable weather forecast – so what protection would Bahamian Christians have by joining the CCOG? Identifying when and where the Place of Safety will be? Bob Thiel says it may be near Petra.
Matt.24:15,16,21 When therefore ye see the abomination of desolation, which was spoken of through Daniel the prophet, standing in the holy place (let him that readeth understand), then let them that are in Judaea flee unto the mountains … for then shall be great tribulation, such as hath not been from the beginning of the world until now, no, nor ever shall be.
It would make sense for those in Jerusalem to flee into the mountains to the south, which is where Petra is located, but why should anyone else go there?

Church of God, a Worldwide Association
Britton Taylor, reporting on COGWA’s audit for the year ended December 31, 2018, wrote: “… income received for 2018 was just under $12.7 million – the highest in our history. This was a 6% increase over 2017, which was a strong year with income close to $12 million. Total expenses for 2018 and 2017 were about $11.8 million and $11.3 million respectively.”
So how is the money being spent?
Salaries and related expenses represented 43.8% of income. The ministry is elderly, so the rate of this expense will increase, in order to fund ministerial retirement pay and sickness benefits, and the recruitment of replacement ministers.
Public proclamation of the gospel, the focus of most ministries, amounted to $1,216,976 – which is 10.3% of annual income. This low percentage is due to its public proclamation being currently restricted to its website, Life, Hope & Truth – which is not as effective as the leadership had hoped.
Visitor numbers declined through 2018, so in January 2019 the media department (which is outsourced) was given the task of improving website visitor numbers and page views by refining its search engine optimization tactics, redesigning the website, adding and changing content, and other techniques to enhance its attraction.
Jim Franks, writing in his September 2019 member letter, now recognizes that the content also needs to be attractive:
“… we are working hard at upgrading our Internet presence. For the past 18 months, our unique visitors to Life, Hope & Truth has leveled off at just under 500,000 per month. This is about half the number we were getting at our high point. We are investing resources to develop a strategy to increase our numbers. There are some technical things that we can do with the Internet, but we also realize the need for more compelling articles that get people’s attention and that proclaim the true gospel to a world that is spiritually starving.”
One comment on the PTG [Preaching The Gospel] website stated in 2012, in the wake of the UCG/COGWA split, that:
“Larry Salyer (former UCG media director) was strongly opposed to any increase in PTG expenditures beyond the 19% level. Robin Webber campaigned for the council with a message of “dramatically increasing the expenditure on public proclamation”. Webber won, Salyer lost.
This was a central part of the leadership change that led to Salyer and others departing. UCG then very quickly increased PTG expenditures to 31%. They tried to maintain that level, but have run into these recent difficulties.
Has UCG followed through on proclaiming the gospel?
Its latest accounts, for the year ended June 30, 2018, show that it spent $5,044,659 on public proclamation, out of its total annual revenue of $19,772,322, i.e. 25.5%.

House of God
In December 2017 Ron Harmon felt it necessary to leave this Texan group of churches. Shortly thereafter he founded Tomorrow’s Church of God, which meets in Temple.
The congregation in Eddy, near Waco, has now left and reformed as the 7th Day Congregation – Eddy. It is co-sponsoring a Festival of Tabernacles site in Temple, with the Church of God Proclaiming the Kingdom, which meets in Burleson, Texas, and has been active since 2000.
Tomorrow’s Church of God will be keeping the festival in New Braunfels, Texas.
The House of God has for many years held the festival in Galveston, but there will not be a festival site this year.

United Church of God
The Council of Elders Meeting Report for August 20-22, 2019, included a presentation by Peter Eddington on the results from the Nielsen report for
Beyond Today on WGN America. The report, which was for February- April 2019, included:
Watch time: Sunday = 40,000 people on average watch at least one minute of the program each week; Saturday = 12,000 people on average watch at least one minute of the program each week.
Age: Sunday = 69% are 55 years old or older; Saturday = viewers skew slightly younger.
Race: Sunday = 70% are white; 22% are black; Saturday = 60% are white; 40% are black.
Education level: Sunday = 68% had a college education or greater; Saturday = 82%.
Political leanings: Sunday = 58% are Democrat, 33% are Republican and 9% are Independent; Saturday = 55% are Democrat, 22% are Republican and 22% are Independent.
The higher percentage of Democrats watching Beyond Today was a little surprising to some Council members. Dr. Ward wondered why our message is more appealing to Democrats rather than Republicans.
Mr. Eddington had one theory that conservatives are generally happy with their churches, but those leaning to the left are still searching for answers.

Biblical Calendar 2019
The crescent new moon was sighted in the evening of August 31 by many people, including:
* From Ma’ale Adumim at 7:12 by Roy Hoffman, followed by his daughter Rina.
* From Beer Sheva at 7:22 by Yochanan Zaqantov and Meir Rekhavi.
* From Tiberias at 7:23pm by Dennis Chkolnik and Maureen Chkolnik.
* From Eilat at 7:25pm by Lucas Schneide together with his children Alon, Lior and Sumadhi, and Anabelle Santos.
* From Arad at 7:26pm by Judith Rood.
* From Galilee by Becca Biderman
For those observing the Aviv calendar method [7], the Day of Trumpets began at sunset.
Live services for this evening and Sunday, the 1st of September are listed on the Live Broadcasts page.
The Day of Atonement will be on Tuesday, the 10th of September.
The 1st day of the Festival of Tabernacles (Sukkot) will be on Sunday, the 15th of September.

Continuing Church of God
Bob Thiel writes, August 29th:
“In 2013, we actually had two leaders in Kenya with the same first and last name (but from different towns). The first one turned out to be a complete fraud, while the other one was not. The first leader we started to work with in Malawi, while not a complete fraud, had severe integrity issues, so we stopped working with him. As it turned out, in time, we ended up with many more times the number of congregants in both Kenya and Malawi than those leaders with integrity problems claimed to have.
Recently, I am saddened to say, we became aware of an integrity problem with a leader in Mexico (Ismael Jimenez). So I investigated this by checking with multiple sources. Furthermore, I and a minister from another COG group gave him opportunities to repent and ‘come clean’ so to speak, but as of yet he has not truly done so. So, the CCOG has had to drop affiliation with him, and we hope and pray that he repents. We also pray that those who had fellowship with him will one day see the truth about this and again wish to support the work of the Philadelphian remnant.
Working on this matter took up inordinate amounts of time, and more time looks to be required.

United Church of God
The Council of Elders Quarterly Meeting Report, August 19th:
Firstly the bad news:
Average U.S. Sabbath attendance for June 2019 was 7,085. (7,459 in 2016)
 The donor list now includes 7,415 people – peak number was 9,564 in June 2016.
Co-worker count is 6,276 – 1.3% decrease over the same time last year, and 1.8% decrease over two years ago.
During the last few years health claims have exceeded budget by a significant amount.
And now for the good news:
Telephone and website responses from Beyond Today TV for 2019 will easily outpace 2018 by about 40%.
The Beyond Today YouTube channel has had 11.22 million views (a 30% increase over a year ago), has 50,687 subscribers (a 42% increase over a year ago), and hosts 2,017 videos (8% more than a year ago). has broken into the top 10 list of Christian denomination websites around the world – currently ranked at #9! This is the highest ranking to date. And is currently ranked #28 of all Christian websites globally.

UCG has just announced its 2019 Winter Family Weekend.
It has chosen not to include Christmas Day this year in its weekend schedule, which will run from Friday, December 20th to Tuesday, December 24th.
Beneath the WFW information is a video from 2011 … “you might also be interested in …
December 25 – Was Jesus Really Born on Christmas?

Living Church of God
Gerald Weston writes:
“We are looking forward to the 2019 Charlotte Family Weekend to be held on December 25–29. A firm contract for the facility was signed April 30, 2019, and we have been proceeding according to plan. Apparently, some heard that we had cancelled the weekend, but that rumor was mistaken. In the future, if anyone has a concern about an issue like this, rather than passing along and spreading an unfounded rumor, the proper procedure is to contact your pastor for the correct information. It should also be noted that we are open to ideas and input from individuals, but we must not get caught up in movements and the pressure tactics of social media that are so common today.

Why would some LCG members be spreading rumors that the Family Weekend has been cancelled? Why would there be movements and pressure tactics on social media, trying to persuade fellow members that it would be wrong to attend this weekend?
Perhaps because it seems to some to be too much like a Christmas celebration. There are sports and social events – just like the secular world enjoys at this time – and the weekend always includes Christmas Day, even if the 25th falls on Wednesday, as it does in 2019. Would Herbert Armstrong, whose doctrines LCG’s ministry claims to uphold, have promoted this modern practice?

Church of God, a Worldwide Association
The International Leadership Program is being held in the UK at Cranfield University, from the evening of Friday 23rd, Saturday 24th, and Sunday 25th. Those scheduled to come from HQ are:
Jim (and Sharron) Franks, COGWA President
Leon (and Reba) Walker, COGWA International Coordinator
Doug (and Tanya) Horchak, COGWA Ministerial Services Operations Manager
Clyde (and Dee) Kilough, COGWA Media Operations Manager
Britt (and Donna) Taylor, COGWA Financial Operation Manager
Joel Meeker, Chairman, Ministerial Board of Directors, & French Language Director
Bernard Hongerloot, Translator & Administration for French Language Areas

Continuing Church of God
Bob Thiel has added two biblical verses to the church’s picture logo:
“Fear not little flock” Luke 12:32 – “Let Philadelphia Continue” Hebrews 13:1
“Luke 12:32 is shown since we are a “little flock”.
And a literal translation of Hebrews 13:1 points to the work we are doing.

“The work we are doing”, he says, is continuing the Philadelphian era work begun by Herbert Armstrong and the Worldwide Church of God… “we show that love through proclaiming the good news of the Kingdom of God around the world and supporting poor brethren. “Pure and undefiled religion before God and the Father is this: to visit orphans and widows in their trouble” (James 1:27). And we have regularly been providing relief to the hungry, widows, and orphans (mainly in Africa).”
Was the leadership of the WCG noted for its “Philadelphia” i.e. “brotherly love”?
How much of WCG’s vast wealth was used to provide international relief to the poor?

Living Church of God
Gerald Weston writes, August 8th:
“Another of Mr. Rod McNair’s programs was censored in Australia. Apparently, any comments about traditional marriage or pro-life are not suitable for children. To see what we had to remove from his program in order to air it in Australia, go to the
Tomorrow’s World YouTube channel and watch “25 Seconds Banned by the Anti-God Agenda.” Brethren, when you look at the 25-second clip that had to be removed, I think you will agree that “truth is fallen in the street” (Isaiah 59:14), and that we are rapidly moving to a time when there will be a famine of the word. “‘Behold, the days are coming,’ says the Lord God, ‘That I will send a famine on the land, not a famine of bread, nor a thirst for water, but of hearing the words of the Lord. They shall wander from sea to sea, and from north to east; they shall run to and fro, seeking the word of the Lord, but shall not find it’” (Amos 8:11–12).
Australian TV companies do not have “Anti-God Agenda”, but entertainment organizations are mindful of the attitudes of their target audiences and sponsors. This is illustrated by an event in Australia earlier this year.
In April 2019 Israel Folau, a devout Christian, had his multi-million dollar contract terminated by Rugby Australia (the national rugby union governing authority), following an Instagram post,  which condemned 8 categories of sinners to hell, lest they repent and be saved by Jesus. His “error” was including homosexuals in the biblical list.
Rugby Australia deemed Israel Folau to be in contravention of Part 2.1.3 of its Code of Conduct: “Treat everyone equally, fairly and with dignity regardless of gender or gender identity, sexual orientation, ethnicity, cultural or religious background, age or disability. Any form of bullying, harassment or discrimination has no place in Rugby.”
When t
he issue of Israel Folau expressing his personal Christian beliefs on social media first arose in 2018, Channel 9’s Today program discussed the financial implications for Rugby Australia. It was really about the money, not the ethics.
Miranda Devine pointed out on the
Today Show (14 April 2019) that the biblical sins that Folau listed “would be most of Australia” – and that, “almost half the players in rugby union are of Pacific Islander background, and most of those are devout Christians.”
Rugby Australia chose to invoke the contravention of the “sexual orientation” part of the Code of Conduct, and to discriminate against the “cultural or religious background” of Israel Folau and all the other Pacific Islanders.
Major sponsors like Qantas need to be pacified. Tiny organizations like the Living Church of God can be told what they may and may not say. If they decide to go elsewhere, the tiny revenue they provided will hardly be missed.

Philadelphia Church of God
Stephen Flurry’s first set of Personal Appearance Campaigns proved to be more successful than those given by Gerald Flurry since the campaigns were resumed in 2017. He delivered lectures to magazine subscribers in Red Deer, Alberta, on June 23-24, then Spokane, Washington, on June 25.
The Red Deer campaign attracted 66 non-members of PCG on the first night, and 27 on the second night, of which 12 registered for follow-up Bible studies.
The Spokane event had lower attendance, but the highest follow-through rate since the campaigns resumed in 2017. 74 were non-members, constituting 73% of those who requested tickets, and 10 signed up for a follow-up Bible study.
In New York City on June 30 and July 1, 50 non-members registered for a follow-up Bible study, setting a sign-up record since campaigns resumed in 2017.
On July 2 in Memphis, he spoke to 52 non-members, about 20 of whom expressed interest in a follow-up Bible study.

Seventh Day Adventist
The official website claims a membership of over 20 million, but Loren Seibold writes in Adventist Today that the claimed numbers in many North American congregations might be up to 5 times the true total, while in India it could be up to 30 times. Even so, the SDA can still count its membership in millions.
“Do you ever look at all the names in your church directory and wonder who some of those people are? It’s pretty common for church memberships not to match participation.
But your congregation’s membership-participation differential is excellent compared to the eastern part of Uttar Pradesh, India. This conference (called “section” in India) has 32 congregations. Yet this small region claims an astonishing 41,312 members, which would mean that they have an average membership of 1,291 in each church.
Says Pastor Gladwin Charan, who is himself from Uttar Pradesh, “There is no SDA church in Eastern U.P. section where 100 people can sit and worship .… There is no village in entire Eastern U.P. section where you will find 20 SDA members.”
But they’re beat out by the
Western Uttar Pradesh section, which claims 20,230 members in just seven congregations! After we wrote about this in an Adventist Today news report, we heard from many who told us that this is true not only in the Southern Asia Division (SUD), but in other parts of Asia, as well as in Africa and Latin America.
Did the mission tourists sweep in, hold meetings, build churches, baptize thousands, and then when they went home, so did the new members? Probably that’s part of it.
But the numbers in some areas are astonishingly out of whack, making one suspect that some of them were simply penciled in. Although the
SUD adjusted its membership downward by about half a million in May, the memberships per congregation in many areas still seem extraordinary, and the statistics in Uttar Pradesh that I cited above changed little in the adjustment.”

Legacy Institute
Gloria Sexton writes:
It is difficult for Leon and me to tell you all the blessings that have come about here in Thailand and Burma. We have had the loving support from our Hong Kong brethren – that is the UCG Hong Kong board approved the costs for making possible the Dobson visit. Also Earl Roemer and Vic Kubik were fully supportive! In the ministry, we have worked under the Dobsons twenty years ago in Palmdale, Lancaster,and Bakersfield, CA – so there is a huge TRUST factor; AND, they have now served in an Asian country for over five years. Also since Mr. Earl’s visit to Myanmar last year – we see someone who is dedicated above measure – and also understands Asia for over 20 years.
We will quote Mr. Earl Roemer: “While Leon is currently boldly facing serious health challenges, it is obvious that God is upholding the decades of work Leon and Gloria have expended in Thailand and Myanmar through LEGACY. I am very pleased to be welcomed by Leon and Gloria to help carry on the work they are doing and have done in that region of the world …
In a debriefing session with David and Denise Dobson … We had a VERY productive and profitable discussion about assisting in serving the brethren in Yangon and Northern Myanmar. We discussed forming a TEAM to assist in serving the brethren in Mynamar. There is obviously a multiple of factors that come into play. Keeping the LEGACY EDUCATIONAL PROGRAM viable and continuing; serving the brethren GOD is working with; and offering leadership training for those who serve ‘boots on the ground’ in the region.”
A December invitation was extended by the United Church of God for our JawkTaing, Myanmar pastor Gum Seng Aung,and his wife Jum Seng Pan,to be a part of a four-day pastor’s leadership training program in the Philippines. They will also be taking their new baby Ja Seng. They already have two children (Blessing 10, and Naw Naw 4½). This too is being funded by our Hong Kong Brethren! This is an awesome opportunity for them to be able to attend in an ASEAN member state, since no visa is required! Plus, it will be with Asian brethren who have similar Asian cultures. In Thailand we say: “same, same, but different.”
The Dobson visit was a miracle blessing, made possible by brotherly desire and love, and by the Hong Kong brethren. Legacy will continue at this time. The visit has given us encouragement and a PLAN so that our brethren here in Thailand and Burma will not be left behind without an overseer! Our discussions helped us look to the future of our brethren. Legacy still has monthly physical needs that must continue to be met both in Burma and in Thailand. So dear donors – brethren and fellow-laborers – please continue your support as you have faithfully done. We have seen a huge drop in income. We will move on – fight on – as God leads us.

Ronald L Dart Evangelistic Association
Gary Gibbons has resigned from
the leadership of the RLDEA, which now comprises Cathy Gibbons, Wes White and Nancy White.
“While serving as a member of the Board, I have seen much growth in this ministry and I am truly satisfied with the progress we have made. I feel that my contribution as a Board member has met its limit and that it would be beneficial to the organization and myself if I were to step down. In doing so, I will be able to spend more time with my home duties, other volunteer services and my part-time business.
Thank you for allowing me the opportunity to be a part of such a strong and dedicated organization. I have no doubt that Ron and Allie would be proud of our accomplishments and I look forward to hearing of the continued success of RLDEA.”

Wes White comments: “I am still close friends with the Gibbons. Almost since the first day after Allie asked me to help her out by doing volunteer work at CEM, the Gibbons and I have been close. Nothing in that regard has changed. We still have lunch on a regular basis. We talk and text and email regularly.
And, perhaps most important, Gary is still doing RLDEA’s commercials, voice overs, and other audio work. So he is by no means gone from RLDEA.
I will always be appreciative that Gary did what he promised Allie he would do. He pledged to get RLDEA set up and moving in the direction that she wanted with a strong social media presence. Gary has met his obligation and is moving on with other things in his life. He will receive a reward for his service.
Personally, I will be forever grateful for his work on RLDEA, because I certainly could not have gotten things this far without him and Cathy.
Which brings me to my next point: If the goal of the Gibbons was to “take over RLDEA” and “get all of Allie’s money,” they are going about it backwards. Until Gary’s resignation, the Gibbons had two votes on the board and I only had one. They could have removed me from RLDEA. They could have made decisions that I disagreed with. They could have done things that would have forced me to resign for reasons of conscience. (Yes, I have heard all the rumors.)
Well, now that Nancy has replaced Gary on the board, the Gibbons no longer have what other people call “control” of the board. And actually, this whole idea of “control” is absurd, because the Gibbons and I have been in agreement probably 99% of the time as to what RLDEA needed and needs to do next.
There has been so much said about the Gibbons “getting” Allie’s money. The Gibbons didn’t “get” any of what Allie’s will left to RLDEA. I know how every penny of RLDEA’s money gets spent. In fact, as the guy who hires staff and contracts jobs out and makes purchases, it is Wes White who actually spends RLDEA’s money – not the Gibbons.
And I am proud of what we are accomplishing in the one year that RLDEA has been active. We’ve only just gotten started. We’ve got a lot more ideas for things we can do to accomplish our mission of preaching the Gospel and feeding the flock thru the terrific works of Ron.
All those who have falsely accused the Gibbons of being “snakes in the grass” might have to re-think the evil things they say about them. In situations like this, the true colors of people come out in the end. Gary’s departure from the RLDEA board is a demonstration that the Gibbons are people of high moral character – something I have been saying for years. They have no desire to “control” RLDEA and, thereby, “get” Allie’s money.
Further, I hope there is at least some small degree of appreciation of the fact that RLDEA is transparent regarding its board. Some of the Armstrong offshoots’ boards are NOT open about who is on their boards.
Even their members and donors have no idea who is running the organizations they support. As soon as Gary resigned and Cathy and I replaced him with Nancy, we updated our website for the world to see.”
There will be a
Remember the Sabbath broadcast this Sabbath at 3:00pm ET. Wes White will talk about whether or not the Old Testament has been accurately preserved, the Apocryphal books and the Greek Septuagint.

Worldwide Church of God, Angola
Victor Kubik writes, 1st of August 2019:
“Along with Jorge and Kathy de Campos, Beverly and I visited our partnering churches in Portuguese-speaking Angola. The faithfulness of the Angolan brethren is in the class of those listed in Hebrews 11. They have endured war, poverty, betrayal, and now persecution. Yet they have remained faithful, almost 6,000 of them scattered throughout the nation of Angola. From last Friday through Monday, we worked through a full schedule that included Sabbath services, Bible studies, meetings with their council, a women’s seminar, leadership training, visits to primary schools that they operate, and simply fellowshipping with people of like faith and practice. Local radio and national television reporters even stayed for Sabbath services and then interviewed us.
On the Sabbath, 1,873 people attended the combined services at the Vidrul congregation in Luanda, Angola. This is the largest group that I have spoken to since the start of the United Church of God.
The United Church of God has a sizeable amount of literature translated into Portuguese that includes 36 booklets and the 28-page bi-monthly magazine
A Boa Nova.
The Angolan brethren continue to need our urgent prayers for their standing with the local government. The government has recently requested additional information from the Church to meet the government’s prerequisites. The main requirement that the Church does NOT meet is the country’s new legal requirement of 60,000 adult members or at least 1,000 members in each of their 18 provinces. This is an impossible target to achieve.
Therefore, the Angolan leadership is asking for the international prayers of God’s brethren beseeching God for a miracle in this stressful situation. Should they not receive this permission, the Angolan churches of God will all be legally forced to close down, the facilities will be locked and they will NOT be able to meet on the Sabbaths or for God’s annual festivals. Your prayers are sincerely appreciated!”

Continuing Church of God
CCoG brethren have so far been deprived of watching their prophet speaking live, but this will change on Tuesday, August 6th, with his first live Bible study on various topics:
e realize that most of our English-speaking brethren in the Western Hemisphere as well as in the South Pacific rarely get live Sabbath services.
We have been looking at seeing if we can do something such as having some type of live Bible study online on a weekday on occasion. While we realize that YouTube has issues, at this time this looks to be the most cost-effective way to have an interactive Bible Study for us.
We have scheduled this for 4:00 pm PDT (5:00 pm MDT, 6:00 pm CST, 7:00 pm EDT) Tuesday, August 6, 2019.
(The start time equates to midnight UK, and 2am in East Africa.)
And, since it is our first attempt at this, do not be surprised if we run into some technical issues. However, we did a test last Friday that worked, so hopefully most of the bugs have been worked out.
While I will try to take emailed questions while live, it would be good to have some questions emailed to me prior to this Bible Study as it may be difficult to be opening emails while I am also being videoed. Send questions to and just put Q&A as the topic, so I will consider them for this upcoming session.
To watch and listen, at the appropriate time, you can go to the following link:

Voice in the Wilderness Church of God
Bill Goff writes in his
update, 25th of July 2019:
Early this morning, fire broke in the boys’ dormitory of the Sengera House Orphanage.
Two years ago, we purchased smoke detectors in the States and put one in each building at the orphanage. About 4 am, Nehemiah was roused from a deep sleep by the shrill of the alarm. He got up to find the house engulfed in flames. Young Francis and Timothy were already unconscious because of inhaling the smoke, but he was able to get them out safely. They were taken to hospital and subsequently released. Thanks to God all nine boys are okay. But the dormitory, everything in it and all their personal belongings are lost. It’s believed that the fire was electrical.
Today we were able to purchase some mattresses and blankets. Tonight the boys will sleep on the floor in the cafeteria. It will be their temporary shelter and it will be a bit rough for a while, but our Kenyan brethren are used to rough. We thank our Heavenly Father that all are alive.
This is a major setback to the progress we have been making. The fire department arrived after traveling a great distance and the orphanage has been billed for their service. Our concern, above making certain the children are safe, is the requirement by the local authorities for making sure the children are properly housed.
The immediate needs have been met, however we need to start the process for rebuilding the dormitory and provide clothing for the children, able to show the local authorities that we are in control of the situation and will benefit the children and lessen (but not eliminate) any chances that the authorities will cause difficulties with the recovery.
To that end, I am making an earnest plea for prayers and for those who can help to mitigate the damage done by this calamity.

Third Angel’s Message
Is the Trump administration Catholic? video – 13 mins.
“Mike Pompeo has founded a commission on human rights and the head of this commission is the ambassador to the Vatican. The human rights is to be based on Natural Law, starting in the United States and to be enforced worldwide. Natural Law is a Catholic term …”

Church of God International (UK)
“It has been a year of stability and strengthening of our small but dedicated flock here in the UK, along with continued growth and zeal in CGI Pakistan and Kenya. Pastor Ramocan continues to preach via Skype to these dedicated followers of Jesus Christ in Pakistan and Kenya each Sabbath prior to attending with the UK brethren in the afternoon.
Pakistan continues to grow at an amazing rate, with around 600 in attendance for the Day of Pentecost. They are led by Pastor Zeeshan, and it is our prayer that God will open a door that will allow us to access Pakistan in order for him to have hands laid upon him.
The same applies to our Brother in Kenya, Mohammed Adan. He is a former Muslim Sheikh who continues to work tirelessly for the Word, despite intense persecution. Please hold both of these men up in your prayers — they are good examples of zeal and dedication.”

Congregation of Yahweh (Jerusalem)
Don Esposito writes, 23rd of July 2019:
“Praise Yahweh that I am back from a very long trip to Liberia through Ghana. The trip was quite blessed as I was honored to be able to meet with the Liberian Foreign Minister and share with him my vision from Yahweh for the nation. I was blessed to go with two senior elders on my team, elder Mutai and Elder Kuel.
I was also able to meet with the LUFI (Liberians United For Israel) board, and praise Yahweh that the program is moving ahead and they were all very excited for my visit and for the program. I was also blessed that a news conference was called for my visit from all the TV stations and newspapers in Monrovia, the capital of Liberia. I had a chance to share on national TV about the great work that Yahweh is doing in Liberia in these end times, and answer the reporter’s questions. They also filmed live on national TV from a sermon that I did about “Israel in the End Time”, in a bishop’s congregation that I was invited to.
I was also able to meet with our brethren there in different areas, and speak with them and see about the many hardships that Liberia is going through. Liberia is one of the poorest countries in the world right now, but also has an extreme amount of resources. Their problem is that, due to the hardships and wars that they experienced in the last 20 years, the mentality in the country is not good. Unemployment is at 80%, and there is a black-market economy for most things out there.
They cannot start to build resources, such as farming, because most of it would be stolen as soon as the plants started to come in. A government lady that is a believer there and has helped us much, had a 2-acre plot of peppers, and while I was there was ready for harvest, but every single pepper but one was stolen. The same is in the chicken industry, as they import 100% of their frozen chicken, due to graft and theft.
It was sad for me to see our brethren, who are good people, have to struggle in such an environment. From the civil war, not only was the economy squashed, but so were the values and morals and the family unit. Most men have either been divorced, or have had several children out of wedlock, and this is even the case with the President of the country. The problem being that if our youth don’t first learn core values, then the belief system that will come later is extremely weakened and non-effective.”

United Church of God
Victor Kubik writes, July 18:
Darris McNeely will be traveling to Cote d’Ivoire, Africa, July 24-August 2 for a training session with members from Cameroon, Cote d’Ivoire, Ghana, Nigeria, Togo, Benin and Congo. More than 40 are expected to be present.
Tim Pebworth, regional pastor for French-speaking Africa, and Jessica Hendrickson, French communication web master and analyst, will provide simultaneous translation for the meetings.
Jorge and Kathy de Campos, along with myself and Bev, will visit our Sabbath-keeping brethren in Portuguese-speaking Angola. This is the church that we have become very well acquainted with after more than 25 years. They have fully adopted the Fundamental Beliefs of the United Church of God. In Angola, which is a Communist regime, these people have gone through hardships that we are not accustomed to in our Western world. We will hold meetings with their governing council and meet with their leaders.
On the Sabbath, we will be at combined services with 800 brethren in attendance. Overall, in Angola, there are about 6,000 members with 50 elders and many congregations with 50-60 members each.

2019 Feast of Tabernacles
Over 300 festival sites are now listed.
The website link for the Philadelphia Church of God does not provide a list of festival sites.
The PCG’s festival sites for 2019 are:
Edmond, Oklhoma (headquarters): Cranberry, Pennsylvania: Blaine, Washington:
Lake Geneva, Wisconsin: Indian Wells, California:
Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario, Canada: Invermere, British Columbia, Canada:
Mount Irvine, Tobago: Henley-in-Arden, United Kingdom: Tweed Heads, Australia:
Buffelspoort, Republic of South Africa: Baguio City, Philippines.
You need to be a subscriber to the church’s Trumpet magazine (i.e. a potential member) in order to attend one of its sites.
If you are considering doing so,
this website page provides important information about the PCG.

Church of God, a Worldwide Association
From Jon Pinelli (14th July 2019):
It is with mixed emotions that we inform you all of the death of my father, Richard Pinelli. While we are saddened with losing him, we are grateful he is asleep awaiting his resurrection to eternal life. He died peacefully at approximately 5:00 a.m. this morning in Vancouver, Washington.
Richard Robert Pinelli was born in Chicago, IL on July 25, 1937. He was called into the Church and baptized in 1956. He attended Ambassador College from 1956 – 1961. He married Mary Porter in 1960. My father was ordained into the ministry in the fall of 1963. He would serve God’s people in a number of locations and capacities, in Canada and the United States over the next 56 years. He was preceded in death by a grandson – Justin. He is survived by his sister Eileen Pinelli, wife Mary, son Jonathan, daughter Adrienne, daughter-in-law Debbie, and grandchildren Kegan and Emaerie.
Visitation, Tuesday July 16th 6:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.
Evergreen Memorial Gardens, 1101 NE 112th Avenue, Vancouver, WA 98684.
Funeral and internment, Wednesday July 17th 10:00 a.m. at the above address.

Ronald L Dart Evangelistic Association
Christian Educational Ministries no longer livestream Sabbath services, but the RLDEA has started a monthly live broadcast at the same time, 3.00pm ET, as CEM previously did.

House of God
The twice monthly bible study will in future be on Wednesday instead of Thursday, so the next broadcast will be on Wednesday, July 24th.

Church of God International
Jeff Reed writes, 10th of July: “My Dad David Reed passed away this morning. Please keep my family in your prayers at this time. Thank you for all your concern and prayers you’ve offered up for him. Graveside service for my father will be at 10:00 am Friday at the National Cemetery in Montevallo, AL. The family requests memorial donations are made in lieu of flowers to the Wounded Warrior Project P.O. Box 758517 Topeka, KS 66675 or by phone 855-448-3997.”

United Church of God
Media Director, Peter Eddington, states that, “ is currently ranked by Alexa as the 13th most popular religious denomination website in the world. Last year, the website received over 10 million unique visitors and 99.8 percent were non-members.”
UCG is by far the highest ranked ex-WCG organization, having an Alexa ranking similar to the SDA, whose membership is over 100 times larger than the WCG at its peak.
UCG’s outreach to new people is thus exceptional – but how many of these become members?
Treasurer Rick Shabi reports that, “The Days of Unleavened Bread and fall Holy Day offerings this [past] year were $100,000 over budget, while general contributions were lower. This is due in part to demographics of the Church; as more people retire, they give offerings but have less titheable income.
The income is steadying out in the $18-19 million range, about equal to estimated expenses this year, as they have steadily risen in the last five years.”
The UCG is failing to gain new, younger members to replace those who are retiring and, if there is no improvement, expenses will have to be cut to match the flattening income. Much then depends on the success of the output from the new TV studio.

LifeNets report from Zambia:
On January 29, 2019, burglers broke into the United Church of God Chipata church building. The perpetrators stole furniture, window coverings that the church ladies had lovingly sewn, along with three solar panels. They tried to dig up and steal the submersible pump but failed. Unfortunately, they caused a lot of damage. The solar panels powered the pump that provided clean water for more than 200 area families and also the congregation’s irrigation farm project.
Read about this at
But a reconstruction project was initiated. First, a security wall had to be constructed around the church building and the borehole.
Prior to the break-in, eight viable men had been undergoing a short course in basic bricklaying. These men immediately volunteered to build the wall because engaging private bricklayers would have consumed half the donated funds. Subsistence requirements were provided for this workforce, including food, toiletries and work clothes.
Despite the onslaught of mosquitos and other discomforts, the team slept in the church hall and worked six days a week, from Sunday to Friday. In the evenings after supper, they conducted Bible studies. Consequently, in addition to improving their newly-acquired bricklaying skills, this opportunity of togetherness also improved their understanding of the Bible.
The wall fence was ready for dedication by the time the President of the United Church of God, Mr. Victor Kubik, visited Chipata on 21 April 2019 in the company of Mrs. Beverly Kubik and Mr. Nick Lamoureux and his wife Megan. By the time of the dedication of the enclosure, the back wall was half way up. However, full completion was achieved three days later on 24 April 2019.– Filius Jere

Filius Jere, pastor just sent this from Ngilile Village in Eastern Zambia. This is not an uncommon water challenge. Water from this shrinking pond is the sole water supply for the settlement, including drinking water.
You may doubt this, but over eighty rural households of Ngilile village and surrounding settlements compete with livestock for water for domestic use, including drinking, from this isolated and unsafe water point. Unfortunately, this contest will soon be unnecessary because the water point will soon run dry, rendering both animals and humans without water until the next rainy season. This situation is being resolved as this area is a recipient of one of the boreholes being funded by LifeNets, Australia. I am currently at Ngilile village liaising with the community over the charitable gesture. — Filius
LifeNets president Beverly Kubik writes to our USA board as follows:
This borehole in Ngilile, when it is drilled, is even more important then we could have imagined. Thanks to LifeNets Australia and a blessing from God of finding water, a borehole for the community will soon be a reality. I don’t think we comprehend how desperate some people are just to be able to get some water, any water. Obviously the water hole is not safe for drinking water.

Chaos in Haiti – Caribbean senior pastor Chuck Smith reports:
“I wanted to give you an update on our brethren in Haiti and the volatile situation the entire country is facing. Some have called it civil disobedience, while others call it a civil war. No matter what you call it – it is sad and disturbing to most everyone, especially our brethren. In a country where it is difficult just finding work or food to survive, imagine trying to live a godly life where violence is a way of life. It’s a life where every store, hotel and market has guards with shotguns patrolling the grounds and checking your every move. Haiti is a place where everything not behind block walls is fair game. And yet, God has raised up a rapidly-growing church.
Our brethren, for the past few weeks, have been protected. But, we have many who could not get safe passage to church each week. Roadblocks and thugs looking to rob have made life even more complicated. Thankfully our church hall is truly a ‘sanctuary’ for most of our brethren. Our hall is behind 10-foot-tall block walls with razor wire on the top. We have secure steel doors to keep everyone safe once they enter the compound.
We had hoped to have our long-planned and uplifting Learning Center up and functioning this week, but due to the violence we have had to cancel the classes that were planned for the next six weeks to teach English and Computer Skills to 14 students, which, when completed, would have put them in the top 5% of the country job skill-wise.
But all is not lost, as we will continue to hope and pray for a more peaceful time in the months ahead. Youth Corps and Good Works have made this dream possible and we will find a time with God’s blessing when we can finish this dream. Our brethren are all safe and we have been able to provide extra food for those times when traveling on the roads is prohibited and food is scarce. Deacon Joseph Jean is seeing to the physical and spiritual needs of our 100-plus brethren in Mirebalais.
Tuesday, June 25, the United Nations Security Council approved a resolution establishing a political mission starting October 16 that will officially replace the U.N. peacekeeping activities in Haiti. U.N. military peacekeepers left the country on Oct.15, 2017, after 13 years – leaving only advisors to help reform the government. Will this bring some much needed stability to Haiti? We can only hope and pray, since that is right in the middle of God’s Feast of Tabernacles. I am praying we can have this year’s Feast, so the brethren can begin to have a greater picture of the peace and prosperity promised in the coming Kingdom of God. Thanks so much for everyone’s prayers and support for God’s people in this troubled country. I have not been able to travel to Haiti in the last month, but I am hoping for a small window of time so I can complete the FOT plans. God has shown His protection on every trip so far, and there is much to do since the ‘fields are indeed ripe.’
We have a blog at for those who would like to keep up with God’s Work in Haiti. We usually update it after each trip, but we will try to update it as we hear updates from Joseph Jean about the situation there.”
Here is some additional information from the Good Works page about the Haiti Youth Corps project:
Good Works and United Youth Corps are sponsoring a project in Haiti. This project will take place in Mirebalais in two sessions. On June 23 the first session of teaching English and computer skills in Haiti was to begin, providing invaluable skills for 14 individuals, and the framework for future classes. Unfortunately, with mounting political instability and violence in the country, with the safety of our volunteers in mind, we have had to make the difficult decision to cancel session one.
We are hopeful that the second session scheduled from July 14 to August 4 will proceed as scheduled. This project will provide an intensive six-week course in English and computers, with 14 students teaching English and basic computer skills. Both of these skills are highly sought after in employees in Haiti and will provide a significant economic advantage to the participants.”

Peter Eddington, Media Director, writes, June 25, on the benefits of UCG’s new million dollar TV studio:
“Three weeks ago we reported the highest response for
Beyond Today television and video for the current fiscal year with Gary Petty’s program, “What Happens To Me When I Die?” The United Church of God is now pleased to report another record-high response has been reached for the year.
The program “
You Can Understand the Bible”, also hosted by Gary Petty, which aired the week of May 19-25, 2019, generated the new highest response for the 2018-2019 fiscal year – which ends on June 30. Having generated a total of 502 responses, this program therefore also claims title to the lowest cost per response for all programs aired this year.
The combination of our new video recording facility with a live studio-audience, continues showing remarkable growth in viewership and response.
We are extremely grateful to everyone for the new, beautiful facility and your ongoing prayers for success in reaching people throughout the world with the gospel message about Jesus Christ and the coming Kingdom of God.”

Charles Melear writes, June 25, re 2020 Israel Festival of Tabernacles site:
“Details for a tour of the Biblical land of Israel has been finalized. Why register so far in advance? During the Feast of Tabernacles Israel is a very busy time of the year so we must protect hotel rooms now with commitments and deposits.
Click on this link for details:
If you have questions call (970) 484-5878 or email”

You can’t hire enough police” – Viktor Kubik, UCG President, 20th June 2019.
Before the Soviet Union collapsed in 1991, people were forced under oppressive Communism to obey the law. And, there was compliance. I have traveled numerous times to Russia when it was part of the USSR and then afterwards when it became a “democracy.” When visiting during Soviet times, we always felt safe. Even late in the night, with very little street lighting, we were not concerned about being mugged. We rode subways and walked down darkened avenues without fear. However, when democracy came in 1991, many people felt that this meant they had the freedom to do whatever they felt like doing. Abiding by civil laws quickly deteriorated when it came to be treated a voluntary choice and not something rigorously and sternly enforced. We would not venture out alone at night, even if there were street lights.
I would like to share a
one-and-a-half-minute video that I have viewed a number of times from Harvard Business School Professor Dr. Clay Christenson, who pioneered the now-widespread disruptive innovation theory. He had an interesting interview with a Marxist economist from China. He summarized the interview in a video that has now had more than 1.6 million views. It illustrates the inner core of respect for law and its fruits.
What was the content that made this video so attractive and popular, and why should we in the United Church of God care? The Chinese economist told Christensen that, after a visit to the United States, he now understood why religions like Christianity and Judaism were so critical to the functioning of a democracy. He told Christensen: “democracy works because most people most of the time voluntarily choose to obey the law.” Seems simple – but it’s actually profound!
Why is it profound? The economist attributed this remarkable choice to be an outcome of people
acting on their belief in God. As he told Christensen, “Americans followed these rules because they had come to believe that they weren’t just accountable to society, they were accountable to God” (emphasis added throughout).
I would like to add another personal illustration. We often travel to Africa, where we have built churches, homes and have acquired other properties. We would not dream of owning property there without constructing a brick or concrete wall around the church, topped with electrified or razor wire. Our vehicles are securely locked up for the night, even inside our walled properties. Why? Because it is just a matter of time before they will be burglarized, vandalized and ransacked. More than half of our financial commitment to any project helping people in this stressed economy is for security, security, security.
When our African ministers come to stay with us in the United States, they marvel that our homes are without the ugly walls that they must live within. Why the great difference? One is the manifestation of a society that respects law where everyone benefits and prospers as a result. The other is a beaten down and directly impoverished society being looted by its lawless own. We are blessed by the benefits of voluntary obedience for the good of all.
A law-abiding society with its roots in the Ten Commandments – the bedrock of God’s supreme and powerful law – historically has been a powerful society, a society that largely enjoys peace. To this, Christensen made an insightful observation: “If you take away religion [like Christianity and Judaism],
you can’t hire enough police.” As has been said, one cannot legislate morality. Without respect for law – driven by biblical belief – a society is doomed.
As the Chinese economist saw firsthand, peaceable and law-abiding citizens stand out in an increasingly lawless, “me first” society. That positively ramps up the pressure on us to uphold the standards of being accountable to God and Jesus Christ when others don’t. As Peter noted, our conduct in society and in the church holds critical present and future implications. As he writes to us from across the ages:
“Be careful to live properly  among your unbelieving neighbors. Then even if they accuse you of doing wrong, they will see your honorable behavior, and they will give honor to God when he judges the world” (1 Peter 2:12, New Living Translation).
Our personal conduct – in the church and in the world – represents a deeply important part of preaching the gospel. We are to be an example to the world (Matthew 5:14-16).
Consider this important point: as the legendary UCLA basketball coach John Wooden once said, “the true test of a man’s character is what he does when no one is watching.” Disciples cannot be spiritual “posers.” The result of this lifelong commitment? People marvel that we are focused on doing the next right thing in our lives, particularly in a society that increasingly practices situation ethics and moral relativity.
However, we are definitely not perfect, and sometimes we fail to uphold the high standard that God has called us to. But when we find out, and admit that we’ve fallen short, our merciful God brings us back to repentance, to changing our mind, to changing our approach, and becoming a little more like God as we move forward. Our faith is tested, and through spiritual heavy-lifting we build righteous character, becoming set apart – even holy to God – in the process. The good news? That divinely-refined character will be with us throughout all eternity!
After the time represented by the Eighth Day/Last Great Day Feast, when God the Father comes and makes His home with a divinely-transformed humanity – now sons of
glory (Hebrews 2:10) – there certainly won’t be any need to hire any police!
But until that glorious day comes, we must be vigilant. From ancient times we are encouraged to “Guard your heart
above all else , for it determines the course of your life” (Proverbs 4;23, NLT). The “heart,” as figuratively described in the Bible, is where our commitment, our resolve, and our character dwell. We obey and love God according to what’s in our hearts.
This society is on the way to extinction because of lawlessness – with humanity thinking they can live above or outside the law. The disastrous consequences are automatic. Entire nations are reduced to subsistence poverty because they have been plundered by dictators and oligarchs.
As I write, there is rioting in Haiti as downtrodden people cannot take it any more and are rising up against the one percent elite who obscenely loot the nation for gain, to be stored in willing banks around the world. This violence is directly affecting our work in Haiti and jeopardizes our Youth Corps project which was intended to help our people. Today’s travel advisory to Haiti is: Do not travel to Haiti due to crime, civil unrest and kidnappings. There is an ongoing risk of widespread, violent, and unpredictable demonstrations in Port-au-Prince and elsewhere in Haiti. Violent crime, such as armed robbery, is common and incidents of kidnappings have occurred.
Even in many American cities the cry is loud: hire more police so we can live peaceful lives. Ultimately, that will solve little. The real solution, of course,
lies within – with a changed heart (Jeremiah 31:31-34) that is yielded to God and in harmony with divine principles, being truly accountable to a presently invisible God (1 Peter 1:8).
We in the church are incredibly fortunate to both know these things, and to
act on this critical belief. Let us humbly hold fast to what God has entrusted to us, for as Paul says: “Then we will no longer be immature like children. We won’t be tossed and blown about by every wind of [so-called] new teaching. We will not be influenced when people try to trick us with lies so clever they sound like the truth” (Ephesians 4:14, NLT).
Hold fast to the revealed precious truth of God, wrapping our arms around the spiritual trunk of the tree, that we may positively act on our beliefs, shining out a light of God’s love and truth in a darkened world!

Church of God Ministries International – Manny Rojas
E-mail received from Rick Beltz, 18th June 2019:
We received a report earlier today through a Facebook post that Manny Rojas, 88, had passed away due to his advanced age and declining health.
Manny was born in Costa Rica and spent more than 30 years working as a school educator. He was the director of the House of God in Daytona Beach for many years, until he and his wife Carole generously donated the building to the Church of God Ministries International in 2018.
Cards and notes may be sent to his widow at the following address:
Carole Rojas, 1528 Ridge Avenue, Holly Hill, FL 32117.

Philadelphia Church of God
Since Gerald Flurry flew back from the last in his series of Personal Appearance Campaign in Portland, Oregon at the end of March, he has been suffering from pain in one of his legs. A connection between extensive air travel and leg health problems (particularly in the elderly, whose blood circulation is poorer) is well known.
Gerald Flurry’s son Stephen and his family returned to PCG’s HQ in Edmond, Oklahoma, on June 13th. Stephen Flurry has been replaced in the UK by Wayne Turgeon, Gerald Flurry’s son-in-law.
Stephen Flurry is expected to take over the next series of personal appearance campaigns in North America: Red Deer, Alberta, Canada (June 23-24); Spokane, Washington (June 25); New York City (June 30-July 1); and Memphis, Tennessee (July 2).

Legacy Institute
Update on Leon Sexton’s health, June 9th:
Dear Brethren and Fellow-Laborers,
Leon had an appointment on Monday with his Neuro Doctor. At that time it was decided to give Leon a spinal puncture procedure to see whether or not it was even a good idea to have a brain shunt procedure to drain the water. Leon was diagnosed with Hydrocephalus, the medical term for water on the brain. The spinal puncture drained 100cc and went very well! It was quite amazing to see a difference almost immediately in Leon’s walking, balance, and talking. We are not sure about short-term memory – since this was due to the damage of the stroke. So Leon was admitted to the hospital the very same day. First they must do a switching of medicines since he is on blood thinner. The heart doctor conferred with the neurologist who will do the brain shunt surgery.
Leon has to be prepped 5 days before and at least that long after. So the procedure for the brain shunt is scheduled on Mon. the 10th and if all goes according to plan with
God in all and over all – Leon is to go home on the 16th. I have moved to Lanna Hospital in the same room with Leon.
Please pray for Leon, and you are welcome to put out more prayer requests. It’s a bit of a whirlwind … God knows the timing and this was totally a surprise to happen so quickly. We specifically requested the procedure not to be done on the Sabbaths.
On Sabbath, and on Pentecost, I will meet together with the brethren here in Chiang Mai, and we will play an audio on Pentecost and I will have something written for the Sabbath day before. I will only be gone from Leon for just over 2 hours and Bronson, our son and his wife Jib can help me.
Our prayers are continually with all of you too!
In Christian love, Gloria Sexton.

Pentecost – Shavuot 2019
Some congregations observed the festival in May, but the majority will keep it on Sunday, June 9th. The list of live broadcasts is on the Pentecost
Shavuot page. This includes broadcasts  on Monday by the Bethel Church of God, which was among a small number that split from the Worldwide Church of God in 1974, refusing to accept the switch from Monday to Sunday.
In 1974 a packet of Pentecost material was mailed to all the ministers – but not to the general membership, as Mr Armstrong considered the material to be “technical and complicated” for them.
A special letter was sent to the Spanish speaking members,
“explaining that their Bible does not mean what it appears to say … Our people in South America who have been keeping Pentecost since 1896 on Sunday have proved willing to change, placing their faith in our Church government!”
They had believed Pentecost to be on a Sunday for nearly 80 years, but such was their faith in the leadership in Pasadena that they were willing to change to observing Pentecost on a Sunday?
Herbert Armstrong’s reasoning for a Monday Pentecost had been that:
“In ENGLISH, 50 days FROM a Sunday can be counted NO OTHER WAY than that ONE day FROM Sunday is Monday, and 50 days FROM Sunday always falls on a Monday.”
This is cardinal or “exclusive counting” – 0, 1, 2, 3 etc. – thus Sunday is day 0, and Monday is day 1 of the count – therefore day 50 would also fall on a Monday. This is the dominant method of counting in the USA, and the only one as far as Herbert Armstrong was concerned.
Page 70 of this Pentecost material acknowledges that there is ANOTHER WAY – ordinal or “inclusive counting” – 1st, 2nd 3rd etc. – a way that the rest of the world has always used.
“The versions and foreign language editions – the Spanish, French, German, Swedish, Dutch, etc., etc. – all lead the average reader to the conclusion that Pentecost is on Sunday – not to mention the English Bible. All those translations and probably others make it clear that Pentecost is to be on Sunday.
We have to write special letters to our Spanish members explaining that their Bible does not mean what it appears to say.
Moreover, most of these European languages have the expression “today in eight days”, meaning “next week on the same day as today”. That is, if today is Saturday and we wish to meet some one next Saturday, we say in Spanish and French, “See you today in eight days, meaning next Saturday”. THIS IS INCLUSIVE COUNTING.
All the groups who had some experience keeping Pentecost (and granted there are some aberrant ones) – Sadducees, Pharisees, Samaritans, Karaites, Essenes (Qumran) – count inclusively.”
In biblical times everyone counted inclusively – never exclusively. We are all familiar with the numbers in Latin: M=1000, C=100, L=50, X=10, V=5, but Greek and Hebrew also used letters to denote numbers. That is why, when counting from BC to AD “exclusively”, we have to remember to deduct 1, as there is no year ‘0’. The number ‘0’ was only brought into use with the introduction of ‘Arabic’ numerals.

Philadelphia Church of God
The latest of Gerald Flurry’s ‘Personal Appearance Campaigns’, was in Oregon, where “he quoted Herbert W. Armstrong, who famously and repeatedly said, “Government is everything,” and emphasized that there is one human leader at a time, led by the true Head of the Church, Jesus Christ.”
Gerald Flurry is only one of a number of church leaders vying for the status of being regarded as Herbert Armstrong’s successor. Churches like PCG are not really evangelizing, as they are almost entirely dependent for maintaining their income on attracting the diminishing pool of former members and supporters of the WCG and other splinter churches.
During the return flight from Oregon, Gerald Flurry commented, “We continue to see more of those Laodiceans [former Worldwide members] coming, and I think that’s a good sign for the future. And we ought to move faster if we can get people like that, because they already know so much, and we don’t have to teach them as much as we would the person that doesn’t know anything about our history.”
“For the first lecture, 67 of the 210 attendees were not already PCG members. For the second lecture, 27 of the 150 were non-members. A total of 144 individuals attended both lectures. A few non-members expressed interest in attending a follow-up Bible study.”
At the previous campaign in Florida 187 Trumpet magazine subscribers attended on the first day and 120 subscribers the second night. Only 10 turned up for the follow up bible study … “some of whom are close to being invited to attend Church services.”
PCG is money driven, so the tiny numbers of possible new members is difficult to justify financially. There were considerable unexpected additional costs for the Florida campaign.
“The flight aboard the Church’s Gulfstream G450 aircraft was scheduled to depart Oklahoma City at 8 am. Once airborne, the pilots encountered a malfunction in the motor operating the wing flaps and returned to Oklahoma City. The plane departed again, but again the pilots were forced to return. Miraculously, the pilots found a small charter plane available at a nearby airport. Mr. Flurry, the Heermas, Sloan and Grant Turgeon drove with Granger to the new hangar and took off a little past noon in a much smaller Cessna Citation CJ4 jet.”

Kenya Hands of Hope
Bill Goff reports, 1st of June 2019:
MATARA (the 92 year old man caring 5 orphans) sends his heartfelt appreciation. He is so appreciative to khofh that all five orphans are in school, wearing uniforms and school shoes. And to have a toilet and place to shower (which khofh also funded) is very much appreciated. We are also introducing Matara’s orphans to the Youth Bible Lessons. Previously MATARA was associated with the Seventh Day Adventist Church (SDA).
Thanks to you donors, khofh was also able to continue assisting some of our brethren who were evicted from their homes and property due to the Mau Forrest evacuation. As many of you know, this was a very trying time for our brethren who were chased off of their property and forced to flee for their lives, leaving their few possessions behind. They took shelter in the woods, and even buried some of their children there who died from exposure to the elements. Many of those brethren are still suffering.
We were also able to visit our brethren living in one of the slums just outside Nairobi. Inside the hall where our brethren meet was clean and neat, but outside was in shambles with filth and open sewers. How sad for anyone to have to live in a place like this.
Those brethren really have it rough. Our message to them on Sabbath of 5/18/2019 was full of hope, reminding them that our Lord and Savior is aware of their current suffering, and will soon return with a reward to give every man according to their works.

Nazarene Israel
While some Church of God prophets are reluctant to relocate to their chosen ‘place of safety’, or travel to Jerusalem to be killed as the ‘Two Witnesses’, Norman Willis, Nazarene Israel’s prophet, is backing up his prophecy with action …
‘we identify
the prophetic land of Babylon of Jeremiah 50-51 as the United States of America. We are told that the land of Babylon will suffer civil war and then fall, and we are commanded to flee it. Because I know this, I have relocated to (Valdivia in) Chile.”

Legacy Institute
Gloria Sexton writes in her May newsletter to the Brethren and Fellow Laborers:
We arrived back home in Chiang Mai on the 29th of April. The Passover and Days of Unleavened Bread went very well and all was truly blessed in every way. This is the dry season and we had soaring daily heat (41-43 C or 105 F +/-). The heat, the bumpy bridge, and dirt pathway prevented Leon getting to the church compound. Though water levels are low at the church compound, the “miracle well” still produces daily water.
We were blessed to have services every day. School was out for summer vacation, so all the children were able to come. All youth (age 17 and under) were a total of seventeen each time. On Passover we were 27, and on the holy days we were a total between 50 and 60.
We had four special meals throughout the feast and ICE CREAM, all at the church compound. I was told that some had never had ice cream previously. How wonderful to share this tasty experience!
On Friday, the 8th of March, three of our young people graduated from the Seventh Day Adventist (SDA) High School. We are so proud of them—they truly worked hard.
Immediately after the SDA graduation, SengAung and SengPan did three one-hour computer classes per day with six people in each group. The 25 days of classes, which started on 18th of March, were completed on the 12th of April.
In turn for free classes, students generously helped pick, bag, and peel the sour tamarind which is used daily in so many dishes. Dishes are touched with salt, sweet, sour, and chili—all in one. Yum! But most were sold for a total amount of 140,000 ($92)—and that’s from just one tree on church land.
We are, and have been, running low each month—down to the penny; yet each month we are miraculously blessed—down to the penny—and are able to keep operating! On a side note, please pray that we are able to complete many long overdue repairs and much needed maintenance.
If our youth attend government schools, they are not able to keep the Sabbaths and Holy Days, especially for administered tests. The SDA University and SDA High School have kindly given our young people time off for our holy days. This is such a blessing! As we wrote above, the students are fully aware that the SDA doctrines DO NOT all match the Church of God doctrines. They learn the Truth from SengAung and SengPan.
In Thailand, we have noticed many of the Thais that have desired a better education have gone to what are considered the best schools—Catholic Schools; but still they remain Buddhist in their belief. In Burma, the better schools are also the Catholic and SDA schools. The biggest problem with the SDA schools is that they are not recognized by the Burmese government. So we pray that after their education, God will bless them for keeping His laws and provide good jobs in their future. Nearly all businesses in Myanmar (
and all of Asia) work six to seven days a week. This is a huge test for God’s people! Only the non-governmental agencies (NGO’s), especially the SDA NGO’s, provide good jobs and are more—but not totally—religiously tolerant.
We plan another JawkTaing, Myanmar, youth program during the December-January, 2019-2020 break. If you are interested in volunteering to teach English and/or computer for 10-14 days—while at the same time enjoying a different part of the world, please write us at: for more information and details.
Should anyone be interested in coming to the Feast of Tabernacles in Taungoo, Myanmar, please send us an e-mail to

Bible Sabbath Association
The BSA Fellowship Meeting 2019 is being webcast from the
Church of God Big Sandy and from the Church of God International, Tyler, Texas.
The theme is “Sabbath History: Our Past, Present and Future”.
All are welcome and entry is free.
Fellowship meals will be provided on Saturday and Sunday.
Notification of your attendance will help the organizers (especially when planning food).
The following times are local, i.e. Central Time:
Friday, May 24     7:00-8:30 p.m. – Introductions and fellowship
Saturday, May 25     11:00 a.m.–12:00 p.m. Bill Watson
12:15-1:15 Bryan Burrell     1:30-2:30 Kelly McDonald
3:00-4:00 Church service – Phil Arnold     4:00-6:00 Fellowship meal
6:00-7:00 Tim Kelley     7:15-8:30 Round table discussion
Sunday, May 26     9:00-10:00 a.m. Bill Watson
10:15–11:15 Royce Mitchell     11:30 a.m.–12:30 p.m. Kelly McDonald
12:30-2:00 Fellowship meal     2:00-3:00 John Merritt
3:15-4:15 Phil Arnold     4:30-5:30 TBD
5:45-7:45 Round table discussion     8:00-8:30 Closing remarks

United Church of God
Following the annual General Conference of Elders, the Council of Elders met on May 7-8.
Darris McNeely and Randy Stiver were elected to the Council, to take the places of John Elliott and Rex Sexton. Frank Dunkle will become the Secretary of UCG on the 1st of July 2019, in place of Gerald Seeling.
In the past Council meetings have been video recorded and uploaded onto the Council’s website for general viewing. A quorum of the Council unanimously gave consent without resolution that videos would now be posted to a private link for the ministry to be able to view.

Church of God a Worldwide Association
The biennial International Ministerial Conference will take place May 20-22 at the Sheraton Hotel in McKinney, Texas, which is nearby COGWA’s new HQ. 330 people have so far registered to attend, nearly half of whom are from outside the USA.
There will be a dedication ceremony for the new office on May 19.
The Festival of Tabernacles sites at Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, and Park City, Utah, are now full. The Myrtle Beach venue will have the largest attendance this year of around 1,000.

Living Church of God
Robert Thiel writes, 7th May 2019: “Received the following in an email this morning:
Rod King passed away last night in Melbourne … he has been in a care facility for some time.
Rod King was a minister in LCG, from the UK originally. He was once also a presenter on LCG’s telecast.”
He was diagnosed with stage 4 cancer 3 years ago.
Rod McNair reported April 24th: “Mr. Richard Ames reports that he had a stroke about two weeks ago, but it has not hindered him from spending Passover and the first half of Unleavened Bread in Kansas City and in Joplin, Missouri, for the second half. The stroke has affected his right side, mostly causing numbness, and he would appreciate your prayers for a full recovery.”

United Church of God
The annual meeting of the General Conference of Elders takes place in Cincinnati, Friday-Monday, May 3-6, followed by the quarterly Council of Elders, May 7-9. Issues include annual budget ratification and selection of elders to fill 4 of the 12 seats on the Council.

Voice in the Wilderness Church of God
Bill Goff writes in his April update:
“Hope all of you are well, as you prepare for the upcoming Passover and Feast of Unleavened Bread. We here in E. Africa are also trying to prepare for the upcoming Feast, but are struggling to do so. There will be a total of ten sites keeping this years Spring Feast here in Kenya and Tanzania, with just over 700 in attendance.
Not many realize how many cog brethren there are in this part of the world. In the 1950s the Radio cog under the leadership of Mr. Herbert W Armstrong was broadcasting the Gospel from Radio Luxembourg. A man by the name of Joash living in Tanzania was receiving that broadcast and connected with the church, and the church began to take hold. Even today there are brethren among us here who came into the church during RCOG.”
Evans Ochieng, who formerly worked with Bill Goff and is now with the CCOG, also mentioned Joash in his report, included in Bob Thiel’s letter to brethren, April 11:
“My trip to Tanzania was very good. I got good time to share with brethren in Tanzania, even though I met them in their various places. Mostly I spent much time with Martin Wanga and Joash Okinyi. Joash was a longtime member of Worldwide Church of God. He is a man who long preached the gospel of the kingdom in East Africa. Most of the people {in Tanzania} knew truth from him. We discussed much more about the work in Tanzania. After that we talked about the Passover 2019.”

Philadelphia Church of God
Gerald Flurry has admitted that his recent trip to Jerusalem was a waste of money.
In his member/co-worker letter, dated 11th March 2019, he writes:
“Perhaps God gave us this miracle with the aircraft to encourage us to expect even greater intervention in the days that would follow.
It was not precisely clear to me what God expected us to do on this visit. Brad McDonald and Brent Nagtegaal had prepared a visit with Dr. Eilat Mazar and a tour of the City of David archaeology site.
Nevertheless, I felt God wanted us to step out and make the trip. Isaiah 22:21 says Eliakim is a father to the house of Judah. I fill that spiritual office, an office by which God gives authority to open and close doors according to His will (verse 22). I felt I needed to do more, which is why I decided to go there myself. Again,
we must back our faith with works.
Perhaps he hoped that there might be an open door to sponsor another archaeological project with Eilat Mazar, but as he admits, the purpose in going there was not clear to him.

Gerald Flurry has declared a church-wide fast for the Sabbath of April 13th.
Andrew Locher is open about the purpose of the fast: “Cash flow is at a low point this time of year, and we want to come unified before God asking for financial miracles to strengthen our bank balances.”
A substantial part of the cash outflow is for Gerald Flurry’s private jet, which he used to travel to Portland, Oregon for the latest of his Personal Appearance Campaigns on Sunday, March 24th.
“More than 200 people from eight states and Canada attended Pastor General Gerald Flurry’s first lecture Sunday night. Campaigns dept. encouraged PCG members to “pray for the success of tonight’s PAC and for a safe return trip for Mr. Flurry.”
How many would want to travel from Canada and eight US states, other than PCG members wanting to be in the presence of the man who calls himself “that prophet”?

Visible New Moon Map – April 2019
The above map shows that the new moon would have been easily visible over all of the earth on Saturday evening, 6th of April, given perfect visibility, but there was only one witness to the sighting of the new moon in Israel, owing to cloudy skies.
New year’s day for biblical calendar
[6] has been left unchanged as Sunday, April 7, but it will be Monday, April 8, for those who require two or more witnesses to the sighting of the new moon in Israel.

Is Herbert Armstrong a Reliable Authority on the Biblical Calendar?
Most churches today keep the Hebrew calendar observed by the Worldwide Church of God. Herbert Armstrong, however, demonstrated in his writings ignorance and confusion as to how the calendar that he authorized actually worked.
In 1940 he wrote: “The Samaritans have throughout their history observed the Passover with all its Pentateuchal ceremonial and still observe it down to the present day …
Here are the ONLY people who have kept Passover, continuously, thru all generations without a break, exactly as God gave it to them under the old Testament form …
Could THEY have lost the calendar — the way of figuring WHEN to take it — as God committed it to them? Hardly! Yet they use today the same calendar all the Jews use — the sacred original Hebrew calendar!”
In 1952 (re-published in 1971) he wrote: “The first day of the new year always begins with the day nearest the Spring equinox when the new moon is first visible to the naked eye AT JERUSALEM (not in the United States). The Jewish calendar as used by Jews today is correct.” (This is the calendar observed today by the Church of God 7th Day [HQ in Salem], where Herbert Armstrong was a minister in the 1930s, and was on the Salem board in 1940.)
In 2018 the Samaritan calendar year began one month
later than WCG’s calendar.
In 2019 the Salem church calendar year began one month
earlier than WCG’s calendar.

Sanhedrin to Change the Jewish Calendar
Herbert Armstrong stated in How Often Should We Partake of the Lords Supper (1952 – re-published in 1971) :
“The first day of the new year always begins with the day nearest the Spring equinox when the new moon is first visible to the naked eye AT JERUSALEM (not in the United States). The Jewish calendar as used by Jews today is correct.”
That’s not how the Jewish calendar works of course, but his consistent teaching that God’s calendar begins at the sighting of the new moon might soon become reality.
The Sanhedrin in Jerusalem has established a calendar court, as in the time of the Second Temple, and has been receiving monthly testimonies from witnesses “to accept evidence concerning the sighting of the New Moon, as required by Jewish Law … The purpose of the court is to increase awareness, develop skills, and resolve halachic issues that arise when determining the Jewish Calendar according to testimony by witnesses.”
This ‘nascent’ Sanhedrin is getting close to the point when it will have the authority to make such a change, but it “has not yet achieved
halachic [Jewish legal] status on par with its previous position. It does however have the full authority of a Rabbinical court.”
The Jewish calendar year begins according to a 19 year time cycle, which was fixed to keep Passover close to the equinox (March 20th or 21st), but never before it. The cycle does not synchronize precisely with the solar year, so that Passover is gradually drifting later in the solar year. In both 2016 and 2019 it was over a month after the equinox. The Sanhedrin has not yet reached a conclusion as to how it might solve this problem.

Christian Educational Ministries
Gary and Dianne McDonnell, long-time Church of God members and supporters of Christian Educational Ministries, have requested that we publish their letter to CEM’s board re its legal action.
This open letter has also been posted on
our Facebook page, where you may comment.

An Open Letter to the Board Members of CEM: Willie Oxendine, John Beasley, C. Roderick Martin, Jon Garnant, John H. Currier, Richard Crow and Larry Watkins at 312 W. Main St. Whitehouse, Texas 75791, and to other concerned Brethren.

We, Gary and Dianne McDonnell, both Church of God members, recently received a phone call from a CEM board member that we would soon be receiving a legal summons regarding a home which Allie Dart willed to us.
This summons is directly related to Christian Educational Ministries wanting half of Allie Dart’s Estate and not settling with an offer made by Cathy Gibbons and the two remaining Dart relatives on October 18, 2018. Mrs. Gibbons offered to give CEM 100% of a home willed to her by Allie Dart, a home valued at more than our house, if CEM would take Philip Hufton and us out of the Family Settlement Agreement. Her generous offer would have excluded us as dedicated church members from the litigation.
It read in part, “I (Cathy Gibbons) and the surviving Dart/Driver families are requesting that CEM allow these three parties to fully have what has been willed to them….I believe that the selling of these properties will create a hardship specifically on the McDonnells and Philip Hufton who are members of the Church of God faith… Please consider this request as an act of Christian love…”
But on December 5, 2018, one of CEM’s lawyers replied, “The CEM board declined the offer. I apologize that was not clear from our prior communications.”
It is a great disappointment to us as contributing, long-time members of Christian Educational Ministries that you, CEM board, did not first reach out to us regarding this matter. We have considered many of you our friends and we called out to you by your first name at Holy Days, Sabbaths, and in personal fellowship. We, Gary and Dianne McDonnell, together have been in the Church of God for a total of over 86 years! We are your brethren. Mr. Dart was a great teacher and we are fortunate to have known him. He was fond of 1 Corinthians 6:1-6.
“If any of you has a dispute with another, do you dare to take it before the ungodly for judgment instead of before the Lord’s people? Or do you not know that the Lord’s people will judge the world? And if you are to judge the world, are you not competent to judge trivial cases? Do you not know that we will judge angels? How much more the things of this life? Therefore, if you have disputes about such matters, do you ask for a ruling from those whose way of life is scorned in the church? I say this to shame you. Is it possible that there is nobody among you wise enough to judge a dispute between believers? But instead, one brother takes another to court and this in front of unbelievers!”
We know that you are aware of this scripture and the many other ones that warn about bringing your brethren to court. We believe that the Bible instructs us to sit down together and talk about our differences and try to settle this as Paul wrote. No lawyers. No recordings. No secret legal angling. Just Brethren together working out an important issue. We understand that many of you are scattered across the country and for your convenience we offer to meet with Larry Watkins or whoever else from our faith you feel will represent your side. Meeting in Tyler will entail us driving and flying many hours to meet you in this manner. We are willing to make this effort and discuss this face to face. We hope you share our commitment. Peace to you.
Dianne McDonnell, Gary McDonnell, Kennon McDonnell.

Techno Censorship and Apple’s Sale of Your Personal Data
Bob Thiel commented 24th March 2019 on Brighteon.
Brighteon’s founder, Mike Adams, explains in this
emergency message how he is fighting to survive the censorship assault, without being informed by governments and his upstream providers as to what is specifically unacceptable to them.
In his 2018
video on Techno Tyranny, Mike Adams talks about the online totalitarian society and Apple’s sale of its users’ personal data to China.
(This post is not an endorsement of Mike Adams’s extreme political views.)

Philadelphia Church of God
From Armstrong Remembrancers and Keepers of God Foundation (a PCG breakaway group in the Philippines) 20th March 2019:
If a member is a big tithe payer, the PCG ministers will do everything to keep him in the fold no matter what. But for a member who is more of a seeker of financial assistance due to his poverty, his expulsion from the Church is just hanging by a thread. Historically, there were nearly 300 PCG members in the Philippines who were excommunicated for the flimsiest reasons under the continuing reign of terror of John Macdonald, which was halted only when the Remembrancers burst in the scene and started exposing PCG’s wicked policies and rules. The majority of those members who were spiritually slaughtered by the PCG ministers were excommunicated primarily because of their poverty.
Mr. Naciancino Guillar is a generous donor and obviously, the PCG cannot simply let him go or do something that will make him feel bad or hold grudges against the PCG ministers. The ministers visiting him in Pagadian City are well aware that Mr. Guillar’s son, Joel Guillar, who is a leading member of the ARK of God Foundation, has never been restrained from visiting his father. He can freely come to see him and talk to him anytime. The PCG ministers are very well aware of this, but they would not dare IMPOSE THE NO CONTACT POLICY on Joel Guillar. Mr. Guiillar does not believe in the need to CUT OFF his relationship with his son, and the PCG ministers know that, if they will insist on him to cut off his connection with Joel, the probability of losing a BIG TITHE PAYER is very high. So, they have been very lenient in the case of Mr. Guillar.
Now that Mr. Guillar is threatening to bolt out of the PCG if Mr. Gerald Flurry will decide to split-off with his son Stephen, the more that they are very uneasy about causing Mr. Guillar to have any ill feeling against them.
Let’s see what happens when Mr. Alex Harrison comes to the Philippines for the PYC. Will he take a trip down south
(to visit Mr. Guiillar), or will he require their disabled, two-legged amputee, a senior member from Pagadian City to travel to the PCG office in Angeles City, Pampanga? Most likely, Mr. Harrison will take option 2, which will put the heavy burden on Mr. Guillar, while thinking it will discourage him from taking the trip because of his extreme physical disability. They will avoid a meeting with him at all cost while trying to keep him at ease in continuing his membership in the PCG.”
A post on 11th March said this of Alex Harrison:
He is a Kiwi who is based in Australia and holds the rank of an Evangelist in the Philadelphia Church of God (PCG). He is the Regional Director of the Cult over Africa, Australasia, Oceania and the Philippines.
Alex Harrison is a family man himself and he has a son who has left the PCG, but since he is a high-ranking minister, who can prevent him from breaking their own man-made law? He doesn’t apply the NO CONTACT policy to his son Paul of course. But he is zealous in applying it on the membership beneath him.”
A comment on 17th March might give a reason for the suggestion of a rift between Gerald Flurry and his son Stephen:
“Stephen Flurry abandoned his post as Regional Director of the PCG in Jerusalem. His father made great plans of establishing a Regional Office in Jerusalem as well as a base of operations for on-site Trumpet reporting. He was also given charge to undertake the initial steps in establishing a branch of Armstrong College in Jerusalem. The details of this plan were covered in an article in the Trumpet Magazine. Stephen Flurry came to Jerusalem for in early 2012 with all the staff and students to help in pursuing the plan laid out by his father, Gerald Flurry. Things seemed to run smoothly for a while, until we learned later than Stephen had decided to abandon Jerusalem in August 2013. The reason for this abrupt termination of the plans for Jerusalem was obviously Stephen’s burning interest in pursuing another work in England and Ireland. In short, Stephen Flurry chose Edstone over Jerusalem!”

Living Church of God
Gerald Weston writes, 14th March 2019: “Until now, Mr. Richard Ames and I co-pastored the headquarters congregation in Charlotte, and prior to that Mr. Ames and Dr. Meredith served as co-pastors. I consulted with Mr. Ames and we agreed to turn over the responsibility and title to Mr. John Strain, who will devote full time to pastoring as well as mentoring younger men that we hope to use in the field ministry.”

Church of God a Worldwide Association
Ministerial Services report that Leslie McCullugh died, aged 89, on Monday, March 11.
He was a minister – and for 4 years president – of the United Church of God, and joined COGWA when UCG split in 2011.
“The arrangements have been made for Leslie McCullough. Everyone is invited to the memorial service on Thursday, March 14, at 1:30pm. The location is Croley Funeral Home, 401 N. Center St., Gladewater, Texas. There will be a reception following the memorial at the local COGWA church hall, 24345 CR 3107, Gladewater, Texas. Maps to the hall will be available at the funeral home.
Les was born in Lincoln, Nebraska on Thanksgiving Day, Nov. 28, 1929, to Arthur and Maude (Bascomb) McCullough. The youngest of six children, he and his family moved to Hillsboro, Oregon, in 1935, where he grew up.
Les and Marion (Rothery) were married in Portland, Oregon, on Feb. 29, 1952. In 1957 they moved, along with their daughter, Kimberly, to Pasadena, California, to attend Ambassador College, where he received his BA and later a Master’s Degree. Les was ordained as an elder in Worldwide Church of God in 1962. Two more children, Lynn and Michael, were born during this time.
In early 1965, Les and his family moved to Big Sandy, Texas, to take the position as the deputy chancellor at the new Ambassador College campus, a position he held until 1973. From that time on Les and Marion served in various capacities for the church and college, living in California, Canada, Ohio, South Africa, and England, before returning to Texas in 1995.
Les and Marion moved to Ohio in 1998 where Les served as president of United Church of God. Upon his retirement in 2002, they returned once again to East Texas.
Les was an avid outdoorsman who enjoyed hunting. He was preceded in death by his parents, Arthur and Maude McCullough, and siblings Hubert, Herbert, Ida, Vivian, and Doyle.
Les is survived by his wife, Marion; two daughters and their spouses; Kimberly and Ron Mabry, Gladewater, Texas; Lynn and Matthew Gus, Plano, Texas; one son Michael, Minneapolis, Minnesota; and beloved dog Willie.
Cards may be sent to: Marion McCullough, 7105 White Oak Rd, Big Sandy, TX 75755.”

Biblical New Year
For those observing the Aviv calendar (7), there has been agreement among the Christian search groups in Israel that sufficient aviv barley has been found, but a contrary view among Jewish Karaites.
Ronald Sessions explains on the Bible Calendar Forum that for the former, ‘There must be enough barley available to make the sheaf (an omer) for the offering to be made on
First Fruits (Lev 23:9-14).’ For the latter, ‘There must be enough aviv barley in the fields to declare that ‘The Barley in Israel is aviv’. I think varying groups have varying ideas as to how much (what percentage) is required to be Aviv, but it is generally a much larger quantity than would be required to make only the offering.’
Final aviv report from Becca Biderman, 6th of March.
Final aviv report from Todd Palmer and Brian Hoeck, 6th of March.
Yoel Halevi and Devorah Gordon carried out searches on the 6th of March. Yoel Levi continued on the 7th and uploaded 2 short videos of areas that had been reported as being aviv.
Brian Convery’s Zoom meeting discussion on the 7th of March has been uploaded on to YouTube –
The New Year from Jerusalem.
The new moon was visible over the Americas and West Africa on the 7th. The new moon was not sighted over Israel, so the new year will start this Sabbath for those using this location as their criterion.

United Church of God
A detailed written report and video reports of the Council of Elders meeting, 25-27 February 2019, have been uploaded.

Continuing Church of God
On Tuesday (Feb.26), evangelist Evans Ochieng sent the following report:
Today is a wonderful day in Malawi to bring many people in God’s family.
The baptism of today was wonderful because we had true needy people who are obedient and full of faith. I baptized 29 people in Malawi. They were 31 people but two failed to come because of sickness problem but the 29 came … The service was good.
Of the 29 baptized, 5 were from Mozambique and 24 from Malawi.

Passover 2019
Michael Rood has organized a Messianic Passover weekend, The Waters of Salvation, for March 22-24, at the Crowne Plaza in Charlotte, North Carolina. A ticket will cost $259, which does not include hotel accommodation.
He observes the Aviv barley calendar, but the start of the biblical year could be in March or April – and will not be determined until early March. He has ‘jumped the gun’ in arranging this event for March, because it has had to be planned well in advance – therefore it might only be a ‘dress rehearsal’ for the actual Passover in April.
One of the other speakers is David Robinson, the Co-ordinator of Aviv Fellowships, who describes himself as having definitely experienced “the dark side” of ministry.

Philadelphia Church of God 
PCG needs to turn many more of its magazine subscribers into members, as it struggles to maintain the upkeep of its Armstrong Auditorium and Gerald Flurry’s private jet.
Stephen Flurry writes to subscribers: “Hundreds of thousands of people in more than 130 countries read the
Trumpet. But few act on it. Maybe this includes you. They follow the message, they agree with it, but they have yet to take the next step.”
He will urge its magazine subscribers “to make a greater commitment” in the first of a series of live broadcasts on Sunday, 24th February 2019.
“Mr. Flurry will broadcast live from Edstone Hall on the Philadelphia Church of God regional office campus in Warwickshire, England. The television department there recently purchased streaming equipment and renovated an area in the loft of the building as a studio space.”

Living God Ministries
Bill Glover, co-founder of Living God Ministries, has died, aged 84.
His wife Esther (née Cole) attended Scravel Hill Church of God, Seventh Day in Oregon when Herbert Armstrong was the co-pastor. Her older brothers, Raymond and Wayne, were among the earliest students at Ambassador College, and both became leading ministers in the WCG. Esther followed them to Pasadena, where she met Bill Glover, and they were married in 1955.
Their son Stephen graduated from Ambassador College in 1984 and was hired into the ministry in 1987. The family separated from the Worldwide Church of God in 2000. Members from previous congregations began asking to meet with them, and as a result Living God Ministries was formed by Stephen and his parents in Eugene, Oregon.
In addition to local groups in Alabama the ministry conducts telephone Bible discussions for scattered members. Bill and Stephen also undertook two trips together to Kenya, where a number of churches of God were planted.
Living God Ministries; P.O. Box 250504; Montgomery, AL 36125
Email: (Stephen Glover)

Darwinian Evolution
According to The Center for Science & Culture :
“More Than 1,000 Ph.D. Scientists Are ‘Skeptical’ of Darwinian Evolution.”
Check this short video

Church of God, a Worldwide Association
Jim Franks reports on the new office building in McKinney, Texas (which will replace the rented office in nearby Allen):
“I never thought I would be posting a building update in February, but here it is! Our original date for moving into the new building was just prior to the Feast of Tabernacles or just afterward. No one thought we would still be in our current office in Allen into the new year.
But the end is in sight! We have good assurance from the builder that he will finish by Feb. 19. After that it will depend on the city of McKinney to issue the final occupancy certificate (OC) or at least a temporary occupancy certificate (TOC). We have another three weeks to go and that should be enough to get everything done. We unfortunately had to pay rent for another month (February) for our Allen office. But because of all the delays, our builder has agreed to help with some of the cost for the additional month.
We have contracted with a moving company to move our furniture from Allen to McKinney on Monday, Feb. 25. Our last day of work in the old place in Allen will be Friday, Feb. 22. Our plan is to move all the technical equipment – computers, servers, etc. on Saturday night and Sunday (Feb. 23 and 24). Then everything else will be moved on Monday. When the furniture arrives, we should have all our computers, servers and other equipment up and running. So, there should be very little downtime.”

There will again be a special registration process for the 2019 Festival of Tabernacles site in Cortona, Italy.
Registration for COGWA members will open at 9.00am ET, Sunday, 10th of February. Owing to the popularity of this site, registration is expected to close on the same day.
Acceptance will be based on the time order of their online registration, giving priority to those who were on the waiting list for Cortona last year and were not accepted. Those who attended in Cortona last year will be accepted after those who did not attend. Members who were on the waiting list last year must still register. You are not automatically registered.

Observance of Passover/Unleavened Bread – Past and Present
How many know that the Radio Church of God celebrated this festival for the full 7 days – just like the Feast of Tabernacles? Then in 1968 (when the church was renamed Worldwide) all the Passover/Unleavened Bread festival sites were cancelled. How many understand why?
The May, 1962, issue of The Good News magazine reported on Gods Passover Observed World-wide. This article was written by Evangelist Roderick C. Meredith. Over 10,000 brethren of the Radio Church of God in seven major Festival locations in America, plus others in England, Australia, and around the world, observed a glorious Passover and Feast of Unleavened Bread.
Unlike the common practice today of having Passover and Night to Be Remembered locally in homes, and perhaps Holy Day services on the first and last days of unleavened bread, the practice then was to observe an eight-day festival with the whole church in central places, with multiple sermons and Bible Studies every day, just like the Feast of Tabernacles.”
(Days of Zeal Gone By, Richard Nickels)
In 1952 Herbert and Loma Armstrong travelled to Gladewater, Texas, for Passover and the 1st holy day of the Festival of Unleavened Bread. They were overwhelmed by the large numbers who came, not only from Texas, but as far afield as Wisconsin and Michigan.
As they were returning home to Pasadena,
Herbert Armstrong wrote:
“We know now – God has shown us plainly and unmistakably – that we must have an adequate place of our own in this central location for the Passover and Feast of Unleavened Bread EVERY YEAR.
There were probably a few hundred others who would have wanted to be at this Festival this week, had they known in time, and if we had an adequate assembly place for so many to meet …
The proper place for meetings of this kind is not an expensive brick or stone or concrete church building on a main corner of a city in all the traffic and noise of the world – but to get CLEAR AWAY FROM THE WORLD – out into God’s own open beautiful nature, utterly secluded from the world!
Next Spring, we shall plan a full eight-day festival, to last thru the entire seven days of unleavened bread following the Passover, and all who plan to come are urged now, with a year ahead to plan, to start laying plans to come for the entire eight days …
Yes, this opens up AN ENTIRE NEW PHASE of God’s great work. This will provide a place for annual great conclaves of God’s people, where many who cannot come as far as Pasadena can meet together at God’s great festivals. What has happened assures that in a year or two there will be several hundred attending. WHAT A BLESSING THIS WILL BE! We who are co-workers together need to MEET TOGETHER as often as possible. The United States is a great nation, and we live long distances apart. We cannot all meet together every Sabbath. But most of us can, and WILL, meet and feast together in these SPIRITUAL feasts which God has appointed, and where we have HIS VERY OWN INVISIBLE PRESENCE with us!”
The Radio Church of God continued observing both festivals at many regional feast sites for the full 7 days until 1967. In 1968 (when the church was renamed the Worldwide CoG) observance of the full 7–day observance was discontinued. Herbert Armstrong’s wife Loma died in 1967 and, lacking her counsel, he was quickly persuaded that maximizing income for “the Work” must in future be the priority.
The article
Days of Unleavened Bread – How Should They Be Observed? [p.2] by the Church of God the Eternal (supporting the change to observing only the 2 high days), explains:
“Many Church of God members remember the marvellous spiritual sermons and exciting fellowship that went along with this festival. But some time during the mid-sixties, the practice was discontinued … the receipt of income for “the Work” was appreciably reduced each Spring, because most of the members did not receive any salary or wages during the week they attended the seven Days of Unleavened Bread. Consequently, tithes and offerings dropped off alarmingly in the Spring … It was felt by Mr. Armstrong that if the Gospel were to continue to go forth with growth and power, the membership would have to be in a financial position to contribute heavily. The observance of the Days of Unleavened Bread for the full seven days was thwarting this effort.”
The major off-shoots of the Worldwide Church of God follow Mr Armstrong
s lead, but a number of small groups (many of whom were never part of Worldwide) continue to sponsor 7-day festival sites, and several of them provide daily live broadcasts of services for those unable to attend this festival. reaches major milestone!
This month, the sites Personal Answers service received its 20,000th Email containing a Bible question!
Started in late 2002, the Personal Answers service is currently staffed by seven Christian volunteers known as the Email Evangelists.
You got questions? We love them!

Christian Educational Ministries & Ronald L Dart Evangelistic Association
James Malm of The Shining Light launched the following attack on Wes White of the RLDEA in his post on 29 January 2019  … “Christian Educational Ministries Lawsuit – The written, signed and witnessed will of Ron Dart willed his church organization and intellectual properties to his CEM organization. Upon his death his wife Allison was convinced along with the Wills Executor to avoid probate and refrain from carrying out the wills provisions, effectively stealing the assets from Rons proper beneficiaries. Wes White ingratiated himself to Allie Dart who was terminally ill herself and became the beneficiary of the Dart millions upon her death …”
James Malm did not contact anyone in the
CEM or the RLDEA to verify his allegations, telling us that, “Everything in the post comes from Wess own writings as published by you and at Banned (i.e. Banned by HWA, a website that has regularly criticized James Malms writings).
(i.e. Wes White) freely says that Rons will was not probated or distributed. His excuse being a self serving [gaining Wes a few million] statement that Ron had said he wanted to change it. Of course any indicated change is not legal unless stated in writing to his lawyer. Legally the will should have been probated and if desired challenged at that time.”
Wes White was never involved in administering Ron Dart
s estate. The executor was Skip Martin, but he did not want this role, and refused to execute the will. The court subsequently appointed Ron Darts niece Jamie as executor.
The “Dart millions” to which James refers were earned by Allie Dart, who was a highly successful real estate executive.
Most of the content of the
article on Banned by HWA comes from posts in this Church of God News page.

Living Church of God
Gerald Weston writes, 24 January 2019:
“WGN out of Chicago was our “flagship” station for many years. Their network went through a number of changes several years ago and the cost per response increased to a point where we dropped it. However, they are rebuilding their network and we are going back on this national network at 6:00 a.m. Eastern time, beginning February 2.
Our Internet Department will be rolling out a significantly updated website. The and sites are being combined into a single site. It is more user-friendly for mobile devices and much easier for our Internet Department to maintain, saving many hours of work each month.”

United Church of God
Caribbean senior pastor Chuck Smith reported 25th January, on his return from Haiti, where a UCG congregation has been established:
“The plan for our new church building in Haiti is coming together nicely. I made a working trip to the island on Sunday, 13-16 January. In four days we were able to complete about 1/3 of the rafters for the roof the new meeting hall. The new structure will give the United Church of God not only a place to worship each Sabbath, but also a learning center and a safe haven during the annual hurricane season. The 1700 square ft. building (which is built to international building codes – unseen in most of Haiti) is planned for completion around the 1st of April. Most of the brethren do not have electricity. The new building will have a dedicated transformer with reliable power and internet access for use of the brethren and community. The metal roof has been ordered and our plan is to have it installed by February 10. This will officially “dry us in!”
A Bible Study was scheduled for the Tuesday night I was there. A heavy deluge of rain ensued, and deacon Joseph Jean thought it best to cancel. It had been extremely hot and humid since I had arrived. I was exhausted from the day’s hard physical labor, and had lain down for a rest. About 15 minutes later, Mr. Jean knocked on my door. He informed me that around 40 people had walked through the heavy downpour to attend the Bible Study, and we needed to go ahead with plans to conduct it. I got dressed and was immediately enthused and energised when I arrived and saw everyone joyfully singing hymns while waiting for the Bible Study to begin. We had a wonderful Bible Study.”

Live Broadcasts
With several additions this month, we now have more than 70 Live Sabbath Broadcasts listed for Friday evening, Saturday morning and afternoon – plus bible studies earlier in the week.
Calgary Ministry has had to suspend live-streaming of Sabbath services. “The internet capability available at our current meeting location is not sufficient to support streaming of video. We will continue to record and upload the sermon videos to YouTube as fast as is possible after services.”
Dynamic Christian Ministries have been broadcasting on Friday evening from the home of Wes & Nancy White, but the video was limited to a narrow portrait format. They therefore decided to transfer their equipment to a rented room in town, and have fiber optics installed. The program was off the air for two weeks, but the new studio is now up and running.

United Church of God
UCG President, Victor Kubik, has posted an article on 18 January 2019, perhaps in response to an article on Banned by HWA – UCG: To Disagree With Them Is To Disagree with God – which refers to comments on Facebook “by a high ranking man in UCG” regarding an article on immigration in the church’s Beyond Today magazine (Jan-Feb 2019, pp.11-14).
Victor Kubik’s post –
What if You Were an Immigrant? – talks about his own experience as an immigrant, and includes the following:
“As employees, elders, and members, we must be careful what we post on social media. We are seen as representatives of the United Church of God and our words impact the church’s reputation! If we’re not careful, we can inadvertently pass on dubious statistics or semi-facts. Those actions are noticed. Those words can negatively change perceptions of the church and what we believe.”

Voice in the Wilderness Church of God
January 2019 update from Bill Goff:
Life here in Kenya continues to be rough for many of our brethren. I received the following report from Narok congregation. Titoa (the overseer there) reports the following:
“Greetings elder Bill and church there, here we are on serious problem. All building we made after Mau eviction all burned down by police. Still we are in a great problem brother, many are sick, others death. We need any help to push life. Especially see mercy on children who are
suffering right away.”

One of the brethren was shot in the head. He was taken to the hospital and has survived. The congregation is requesting assistance in paying his hospital bill, but we do not have funds to assist. Although we did send the brethren some funds for food. They are now hoping to migrate to Bomet, Kenya to flee the persecution.
The Gospel also continues to spread here in Kenya. We spent two Sabbaths in Nyabigege, Kenya where our message was well received, and additional visits are requested. This Sabbath Charles Mokoro held an open meeting near the Maasai border. The message was well received there also.
Many who attended the open meeting were young. Over half of Kenya’s population are children under the age of 18. The following is reported by UNICEF:
“Kenya is a nation of children and youth, with more than half the estimated population of 36 million under the age of 18 years. An estimated 6 million children require special care and protection, of which approximately 2.4 million children are orphans.”
I will be returning to the States in approximately two weeks, my focus then will be to try and make other members of God’s church aware of the suffering that our impoverished brethren endure here. (If you have a group that is interested in learning more about the work we are involved in, please let me know – I’m willing to visit your group to give a slide presentation that will better show the conditions here.)

Continuing Church of God & Living Church of God
Robert Thiel writes, 13 January 2019:
Elder Alexsandar ‘Sasha’ Veljic, who lives in Serbia, is currently in Manipur, India. He sent me several emails that he said to combine parts of them. So I did and he enthusiastically approved the following for public distribution today.
This is the link to his combined e-mail messages.
This group was formerly part of the Living Church of God, about which association he writes:
“I remembered that there was that accusation about them having Pentecostal spirit, or Pentecostal behavior. You can rest assured that I would not have hesitated to correct that and put things in order had that be true. Now that I have had a Sabbath services with them, I understand better the things. There is nothing Pentecostal in terms of “speaking in the tongues”, or a disorder at services. On the contrary, there is peace and order. Perhaps there is some intensity of emotions in the air, with which a Westerner might not be comfortable with. But, as for me, I am perfectly comfortable with that. I want to assure you that I am well taken care of. To all my questions I get very detailed answers. I haven’t noticed any half truths.
A few more things I need to bring to your attention.
1. Sani Mao related to me how they had become spiritual orphans when they were abandoned by LCG. Other than the unfounded accusation about Pentecostalism, a LCG minister made derogatory comments about women. That their place is to wash the cups. He would not accept that a woman might have a dream coming from God, such as we know that has happened in our CCOG history. And so, when LCG announced that there was no LCG in India, that came out of the blue and has devastated these people.
2. Coercive hierarchical control. They were told not to get together for Bible studies, or when they fast with no Scriptural explanation whatsoever and contrary to what we are told in the Book of Hebrews.
3. I had another baptism counseling session after the Sabbath. A young man was present as an interpreter. After counseling, he told me that LCG always had short counseling and would dismiss people. I just don’t understand such an approach. When I counsel people, I try to bring up the important points for their salvation. I also asked questions. I let them talk to me. I need to see if they are repentant to be baptized. Sani Mao’s daughter, for example, asked me several questions from the Scriptures seeking help to defend her belief against here Protestant peers who mock her beliefs. I also read some scriptures related to baptism. I never limit counseling time. I let it continue until all relevant points have been exhausted. That is new to this group as well. But I would find it highly disrespectful to just have short counseling and then dismiss them.”
The Living Church of God still lists congregations in India, which have now been deleted from our lists.

Church of God a Worldwide Association
Clyde Kilough, the Media Operations Manager, reported, 10 January 2019, that 1139 people were registered for the 2018 Winter Family Weekend, the highest number ever.
In 2019 the media department will try to improve website visitor numbers and page views for the
Life Hope and Truth website by refining its search engine optimization tactics, redesigning the website, adding and changing content, and other techniques to enhance its attraction.
This is essential, because the Life Hope and Truth website
(which includes Discern magazine) is currently COGWA’s only form of gospel outreach (though video production is to be increased).
Alexa’s chart for 2018 shows a substantial decline in website visitor numbers, beginning the year with a world ranking of around 60,000 and ending it outside the top 100,000.

United Church of God
Peter Eddington writes, 10 January 2019:
We are pleased to make available a
6-minute video that highlights the construction and completion of the Church’s new Video Recording Studio. Please take a moment out of your day to see the many benefits the new studio will provide for the Church in preaching the gospel of the Kingdom.
This video also plays from the Church’s new
Beyond Today app on the iPhone in the “BT DAILY” category – as well as in our apps on Roku, Amazon Fire TV and Samsung smart TVs.
The first three
Beyond Today TV programs we recorded in the new studio will air in February, beginning on Sunday, February 3. Here is what’s scheduled:

  • Are We Living in the Time of the End?” by Gary Petty (February 3-9, 2019).
  • The Four Horsemen of Revelation” by Darris McNeely (February 10-16, 2019).
  • Are You Led by God’s Spirit?” by Steve Myers (February 17-23, 2019).

United Church of God
Victor Kubik wrote, 3rd January 2019:
“Two major year-end family events dominated United Church of God news in the past few weeks. One was the Winter Family Weekend in the Cincinnati area while the other was the Northwest Weekend in Portland,Oregon.
The 2018 Winter Family Weekend is the largest annual UCG event, and thanks to the work of many dedicated volunteers, one of the smoothest-running ever. The event began with a Friday evening Bible study that encouraged youth to take God’s calling seriously right now. There were 1,217 brethren who attended Sabbath services, with 61 watching via webcast at the home office, along with more than 500 other web connections.
The continued growth of this event has us considering larger venues for future years, but in 2019 the Winter Family Weekend will take place at the same location.
Then in the Northwest, with the spectacular Columbia River as the backdrop, approximately 320 of God’s people gathered to celebrate the 54th annual Northwest Family Weekend Dec. 21-24 in Portland, Oregon.
Many positive comments were shared by those who attended. We had attendees from six non-UCG congregations in the area.

Beverly Kubik, President, reported, 30 December 2018:
Philippines Prison Project
We are so happy to receive this encouraging report about the completion of a LifeNets project and its dedication that took place September 17, 2018. The project provided a borehole, water tank and visitor kiosks. It will change the quality of life for incarcerated ladies in a women’s prison on the island of Davao in the Philippines …
Orphanage in Zambia
LifeNets has been helping with the Chilemo Orphanage Club in distant Mufumbwe, Zambia for more than five years. We have helped with building poultry raising facilities, boreholes and other aid through Derrick and Cherry Pringle who come all the way from Kitwe. But, the onsite overseer and director is Joseph Kaputula who is responsible for the success of the operation through his hard work and commitment …
Scholarships in Colombia
Letters from Scholarship recipients in Colombia. Great program.
We thank all contribute to the LifeNets Developing Nations Scholarship Fund!
Aid in Ukraine
LifeNets chooses to help people who are in deep poverty and have suffered additional misfortune. We are helping this family of 12 in Ukraine who has 10 children and live in two rooms. Their father, Tolik, had a growth on his brain that caused the loss of use of one arm and one leg. He needed an operation to remove the growth, but the family was unable to have any resources towards the operation. The doctors declared that the operation prognosis was good. Along with Felstad Aid in the United Kingdom (with whom we work in Chernobyl area). Alan and Pauline Hilliar, who operate this charity. LifeNets contributed towards the operation that was done in late January 2018. Alan and Pauline personally know this loving family and have organized the drive to help them.

Philadelphia Church of God
From Exit and Support Network, 28 December 2018:
Gerald Flurry is nearing the end of his life, and reading his articles in the
January 2019 issue of The Philadelphia Trumpet, one would think that he has thrown all caution to the winds.
On page 8, he writes, “The Second Coming of Jesus Christ, the greatest event ever, will happen in six to 10 years, as I calculate it. That means the Great Tribulation, the worst suffering this Earth has ever experienced, will start within a few short years.”
Nevertheless, Joel Hilliker on the very next page, warns that, “In recent decades, it seems that every few years someone comes along with a new prediction of the world as we know it. And then those predictions prove false. This problem of failed prophecy has plagued many religions for thousands of years. People predicting Jesus Christ’s return have set dates.”
The quote continues … “then shifted the dates when those dates came and went.”)
On page 10, Hilliker again: Be wary when you hear someone predicting a specific date of Christ’s return.” But what if the someone” doing the predicting is the leader of your own church? What if Gerald Flurry himself is date-setting, as he calculates it.”

Voice in the Wilderness Church of God
Update from Bill Goff
The 92 year old man, Matara, who was arrested and jailed (because he neglected to inform the proper authorities of his caring five orphans) is now free. Thanks to some compassionate donors, we were able to pay his fine. His arrest and jail time almost killed him. He took sick while incarcerated, and was placed in a hospital, and cuffed to the bed.
The five children were also treated quite poorly and neglected by the authorities. After the old man (the only one caring for them and teaching them about life) was arrested, the children were left helpless at home. When we first found them, four were too weak to even fetch water from the river, and the eldest (age 12 named Brian) was sick in bed close to death. Nehemiah was able to bring him to a clinic, where he was diagnosed with malaria, typhoid, and cholera. He would have died in the next day or two. But the boy is now okay, and they are all very happy to be reunited again.
Concerning the Mau evacuation brethren, thank you for your prayers, they have been given part of land just outside Mau forest, and are now okay. Please continue to pray for them as they begin planting crops for food. The Mau Forest is Kenya’s largest watershed, so there is a need to preserve it, as precious clean water is becoming quite scarce.

Continuing Church of God
Robert Thiel writes, 28th December 2018:
Today marks the 6th anniversary of the declaration of the Continuing Church of God (CCOG). We started with 4 members, plus 2 prospective members. A year later, we had a few dozen. Notice the following which includes information received today from CCOG Evangelist Evans Ochieng:
Pastor Dr Bob,
Greetings from Kenya. Since I joined CCOG. I have experience a rapid growth in CCOG …
I am getting so many contacts from those who visited CCOG WEBSITE. New congregations are added in Kenya and Malawi. Now we have new congregations like Gribe, Muhuru etc Our members have increased up to 4250 …I am talking about Kenya, Malawi, Mozambique, Ethiopia, Tanzania and Zambia.
In total, the CCOG now has between 4500-5000 congregants. The earlier estimate of 3800 was based on a June 2018 report from Evangelist Ochieng, as well as other information. After he saw the 3,800 figure, he sent the above information related to the areas he oversees.

Church of God, a Worldwide Association
At the annual Ministerial Board of Directors meeting in December, President Jim Franks listed 6 key concerns that the leadership needs to address.
1. How do we get the message out to the world in the most effective manner?
“We still have a very healthy number of unique visitors every month to Life Hope and Truth – but how can we increase that number?”
The Life Hope and Truth website (which includes Discern magazine) is COGWA’s only form of gospel outreach. Alexa’s chart for 2018 shows an alarming decline in website visitor numbers, beginning the year with a world ranking of around 60,000 and ending it outside the top 100,000.
Jim Franks commented that
COGWA TV (which is currently for members and requires a password) has never been fully used, and he wants to upgrade and expand video.
2. What can we do about growth in the church?
“We have seen some growth since we began in 2010, but not a lot. Our actual attendance worldwide is up, but only by a few percentage points, single digits actually.”
That’s a total increase in attendance of less than 1,000 in 8 years. There is great potential for growth overseas – which brings us to the next area of concern …
3. Increase in requests for international subsidies.
“In our budget for 2019 we will be spending approximately $2 million in supporting congregations and ministers outside the USA. Because of our excellent financial position, we are hopeful to upgrade feast sites, build new meeting halls – you know there are still some areas where the members meet outside under the trees – and to train new leaders in all areas outside the USA. Because we will end this year with a surplus, we plan to send additional funds from this year to several areas in Africa, so we won’t have to impact next year’s budget.”
4. How will we replace ministers who will retire in the next 7 years?
“In the next 7 to 10 years half of our current pastors will most likely retire. Not only is there a financial responsibility to provide for them when they retire, but how do we replace them? This will require judicious use of our resource,s and an increase to continue providing pastors for every congregation, which we are committed to doing.”
“Our current financial plan is to pay off the mortgage of the (new HQ) building within 6 years … this is about when we will see the largest number of men retiring.”
Church members have to save for their own retirement. Why should they also have to fund the ministers’ pensions? Shouldn’t the ministers be doing this out of their salaries?
5. How will we expand leadership development in the USA and outside the USA?
“We are working hard at developing a database of men and women who desire to serve in the church from our various programs. From this group we hope to take on new and younger leaders to take on more responsibility.”
6. We know that we have doctrinal challenges to contend with.

“Paul, Peter and John all warned about false teachers and false prophets. It will come from among us. We must ask ourselves if we have done the best job we can in teaching our basic beliefs, especially among our young adults. Are we doing our best to help them understand some of the most basic teachings of God’s word? We all must be on guard against heresy. It will come and it has come. We must not tolerate it. We will be kind to everyone, but we will not accept erroneous doctrinal teachings.”
Should COGWA – or any church – be declaring that it has no false teaching?
Heresy is disagreement with what “our church” believes. COGWA
s beliefs are the teachings of Herbert Armstrong, who made a number of doctrinal changes over 6 decades. How does COGWA know that he’d got it 100% correct at his death?

Living Church of God

December has been a busy month at Charlotte HQ.
Roderick Meredith’s son, James, has been sent out to Knoxville, Tennessee, to assist his father-in-law, Martin Fannin, who is the minister for this and 3 other congregations.
Wayne Ciesielka is being relieved of his TV and Internet roles (to be replaced by Michael DeSimone and Daniel Guidry respectively), and will leave HQ to become pastor of congregations in eastern North Carolina.

Winter Family Weekend
The dates for the family weekend this Christmas are December 21-25.
The Sabbath afternoon broadcasts will begin at 3.00pm from the Lexington WFW, and at 2.30pm from the United Church of God’s WFW, where Victor Kubik will give the sermon.
Please refer to the Live Broadcasts page for links to these and other Sabbath broadcasts.
The original WFW, now in its 22nd year, is the
Lexington Winter Family Weekend, sponsored by the Cincinnati and Lexington churches, which will be held at the Clarion Hotel & Conference Center in Lexington, Kentucky. This is a gathering of independent churches and individuals, and is open to everyone.
“The Winter Family Weekend in Lexington, Kentucky has helped change the culture of the Church of God. Twenty years ago God blessed us with an event without borders. People quickly learned that it is what you believe – not the name on the church door that makes the difference. It’s an environment where friends can meet as equals to worship together and celebrate the Faith that is common to us all.”
Three corporate Churches of God will be holding this event:
The United Church of God will be having a
Northwest Family Weekend in Portland, Oregon, but its main WFW will be at the Great Wolf Lodge in Mason, Ohio. Victor Kubik has commented that, “It is the largest gathering of United Church of God members in one place – larger than any Feast site.”
The Church of God a Worldwide Association will hold its
annual WFW  at the Galt House Hotel in Louisville, Kentucky. Over 1000 members have registered to attend.
The Living Church of God’s
WFW at the Renaissance Charlotte Suites Hotel, North Carolina, is strictly for LCG members only.

United Church of God
President Victor Kubik wrote to members on 18th December 2018, calling on them to fast for a day before the end of December.
While we have had steady, but modest growth over the past several years, you may have read in the report from the December meeting of the Council of Elders that the Church’s income for the current fiscal year is about 8% under budget.
There are a number of possible factors contributing to the lower amount of received donations – including uncertainty about U.S. tax law changes introduced for 2018 (including changes affecting deductions for charitable contributions), and December performance in 16 years” for U.S. Stocks).
[Surely donations ear-marked for the new $1 million video recording studio, instead of to general funds, is a significant factor?]
We are currently developing the budget for the 2019-2020 fiscal year – which will be presented to the Council of Elders in February. With the current downturn in income, it is vitally important that we accurately forecast the Church’s future income so that we can scale our programs accordingly to match the income that God will provide. In mid-January we will be evaluating our finances and making decisions tied to the size of next year’s budget. Our projected revenue will determine how aggressively we can continue with the development of new ministers and continuing the gospel message through Beyond Today, including products from our new video recording studio.
With this in mind, we would appreciate your prayers that we see our income trends clearly as we prepare an appropriate budget. I’d like to request that you please join me in prayer and fasting to our great God on a day of your choosing between now and the end of December. Please ask God to not only bless the United Church of God, an International Association, but for Him to show us how we may be the wisest of stewards with the income and blessings He has given us.
Our budgeting team will be working together to carefully examine every expense, every job and every activity. Is there something we can do better – or do without – and still do the Work of God? (
Send Victor Kubik a message)
Here in the United States it’s important that we stay financially healthy in order to help the rest of this world. Many of the international areas and developing nations require a great deal of financial subsidy in order to do their work – where we have thousands of faithful brethren relying on us.”

Living Church of God
As a result of posts on this and other websites re church numbers, LCG stated, 13th December 2018, that its average weekly attendance is 9,000, which would mean that only its income has been falling. The post on Church Membership Numbers has been amended to note this.
In his December letter, Richard Ames warns co-workers (those who have requested ‘free’ material from LCG, but are not members), not to be cursed for robbing God by spending money on Christmas festivities instead of giving it to the LCG.
“In our
Tomorrow’s World personal appearance presentations, I often emphasize the sins of America, Canada and other nations, including the national sin of robbing from God. The prophet Malachi indicts our Western nations for their selfishness and covetousness, and their choice not to honor God for His abundant national and individual blessings. “Will a man rob God? Yet you have robbed Me! But you say, ‘In what way have we robbed You?’ In tithes and offerings. You are cursed with a curse, for you have robbed Me, even this whole nation.” (Malachi 3:8–9).

“Go, therefore, and make disciples of all nations”
Will great church websites fulfil ‘the great commission’?
The UCG has embraced modern communications technology far more than other churches, its website now being ranked by Alexa the 14th highest in the world among Christian churches – but its Media Manager, Peter Eddington, and Chairman, Donald Ward, have noted that this achievement has not yet been translated into increased church attendance.
A high number of views of articles, videos etc. accessible by various means are obviously very positive in spreading the gospel to those who can afford modern technological devices and have good internet access, but the major spiritual harvest today is in the poorer countries.
The United Church of God has a better world ranking with Alexa than even the Seventh Day Adventists, whose membership has now reached 20 million. Only 1.2 million live in the USA and Canada. The largest gains in recent years have been in East-Central Africa, where membership has increased by over one-third in 4 years, from 2.8 million in December 2013 to 3.8 million in December 2017.
The Continuing Church of God, founded 6 years ago, now claims 3,800 members, but 3,600 are in Africa, and it has a very low Alexa ranking of 2 million.

The Restored Church of God
has fewer members than the CCoG, yet it has the second highest ranking of the ex-WCG churches. This has been achieved by heavy spending on Google adverts and by the constant negative publicity which its leader, David Pack, has been producing. His bizarre sermons given in 2016 and 2017 were removed in late 2017, and the chart for 2018 shows a steep decline.
Philadelphia Church of God also enjoys a high ranking due to negative publicity. In 2017 its leader, Gerald Flurry, came up with a doctrine that a ‘prayer rock’ in his possession was actually the new Stone of Destiny, which culminated in June 2018 with the publication of a booklet and telecast that this rock is ‘The New Throne of David’. Alexa’s chart shows the PCG’s ranking climbing in the first half of 2018, and then sinking back in the second half.
The website traffic statistics for the Church of God a Worldwide Association are interesting.
The chart shows a steep increase in visitors between May and July 2018, which then levels out again. The bounce rate (visitors who view only one page) is exceptionally low, and the average number of pages viewed and time spent on the site are exceptionally high. These cannot be newcomers studying COGWA’s doctrines, because the chart for the church’s doctrinal site, Life, Hope & Truth, shows a steady and substantial decline throughout 2018. These people are already familiar with Herbert Armstrong’s doctrines – so what are they looking for? Their specific search keywords are ‘feast’, ‘holy days’ and ‘sermons’.

Ronald Greene commented on the Facebook page : This is not a competition. God does the calling, not the churches. The job of the churches is to feed the flock, the sheep of God.
Obviously, God does interfere when His people become deceived.
I’ve tried to listen to UCG but found NO MEAT in their sermons.
In Acts 2 THREE thousand were added that day. It was NOT the church, it was God.
It’s strange that UCG and other churches of God seem to have forgotten that.
“Many are called but few are chosen.” God is building not the churches.
God calls them “LITTLE FLOCK.”

United Church of God
In President Victor Kubik’s video report on 3rd December 2018, during the quarterly meeting of the Council of Elders, he covered various aspects of the work, including the new $1 million TV studio, current Good Works and Lifenets projects – the relief responses to recent disasters and the long term programs to alleviate poverty, and evangelism in Africa and India.
Media Manager, Peter Eddington, then provided many highly encouraging media statistics, including that the UCG website is now ranked the 14th highest among Christian churches worldwide by Alexa – but as he and Chairman Donald Ward noted, the increasing number of views of articles, videos etc. have not so far been translated into increased church attendance. 

‘Rebuild The Temple!’
Don Esposito of the Congregation of Yahweh (Jerusalem) writes, 5th December 2018:
“President Trump is planning on rolling out his peace plan very soon. I have seen parts of the plan and it is not a good plan for Israel. It is basically the Oslo agreement of Bill Clinton rolled together with the Road map of George Bush.
The most troubling part of President Trump’s plan is not only is it calling to set up a Palestinian state, but it also makes Jerusalem an international city run by a new group that will be made up from the Trump peace plan. I also received news from Jerusalem this week that they are already starting to mark out areas for borders for the Trump peace plan around the Old City, so it may not be that far away.
Some might ask why would the Jews ever agree to such a plan if it failed in the past? The answer that many believe here in Israel is that Trump, the real estate mogul, has promised Israel to make the ultimate building project; To Rebuild The Temple!
Jews this week have had a gigantic ceremony near the Temple Mount sacrificing an animal to consecrate a newly made altar that they plan to use for the 3rd Temple. And the religious Jews here have actually minted a coin with President Trump’s picture with the picture of King Cyrus, the very King who allowed Israel to return and rebuild the Temple of Solomon at that time.
No one knows how quickly all this may come about or how quickly it may fizzle out, as the times and dates of things are left in the hands of Yahweh. But one thing is certain that when this move goes forward and a peace deal is made and the land of Israel is divided it will bring the wrath of Yahweh, not only on Babylon who will force this deal, but also on all other nations in the world which support it.
Joel 3:1-2 For, behold, in those days and in that time, when I bring again the exiles of Judah and Jerusalem, I will also gather all nations, and will bring them down into the valley of Jehoshaphat. And I will enter into judgment with them there, for My people and My inheritance, Israel, whom they have scattered among the nations; and they divided My land.
How blessed we are in these end times to have our eyes and ears open to the Spirit of Yahweh and what He is doing in these last days. So many in this world today are being hoodwinked by Satan and actually think that a newly build Jewish Temple is a good thing, when in reality it will be the abomination that causes desolation.”

Church Membership Numbers
Robert Thiel of the Continuing Church of God wrote on 2nd December 2018:
“A reader sent me a post from former WCG member James Tabor (who consulted with Dixon Cartwright and others) that contained the following information:
Re: Membership numbers for major WCG remnant {sic} groups …
United Church of God An International Association (12K)
The Church of God a Worldwide Association (9K)
The Living Church of God (3K)*
The Continuing Church of God (Around 3.8K)
The Philadelphia Church of God (2K)
The Restored Church of God (2K)
*Note: James Tabor made a typo or had a misunderstanding regarding LCG as it has more like 9K than 3K–so I placed it before CCOG above. RCG probably has less than 2K and PCG may have more than 2K based on information I have seen.
Anyway, the only group in the above list to add over 3,000 congregants in the past six years is the Continuing Church of God which began with 5 people on December 28, 2012. The three groups with more congregants than CCOG above (UCG, COGWA, LCG) have basically been stagnant as far as congregant growth goes in the past 1/2 dozen years (they have had relatively little) and the two groups with less congregants than CCOG in that list have significantly lost congregants during that period.”
The figures reported by the churches are:
United Church of God:
12,360 according to Peter Eddington on 26th February 2018.
Church of God a Worldwide Association: 11,000 (5,500 in the USA), according to Jim Franks on 29th November 2018.
Living Church of God: 9,000 average weekly attendance, according to its Church Administration Department on 13th December 2018.
Continuing Church of God: 3,800 according to Robert Thiel. (Over 3600 are in Africa.)
The PCG and RCG do not give out numbers, but attendances for all three have been declining significantly.
Philadelphia Church of God: 3,500? Stephen Flurry commented a couple of years ago that PCG had levelled out at around 5,000. In 2017 The Philadelphian magazine listed 143 congregations, indicating that 2,000 must be on the low side.
Restored Church of God: 1,000? If it isn’t down to this figure now, it surely will be soon – David Pack is continually losing members and ministers – even his second-in-command left recently.
COGWA is the natural beneficiary of transfers from LCG, PCG and RCG, because it has retained the tenets of Armstrongism, and has a more Christian leadership.
As Jim Franks commented in the June issue of One Accord, “I enjoyed my four years at Ambassador College, and I learned a lot. But I also realized that there is more to developing leaders than attending four years of college … One thing we have learned is that leadership without conversion is of little value. Over the years we have seen many examples of outstanding leaders and great speakers who were lacking in this most basic principle of Christianity.”
COGWA no longer vets prospective members before allowing them to attend. Instead it has copied the United Church of God in introducing a standardized website for each congregation, stating location and times of services, and welcoming people to visit. Whereas the Festival of Tabernacles in LCG, PCG and RCG is restricted to members and their families, COGWA has an open attendance policy.
The Church of God International had moved away from authoritarian church government prior to the UCG-COGWA split in 2012, when UCG’s Council of Elders under its president Dennis Luker (now Victor Kubik) were wanting to move away from Armstrongism, whilst the COGWA faction was determined to retain it. UCG and CGI are now co-operating both with each other and with many smaller Sabbath Keeping Churches of God. COGWA on the other hand, like LCG, PCG, RCG and other Armstrongist groups, keeps itself separate from all other churches.
An example of the change in UCG’s outlook is Aaron Dean’s censure in 2007 for speaking at a non-UCG festival site, when the COGWA faction had a majority in the UCG’s Council of Elders, but he was welcome to speak at a CGI festival site in 2018. Viktor Kubik has spoken at CGI events on several occasions.

David Hulme’s ‘Vision’
As the church that David Hulme founded slides slowly from obscurity into oblivion, he is seeking to use his accumulated knowledge and diplomatic expertise to bring peace to the world.
His vision is “to become a renowned diplomat to establish peace among international entities” [Crunchbase], because he is “the ultimate resource for all matters about foreign policy” [Twitter].
He spent 10 years studying International Relations at the University of Southern California, with an emphasis on the Middle East, in order to obtain a doctorate.
What work experience has fitted him for this role?
David Hulme gained a BA degree from Ambassador College, Bricket Wood, and served as a minister in the Worldwide Church of God in the UK, South Africa, Canada and the USA.
He rose to prominence in 1986, when the WCG’s new pastor general, Joseph W. Tkach, ordained him as an evangelist, and appointed him, Richard Ames and David Albert as presenters of
The World Tomorrow TV broadcasts.
In 1995 he was elected to be the first President of the United Church of God, the largest breakaway group from the WCG. In 1998 he was removed from this position by the UCG’s Council of Elders for unauthorized spending that had plunged the church into serious debt.
He then left United, drawing away around 3000 members to his new church, the Church of God, an International Community.
He launched a
quarterly magazine, Vision, which was printed on very high quality paper. The magazine was almost entirely secular in content, with no mention that it was being sponsored by a church.
David Hulme claimed that the new church would be more active than UCG in preaching the gospel, but in 2013 several of his ministers had finally had enough, and left to form a new church, with probably close to 1000 people.
Stephen Elliott, wrote, in his resignation letter to David Hulme in December 2013: “Our membership has declined, not grown. After 15 years and an estimated expense for Vision of $3+ million dollars for salaries, advertising, publishing, design, shipping, PR, video, travel and whatever, there has been no fruit from Vision or the Vision website. The only new members, other than children of members, have come because of a personal relationship with a member – not because of Vision.”
In 2016 the magazine was reduced to a website version, which is actually just a collection of 5 or 6 articles.
Three early videos – Quest for the Real Paul, Cheating God out of Christianity and Message to the Seven Churches – were filmed on location in the Middle East. These are well produced and worth viewing, but very expensive to make. Latterly, his Insight videos are much shorter and filmed in a studio.
David Hulme promotes himself, but not his church, posting his personal profile on various websites dedicated to business professionals.
If you go to David Hulme’s page at LinkedIn (a social networking website),
you find that he describes himself as the President of Vision Media, and clicking on the link to his ‘personal website’ takes you to It’s not a church website, as far as he is concerned.
“David Hulme is publisher of the quarterly online journal, Vision (, president of Vision Media Productions and chairman of Vision Foundation International.”
He lists his previous experience as:
1977-1979 Circulation Manager (Africa) of Quest Magazine
Although Quest was supported financially by the Worldwide Church of God, TIME magazine described the magazine as: “nonetheless thoroughly secular. Armstrong gave editorial control to Robert Shnayerson, 55, a former TIME senior editor and Harper’s editor in chief, who dedicated the magazine to what he called ‘the pursuit of excellence’ in fields as diverse as mountain climbing and genetic research.” Quest closed down when Shnayerson declined to modify his editorial policy, and the WCG withdrew its backing.
1986-1995 Vice-President of Ambassador Foundation
(David Hulme formerly described AF on LinkedIn as a “Non-Profit Organization, Management industry”.)
Ambassador Foundation carried out some charitable works, but Ambassador Auditorium’s performing arts program was not one of them.
There is no mention of being a presenter of the WCG’s TV program, The World Tomorrow, 1986-1994.
There is no mention of being the President of the United Church of God, 1995-1998.
President of Vision Media, 1998- (not President of a church).
There is a mention of the church on the Vision website (if you search for it):
“ is sponsored and funded by the Church of God, an International Community.
The Church does not intend this site to convert readers to its beliefs …”
As Stephen Elliott noted above, David Hulme succeeded in not converting readers – but surely that was not the wish of the church members?

United Church of God
Viktor Kubik reported, 29th November 2018, on the opening of the new $1 million video recording studio:
“The big news of this past week has been the ribbon-cutting and dedication ceremony of the much-anticipated
Beyond Today Video Recording Studio. This occurred on Monday, Nov. 26. Then, yesterday, before a live audience, we recorded the first three programs in the main studio.
The first three new
Beyond Today programs (BT361, BT362 and BT363) recorded in a two-hour session on Wednesday were:
“The Horsemen of Revelation” by Darris McNeely
“The Power of the Holy Spirit” by Steve Myers
“Are We Living in the Time of the End?” by Gary Petty
This is quite a milestone, as we had been “making do” in the old studio for 13 years – since 2005 – with 360 episodes recorded there!
This has been a most wonderful week as we move forward with new tools and new opportunities to fulfill the Mission of the Church!”

Jorge de Campos reports that:
“More than 2,500 brethren were able to gather in the province of Kuanza Sul in Angola for God’s Feast of Tabernacles. They are part of the Igreja de Deus Mundial [Worldwide Church of God] in Angola and are associated with the United Church of God, an International Association. They rejoiced greatly and gave God thanks for the wonderful opportunity that God has given them to be part of this great work.
More than 40 brethren were assisted by the UCG congregations in Bakersfield and Las Vegas to attend the Feast for the first time. These brethren had to walk 100 miles to the nearest town where they then caught a bus for an additional 1,000 miles to get to the Feast. Also a number of food items and other supplies were purchased to assist the brethren with enjoying the Feast in Angola.
The brethren in Angola thank all UCG brethren for their kind help and assistance to make God’s Feast in Angola a time of rejoicing.”

Viktor Kubik reports:
“It’s been a tough week for many. There was another shooting. This time 12 young adults murdered at a country-western bar in Thousand Oaks, California. Four of the five biggest mass shootings in five decades have happened in 2018.
Then, fires – terrible swift destructive fires in California have claimed more than 50 lives (as of this writing) with upwards of 200 missing. Our ministers in California have filed the following reports.
Los Angeles pastor Robin Webber:
“All church members affected last week are physically safe and none lost property. The fire is only 15% contained. Hundreds of homes are gone. Wildlife, deer and mountain lions took a hit. Inspectors are just now getting into the footprint of the blaze to inspect the fire damage – possible loss of more life? The blaze was incredibly fast moving, a blow-out like a science fiction movie. Malibu, Zuma – so much loss! All levels of Southern California society banded together in tragedy and are helping one another – from movie stars to movie-goers, from millionaires to people struggling. One! So many heroes and heroines. We will never know all their names. Firefighters have been incredible. One positive item has been how everyone has risen above their differences! And this is all after the shoot-out tragedy in Thousand Oaks.
Our larger congregations are collectively donating to the Salvation Army which has been the best agency with first responders.
As devastating as this 90,000-acre blaze is, it’s hard to wrap your mind around the immensity of the Campfire up north. Armageddon, ‘Paradise Lost’ – recovery and finding who is alive is just beginning up there. So many people there are not accounted for at this point.”
Joe Horchak, pastor of Sacramento:

“I am pleased to announce that all three of our members from Paradise have found safe haven in a shelter in Chico, California, on Thursday night! There are other fires in Southern California that are also very challenging and destructive. This is a sobering and unnerving time for the state and many people’s lives. Please keep all involved in these tragic circumstances in yourprayers.
I went up to Chico yesterday, which is where many of the dislocated are staying. The fire has grown to 117,000 acres – which is 30% contained – making it the deadliest wildfire in U.S. history. The air quality for most of the surrounding area is terrible, and most people are wearing special masks …
Three of us are going back up this morning to help sort through the tons of donations made by people, and deliver many personal hygiene items we have collected from our local congregations. Please pray for the 57,000+ people who have been evacuated in Paradise and other surrounding towns. This is a tragedy beyond belief!”
Viktor Kubik continues: “But, in this gloomy and groaning world, there is light and good tidings as we do God’s Work in the midst of darkness. I would like to highlight some of the wonderful forward-moving events in the United Church of God this past week.
Haiti Visit by Pastor Chuck and Mary Smith:
“On Friday, Nov. 2, we arrived and deacon Joseph Jean picked us up and took us to our hotel. The Church van is currently out of commission, so Joseph used his pickup truck … Most everyone who attends the Bible studies and Sabbath services either walk or are picked up by Mr. Jean. About 50 attended the Bible study on Friday night, then around 65 attended the next day for Sabbath services. These numbers have been consistent over the past few weeks. There are many children – I counted at least 20 young children, not including teenagers. After services, Mrs. Jean and her sisters served the meal they had prepared for everyone. Most of the brethren lingered well into late afternoon, singing hymns or fellowshipping with one another.
On Sunday, Mr. Jean and I met with three men in the congregation (an electrician and two carpenters) to discuss the meeting hall we are about to build. The congregation is rapidly outgrowing Mr. Jean’s living room, so it is crucial to get this hall constructed soon. It will be used not only for Bible studies and Sabbath services, but also as a training center for teaching English and computer skills. Mastery of these skills will greatly improve the chances for members to successfully compete for the few jobs available.
This trip marked a HUGE step in our goals to help the Haitian congregation, both spiritually and physically. Our short-term goals are:
Complete the church meeting hall/training center before the Spring Holy Days.
This summer, we hope to send teachers to conduct English and computer skills classes.
Acquire a piece of property where a park and a community garden can be developed, the goal being to provide food for the brethren to eat and to sell/barter. We plan to provide soccer balls, so the youth can have an outlet for good, clean fun, as well as learn teamwork. You don’t see anything like this in Mirebalais – no soccer balls, cricket or children’s toys of any type. People do not have funds for those things.
I am pleased to inform you that the first goal is underway! With the completion of the meeting hall, we will be able to hold services for 200-250 brethren. Construction should be completed by the end of January. Donations from our churches in the Caribbean and from brethren in the U.S have allowed us to build a debt-free meeting hall and learning center.
How thankful we can be that our Father and the Head of the Church, Jesus Christ, have made it possible to bring spiritual and physical nourishment to a country in dire need of hope. Mary and I are blessed to be a part of this great work.”

Living Church of God
There was a meeting of the Council of Elders, 5-7 November 2018. Gerald Weston commented:
“We so often hear of members coming up with different doctrines, fancying themselves as Bible scholars. By the time they come to the ministry, they are so convinced of their own rightness that nothing will persuade them otherwise. The issues raised are almost always peripheral, or doctrines contrary to our long standing understanding. The Church’s Council of Elders often discusses subjects that may appear simple on the surface, but are frequently more complex than first thought. It is through thoughtful and prayerful discussion with the Bible as the foundation that 15 or more men, who have been in the ministry for decades, are able to come to a sound biblical understanding.”
He means that doctrine has been set by what these men were taught when they were students in WCG’s Ambassador College, and only such men who are now the leaders of the LCG have that necessary knowledge and understanding to make changes.
Take for example Richard Ames’s
Marriage Supper in Heaven Doctrine, which he outlined to ordinary members in 2012:
“I will share with you some of what we have recently discussed in our Council of Elders meetings, on which I elaborated during a presentation at the Ministerial Conference in May of this year …
In fact, much of what Dr. Meredith and I have preached, and what I discuss in this article, follows closely from what Mr. John Ogwyn wrote in 2003 in his powerful booklet,
Revelation: The Mystery Unveiled! Please be assured, brethren, that Dr. Meredith and I, and the many other faithful ministers in the Living Church of God, are not “departing from the truth.” We are simply striving to fulfill the biblical imperative to grow in grace and knowledge (2 Peter 3:18), and to rightly divide the word of truth (2 Timothy 2:15).”
Ordinary members who advocate doctrinal change are, however, “departing from the truth,” and are failing “to grow in grace and knowledge.”

Restored Church of God
David Pack has promoted Brad Schliefer to the status of Evangelist to replace Jeff Ambrose. Armstrongism Library has published David Pack’s explanation to members as to why Jeff Ambrose decided to leave the RCG.
“… In his resignation letter, Mr. Ambrose expressed that they had “a fundamental difference in belief.” He has very carefully assured us that he has no plans to attack anyone, but rather desires to leave quietly and in peace. He also clearly stated that he has no intentions of starting his own group or joining any other religious organization. It appears that after a lifetime in God’s Church, he wants to leave the ministry and organized religion altogether!

Additionally, Mr. Ambrose stated that “fairly serious, and permanent, health problems” caused by stress as the other driver compelling him to take action. This is never a reason to leave God’s Church! No one knew the full extent of his difficulties and he never sought advice from any us – even the medical doctor who was in the office next to him.
Obviously, this is not easy news for any of us to receive. The Ambroses have been in the Church for many years and served in various facets of the Work. As we did here, we are sure you are battling the same shock of this announcement. Rest assured that 
everyone on our Headquarters staff, Mr. Pack and all the ministry, including all our field ministers, are doing well. Everyone understands that this has happened before and is the pattern of centuries in God’s Church. No one is shaken.”
Yes, this has happened before – a lot – as shown by this
photo from 2010. The significance this time is that Jeff Ambrose was his second in command.

Biblical Calendar
In the past few years various divergent ideas have arisen, such as:
Biblical year comprises 360 or 364 days;
Month starts at the full moon;
Week starts at the new moon, therefore the Sabbath falls on the 7th, 14th, 21st and 28th days;
Day starts at sunrise rather than sunset.
Seekers of Yahweh’s Ministries deemed it necessary to impose the following rule:
“Due to many bad reports of things that have taken place at other gatherings during Yah’s Feasts, we here at Seekers of Yahweh want to make it very clear that the following topics for discussion will not be focused on, and if it is your intent to bring these topics (listed below) that are creating division, instead of studying with us, please find another venue …
Chris DeWeese wrote in The Word and The Way: “For the past four or five years, our movement has been playing “whack a mole” with ludicrous doctrines. Every year some new strange doctrine comes up and then those who would normally be talking about sound doctrine go to war trying to tamp down the strange doctrine.”
There were several Sukkot sites this year which did not align with the main calendars, and only one had an explanation as to the calendar they were observing. Our Biblical Calendar for 2019 will keep to the main calendar methods.  

Church of God 7th Day
The Bible Advocate has been covering its Statements of Faith in 2018, and in this issue are the final two — The Second Advent and the Kingdom of God:
“Many Christians, including well-respected scholars, have set dates based on various “Bible” chronologies. Periods of 2300, 2520, 1260, 1290, 1335, and 1000 years have been manipulated in various ways to predict the end in the years 1000, 1844, 1914, 1975, 1988, 2011, and others. All these dates have two things in common: They made good sense to many people at the time, and they were all wrong.
Why is there such a preoccupation with figuring out when Jesus will return and with seeing every evil as a sure sign of the end? One reason is that Christians long to be united with their Savior at the resurrection — a blessed hope indeed.
Another reason is not so godly. It is the same reason people consult fortune tellers and astrologers: They are curious about the future. Unable to rest securely in the loving arms of their Creator, they want to know what lies ahead. And for every such individual, there is some Bible teacher ready with new proofs of how near the end is or of exactly when and how it will occur.”
Editor Jason Overman writes: “I was asked a while back why I wasn’t preaching on the blood moons. Well, that came and went, but it illustrates why we don’t hear more prophecy from the pulpit. The boundless, fanciful speculation of many discourages the rest from bothering with prophecy. Fallacious interpreters guessing the day and hour of Christ’s return shouldn’t deter us from sober end-time teaching. It’s essential to the health of the church.”

Philadelphia Church of God
In his new book, The New Throne of David, Gerald Flurry identified the Place of Safetyas Adullam, a cave in Israel. He wrote that he would shortly be transporting Herbert Armstrong’s prayer rock (the new “stone of destiny”) to Adullam, where he and his church would soon begin living for the duration of the Great Tribulation’.
p.22 God is getting us ready to go to the place of safety where David’s throne is prophesied to be. There is a new king and a new stone. There has to be for this prophecy to be fulfilled! And this new king would have to be God’s apostle, at least for this time.’
pp.24-25 ‘During the Great Tribulation, they will suffer as never before! Now – what will happen to God’s people during that time? Micah 1:15 says, “Yet will I bring an heir unto thee, O inhabitant of Mareshah: he shall come unto Adullam the glory of Israel.” …
We must be prepared to go to the cave of Adullam, the place of safety. Make this a part of your thinking, because we live in the most urgent time ever!’
Gerald Flurry has now decided against spending the Great Tribulation in a cave.
On the opening night of the Festival of Tabernacles he spoke about the Church’s
Bible Hymnal, saying that, “it was prophesied in Psalm 137 and that God’s people who are taken captive by the revived Holy Roman Empire will sing “By the Waters of Babylon” as a witness to their captors.”
After delivering three messages in Edmond, he took a two-hour flight aboard the Church’s corporate jet to Palm Harbor, Florida, on September 27. He delivered a sermon there on Friday regarding “his office being like no other human office in the Bible” – he regards himself as God’s Prophet, God’s Apostle and King on the Throne of David.

Festival of Tabernacles – Sukkot 2018
The festival begins this week for those observing a calendar that starts the new year at the new moon following the vernal equinox.
Three groups will be broadcasting services, and two of them will have sermons in the morning, afternoon and evening. Please go to the Live Broadcasts page for detailed information.

Seventh Day Adventists
The foundational issue at this Autumn Council is not the ordination of women … not even an ecclesiastical one – whether we will have a top down style of administration leadership …
The real issue is what it means to be the church and what it means to be the Church in “unity” …
For some, unity really means “uniformity” … screen out anyone who doesn’t see and do things my way and endeavors to discipline anyone who gets out of line.”

SDA’s Official News Service  reported, 14 October 2018: “… delegates to the Seventh-day Adventist Church’s annual meeting of its full Executive Committee approved a recommendation from the church’s Unity Oversight Committee (UOC) to create a new compliance process to assist with the need to implement church policies and voted actions.
Today’s action, expressed in a vote of 185 to 124, with two abstaining, approved a document entitled
Regard for and Practice of General Conference Session and General Conference Executive Committee Actions.
In Adventist Today, Dan Appel calls the vote a Pyrrhic Victory :
“… the General Conference President Ted Wilson and his allies from the developing world and the Adventist far right won a victory at Annual Council – but one which I fear will turn out to be pyrrhic in its long term consequences.
In pursuit of their ultimate goal to block the ordination of women, President Wilson and his allies planted a stake in the ground on the issue of centralized and empowered church government and were willing to gamble the church on their chance of victory. It was so important to them that, as one in the church’s leadership was quoted as saying, “I am willing to lose two million members if necessary in order to make this a reality.” A leader should be careful what he wishes for! Before the dust finally settles, that leader may get his wish.
The foundational issue at this Autumn Council is not the ordination of women. That horse is already far out of the barn, never to be corralled. It is not even an ecclesiastical one – whether we will have a top down style of administration leadership in the Adventist Church – although at least for the time being it appears that our system will more closely resemble that of Roman Catholicism than it does the Early Church and the church Ellen White worked so hard to protect.
The real issue is what it means to be the church and what it means to be the Church in “unity” …
For some, unity really means “uniformity” … screen out anyone who doesn’t see and do things my way and endeavors to discipline anyone who gets out of line.”

Winter Family Weekend
There are many ‘family weekend’ events during the year, but by far the largest gatherings are at Christmas. The dates this year are December 21-25.
The original WFW, now in its 22nd year, is the
Lexington Winter Family Weekend, sponsored by the Cincinnati and Lexington churches, will be held at the Clarion Hotel & Conference Center in Lexington, Kentucky. The event is open to everyone.
“The Winter Family Weekend in Lexington, Kentucky has helped change the culture of the Church of God. Twenty years ago God blessed us with an event without borders. People quickly learned that it is what you believe — not the name on the church door that makes the difference. It’s an environment where friends can meet as equals to worship together and celebrate the Faith that is common to us all.”
Three corporate Churches of God will also be holding ‘family weekend’ events:
The United Church of God will be having a
Northwest Family Weekend in Portland, Oregon, but its main WFW will be at the Great Wolf Lodge in Mason, Ohio. Viktor Kubik has commented that, “It is the largest gathering of United Church of God members in one place – larger than any Feast site.”
The Church of God a Worldwide Association will hold its
annual WFW  at the Galt House Hotel in Louisville, Kentucky. Over 1000 members are expected to attend.
The Living Church of God’s
WFW at the Renaissance Charlotte Suites Hotel, North Carolina, is strictly for LCG members only.

Voice in the Wilderness Church of God
Update from Bill Goff, 13th October 2018
“People are crying, these guys arrested a 90 year old man, friend to my Daddy, who has five orphans. They are looking 45,000 Kenyan Schillings from him with no negotiation. Reason, because he didn’t report to authorities his caring of 5 orphans.”
We live in a rough and tough world. I received the above report from Haron (the overseer at the Sengera Orphanage). The Government had made a surprise visit to all the orphanages in our area. They entered our compound heavily armed carrying AK-47s. After inspecting, they complimented us for having a very clean and organized orphanage, saying it was the cleanest they had seen. They also complimented that our store room had plenty of food on hand for the orphans, including fruits and vegetables. But they didn’t leave without making an arrest. They arrested Doricah (Haron’s wife) for cooking without being certified. We have three certified by the health department to cook, but she is not one of them. Doricah was loaded into the back of a truck that was full of others who had been arrested that morning from other orphanages (including that 90 year old man.) How sad for them to arrest that elderly man who was just caring for a few orphans out of his compassionate heart. Later that day Doricah was released after paying a fine.
(Just received an update concerning the fate of that 90 year old man. He didn’t have the funds to pay his fine, so was sentenced to 6 years in jail. Brethren, we need to count our blessings to be living here in America and other humanitarian countries. Do we realize how fortunate and blessed we are?)
Next I want to update you on the brethren involved in the “Mau Evacuation” who were evicted off their land. As previously reported, they had to flee their homes running for their lives. They ran with the clothes on their backs and whatever they could quickly grab. They spent the first few nights in the forest where they took shelter under the trees. (Two children died from exposure to the rain and cold, and were buried in the woods.) We managed to raise enough funds that first week to transport them via motor bike taxis to the town of Narok. They lived on the streets of Narok for the next few weeks. (Very rough conditions with little escape from the rain and scarcity of food – fact is, they were starving.)
With the help of a very compassionate judge who has befriended us, we finally assisted our brethren the best we could with some food and blankets. And now we’re happy to inform you that as of October 1st they are no longer living (and sleeping) on the streets of Narok. After working with the town chief, the judge has secured a shelter to house them. They now have a roof over their head, and use of a kitchen. We (KHofH) are trying our best to assist them with some food, until they are able to get on their feet and become self supportive. That will take some time, because they (as most of our Kenyan brethren) are peasant farmers. Without land, there is no place for them to grow any crops.
It just amazes me how rich these brethren are in faith, putting their trust in our Creator. As rough as it has been the past two months, being evicted off their property, burying their deceased children in the woods, and then starving and struggling to survive on the streets of Narok, not one of them ever complained.

Mau brethren flee after being evicted
off their land by the Kenyan Government.

On another note, the children at Sengera House are doing well. They will finish 3rd term the end of this Month. Then school will be closed for November and December. The children send their Highest Greetings to those of you who have been assisting them.
They know that without your help (and our Heavenly Father of course) they would not be in school, not be clothed, and most likely, some would have died. Let us praise our Heavenly Father for your giving spirit and compassionate hearts.
I posted a picture of Ibu before, but forgot to include what he had to say to you donors:
“I will take this opportunity to thank you donors for all you have done for me. Since I was a small boy you have clothed me, fed me, and loved me as you put me through primary school. Now I am in trade school learning how to weld. I am getting better and now even can sew. I also thank Papa for his love to me. God bless all of you from my heart. Ibu”
Once again, we at Kenya Hands of Hope want to thank you donors for easing the pain and suffering of our impoverished brethren. Life in those 3rd world Countries is rough and tough to say the least. And as you can see from the reports above, it’s not: “Innocent until proven guilty.” In many of those countries, it’s: “Guilty until the fine (or bribe) is paid”.
We also want to thank you for your prayers for our protection. And, as I always tell the brethren, It might be my face they often see, but it’s you donors that keep the wheels rolling. I’m just another spoke in the wheel.
What a pleasure it is to be working together with all of you, in unity and in love.
Let us not get weary to do good works that will glorify our Heavenly Father.
Your brother in Christ, Bill Goff.

Seventh Day Adventists
Is there an “anti-Trinitarian surge” within by far the largest Seventh Day Sabbath church?
Adventist Today reports: Translators who have been working on the Sabbath School lessons on the book of Revelation scheduled for the first quarter of 2019 were surprised to get a late, fairly extensive revision to the lessons recently. The lessons, written by New Testament scholar Dr. Ranko Stefanovic of the Seventh-day Adventist Theological Seminary at Andrews University, had already been approved by the Sabbath School committee.
Throughout the lesson Dr. Stefanovic contrasts God’s Holy Trinity and Satan’s counterfeit “trinity” (the dragon, the sea beast, and the land beast of Revelation 13). The word “trinity” was used 9 times in the original manuscript. All nine uses of the word have been removed, whether they referred to the Holy Trinity or the false satanic trinity. Similar words such as “triad” and “triumvirate” are at times removed.
Wrote one translator to
Adventist Today, “As these late edits claim to remove ‘errors’, I find it curious that someone would object to this contrast being made in our quarterlies. After all, the Trinity is still a fundamental doctrine of ours. Removing it from the lessons looks like wanting to blur our view of the Godhead and an important theme in Revelation.”
Dr. Denis Fortin of the SDA Theological Seminary made this observation to
Adventist Today: “The male headship principle used to support the case against the ordination of women leads naturally into an anti-Trinitarian posture with its kindred theological argument of the eternal subordination of the Son to the Father. That same principle is now guiding some Adventist church leaders toward this authoritarian stance on compliance to all rules and regulations the General Conference endorses. This underlying principle of headship demands submission to higher authorities. During the fateful Theology of Ordination Study Committee (TOSC), a number of us on that committee predicted that endorsing the male headship argument (along with the eternal subordination of the Son to the Father) would in time generate an anti-Trinitarian surge in our churches. And it is happening as predicted. We are reaping the consequences of faulty theology endorsed consciously or unconsciously by church leaders and pastors.”
This link to Adventist Today’s report lists the amendments that have been made.
The SDA’s trinitarian doctrine was adopted by its annual conference in 1980. The 2018 Council of the General Conference Executive Committee is currently meeting (October 11-17).
The SDA is not a hierarchical church, and strong opposition has already been voiced against the possibility of a more centralized governance.

Church of God – Preparing for the Kingdom of God
Will Ronald Weinland decide to close down the COG-PKG within the next month?
The sermon he gave on the seventh day of the Festival of Tabernacles in the Netherlands, was entitled
The World Stage is Set for the Kingdom of God – “but we may not be”, he said.
The delay in Jesus Christ’s return is, he said, because many of those attending the church’s annual FOT have been indulging in pornography and ‘playing away’ with married brethren while their mates are back home.
He asserted that it is worse than what Judas Iscariot did, “for selfish reasons, whatever it might be, to form a relationship with someone else within the church that should not be formed, or to form a relationship with someone outside the church that should never have been formed, or in the way that it was being formed. Not wrong to do that, but you’d better do it the right way. Not like the world, where you sleep together in advance … I mention these things because this stuff happens, year after year. It should never happen. You think you get by with it? Not before God you don’t …
I’m hoping a bunch of us are getting the picture out here that any of you fooling around with pornography, you’d better quit. Because I know that too many are. And I’m saying that with the authority of almighty God, that God knows what you’re doing. If I were to ask for a show of hands of individuals who over the last year have looked at any of that stuff, have thought about any of that stuff, or allowed that kind of thinking into their mind, I tell you right now that a lot of hands would go up in this very room, if you were being honest before God.”
Will COG-PKG continue beyond Pentecost 2019?
[his wife] has mentioned to me many a time over the past year how it seems that there are quite a few in God’s church who are having a kind of repetition, a deja vu effect, take place in their life in what they were experiencing prior to 2012 [Weinland’s original date for Christ’s return]. A kind of spiritual ground hog day. It’s there. Now, how are we dealing with it this time. Is this perhaps your final test? …
Will God determine that we must go beyond 2019?
[Pentecost 2019 is Weinland’s third date for Christ’s return]
I think, I feel, by the fact that this is being inspired to be given at this feast, that we’re real close to that decision being made … So when is that being made – maybe at this Feast of Tabernacles? Maybe within the month after here to see what we put into practice in our lives? I don’t know, but I fear and feel that it’s that close to making a determination as to whether we are going to go on at least another year. And I’ll tell you now too, just so you know, that we’re going to try to secure feast sites for the following year, just in case, just in case.”
(This “decision being made” now or within the month, is not referring to the timing of Jesus Christ’s return, since he had stated earlier in the sermon that, “You can know that it is the time when Christ will once again stand on the Mount of Olives, if a third world war has broken out by February or March of 2019. That’s close. It has to be within that period of time.”)

Philadelphia Church of God
Exit and Support Network reports (October 3, 2018):
Another PCG Milton Ontario Suicide
“It is with great sadness to announce another PCG suicide from the Milton, Ontario Cult (“church”). MaryAnn McCullough, 25 year member, took her life Sunday, Sept 23, 2018 approximately 10.55, while Randy and her son Caleb were at church, yes, on Sunday! praising and worshiping our creator God. Randy has been waiting 25 years for his wife to attend with him and now each Sunday she will be there with him in spirit.
After being kicked out of her congregation when she needed them the most was too much for her to bear. This most precious of women left a husband, 3 kids, and 3 grandchildren, in tears and disbelief. Flurry’s dictatorship style teaching falsehoods of God’s word pushed this beautiful wife and mother to her grave. Matthew 18:6 says if anyone causes one of these who believe in me to stumble it is better for a huge stone to be hung around their neck and be drowned in the sea.
After 4 months of suffering and no flowers, cards, or phone calls other than her husband’s church, who has and still is reaching out with God’s love and compassion, sending flowers, food and cards over the last several months. People and family members just can’t believe she could be brainwashed into believing such doctrinal lies. Her husband believes she has accepted Christ and in Him alone and will see her again someday, hopefully soon.
The Rcmp Opp and other law informant groups are well aware of what Flurry’s teachings are doing to innocent people.
This is the 2nd suicide from the Milton, Ontario cult.
You have to ask yourself what the hell is going on. With well Over 200 family and community people gathered, yes, on Sunday September 30, to show their love and support to the family and not one word from the PCG. Wow! Trust me, no one from this area will be joining that
cult for sure. I beg all of you who are still drinking Flurry’s Kool Aid to get out! The pastor who married the McCulloughs, George Alfeldt [WCG-GCI minister 1970-2017], 27 years ago, called and sent his condolences and stated he feels Satan has entered that cult.
I have so much more to say, but with half my heart missing I am at a loss for words right now. I pray this will cause one, if not many, to
GET OUT!!!!!” — MaryAnn’s Loving Husband Randy

Port Austin Bible Campus
Port Austin Bible Church and its ministry to the homeless closed on 9th July 2018.
It was announced in the
October 2017 newsletter that Jeff and Judy Kramer were arriving, and would take over the bible campus and homeless ministry in 2018.
“Norman and Marleen Edwards and Bill Buckman have lived on the former Port Austin Air Force Base property since 2004, carrying out the mission that they believe God gave to them …
The Edwards are now retirement age themselves. It is no longer as easy to pick up new homeless Guests or resolve disputes among existing Guests in the middle of the night – and still tend to all the necessary work the next day.”
The Kramers set up the
Michigan House of Hope, but in April 2018 they decided against buying the property:
“A number of factors led to this decision inlcuding the purchase price, payment terms, age of the facility, long-term operating costs and the significant financial investment needed to bring it up to standard fire and building codes. With significant financial support from several local churches, we are instead looking at other facility options.”
The property was therefore put on the market and, with no other ministry able to take over, it was
sold to Huron Casting.

United Church of God
The Church of God Big Sandy reports that, “This week, Aaron Dean of Cincinnati, Ohio, suffered a stroke and two brain bleeds. He initially became weak on his left side. The family reports that he was conscious and expressing that he was doing fine. The doctors discussed the possibility of doing a procedure to remove some “blood off the brain.” He and the family appreciate your prayers.”
Aaron Dean was due to give the main message on Monday afternoon, the 1st day of the festival, at the Church of God International site at Kentucky Dam Village (Land Between the Lakes). Richard Crow will now give the sermon.

Myrtle Beach Festival Sites
Special Feast Notice from The Church of God Ministries International, September 21st:
“Hurricane Florence has left many of the brethren in the churches in difficult positions having to relocate to areas that may be beyond their time available and expenses to do so. If you find yourself in that situation, please know that The Church of God Ministries International extends an open invitation to all brethren of all of the Churches of God who may be unable to relocate at the last minute due to this deadly hurricane.

The Grand Shores Resort in Myrtle Beach has assured us that the area and the resort are fully operational. Additionally, brethren who live in Myrtle Beach have informed us that there are roads that are open and safe. Here are the links sent to us by the Grand Shores that will help you map your route on your journey to Myrtle Beach.
The Church of God Big Sandy’s festival at the Avista Resort in Myrtle Beach is also going ahead – please contact Lyle or Kathy Kerby for information.
Dave Havir (Church of God Big Sandy) announced on September 19th:
Lyle and Kathy Kerby (feast coordinators), and other members of the leadership team for the site wanted to continue with the site – knowing that any individuals can decide to switch sites if they are uncomfortable with the weather conditions.
At this time, the scheduled speakers expressed their intention to travel to the feast site.
Mr. Havir assured the speakers that he would support any decision on their part if the weather influenced them to change feast sites.
Following are excerpts of a text from one of our attendees who initially expressed some hesitancy because of some factual challenges about driving through North Carolina to Myrtle Beach: “I think we are going to be okay. The worst case is there will be longer routes than normal. Some may drive further south and then come back north-east into Myrtle. I think most are allowing extra time to travel.”
The Intercontinental Church of God decided on September 19th to cancel the Myrtle Beach feast site due to Hurricane Florence.
The Church of God International announced on September 18th:
“We regret, after much hopeful preparation following the storm, that we must cancel our feast site in Myrtle Beach. The past three days have been encouraging with the rebound and developments in the Myrtle Beach area, however the latest governors’ press conference in SC expressed concern, with unprecedented rising of rivers in the area which could cause additional road closings and possibly putting a strain on the few routes available which will be needed for emergency vehicles. We have a concern that these few routes may become more difficult or unavailable. The surrounding area may be heavily impacted by what is now projected and the resources now available may be needed for those who will be displaced from their homes. While our feast site is in good shape the surrounding area is deteriorating. Please call Mike Nolen at 843-761-5211 if you have any questions.”

Church of God Ministries International
A reader has responded to Tom Kerry’s assertion (see the post below the reader’s e-mail) that there is always a 100% full moon on the 1st day of the Festival of Tabernacles (15th of Tishrei), thus proving that the Jewish calendar – “God’s Sacred Calendar” – is correct:-
Full Moons and the Fifteenth of Tishrei from 2004 Through 2018
There will be a few readers who still believe that this calendar must surely align with something within the lunar cycle. They may not believe that alignment of the Full Moon with the 15th of Nisan is that important, but a “Full Moon” must align with the 15th day of Tishrei—the first day of the Jewish Feast of Tabernacles (Sukkot). A comparison of these two events will be illustrated in the table below, for all 15th days of Tishrei from 2004 through 2018.
[This table shows that the moon was 100% full on 15th Tishrei in only 5 of the last 15 years.]
This will reveal the truth about this alignment—what actually occurs and what can be proven to occur. See the inconsistent results of this alignment, exposing yet another myth—“The first day of the Jewish Feast of Tabernacles (the 15th of Tishrei) falls on the Full Moon.”

In one of his weekly broadcasts (God’s Unchanging Word) Tom Kerry announced (at 35 minutes) that he can “accurately predict when a new moon will be months in advance” by using astronomical data for the full moon, thereby proving the accuracy of the Hebrew calendar. Sadly, his misunderstanding of basic arithmetic leads him to “prove” the opposite of what he intends.
Quoting Psalm 89:37 “It shall be established for ever as the moon, and as a faithful witness in heaven”, he says: “So now, if I want to follow God, not man, that means all those people who are out there, and this is what people want to get confused, all these people who are self appointed to determine the new moon
[those who wait for the visible new moon], they have just eliminated the one witness that God left for us.”
“These people who are self appointed” are actually following what the Worldwide Church of God proclaimed that God had commanded: “Jerusalem was always the point from which the new moons were observed and sanctified. It was the Sanhedrin, the Supreme Court in Jerusalem, that determined when the new moon was apparent … If the people of Jerusalem, where God’s permanent headquarters are to be, cannot see this crescent of the moon following sunset, then the entire world east and west of that city must delay beginning the month till the following sunset. This is the ordinance as it was given by God. We are not free to begin earlier because of the way we see it.”
“The one witness that God left for us” – he means the 100% full moon – not the new moon, which was not visible anywhere in the world on Sunday evening, September 9th, when the Hebrew calendar year began.
“All you need to do is understand, when is the full moon?”
Displaying a calendar chart for September 2018, he explains:
“There’s the 24th of September, which is the beginning of the Feast of Tabernacles. This is Tishrei 15, the middle of the month. If you go look at the calendar, you’ll see, you look at NASA, that’s a full moon … We know when the full moon is, just count back 15 days … it brings you to the 1st of the month
[counting inclusively] … which is a new moon according to NASA. Now how complicated can that be?! Hopefully you will understand that you won’t let anybody else persuade you to do things differently.”
Tom, it’s a little more complicated than you believe. The 15th day is not “always dead center of God’s month”, as you claim. A lunar month has either 29 or 30 days, and the times vary between two astronomical new moons and between new and full moons (see chart of moon phases).
“Like the gentleman here, who told me that no-one can predict, then began to predict when he thought it was going to take place. I know he doesn’t mean any harm, but when he brought his conclusion, he began the Feast of Tabernacles on the 25th, not the 24th, so he is actually one day late, and off the full moon.”
Tom Kerry then displays NASA’s full moon chart, highlighting September 24-25 as the 1st day of the Feast of Tabernacles. Tom, you are one day late – the holy day on the Hebrew calendar is the day before.
He continues: “The full moon takes place in the night-time portion of the 24th, which is the beginning of the Feast, and it completes its fullness in the day-time portion of the 25th, which is still the same day as the 15th of Tishrei
[not in the Hebrew calendar, it isn’t] … There’s the new moon on the 10th.”
The Day of Trumpets in the Hebrew calendar begins on the evening of the 9th.
“The new moon and the holy days, they correspond precisely as God’s faithful witness says, every single year … and the Jews to this day have got it right. Because why? Because God has given them the oracles of God.”
If the Jews to this day have got it right, Tom, why aren’t you keeping Shavuot (Pentecost) on Sivan 6 each year as they do?
The moon was 100% full on the 1st Day of Unleavened Bread 2018 in the Hebrew calendar [Nisan 15 – March 31] – but there was neither an astronomical nor visible new moon on Nisan 1 – March 17. On that evening the old waning moon was still visible.

Biblical Calendar 2018
Which New Moon? Israel -v- Global Sighting
The Temple Institute was founded to prepare for the building of the third temple. At that time they expect that a new official Sanhedrin will have reverted to sighting the new moon to begin each month, as they did at the second temple:
“Two witnesses who had seen the appearance of the new moon were required to testify before the Great Sanhedrin …”
After the destruction of the Holy Temple, the Sanhedrin moved to the town of Yavneh, where it would receive witnesses’ testimony of the new moon. The Talmud relates that Rabban Gamliel displayed pictures of the moon in various stages of its monthly course. He would use the pictures when questioning the witnesses in order to determine the veracity of their testimony.
The Sanhedrin moved from Yavneh, on the Mediterranean coast, to several places in Galilee. Jewish tradition does not therefore limit sighting of the new moon in Israel to an area around Jerusalem.
Those Jews, who protested against the introduction of the fixed calendar based on the conjunction + rabbinic postponement rules, became known as Karaites.
Nehemiah Gordon, a Karaite Jew, admitted, in
an article dated 27 August 2014: “For approximately 15 years, I have been a zealous advocate of using the moon in the Land of Israel to determine when to observe our holidays in the Diaspora. I set this forth in a book. I stated this in a Karaite Fact Card. But over the last year, I’ve come to realize that I might have been wrong. Some of my hesitancy in admitting that I was in fact wrong is because so much of my identity has been wrapped up in this …
When I was in the fourth grade, I showed up to school on the Rabbanite Yom Kippur with a handwritten note from my mom explaining that I would be absent the following day for my religious observance. In that year, the new moon was seen in Israel one day after the Rabbinic calendar set the new month. And that year was the last year the Karaite Jews of America set their holidays in accordance to the new moon sightings in Israel.”
So you have to look at “the full picture and decide any final conclusions for yourself.”

Sighting the New Moon for the Day of Trumpets  – from Renewed Moon
“This month’s sighting is, once again, an excellent example of the different results that can be obtained by limiting eyewitness accounts only from Israel versus the consideration of global sightings. Although the practice of restricting renewed moon sightings to this specific geographical location is purely traditional (not scriptual), it’s easy to see how extremely limiting and inaccurate the final results can be. In this case, the moon was clearly sighted, with reports further east from India and Mauritius, prior to Israel’s lone sighting, that should serve as the secondary (or third) confirmation – making Monday, September 10 at sundown the start of the seventh Biblical Month for India and areas westward (including Israel).
By following the Israel-only tradition, however, there is no secondary eyewitness (even though there were many others directly south in South Africa) – therefore there would be no conclusive, verified evidence for Israel-based observers to begin the month on Monday and the start of the month would be delayed until Tuesday, by default (after the 30th day) regardless of where they live and despite contrary evidence of the moon’s renewal. It is this contrast as to why we report for both methods to give you the full picture and decide any final conclusions for yourself.
For more information