Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Raising the Ruins and HWA's Contract with WCG

Mary Lane earlier pointed out in a comment that Stephen Flurry maintains in Raising the Ruins, Chapter 19, Part 1, that Herbert Armstrong did not have a contract with his religious organization, Worldwide Church of God.
We filed our answer to [WCG's] brief on September 1. On the point about Mr. Armstrong’s authority in the church, we said, “His control over the WCG’s earthly organizations was absolute.” [Agreed.] We even quoted from the WCG’s own bylaws, which showed that Mr. Armstrong was in charge of the “ecclesiastical and temporal affairs of the church.” [Agreed.] ... He never had an employment contract with the church. We explained that he “simply did not want” one.
The last two sentences appear to be inaccurate.

Ambassador Report 26, October 1983 states that HWA did have a contract with WCG. It was published as part of the divorce case between Herbert Armstrong and Ramona Martin. (Some of the more outrageous parts of this contract have been highlighted.)

In with the thousands of pages of court documents now on file in the divorce case are copies of HWA's employment contracts with the Worldwide Church and the Corporation Sole. HWA's 14-page Employment, Disability and Retirement Agreement with the WCG was signed August 1, 1976. Page one contains this modest claim:

Employee [HWA] is the founder, President and Chairman of Employer [WCG]. Since the organization of Employer and its related entities, which include Ambassador College and the Ambassador International Cultural Foundation, both of which are headquartered in Pasadena, California, Employee has served as the senior executive of each of them. Employee has unselfishly devoted his lifetime to ensuring the success and good image of Employer throughout the world in its support of worthy humanitarian purposes. Employee's services and contributions to Employer and its related entities have far exceeded anything that Employer expected or had the right to expect.

In return for his services this is what HWA's contract granted him:

Salary. For all his services as Chairman of the Board and President of Employer, Employee shall receive a salary of Two Hundred Thousand Dollars ($200,000) per year. Each year during the Employment Period, Employee's annual salary shall be payable in at least twelve (12) equal consecutive monthly installments.

Expenses: Employer shall pay for all expenses incurred by or on behalf of Employee in performing as the Chairman of the Board and President of Employer, including but not limited to all travel, lodging, entertainment and meal expenses. Recognizing that Employee will be traveling around the world meeting with many dignitaries, including Heads of States, in all cases Employee shall be provided with first-class accommodations at Employer's expense.All out-of-pocket expenses incurred by Employee in the performance of his duties as the Chairman of the Board and President of Employer shall be promptly reimbursed by Employer to Employee within thirty (30) days after Employee's incurrence thereof.

Fringe Benefits: Vacations, sick leaves, employee group insurance and other fringe benefits for Employee shall be in accordance with Employer's personnel policies governing its senior executives, and if no such policies have been adopted, as Employer may authorize from time to time, such authorization not to be unreasonably withheld.

Automobile: Each year during the Employment Period, Employer shall provide to Employee, by purchase, lease or otherwise, (at Employer's expense), a limousine with chauffeur to be used in the performance of the Employee's duties as the Chairman of the Board and President of Employer. Said limousine shall be a late model, not older than three (3) years.

The seven-year contract continues on, giving HWA protection against being fired, full compensation for partial disability or total disability, retirement benefits, retention of his titles, use of airplane, attorneys' fees in case of lawsuits, etc. The contract was signed by Herbert W. Armstrong (Employee), and by Garner Ted Armstrong and Stanley R. Rader for Worldwide Church of God (Employer).
So there is a contract between HWA and WCG after all. And it was signed by Stanley Rader and Garner Ted Armstrong.


  1. Another lie in print exposed. Another reason to believe Armstrongism is a deceptive system from it's head to its curiously long-lived tail.

    Good work, RF.

    But about the details of that contract... my gracious that's a comfortable lifestyle. I can see why one would be tempted to lust after it.

  2. Thanks for the comment, xHWA.

    Thanks Mary Lane for pointing this out to me.

  3. It wouldn't surprise me if Flurry had a similar employment contract with his PCG, signed by his son and the PCG attorney.

    In fact, he may be calling up his attorney to draw up a similar idolized employment contract today!

    Stan Gardner

  4. You are quite welcome Redfox. Glad to hear that you are aware of this abuse of the people. Hope it awakens some more to the reality of the system that they have lived in, because it will not stop until we get rid of the scattered ministries that keep the traditions of Armstrongism in order to make money.