Sunday, December 6, 2015

Reading Living Church News (2015)

Let us take a look at the 2015 issues of LCG's magazine, Living Church News.


Meredith makes the following boast that all is well among LCG's 1%.
It has always been encouraging to me that far more “leading” ministers came with us as we started the Global and now Living Church of God than went with any other organization. For, almost from the beginning, we had men such as Dibar Apartian, Carl McNair, John Ogwyn, Karl Beyersdorfer, Sydney Hegvold, Lynn Torrance, Ben Whitfield and many, many others who had “been around” in the ministry or the Work for literally decades. These men knew me and knew what they were doing. So it is much harder to “shake” them away from what they know is the Truth and what they know about the Work of God and its leadership. All of them believe in the correct form of government described clearly in the Bible. Not just “government from the top down.” But, as I have emphasized dozens of times over the years, the approach of servant leadership in how we administer that government. I am sure all of you older brethren can see that in our ministry. (p. 2.)
And when Meredith decided that it was too difficult to held in check by others within GCG he left and engineered a schism to create LCG.

Meredith also alludes to PCG's infamous no contact policy.
In some other groups, sadly, we find that the leading minister or ministers become “little dictators.” They are very sensitive, easily upset and “ demand ” obedience and loyalty in unusual ways. Some are so fearful of losing their power that they will literally disfellowship their own members for even visiting or eating with members of their own family who happen to be with a different Church of God organization! Many of you know that, and most of you know that we—in this Work —are definitely not like that. So I hope all of us can appreciate how the Spirit of God is moving us toward “the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ” (Ephesians 4:13). (p. 2.)
While it is good to condemn PCG's no contact in fact Roderick C. Meredith himself disfellowshipped ministers while he was head of the ministry in 1979.

At the time Gerald Flurry was a minister in WCG after getting ordained in 1973. Meredith's actions taught him that there is nothing wrong with disfellowshipping members and ministers to get one's way. He imitated those senior to himself including Meredith. Although he used more promiscuously he learned this ghastly practice from those senior to him. He was influenced by the culture of the time and Meredith bears a lot of responsibility for creating this culture of authoritarianism within HWA's WCG.

This issue also discusses the Feast of Tabernacles held the previous year.


Meredith fear mongers that the world is falling apart. In the United States white Americans are much more likely to experience violence at the hands of others whites. But despite that fact none of the examples Meredith cites here are of whites. They are all not white.
Brethren, in the tumultuous years just ahead of us, we will all need to genuinely “walk with God”—probably more than we have ever done. For the “little boy soldiers” of ISIS are being trained by this perverted organization to learn the details of how to behead other human beings and other vile practices. The scars on their minds may never be erased in this age. The increasing numbers of kidnappings, rapes and other instances of brutality experienced in the tribal warfare of Africa are going on over there right now as I write. Also, in a National Public Radio interview I heard just this morning, a woman from the Gaza Strip described the increasing hate and slaughter of the many hundreds of men, women and little children over there. Describing this, this woman stated emphatically: “This war will go on forever.” (p. 1.)
Meredith makes no mention of the fact that in last year's war it was the Palestinians who endured the vast majority of fatalities and injuries. But the COGs are blinded by racism so they do not notice this fact. Because of the false dogma British Israelism the COGs think the Jews are white. (What the Jews think about this are studiously ignored by the COGs.) At the same time they view the Palestinians as not white. So the COGs support the State of Israel against the (non-white) Palestinians and are blind to the sufferings of the Palestinians. The COGs support the State of Israel for racist reasons. Viewing Jews as white is not a good reason to support the State of Israel.

Here Meredith speculates that some kind of "race war" or "race riot" will soon occur. But unlike PCG Meredith seems to assume that the white majority will attack minorities as well. PCG in their false prophecy of "race war" tend to portray the white majority as innocent and passive victims. Banned by HWA reported on this article at the time it was published.
We in God’s Church will soon be surrounded by situations where whites are killing blacks, blacks are killing whites, and almost no one truly loves and trusts people of other races or ethnic backgrounds. We will come to the place where increasing numbers of demons will be “set loose” and unleash truly powerful attitudes of hate and violence. (p. 1.)
Such things will never happen. It is irresponsible to propagate such racist ideas.

Peter Nathan has an article insisting that Jesus died because a Roman soldier plunged a spear into Him while he was still alive (pp. 11-13). This idea has been promoted within the COGs for decades.

Page 18 contains an article discussing financial details of LCG from the LCG Business Office.


Here Meredith states that Gerald Weston is third in line to the throne behind Meredith and Ames.
Also, if anything should happen to Mr. Ames, another of the most experienced and dedicated leaders in the Work at this time is Mr. Gerald Weston, who has already been acknowledged by the Council of Elders to carry on in Mr. Ames’ place, if necessary, as Presiding Evangelist of the Living Church of God. Mr. Weston, also, has been tried and tested in many different ways. He has served faithfully throughout the United States, across Canada, and soon will be serving full-time in Britain, Europe and the Middle East. Do give him your support and your fervent prayers. (p. 2.)
Richard Ames has this little paean to Meredith.
We are grateful for Dr. Roderick C. Meredith’s 63 years of dedicated service to the Work of God as an evangelist of Jesus Christ—he was, as most of you know, ordained in the very first group of evangelists ordained by Mr. Herbert W. Armstrong. To put that in perspective, when I was ordained as an evangelist by Mr. Armstrong—during the Days of Unleavened Bread in 1984—Dr. Meredith had already been serving as an evangelist for more than 32 years! I know you will join me in praying that God will bless him with the health, energy and continuing zeal to serve God’s people for many more years! (p. 20.)
Peter Nathan has an article reciting Armstrongism's interpretation of the Holy Days.

Scott Winnail vilifies Colleges outside of LCG's unaccredited Living University as propaganda mills. He wishes to discredit the competition.
In addition, over the last few decades, universities have become increasingly hostile to traditional Christian values and orientations. Evolution is typically taught as fact and influences students’ study in subjects from biology to chemistry, to anthropology, to sociology, to nursing and medicine. Homosexual conduct is taught as “normal” and even praised, instead of being rightly labeled as a sin. As Robert Bork noted, quoting sociologist Seymour Martin Lipset, university intellectuals have “... a predominant sympathy for the antiestablishment, liberal-left positions.... They have lent disproportionate support to atheistic, antiwar, civil rights, civil liberties for deviants, liberal Democratic, and third party causes” (Bork, 93). In essence, many university campuses have become vehicles for advancing social, intellectual, and political agendas—they are no longer what we would properly consider institutions of higher learning. Students and faculty are now expected to “tolerate” and “accept” a wide range of behaviors that were once viewed as sinful. Universities have normalized behaviors that many parents and even therapists consider “depraved” (Grossman, 149). Those who “hold on” to traditional values are labeled as bigoted and intolerant, or even ignorant and stupid. In general, the university experience (including the on- campus living experience) is designed to deconstruct traditional values and rebuild them in the image of the elite of the academy. It is no wonder that many young people lose their faith along with their “virtue” while at university. (p. 16.)
Of course the point of all this vilification of non-LCG Colleges is to convince people to go to his institution, namely LCG's Living University. (Is it accredited?)
Yes, that institution is Living University, where I have taught since 2008, and where I serve as Dean of Faculty. Living University’s programs are based on the Bible and include significant training in the Word of God. Additionally, Living University aims to recapture the true values of Bible understanding, in marriage and family preparation, in health and wellness, and even in finance. Our on-site program goes further in fostering this outlook in dating and social life, in leisure activities and in service to the Church and the community. It really is different—and I have experienced this firsthand, having also taught in the world’s universities for more than a decade before coming to Living University. (p. 17.)
Those Universities outside of LCG are so terrible, awful and ungodly that Scott Winnail taught in one of them for a decade before joining LCG's outfit.

Is it accredited? If not maybe people would be better served going to an institution in which their degrees will be recognized. 


Meredith mentions what happened after the death of his first wife in 1976 and comments on the death of Pieter van der Byl (p. 1).

Dexter Wakefield has an article condemning the occult. I most emphatically would not encourage anyone to get into such things but the COGs fear monger about society outside of the group in order to make staying in the group seem more attractive.

This issue contains the audit (pp. 12-23).

Scott Winnail once again promotes his Living University. (Is it accredited?)
On May 18 of this year, Living University graduated its largest-yet number of certificate, diploma and degree recipients. Twenty-one students from around the world completed a course of study—including six who received the Bachelor of Theology, two who received the Associate of Theology and one who received the Diploma in Biblical Studies. Twelve also completed Certificates. Graduates traveled from across the United States and from as far as Belgium to receive their credential. Our first “Early College” graduate also earned a certificate this year— completing her LU study while also carrying out her high school duties. (p. 27.)
He also mentions some of the courses available. Here is one of them.
HPRO 114. Health and Wellness. This course filters the vast array of health-related knowledge available in the world today through sound biblical principles. Emphasis is placed on lifestyle-related wellness, health promotion, and disease prevention within the context of a range of health topics. (p. 27.)
Considering the tragic and shameful history of Armstrongism's anti-medicine superstitions I cannot help but wonder if that tragic history will somehow affect what is taught in this course.

There is also a photo of the Paris congregation when they celebrated the Days of Unleavened Bread (p. 29).


The cover has been changed with a scene of forests.

Meredith opens this issue with an article entitled "The Dangers of Laodiceanism". He says Satan is plotting to make LCG members no longer adhere to LCG's faith.
Satan now has the capacity to virtually pour his approaches and attitudes into human beings regarding illicit sex and same-sex marriage, plus all kinds of “stuff ” about “political correctness” more than ever before. This certainly powerfully affects the minds of God’s people—and especially our vulnerable young people! (p. 1.)
In it Meredith excoriates LCG members for not properly observing the Sabbath in his opinion.
For even among God’s own people there is a tendency to be very careless in observing the Sabbath! Many take a very “casual” attitude toward watching television on the Sabbath, toward all kinds of thoughts and activities that draw them away from the true worship and adoration of God they should be developing on His holy day. ...

Brethren, we must ask God for the strength to literally give ourselves over to profound Bible study, meditation on God’s Word and His law, heartfelt profound prayer— particularly on God’s seventh-day Sabbath—as we focus on His Kingdom and on things related to Him far more than any other interest! Even during the week, we must not allow ourselves to watch too much television, to dwell on worldly entertainment, or to absorb our minds in sex or violence or on the constant attitude of “getting ahead” and making more money, having more material goods, and having more “fun”! (p. 3.)
Actually Roderick C. Meredith has perverted the Sabbath into a weekly, 24 hour Armstrongite indoctrination session. Evidence that contradicts Meredith's view of the Sabbath was suppressed during HWA's mass expulsions of dissidents in the late 1970s that Meredith participated in.

Page 10 contains a little article by the LCG Business Office justifying the practice of the tithe of the tithe.

Faye League has an article saying that women are expected to dress modestly.
In the area of modesty, I have been asked this same question quite often over the years by women, young ladies and even the elderly—“Why is it that, even though we women and young ladies have been taught to be modest and to wear modest attire, some ignore and neglect these instructions and continue to push the envelope in these areas, wearing revealing and even seductive clothing?”

This type of dressing can be highly offensive to others, especially at Church services, where we go to worship God. I have even heard some of the men voice their concerns, saying that it makes them very uncomfortable and that they have to avert their eyes from the seductively exposed areas of women who are dressed in this manner. Logically speaking, there is just no benefit to anyone in this type of situation anywhere, anytime. (p. 14.)
In response to this problem of women dressing inappropriately League suggests the following should be taken into consideration.
Here are some helpful questions to ask oneself when shopping and trying on clothes before buying:

1. Is this dress/skirt too short for its intended purpose?

2. Will this dress/skirt ride up to be shorter when sitting or bending over?

3. Is this blouse/dress too low-cut and revealing, especially when bending over or stooping?

4. Is this garment (including slacks and jeans) inappropriately snug and form fitting?

5. Will I draw undue and inappropriate attention to myself if I wear this garment?

6. Is this garment age-appropriate? (pp. 14-15.)
Within the COGs men rule over women. So since women are lorded over by men it is necessary express this control by controlling how they dress. Although League wrote this article in one sense it is just a symptom of the widespread sexism against women that unfortunately exists within the COGs and society in general.

Wallace Smith complains that the Supreme Court legalized same sex unions. He even cites an article hysterically insinuating that they will soon be treated like the Christians persecuted by the Roman Empire over this issue. That will not be happening.


This issue mentions the tragic death of Morgan Montgomery during Living Youth Camp. Reading this issue it was clearly a harrowing ordeal for all involved. I hope those affected, especially her family and friends, get the help and counseling they need.

The Authors and Editors

The editors as listed in the November-December 2015 issue are Roderick Meredith, Richard Ames, William Bowmer, John Robinson, Bruce Tyler and Gerald Weston.

In alphabetical order here are the names of the less prominent writers of Living Church News. Some of the more important persons that all are familiar with (Meredith, Ames) have been omitted.

Wyatt Ciesielka, J. Davy Crockett III, Mike DeSimone, Linda Ehman, Gary Ehman, Faye League, Jonathan McNair, John Meakin, Sheldon Monson, Rod King, Peter Nathan, Jerry Ruddlesson, Dexter Wakefield and Scott Winnail.

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