Tuesday, April 25, 2017

PCG Loves McCarthyism

When it comes to politics PCG's 1% leans far to the right. They do not like the left. But their disdain for the left has led PCG's 1% to demonize the left as socialists and communists in order to scare their audience away from the left. When the Soviet Union collapsed in 1991 one would have thought that it would be much harder to make people scared of the left by accusing them of being Communists yet that is exactly what PCG's 1% has been trying to do. This tendency may be seen in a recent article released by PCG. (Joel Hilliker, How Did Socialism Become So Popular in America?, April 24, 2017.)

Let's take a look.
America is a nation “conceived in liberty”—like no other nation in history! For hundreds of years, people from all over the world have come here for freedom: religious freedom, economic freedom, freedom of opportunity. 
But something is destroying America’s unique liberty.
What would that be?
How is it that more and more Americans—especially younger Americans—are embracing socialism and communism? These ideologies are very different from those established by America’s founders. They are economic and political models that make this nation more and more like other nations—in Europe and elsewhere—and less and less like America.
And who are these Americans he condemn for promoting socialism and communism? As we shall later in this article Hilliker will criticize Senator Sanders, Barack Obama, Nancy Pelosi, the "political left" and "the leaders in the Democratic Party today." In other words he has turned "socialism" and "communism" to mean the American left in general. That is a classic McCarthyite tactic: Slurring the American left in general as Communists in order to hurl the guilt of the atrocities committed by Lenin, Stalin and other like minded dictators onto the American left to silence debate.

Also note the odd disdain for being like Europe. Even though western European nations have been close allies of the United States since the World War II era it seems that PCG's leaders look down on them and do not want to live in a society like theirs'.
During the Cold War, there was a lot of fear in America about the spread of communism. Now, most Americans today have come to think that threat was overblown. But just look at how widespread and mainstream socialist ideas have become in America today.
There was indeed "a lot of fear ... about the spread of communism." It is generally called McCarthyism. It was not merely an attack on Communists. Rather it was directed at many peoples and dissidents who had nothing to do with Communism including many who were innocent of any wrongdoing. It caused many innocent people to suffer and have their reputations ruined for no good reason. The guilt of the atrocities in Communist countries was hurled onto people who had nothing to do with those things. Senator McCarthy made the hysterical accusation that the State Department was infiltrated by many Communists. People were stirred up into chasing after ghosts. It is shameful that PCG should try to rehabilitate that campaign of hysteria that hurt so many innocent people.
In the 2016 presidential campaign, an open socialist almost won the Democratic Party nomination! If Americans under the age of 30 were the only ones who voted, this man would now be president of the United States. His radical plans to multiply the power and size of government are still extremely popular. More and more Americans want the national government to run health care and other major sectors of the economy.
Perhaps a lot of those young Americans want every American to have health insurance. That would be such a good thing. All Americans deserve to have health insurance.

Hilliker complains that Senator Sanders' plans (actually proposals since he did not win the primary elections) happens to be "extremely popular." But instead of wondering why it is like that he retreats to simple assertions that they were manipulated by Communists, the Universities and the political left instead of accepting the fact that many people do not view politics the same way as himself.
Is it possible all that concern over Communist infiltration might have been justified? This might sound like a kooky conspiracy theory...
It is "a kooky conspiracy theory" to demonize the American left as Communists. It is also an attempt to shut down debate within his audience and scare off people in his audience from listening to sources of information outside of PCG's information bubble.

We now continue with Hilliker's article.
...but you don’t have to look hard to find evidence that communism is influencing America today! The political left is actually pretty open in advocating Communist policies!
Note how "the political left" is equated with "advocating Communist policies." In other words this article is a condemnation of the left in general. The words "Socialist" and "Communist" are here rendered as almost meaningless synonyms for "the political left."
When you look at the leaders in the Democratic Party today, they got their education from universities that were heavily influenced by Communist thinkers.
In other words Hilliker's condemnation of Socialists and Communists includes "the leaders in the Democratic Party today." Once again we see that he has rendered the words "Socialist" and "Communist" are here rendered as almost meaningless synonyms for "the political left."
The Communist Party U.S.A. enlisted the support of thousands of sympathetic professors. Documents from Soviet archives reveal that even after the Soviet Union collapsed, the Communist Party U.S.A. received 2 to 3 million dollars a year from the Kremlin. 
And what happened to the leaders of the Soviet Union? It collapsed in 1991 and splintered into numerous nation states.

He also labels Barack Obama as being part of this alleged Communist threat because of meeting with certain people when he was a young man instead of judging him by what he did when he had power.
Former U.S. President Barack Obama was influenced as a youth by Frank Marshall Davis, a card-carrying Communist Party member, a man who openly supported Joseph Stalin, and who said the world’s greatest threat was “Anglo-American imperialist domination.” Mr. Obama wrote in his biography that he attended socialist conferences and hung out with Marxist professors.
Hilliker insists that the Communists tried to infiltrate the Democratic Party to reforged it according to the wishes of Nancy Pelosi and Barack Obama. Note how the Communists are portrayed as being aligned with Nancy Pelosi and Barack Obama once again showing that he has twisted the words "Socialist" and "Communist" to mean the left in general.
There is a lot of evidence exposing the Communists’ deliberate effort to get inside the Democratic Party. Like Paul Kengor wrote, they wanted to transform it “from the party of Harry Truman and John F. Kennedy to the party of Nancy Pelosi and Barack Obama.”
He also does not even mention where this quotation came from.

He then dares to minimize what President Nixon did during the Watergate scandal and portrays him as a victim of "the radical left" for combating the influence of Communists.
A book published in 2015 titled The Real Watergate Scandal documents how President Richard Nixon worked to prevent this from happening. He was part of the effort to convict Alger Hiss, a Communist spy who worked in the U.S. State Department. For that, Nixon became a target among those on the radical left. History shows that the way Nixon was prosecuted involved law-breaking and lawlessness far more scandalous than what he himself had to resign the presidency over.
PCG's 1% have tended to be intensely partisan towards the right. This is one reason why Hilliker is willing to minimize what Nixon did since he happened to be right wing.

He then simplistically slur young Americans as hating Nixon, Truman, Madison and Washington's political stances.
But today, the dominant message, especially among younger Americans, is to hate what Nixon or even Truman or even Madison or Washington stood for—and to embrace the enlightened principles of Obama, Sanders, Davis, Engels and Marx.
He bemoans that many Americans do not view the world politically the way he does.
Americans today are not living in the nation of our Founding Fathers, or even of our own fathers. The ideas that many Americans are embracing are more radical than a lot of people realize.
But even though he and his followers in PCG and his core audience are already mainly right wing and largely opposed to the left and the Democratic Party almost by default but that still is not enough for Hilliker. He then makes the wild accusation that the left are plotting to "bring... down" America,
And we didn’t arrive at this moment just spontaneously coming to recognize the wisdom in socialist and Communist thinking. 
The fact that these ideas have become so popular is the result of a deliberate and amazingly successful strategy—that was aimed at bringing down “the land of the free, and the home of the brave.”
What a potent cocktail of McCarthyite paranoia, fear, demonization and narrow minded parochialism this article is. The spirit of McCarthyism is alive and well in the offices of PCG headquarters. No good can come from this.

Mark Armstrong's Weekly Update (April 21, 2017)

Intercontinental Church of God's leader, Mark Armstrong, son of Garner Ted Armstrong, has released another misanthropic polemic. Let's take a look.

Mark Armstrong lives in Texas and leads his organization from there so why does he choose to focus most of his attention in this update on terrorist attacks in Europe?

Recently the world was shocked and saddened to see terrorist attacks committed by ISIL sympathizers in Stockholm and Paris which have killed five innocent people. But instead of offering words of sympathy and support Mark Armstrong cites the attack in Stockholm to ridicule those who advocate accepting refugees from Muslim majority countries as being driven by guilt to do so.
We saw a similar scene earlier this month, one becoming all too familiar in the ISIS-infested cities of Europe. That is shoppers and tourists running for their lives amid an unfolding terrorist attack. It happened in Stockholm, Sweden, where hundreds of thousands of Muslims have been housed and supported because Swedes have been convinced that their guilt for having lived in peace and prosperity must be assuaged by importing hordes of conscienceless zealots, deemed "the poor" by the press and by posturing politicians.
He also discusses the terrorist attack in Paris and lambaste the authorities in both France and Sweden for supposedly ignoring the perpetrators.
Last month it was London, where a vehicle was used to bludgeon pedestrians on Westminster Bridge on its way to the gates of Parliament. It should come as no surprise that terror has Paris again, this time on the famed Champs Elysee boulevard, again sending locals and tourists running for their lives. French police had the perpetrator on their radar, (just as Swedish authorities knew the beer truck terrorist and British authorities knew of the Westminster terrorist) another ISIS devotee dedicated to the destruction of Western civilization and the worldwide conquest of Islam. As terrorist attacks go, the bloodthirsty Champs Elysees killer was only marginally successful. Experience shows that a single terrorist carrying out a murderous mission in an unarmed society is often capable of taking out dozens, sometimes forty or fifty carefree civilians at a time, or, as in the case of the attack in Nice, eighty-six civilians. 
He then takes information about the murderer in Paris to make French investigators trying to learn about the terrorist to make them look stupid.
But this one targeted a random police vehicle slaughtering a Paris policeman, grievously wounding two other policemen and wounding a passing female tourist. And it's not like the French authorities didn't know all about this murderer. They think he was "radicalized" while serving a fifteen-year sentence for the attempted murder of two police officers. That little detail should tell us all we need to know about the rationalization of the Muslim situation in Europe. Let's try to get this straight. They're saying he wasn't "radical" when he attempted to take innocent lives in 2001? He only became "radicalized" while serving a sentence for attempting to murder Police officers? If that's not willful ignorance!
He shows his sympathy for the far right by condemning the media for criticizing Marine Le Pen. As is common in these Islamophobic polemics fear of Al Qaeda like terrorists is used to also demonize the left as failing to combat them.
Marine Le Pen is regarded as the "far-right" candidate, striking fear if not hatred into the hearts of the politically correct establishment. She's being accused of "taking advantage" of the attack for political gain. Oooh, that would be wrong, wouldn't it? It would be beneath elite dignity to bring up a murderous ISIS attack on the Champs Elysees a day or two before preliminary voting commences. How low can she go; her opponents want to know. What a cheap ploy!
He than falsely equates ISIL's claim of responsibility for the attack as "a Muslim thing" thus falsely equating the criminal network called ISIL with Muslims in general.
To summarize, it was a religiously motivated act. The perpetrator had material praising ISIS in his car, along with a copy of the Koran. ISIS immediately took credit for his actions and called him one of their "fighters." Funny how these sneak-attack murderers are lauded as "brave fighters." It's a Muslim thing.
Furthermore ISIL is losing on the battlefield in Syria and Iraq consequently this terrorist criminal network is eager to claim credit for anything they can to mask the fact that the long awaited day of their fall is soon coming.

He scare mongers that there are 10,000 people in France on a watch list.
The French maintain a list of terrorist suspects living in their midst. There are 10,000 names on that list, and this murdering piece of ISIS was one of them. Now, there are only 9,999 others that need to be "watched" like this guy was, and that's just in France. As one analyst recently remarked, "He wasn't a lone wolf, he was a known wolf." There are tens, if not hundreds of thousands of them currently residing in Europe, and there is little doubt that sooner or later the domestic population will have enough of "running for their lives" as dozens of terrorist attacks continue to play out. 
And then almost as an afterthought he claims the same things are happening in the United States.
The problem has grown massive in the United States as well. Would be, wannabe terrorists are everywhere. You can't go anywhere or do much of anything without being struck with the realization. 
And that is all he has to say about that in this problem in the United States in this weekly update. Mark Armstrong is based in the United States. It is seems reasonable to assume most of his followers are in the United States. Europe is far away. It is easy to imagine fearful things about places an ocean away.

He then talks about the very serious and concerning crisis concerning North Korea.

And after that he alludes to the protests in Venezuela and yet he mainly talks about multi-national corporations losing money there and uses the current crisis to condemn the American left.
It appears that the inevitable consequences of Democratic Socialism may be reaching critical mass in Venezuela. Mass demonstrations, brought about by poverty and starvation, threaten the ruler-ship of Nicolas Maduro, successor to Hugo Chaves [sic]. His government seized a General Motors plant earlier this week, which mimics similar actions against foreign corporations taken by his predecessor. An article in the New York Times lists a who's who of corporations that have done business in Venezuela and its government, and shows that they've had to write off hundreds of millions of dollars in unpaid debts. And so it goes in this Utopia of Democratic Socialism. It's a pattern we'll see play out elsewhere. It's a philosophy being taught as "fair" in American universities, and one that was preached and promoted by the losers of our recent presidential election.
He direly proclaims that we are "living in an Obama world."
The United States may have elected Donald Trump President, but we are still living in an Obama world. The media, the educational system and the big corporations are hooked on the kind of political correctness that is imploding wherever it's had time to metastasize. 
Even having a Republican as president is not enough for Mark Armstrong. This shows that he will never be satisfied at things and will constantly complain in this way. He will not change even when circumstances are more favorable for his political outlook.

And so Mark Armstrong has given the world another weekly update of his complaints. If his followers are so fixated on events far away in Europe, North Korea or Venezuela it seems likely that they will not focus as much on their own situation and the situation within Intercontinental COG and their local communities.

Monday, April 24, 2017

HWA: Palestine was "a Barren Desert Waste" Until 1917


French tourist poster. 1898.

Way back in 1934 in the very first issue of his recruitment magazine, The Plain Truth, HWA insisted that "Jerusalem and Palestine" were "a barren desert waste" until 1917 when the British seized it from the Ottoman Empire.
In words written some nineteen hundred, some twenty-five hundred years ago the Bible prophesies every outstanding phase of present world condition---the depression, the unemployment, its causes, the hoarding of gold, the topsy-turvy political conditions thruout the world, the modern church condition and present social conditions. It has foretold modern science, the automobile, the airplane. It foretold that the Jews would be driven into ALL nations, scattered, yet without ever losing their nationality or their appearance---and that is the miracle of history! It foretold that Jerusalem and Palestine would be in the power of the Gentiles, a barren desert waste, until 1917-1936 when it would once more "blossom as the rose," and the Jews would once again return! (Herbert W. Armstrong, Is a World Dictator About to Appear? Plain Truth, February 1934, pp. 1-2.)   
HWA thought the "Day of the Lord," which he taught was a time of numerous catastrophes just before Christ's return, would begin in 1936 hence his reference to that year even though he wrote this in 1934. (See Plain Truth, June-July 1934, p. 3.)

But was Jerusalem and Palestine "a barren desert waste" until 1917? Of course not. Jerusalem and Palestine (later after the war of 1947-9 part of it became the State of Israel) were continuously inhabited from Biblical times to this very day.

The 1922 Census of Palestine reported that 757,182 people lived there. The population was about 78% Muslim, 11% Jewish and 10% Christian. How can a land in which 757,182 people live in it be described as "a barren desert waste"?

They farmed. They built homes. They made art. They made families. They raised up their children. They paid taxes to the Ottoman authorities and after 1917 were ruled by the British. Before 1917 and even by 1934 when HWA wrote his words the majority of inhabitants were Palestinian Arabs.

What a terrible slur against the Palestinian people HWA made by insisting that Jerusalem and Palestine were "a barren desert waste" until 1917. It shows how little value he gave to the Palestinian people. They meant little to him. And sad to say this dismissive attitude towards the Palestinians continues to be present within the COGs to this day.

But why did HWA talk of Palestine as though it were "a barren desert waste" until 1917? Well in the mid-19th Century among some Protestant Christians in Britain the idea arose that Jews should migrate to Palestine. And among them arose a saying to promote this idea describing Palestine as "a land without a people and a people without a land," that is they claimed that Palestine did not have a distinctive people while the Jews did not have a homeland. And this view in a mangled form came to influence HWA in 1934 to slur Palestine as "a barren desert waste" thus devaluing the Palestinian Arabs as unworthy of his regard. How shameful.

May peace soon come to the Holy Land.

Saturday, April 22, 2017

Ahmadinejad Disqualified from Running for President

Recently Mahmoud Ahmadinejad announced that he would try to run for the presidency. Naturally PCG, having had a long history of condemning him, related this news with excitement.
Firebrand Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, former president of Iran, has announced that he is again running for the presidency. While walking his former vice president, Hamid Baghaei, through the registration process on Wednesday, Ahmadinejad turned and strode to the registration desk, registering his own papers and sending the media into a frenzy. (Callum Wood, He’s Back! Ahmadinejad to Run for Iran Presidency, April 14, 2017.)
But even Wood had to note the possibility that Ahmadinejad would not be allowed to run for president.
Many in the media suspect that Ahmadinejad will be vetoed. Some say that the former president expects it—choosing to apply only to aid his former vice president. The Associated Press speculated that the Guardian Council is less likely to veto Baghaei if they veto Ahmadinejad. 
But there may be more credibility to Ahmadinejad’s play than the media care to admit.
As it turned out the many people in the media turned out to be right: Ahmadinejad was blocked from running for president.
An Iranian panel charged with vetting candidates approved the country's incumbent president and five challengers but disqualified former hard-line President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad from running in next month's presidential election, state television reported Thursday. (Nasser Karimi and Adam Schreck, "Iran's Mahmoud Ahmadinejad disqualified from presidential election," Associated Press, ABC News, April 20, 2017.)
And so it appears that PCG will no longer be able to use Ahmadinejad as a prop to scare their audience.

PCG Complains About Bill O'Reilly's Removal

The PCG leadership leans far to the right in regards to politics so it is unsurprising that they would comment on the recent removal of Bill O'Reilly from the Fox News Channel.
Earlier this month, the New York Times ran an exposé on Fox News host Bill O’Reilly’s alleged history of sexual harassment. The article resurrected settled disputes and ran unverified information. This week, 21st Century Fox dismissed O’Reilly over the controversy. While we don’t know all the facts about what happened at Fox, it’s safe to say the New York Times effectively helped bring O’Reilly down. A couple weeks after launching the assault on O’Reilly, the New York Times casually posted an op-ed from Marwan Barghouti. According the Times’s byline, Barghouti is “a Palestinian leader and parliamentarian.” It failed to mention he is a convicted terrorist who is imprisoned on five counts of murder, and has orchestrated the killings of hundreds of Israelis. On today’s Trumpet Daily Radio Show, we discuss how the New York Times fiasco is another symptom of a backward and biased media. ("NYT Takes Down Bill O’Reilly and Props Up Marwan Barghouti," The Trumpet Daily, hosted by Stephen Flurry, April 20, 2017.)
Sexual harassment in the workplace is a very serious problem that deserves proper attention but shamefully whoever wrote this chose to focus on partisan condemnations of liberals instead of addressing that serious issue.

Shame on them for choosing to focus stir up partisan feelings and giving less attention to the issue of sexual harassment in the workplace. Do they view sexual harassment as of such little importance? If so that would be a terrible shame.

It is easy to sneer at those we may view as outsiders but it is harder to look at ourselves and address the problems among ourselves.

The Many Fatherlands

While listening to a sermon by Garner Ted Armstrong he stated words to the effect that only Germans called their land the "fatherland" whereas everyone else would talk of the "motherland" instead.

But as is often the case he was completely wrong as may be seen in the Wikipedia article for "Fatherland."

***
Groups with languages that refer to their native country as a "fatherland" include:
  • the Afrikaners as Vaderland
  • the Albanians as Atdhe
  • the Arakaneses as A pha rakhaing pray....
  • the Belarusians as Baćkaŭščyna (Бацькаўшчына)
  • the Bulgarians as Tatkovina (Татковина) and Otechestvo (Отечество)
  • the Danes as fædreland
  • the Dutch, as vaderland
  • the Estonians as isamaa (as in the national anthem Mu isamaa, mu õnn ja rõõm)
  • the Finns as isänmaa
  • the Frisians as heitelân
  • the Georgians as Samshoblo (სამშობლო - "[land] of parents") or Mamuli (მამული)
  • the Germans, as Vaterland (as in the national anthem Das Lied der Deutschen)
  • the Ancient Greeks as patris
  • the Greeks as "patrida"
  • the Icelanders as föðurland literally meaning "land of the father"
  • the Iranians as mihan (میهن) or vatan (وطن - Arabic loanword)
  • the Irish as Athartha
  • the Kazakhs as atameken
  • the Latvians as tēvzeme
  • the Liechtensteiners as Vaterland
  • the Lithuanians as tėvynė
  • the Nigerians as fatherland
  • the Norwegians as fedreland
  • the Oromo as Biyya Abaa
  • the Pakistanis as Vatan
  • the Poles as ziemia ojców literally meaning "land of fathers", somethimes used in the phrase ziemia ojców naszych literally meaning "land of our fathers"
  • the Portuguese as Pátria
  • the Russians as Otečestvo (Отечество)
  • the Serbs as otadžbina (отаџбина)
  • the Somali as Dhulka Abaa, land of the father
  • the Swedes as Fädernesland
  • the Swiss as Vaterland (as in the national anthem Swiss Psalm)
  • the Thais as pituphum (ปิตุภูมิ), the word is adapted from Sanskrit
  • the Tibetans as pha yul (ཕ་ཡུལ་)
  • the Welsh as the land of my fathers (Y Wlad Fy Nhadau)
Romance languages, derived from Latin "patria"
  • the Esperantists as patrio, patrolando or patrujo
  • Aragonese, Asturian, Franco-Provençal, Galician, Italian, Spanish: Patria
  • Catalan: Pàtria
  • Extremaduran: Pátria
  • Occitans: Patrìo
  • French: Patrie
  • Romanian: Patrie
  • Portuguese: Pátria
***

What useless fables and misinformation we were given.

Thursday, April 20, 2017

Mark Mendiola's Articles for LCG's Tomorrow's World

One writer whose name often appeared in the early issues of Living Church of God's recruitment magazine, Tomorrow's World, was one Mark Mendiola. Here follows a list and brief summary of his articles.

After the GCG-LCG split of 1998 Meredith's new group, LCG, began to produce their recruitment magazine, Tomorrow's World. The first issue was the May-June 1999 issue.

1999

May-June: "Generations in Crisis." (pp. 18-21.) Here he bemoans that younger generations are far more flawed than the generation which went through the Great Depression and World War II.

July-September: "Who's Winning the Culture Wars?" (pp. 24-28.) Here he bemoans the younger generations for drifting astray from how he thinks society should operate.

October-December: "Marriage vs. Immorality." (pp. 22-25, 30.) Here he condemns attempts to allow same sex marriages.

2000

January-February: "America's Shocking Military Decline." (pp. 16-20.) Here he exploits problems within the American military during the Kosovo War to insist that the US military was falling apart.

March-April: "Is Time Running Out for the US Economy?" (pp. 24-28.) Here he insists that the US economy will soon collapse.

May-June: "The Ten Commandments: A Sacred Law for All Nations." (pp. 14-18.) Here he condemns restrictions regarding the display of the Ten Commandments in US law courts.

July-August: "A Crude Awakening?" (pp. 14-18.) Here he scare mongers about high oil prices.

November-December: "Watch and Warn." (pp. 20-24, 30.) Here he insists that the dramatic events connected with LCG's prophetic scenarios will soon happen.

2001

January-February: "The Scourge of Pornography." (pp. 24-28.) Here he condemns the pornography industry even insisting that the 1994 Northridge earthquake was cause by (LCG's) God to condemn pornography.

May-June: "Allies or Adversaries? A Unique Alliance Imperiled." (pp. 20-24.) Here he discusses the alliance between the United States and Britain.

July-August: "A Powerless America?" (pp. 20-24.) Here he scare mongers about energy resources running out in America.

September-October: "The Bible: A Book for All Time." (pp. 16-19.) Here he praises the Bible.

Starting with the November-December 2001 issue LCG's writers introduced a little one page article. After that Mendiola's articles began to appear less frequently.

2002

January-February: "The Coming Food Crisis." (pp. 20-23.) Here he scare mongers that the harvest will soon run out.

May-June: "Nations in Distress." (pp. 18-20, 28.) Here he scare mongers about world events to insist that soon it will end with Christ's return as his predecessors in the COGs have been continuously insisting since the 1930s.

November-December: "The Embattled Jews." (pp. 16-19.) This article is accompanied with a heart breaking photo of a Jewish man laying to rest a body wrapped in a shroud. Here Mendiola comments on the turmoil, violence and negative effects of the Second Intifada then raging in the Holy Land. There is no discussion of any of the deaths of Palestinians even though they endured a 450% higher number of fatalities in those dreadful days of violence from 2000 till 2005. May peace soon come to the Holy Land.

Mendiola also insists that Jews will be converted to his religion after Christ returns.
Although the Jews have rejected Him as their Messiah, Jesus Christ will rescue them from genocide worse than the Nazi-era Holocaust. ... The Jewish people will finally recognize Jesus Christ as their Messiah, who will halt military conflict in the Middle East, and anti-Semitism around the world, once and for all, establishing a kingdom ensuring peace, harmony and love among all nations! (p. 19.)
2003

March-April: "Will the Dominant Dollar Decline?" (pp. 24-27.) Here he scare mongers that the US dollar is fated to soon fail somehow.

2004

May-June: "God's Perfect Law of Liberty." (pp. 10-14.) Here he condemns attempts to remove references to religious beliefs in public buildings.

In September 2006 Mendiola left LCG and joined Dave Pack's Restored Church of God. Around 2008 he left RCG and joined Don Billingsley's Church of God-Faithful Flock.

To Remember the Meaning of War

It is so easy to think about and discuss war without fully appreciating what a war really means for those in the midst of it.


One astonishing book detailing events in the Iraq War is The Good Soldiers by David Finkel, an account of the 2-16 Battalion's fifteen month deployment in eastern Baghdad in 2007-8 during the height of the Surge.

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Part 2 of Letters to LCG's Tomorrow's World (2002-4)

Continuing from Part 1 let us continue to look at the letters published in LCG's recruitment magazine, Tomorrow's World.

January-February 2002

Here's a letter from Jackson, Michigan praising LCG's "Bible Study Course" which teaches people to interpret the Bible the way LCG's leadership insists it should be viewed.
I am putting in a whole new life for myself. I am doing your Bible Study Course and I am finding answers after a lot of years of “I wonder.” I am 71 years old, so I am getting a late start. Since I have received booklets from you, I can understand a lot of questions I have had, but I still have a long way to go.
Here's a letter from Taman Daya, Malaysia sending condolences after 9/11.
I would like to send you our sincere condolences for the tragic disaster in New York and Washington. I was educated in an “American” school in Singapore. During my early school days, we used to sing “God Bless America” and the “Star Spangled Banner.” So when those events happened on September 11, suddenly I was transported back to those early days. I thank God for opening my eyes recently, as I have been reading your magazine sincerely, praying hard and keeping Christ’s Sabbath. Thank you for your good articles, to bring anyone to repentance. Please continue to give us more good news, so that everybody can be more committed to God.
Here's a letter from Cushing, Oklahoma from a prisoner. How unfortunate it is that one in such a problematic situation should be exposed to this groups attempts to recruit more tithes paying members.
I am writing to you from a penitentiary in Oklahoma. As I lay in bed one night, I caught your show on television. I was so blessed by your words and knowledge of the Bible. I am a babe in Christ but desire the sincere milk thereof. Thank you for your love, guidance, prayers and teachings to the lost world and to myself. I anxiously await receiving the booklet, Restoring Apostolic Christianity.
Here's a letter from Hillsboro, Ohio from a person who broke down after reading Meredith's booklet on the God Family doctrine. The God Family doctrine is contrary to what is taught by most Christian churches.
I was very touched by your booklet, Your Ultimate Destiny, so that I broke down and repented of my sins and gave my life to Christ. It really opened my eyes. I had never heard about all the things that you talked about in the booklet. Thank you from the bottom of my heart.
March-April 2002

Here's a letter from East Meten Meer, Guyana which expresses disquiet that churches today are not like the church described in the New Testament, an idea that aligns with LCG's denunciation of all churches outside of the COGs.
I looked at one of your programs two days ago, and saw you advertise a booklet titled Restoring Apostolic Christianity, which I am asking for. Every time I read the book of Acts, I see a different church than what I see today all around me, and I have the conviction that the churches today fall far short of the glory with which the Church was first established. I think there may be some answers for me in your book, and I sincerely thank you for the offer.
Here's a letter from Georgetown, Guyana from a person who at one time was preparing to adopted a monastic lifestyle.
Thank you for Tomorrow’s World and the Bible Study Course. I can tell you as one who was preparing for monastic life in my former denomination, and also being a little while with another group, how many use Scripture wrongly to prop up their own interpretation, or that of some “saint” or “prophet.” The courses I receive from you, however, are both revealing and inspiring, and are really thoroughly (as I have researched) biblical.
Here's a letter from Tacoma, Washington praising an article by Meredith about supernatural healing. Sadly the COGs has a long history of discouraging people from visiting doctors or taking medicines. Back in 1952 HWA published a booklet, also entitled Does God Heal Today?, discouraging people from seeing their doctors. Many people have been badly affected or even died because of this doctrine of death. Although LCG's leaders no longer officially teach that dangerous doctrine it is still taught by some of the other COG splinter groups.
I was just thrilled to read the article “Does God Heal Today?” by Dr. Meredith in the November-December 2001 Tomorrow’s World. It was so inspiring. I have been studying the subject of healing for the past couple of years, and this article agrees completely with what I have been finding in my own Bible.
Here's a letter from Newton Ground, St. Kitts and Ives that also praised Meredith's article about supernatural healing.
Thank you for lessons 5–8 of the Bible Study Course. I also want to express my appreciation of the article “Does God Heal Today?” in the November–December 2001 Tomorrow’s World. It was extremely focused and enlightening, revealing the truth of God’s Word.
May-June 2002

Here's a letter from San Diego from a person of Filipino heritage praising an article by John Ogwyn. Influenced by Ogwyn's article the letter implies that the Philippines suffers poverty because its population happens to be largely Catholic.
Your January-February 2002 issue of Tomorrow’s World was replete with eye-opening articles, especially the one titled “The Reformation and Religious Deception.” Reading the article made it clear to me why my dearly beloved country (the Philippines) has remained poor and people are living in squalor. Please pray for me and my family, and keep on sending me the spiritual food that I need most.
Here's a letter from Tecumseh, Oklahoma from a person who wakes up to watch LCG's recruitment broadcast at five in the morning.
I get up at 5:00 a.m. Sunday morning to watch your Tomorrow’s World program. You will never know how much God has blessed me through you, so I can understand His Word. I love the booklets you offer.
Here's a letter from Beach Park, Illinois praising an article by Richard Ames about dealing with grief in the wake of 9/11.
After the Sept. 11, 2001 attack, I appreciated the Tomorrow’s World television program and your subsequent article titled “Comfort In Times of Tragedy.” The article provides an excellent approach for people to seek the comfort and wisdom that comes from the Bible. After reading your article, I am convinced that God is providing a “wake-up call” to our country, and a “take action call” to those now being called.
Here's a letter from New Carlislie, Canada praising LCG's writings and stating that much of what is taught in mainstream churches is wrong.
I just want to say “thank you” for the free material I have received, the magazine, the literature and the Bible Study Course. I appreciate this more than words can say. I have had to change my way of thinking. The Bible says many things contrary to what we have been taught in Sunday school and church. What a revelation!
Here's a letter from Rosharon, Texas which implies that LCG's "Bible Study Course" is unlike anything else this person had taken. The author requests two booklets produced by LCG which insist that mainstream churches are illegitimate and should not be followed.
I recently started the Tomorrow’s World Bible Study Course. I am on my first lesson and I am enjoying it. Your Bible Study Course is like no other course that I have taken. I really like the way you present the Word. I want to thank you and your staff for all your hard work. I am writing to request Restoring Apostolic Christianity and Do You Believe the True Gospel? There are so many religions and doctrines out there today, that without a solid foundation of truth one can easily be misled.
Here's a letter from Ellisville, Mississippi praising a booklet by Meredith that implies that the final Pope will be the Antichrist able to do miracles with the power of Satan and help prop up the future European leader who LCG insists is fated to conquer the United States.
Thank you for the booklet Who or What is the Antichrist? I have never read anything like it before. I want to reread it and then study it thoroughly.
Here's a letter from Boston, Virginia praising a booklet by Meredith as being the most relevant thing this person had seen from the COGs since becoming involved with them back around 1982.
I just finished reading Dr. Meredith’s new booklet, Who or What is the Antichrist? In the 30 years since I first came in contact with God’s Work, I have not seen a more relevant booklet! May God bless the Work!
July-August 2002

Here's a letter from Hohoe, Ghana praising an article by Ames discussing dealing with grief.
I want to express my appreciation for the article “Comfort in Times of Tragedy” in the March-April 2002 Tomorrow’s World. It was enlightening, and revealed the truth of God’s Word that when we share our sorrow with our Father in heaven, He gives us comfort in times of many tribulations.
Here's a letter from Regina, Canada from a person who had suffered a lot including losing a son. It is certainly to be hoped that this person gets help regarding these crises.
I eagerly look forward to reading Tomorrow’s World. Your magazine is the only source I have found anywhere that teaches the Bible accurately and unbiased. In the past year I have lost a six year old son to cancer, suffered a divorce, job loss and have had my car stolen. With all of these disasters, your message in Tomorrow’s World keeps renewing my strength and keeps me uplifted and watching for the imminent return of Jesus Christ. Keep up the good work, for you are doing God’s Work.
Here's a letter from Jackson, Mississippi praising LCG's writings for insisting that people follow them based on their understanding of the Bible.
My husband and I really enjoy your truthful and enlightening teachings about the Bible. We also enjoy the fact of how you insist upon us following you in the Bible because in watching other ministers, we have found that often many scripture references are misquoted and if you don’t follow on your own, you could be misled. Thank you for being unafraid to speak truthfully and openly to the people.
Here's a letter from Clarendon, Jamaica praising LCG as a continuation of HWA's WCG.
I have been listening to your programs for some time now and I am so inspired by your preaching because so many preachers distort the Truth. The first two programs I saw with you both, I said to myself that this seems to be the follow-up of Mr. Armstrong.
Here's a letter from Tularosa, Minesota which praises a booklet by John Ogwyn promoting British Israelism as eye-opening for the author. British Israelism is inaccurate.
For some time I’ve been reading the material you have sent me. The booklet on the English speaking nations [What’s Ahead for America and Britain?] is quite an eye-opener! To boot, it seems to be happening right before our eyes! The March-April 2002 issue, with the article “Conflict Over the City of Peace” by Mr. Ogwyn, promises to be another one of your “wake-up” calls. I want to thank you for sending me these materials. All the articles are easy reading.
September-October 2002

Here's a letter from Eastwood, Australia praising LCG's belitting of "watered-down Christianity." It seems possible this person has not yet learned that LCG condemns mainstream churches as illegitimate and not worthy of being followed.
I was really impressed by your articles in the January-February 2002 Tomorrow’s World, especially the article warning Christians against falling victim to watered-down Christianity. Your article has made me sit up and take notice that someone out there is blowing the trumpet as in Isaiah 58:1, and I am excited about it
Here's a letter from Denham Springs, Louisiana praising an article by Ames that presents troubles in the Middle East as a sign that Christ will soon return.
I was just rereading the July-August 2001 Tomorrow’s World, with the cover story “The Middle East in Prophecy.” Boy, were you on the mark! I can’t wait to hear your opinion on what is going on now. I now understand more why Jesus said to pray for the peace of Jerusalem, and why He wept over it. Thank you so much for caring enough to tell people the Truth.
November-December 2002

Here's a letter from Atlanta, Georgia praising LCG's recruitment magazine as being much better than a newspaper.
I love so much receiving your publications. They are truly a blessing to me because of all the information they contain. It is so much better than reading a newspaper! I also watch you on television. Between my Bible and your publications, I’m in pretty good shape! Thank you so much for all that you do.
Here's a letter from Missoula, Montana praising LCG's alarmist claims about Europe being fated to rise up as a military to conquer the United States.
Your articles are interesting and meaningful to me. Thank you for sending me your good magazine. What is happening in Europe is not on the news. Keep reporting on things.
Here's a letter from Hazard, Kentucky from a person thanking LCG for revealing "the true Jesus Christ" agreeing with LCG's claim that mainstream Christian churches are false.
I want to take this time to thank you all for a wonderful job you are doing in getting our Father’s message to the world. I am writing to thank you for sending the material I have requested over the past few months. What a joyful time I have in reading and studying your materials. You make it so understandable. You’ll never know what a blessing this information has been to me. It was your material that first brought me to the true Jesus Christ and has continued to be a major factor in the foundation of my faith. No matter how much we grow in the Word of God, it is still crucial that we have that firm foundation to stand on. I will continue to mention you and all your staff in my prayers. Please do the same for me.
Here's a letter from Toronto, Canada from a Muslim who found an article by Ames condemning adultery as interesting.
I find the magazine very useful to read though I am a Muslim. The article “Is Adultery OK?” is very good.
Here's a letter from Tshovani, Zimbabwe praising LCG's writings as revelations from God.
I’m so happy to inform you that it’s because of your magazine I am writing you this note. The magazine is so inspiring. I would like to thank the Almighty God for the revelation that He gave to me through your magazine. I’m a young Christian who has the zeal to know much about Christ through the events that are taking place in this world.
Here's a letter from Kingston, Jamaica praising a booklet by Meredith, which insists that Christ will soon return, as changing the author's entire life.
I am a very keen listener of your program each Sunday morning in my country, Jamaica. I was so impressed on this particular Sunday morning that I decided to write for your booklet Fourteen Signs Announcing Christ’s Return. I read this booklet and it has changed my entire life.
Here's a letter from Sayama-shi, Japan praising LCG's recruitment magazine and a booklet by Meredith promoting tithing to his organization.
Thank you so very much for sending me copies of Tomorrow’s World magazine and the booklet, God’s People Tithe. I need them very badly for my spiritual upliftment and progress.
January-February 2003

Here's a letter from St. Louis, Missouri from a person impressed that LCG does not solicit for money in their recruitment magazine. In fact LCG teaches its followers to pay three tithes. Perhaps this person did not see Meredith's article promoting tithing.
I just received Lesson One of your Bible Study Course. I wasted absolutely no time reading the entire thing from cover to cover. Now I will go back and deeply study each word, sentence and paragraph. I want you to know that I know these materials are not free for you to print and send me. And the fact that you do not solicit monies has greatly impressed me.
Here's a letter from Branson, Montana from a person who had decided to stop celebrating Christmas because of LCG's writings. LCG and many of the COGs ban various mainstream festivals such as Christmas, Easter and birthdays. Alienating their followers from such festivals has the effect of making them socially dependent upon the group since so much of public social life had been banned.
I can’t tell you how much my husband and I derive from your articles in Tomorrow’s World. We have been searching the scriptures for years and were convinced that no church was set up the way Christ intended. We were so frustrated that we quit going to church and instead our home became our church. Your booklet on the Sabbath was an eye opener. I have never felt right about Christmas and now I know why. Needless to say, we won’t be celebrating Christmas anymore. The articles you write are truthful and my husband and I praise God for you and your staff.
Here's another letter from Branson, Missouri from a person who read an issue of LCG's recruitment magazine after it arrived in the wrong mailbox.
I received one of your booklets in the mail. The postman put it in the wrong mailbox, and I am sorry but I read it and took down your Web site address before I put it back in the mailbox to go back to the right person.
March-April 2003

Here's one letter from Mursfreeboro, North Carolina from a person who enjoyed an article by Douglas Winnail that claimed "God's true church" was present in Britain until Catholic missionaries arrived in the seventh century. It is often taught within the COGs that "true Christians" very similar to present day COGs established themselves in the British Isles in the distant past until they were displaced by Catholics at some point in the early Middle Ages. This transition is usually placed at the time of Augustine of Canterbury in the seventh century.
I enjoy your magazine Tomorrow’s World very much, and I especially enjoyed the article “Early Christianity in Europe’s Western Isles.” In the past year, I have been seeking God and the true way to serve Him. Needless to say, I’ve had a lot of battles of the mind as far as doctrine is concerned—especially the Trinity. I would appreciate more information. Thank you very much.
Here's a letter from Surrey, Canada praising LCG's recruitment magazine as being a great source to keep up with the news.
My family and I very much enjoy reading the Tomorrow’s World magazines and booklets. In the past we have been very unclear about many issues, and you have helped us understand about end-time prophecies and about ourselves. There have been some very inspiring and enlightening articles. Your magazine is a terrific update on world events around us. Thank you ever so much!
Here's a letter from El Cajun, California from a person who shares LCG's teachings with other people.
I have enjoyed the Tomorrow’s World magazines. I even show them to a friend of mine and my husband’s friends. I would also enjoy receiving your Bible Study Course. I feel God is in my life now more than ever.
Here's a letter from Waynesville, Montana from a person whose mother apparently was influenced by the COGs.
Thank you so much for your magazines. I also watch your program every Sunday morning. Bless you for telling people the true gospel. It takes me back to my childhood, when my parents taught me the truth. There are times when you will say something and I can remember my mother saying the very same thing.
Here's a letter from San Diego, California from a person who says LCG's recruitment magazine has inspired this person to change undesirable behavior.
Tomorrow’s World magazine helps me to change my bad behavior and wake me up and learn to love God. You teach me to look up scriptures and read the Bible. I believe you help me to draw close to God. Please keep on sending me the spiritual food that I need most.
May-June 2003

Here's a letter from Branson, Montana praising LCG for its Sabbatarianism and its condemnation of Christmas.
I can’t tell you how much my husband and I derive from your articles in Tomorrow’s World. We have been searching the scriptures for years and were convinced that no church was set up the way Christ intended. We were so frustrated that we quit going to church and instead our home became our church. Your booklet on the Sabbath was an eye opener. I have never felt right about Christmas and now I know why. Needless to say, we won’t be celebrating Christmas anymore. The articles you write are truthful and my husband and I praise God for you.
In this issue the editors decided to include a letter that criticized them. This came from Oklahoma City, Oklahoma and concerns an article by Ames that brought up Harry Potter while condemning the occult.
Your article of blatant Harry Potter bashing entitled “Dangers of the Occult” (September-October 2002) sickened me. Your references to it as “occult” are detestably wrong. They are books and they are kids’ imaginations. Maybe you’ve forgotten what it was like to believe in things like Santa Claus or monsters under your bed, but these things were a part of growing up. Let kids be kids! There is no spike in Satanism due to the books and you should be ashamed that you are tainting our children’s mind with this fear of nothing. Although I’m only 16 years old, I have read the books and if you think that these are dangerous tools of the Devil then you desperately need to relax. You yourself have been blinded by the Devil, spreading fear of him instead of the love of Jesus.
July-August 2003

Here's a letter from Peterborough, Ontario, Canada from a person who asked to no longer receive the recruitment magazine once this individual noticed that they denied the Trinity. Similar to HWA it is LCG's teaching that the Holy Spirit is merely a force not a person of the Holy Trinity.
I am an Anglican and belong to a wonderful church in my area. I feel so blessed to be able to worship in a church that recognizes the Holy Trinity. Reading your answer to the person in your March-April issue who asked about being born again, makes me wonder how you manage to so badly misinterpret the scriptures; you say, “At present, there are only two members in the God family—God the Father and Jesus Christ the Son!” What have you done with the Holy Spirit? He was certainly there at Jesus’ baptism and at the Day of Pentecost. Please cancel my magazine. I simply can’t believe what you purport to be the truth.
Here's a letter from Chino, California from a person who was convinced to start observing (LCG's selective interpretation of) the Sabbath after reading a booklet by Meredith promoting seventh day Sabbatarianism.
The literature that Tomorrow’s World has sent has changed my total outlook in my personal relationship with the Father and Lord Jesus Christ. When I read the Sabbath booklet, I was hurt in my spirit to the point of tears. I read all the scriptures to check for errors, my spirit was grieved to know that I was not keeping God’s day and how all the “mainstream” churches are afraid to be obedient to the Word. I started keeping the Sabbath this week from Friday sunset to Saturday sunset. Thank you, and I love you all for being real.
September-October 2003

Here's a letter from Gatesville, Texas from a person who seems to have had independently adopted beliefs similar to what LCG teaches.
I have been reading the Tomorrow’s World magazines that you have recently been sending me. I have found the articles very interesting, for the subjects need addressing in our day and age in history. I have found that many authors and teachers don’t know the Scriptures well enough to be doing what they are doing. Anyway, because of these things and others I became very discouraged with mainstream Christianity. I have some very strong convictions due to my studies over the years, and it wasn’t until I started reading your magazine that I came to learn that there are others out there that believe as I do. Please keep sending me Tomorrow’s World.
Here's a letter from Tehachapi, California from a gay Christian offended at a virulently anti-LGBT article by John Ogwyn which, among other things, falsely equated homosexuals with pedophiles. This article was discussed in a previous post.
I just received the March-April 2003 issue of Tomorrow’s World magazine. I read the article entitled “From Closet to Mainstream: the Homosexual Agenda.” As a gay Christian I was offended. The article also mentioned prisoners in an untrustworthy light. I cannot imagine my Lord and Savior ever writing an article like that. Please cancel my subscription to your magazine and Bible Study Course.
Here's a letter from Lufkin, Texas from a person who expresses joy at learning LCG's teachings.
I am taking your Bible Study Course and it has truly opened my eyes to understanding the Bible. I have read the Bible for years. I am 58, and I am only now understanding God’s Word.
November-December 2003

Here's a letter from Excelsior Springs, Montana from a person who appears to have been baptized as a member of WCG back around 1979.
I was baptized some 34 years ago. During these ensuing 34 years, I have never read an article that so clearly points out why God will punish the Israelite people as “The Economics of Greed” [in the July-August 2003 issue]. I have read the prophecies and understood them as you have written in your article, and I have been baffled why nobody has been writing articles along these lines before. It is not just the corruption at corporate headquarters and political circles. It is all of us. Our entire nation (the USA) and peoples need to repent of our desire for the “American Way” or the “American Dream,” and replace it with a desire for “Thy Kingdom Come.” Thanks for the article.
Here's a letter from Brazil, Indiana praising John Ogwyn's virulently anti-LGBT article.
I want to thank you for your magazine, which sounds as a warning trumpet to this sin-sick, morally destitute nation. Your article “From Closet to Mainstream: The Homosexual Agenda” [in the May-June 2003 issue] was especially enlightening and rang with truth. God surely cannot withhold His righteous judgment from us much longer for our collective disobedience of His holy commandments. Thank you again for telling God’s Truth in your publications.
Here's a letter from Columbia, South Carolina praising a booklet by John Ogwyn that promotes LCG's doctrine of "church history," a highly problematic and inaccurate teaching. Armstrongism is actually an offshoot of the Millerite Adventists of the 1830s-1840s.
I have done a good bit of reading about church history to present. I have read most of the references you mention in God’s Church Through the Ages. This booklet compares favorably to other authoritative references. I especially appreciate that yours is completely free. Many thanks!
January-February 2004

Here's a letter from Mount Pleasant, Pennsylvania from a person suffering "phobia and panic attacks and depression."
I remember a telecast that Richard Ames delivered about prayer. When he asked, “What problems do you have?” I had every one of those problems he named—even phobia and panic attacks and depression. I’ve been able to have some success against phobia, but depression still rules. I’m thankful that you not only preach the good news, but you also teach about how to solve problems like my own. Thanks for being there.
Here's a letter from Chicago from a person contemplating observing Armstrongite days of worship.
Your Bible Study Course, the Tomorrow’s World magazine and the various booklets are all fascinating and true. I have learned so much from them. I pray that the spirit of God moves me to take heed and to do what the word of God says, especially keeping the Sabbath and the rest of God’s commandments.
Here's a letter from Jamestown, California from a person who has been persuaded that Christians do not go to Heaven after death.
I’ve just finished reading an article in the September–October issue of Tomorrow’s World, entitled “Two Contradictory Views.” Wow! What an inspiration; an eye-opener. I’ve always thought that heaven was the eternal reward of the saved. After reading this article and researching the scriptures you provided, I see things in a whole new and wonderful light. Thank you for the eye-opener.
Here's a letter from West Monroe, Louisiana from a person persuaded that it is wrong to worship on Sunday after reading LCG's writings.
Thank you so much for Tomorrow’s World magazine. I so enjoy the articles that are written. I had never believed we were wrong in worshiping on Sunday until I read your magazine.
Here's a letter from Nakum, Kenya from a person fascinated at LCG's proclamations about prophecies.
I am really blessed by the Tomorrow’s World magazine. It has proved a great encouragement, enlightenment and source of light to my life. We have had much to study from your articles concerning the last days prophecies. I wanted to let you know that we are indeed blessed by all these.
Here's a letter from Bangkok, Thailand from a person persuaded by LCG's writings of their legalistic views.
Thank you for the free magazine subscription. My Dad and I read them back to back, we just can’t put them down. I find them very inspiring. Your outlook on Christianity has changed my life. I thought I had all the answers to what I though was the truth, but now its quite clear to me that I was wrong in thinking that the Ten Commandments did not directly apply to me. It has changed my life.
March-April 2004

For whatever reason this issue has three letters from Chicago. Here is one of them from a person looking forward that things will improve because of LCG's writings.
I recently received your May-June 2003 issue. Before I was able to finish, I felt compelled to write. Never before have I heard or read such clear explanations of God’s Word or the Bible. I am very interested in any and all literature you have to offer. I am looking forward to writing you again to tell you how Tomorrow’s World has affected my life for the better.
Here's a letter from Sunland, California praising an article by Douglas Winnail bemoaning the state of Britain today.
Please thank Dr. Winnail for his very powerful and well-written article on the “Modern ‘Battle of Britain.’” I am sure most Americans have no idea how bad things are in Britain and, similarly, that we are traveling that very same road headed for the very same fate.
Here's a letter from Brownfield, Texas praising a booklet by Meredith which insists that Christ will soon return. Meredith has promoted such alarmist claims continuously since the 1950s and yet his dire proclamations never come to pass.
Recently a friend of mine came to me with a copy of your booklet Fourteen Signs Announcing Christ’s Return. I must say, without a doubt this book is totally, if you’ll excuse the phrase, “awesome.” I found it to be so much more than inspirational. At any rate, I just have to have this book to keep for myself to be able to reread whenever I need to not to mention to share with someone else.
Here's a letter from Chicago, Illinois saying that the author has begun to read the Bible again after being intrigued by LCG's writings.
Thank you for sending me your magazine. Believe it or not, your magazine has made me pick up my Bible again. When I received your July-August 2003 issue, it made my day. I could not stop reading it. I, like many other people, always think I know everything about God. But reading your magazine let me know: no, I don’t know everything. But I want to know. I want to learn more. So please keep on sending me your magazine.
Here's a letter from Channelview, Texas praising LCG's writings saying that they have given the author comfort concerning world events.
Tomorrow’s World magazine, and the booklets you have sent, are a blessing to me. I used to be frightened to hear about the current world events such as the crisis in the Middle East, along with the many other worldly happenings. I’m no longer frightened about such things. I now have an inner peace. After reading Tomorrow’s World and the booklets, and following up with the scriptures from the Bible, I now understand the true gospel of Jesus Christ more and more every day.
Here's a letter from Tuscaloosa, Alabama praising a newly released booklet as a masterpiece even though what it teaches it pretty much the same as what was taught in HWA's WCG decades earlier.
I want to thank you for the very inspired literature. All of the articles from cover to cover just get better and better. The new booklet, Revelation: The Mystery Unveiled, is another masterpiece as well. An old friend read your “Armageddon” issue [JulyAugust 2000] at a doctor’s office, and later started subscribing, then he later turned me on to your magazines. Thank God for that issue, and for the one responsible for putting that magazine in that doctor’s office.
Here'a a letter from Galway, Ireland from a person shocked to learn that LCG promotes some virulently anti-Catholic views and demanding his subscription be cancelled.
I have been receiving literature from you for quite some time, and found it interesting and I agreed with most of it. I was, however, shocked at the latest booklet I received, to read what you said about the pope and the Roman Catholic Church. Now I believe you are completely mixed up. I am very open to all religions. I believe they are all like bicycle wheels. God is in the middle, and all the spokes are the religions leading to God, even if people are not receiving the absolute correct teachings. I do believe that the Roman Catholic Church is the one which teaches the most truth. No matter what you say about the people in the church, I know that holy water, the Mass and the rosary are the most powerful things on this earth against evil.
Here's a letter from Fort Saint John, British Columbia from a person frustrated with mainstream churches and intrigued at what LCG has been saying.
I was blown away by what was preached on your telecast, concerning God’s intervention in world affairs. For the first time in years, I am hungry for more of what God has in store for us in tomorrow’s world. You have—or, should I say, God has through you—sparked a new desire to live by His word as His word is written. I have been saying for years that some people tend to shade His word to fit their lives, rather than adapting their lives to the word of God. The “sweet Jesus message” is all I hear in my church, and in itself is wonderful—but man cannot live on bread alone. I need as much info as you can send. I have ordered, and will continue to order, more info.
Here's a letter from Baghdad, Iraq from a person looking for answers especially because of the severe turmoil in the author's nation. The author requests booklets by John Ogwyn and Richard Ames that promote LCG's fear inducing false prophecies.
I would like to thank you so much for keeping me updated about the world’s major events from a Biblical perspective. I am so concerned with what is happening in my country, Iraq, because it has become a world news focus. I would like to request your free booklet, Revelation: The Mystery Unveiled! and also The United States and Great Britain in Prophecy, because I wish to know if it is true that the U.S. and the U.K. are really mentioned in the Holy Bible.
Shame on LCG for presenting inaccurate information to this person. This person needs accurate information not superstitious mumbo-jumbo and discredited misinformation such as the inaccurate idea that white Americans and British peoples are descended from the Biblical Israelites. This is just awful.

Here's a letter from Aberdeen, Scotland from a person bedazzled after reading Meredith's booklet about the God Family doctrine, an idea contrary to what is taught in the majority of Christian churches.
I just read the booklet Your Ultimate Destiny. Wow! Thank you. Thank you for not only showing me where I am going, but also what I have to do until that day, and how I should go about it. In Scotland, our national game is association football, or soccer, but what happened to me today was that someone just switched on the floodlights for the start of the ball game!
Here's a letter from Providence, Rhode Island praising LCG for their unorthodox teachings about the afterlife.
Each edition of the Tomorrow’s World magazine comes out more informative and educative than the last. The March-April 2004 edition, with the cover article “What Happens When You Die?” has answered all my puzzles concerning death, resurrection and the Sabbath. Thank you, and keep it up!
Here's a letter from Sayre, Pennsylvania praising LCG's God Family doctrine, a teaching that contradicts the vast majority of Christian churches.
I just read the article, “God Is Creating A Family” (March-April 2004). I do not feel that I can find within myself words to write here to express my feelings. I will just say that the article impressed me profoundly.
September-October 2004

Here's a letter from Norfolk, Virginia condemning a personal article by Meredith.
I find your article entitled “Vile Passions” (Personal, May-June 2004) extremely offensive, and your references to the AIDS epidemic angering. Are you kidding me? God will not condemn two people for wanting to commit to a faithful, loving relationship. Your article should have been titled “Vile Hatred.” You should be ashamed of yourself. I demand that you never send your publications to this home ever again.
Here's a letter from Cardigan, Prince Edward Island, Canada from a person greatly impressed that LCG sends its booklets and magazine for free. In fact this distribution of writings for free is part of their marketing strategy. They give them away knowing that a critical mass of people will respond by giving money to them and becoming tithes paying members.
Thank you for your free booklets. I am highly in awe. I never saw a place that gave away free books without asking for a donation and no questions asked. That leaves me very curious and wondering. You seem to know something no other place I’ve visited knows. I really stress that word “know.” Please help me find what you have to give me. I want to live the rest of my life the way God wants me to, but I don’t know how to interpret His word, because there are so many different places and they all interpret differently. But, somehow, you know the right way of interpreting His words.
Here's a letter from Troy, Virginia praising LCG for supposedly telling it like it is.
I have truly and thoroughly enjoyed your Bible Study Course. I have learned more new things and truth in your studies than any other I’ve done. The difference between yours and the others is that you tell it like it is, without sugar coating. So many churches and preachers today don’t express the importance of walking in Jesus’ footsteps and keeping all of God’s commandments. I feel this is the type of message that more Christians need to hear so they’ll have more of a conviction to wake up and truly repent.
Here's a letter from Warren, Michigan praising an article by Meredith which promoted seventh day Sabbatarianism.
I have just finished reading “What Is Wrong With the Sabbath?” in your March-April 2004 issue of Tomorrow’s World magazine. As is the case with all articles and booklets I read from you, it made complete sense to me. I have felt all along, since I have become acquainted with your materials, that this is the truth. I have been searching a long time for this and I thank you for putting it out there.
November-December 2004

Here's a letter from Rock Island, Illinois a man attending a Catholic seminary who seems to view Alexander Hyslop's The Two Babylons as something worth taking at face value. That book has long ago been discredited as nonsense.
I greatly enjoy receiving and reading Tomorrow’s World magazine. I am sure that much of your literature brings readers to Christ. As a young man entering Catholic seminary, I am aware of the similarities between old pagan traditions and Catholicism, and have read The Two Babylons by Alexander Hislop. Some of these rituals and practices that you point out do have an alternate history behind them, which is not completely pagan in origin. My only concern is that the language directed at the Roman Catholic Church is too harsh and limited. Though I see no wrong in pointing out the pagan influences, I feel the articles fail to mention the great philosophers and theologians the church has bred. Though I strongly feel salvation is limited to Christianity, I don’t believe it is limited to one particular denomination or adherence to doctrine. In the end times, the Catholic Church too will have believers who can distinguish the false from the true.
Here's a letter from Dauphin, Manitoba, Canada from a person who had seemed to independently take stances similar to LCG's teachings.
I have been reading your magazine and booklets for some time now. I wanted you to know what a life changing experience it has been to find the things that I could find no answers for suddenly come to life and be answered. All the questions that had puzzled me for years, like the Sabbath and Christmas and Easter, also why did we not celebrate the holy days set out in the Bible like the Passover and the Feast of Unleavened Bread. How did so many of the things Jesus taught come to be discarded as no longer valid or necessary? To me God said what He meant and meant what He said. I particularly liked the article about the clean and unclean foods (“Bible Health Laws,” March-April 2004). Thank you for your magazine and the booklets, and for giving me a new and much happier outlook on my life. I feel I am a better person and one that feels much closer to God as I become better acquainted with His word.
Here's a letter from West Midlands, United Kingdom thank LCG for telling him that "atrocities" will soon occur alluding to LCG's teaching that a German led European military superpower is fated to soon conquer the United States and Britain and take the survivors as slaves just before Christ's return.
Thanks for your Christian preaching of the Word in truth, I now know the way we are heading and the forthcoming atrocities. Moreover your interpretation of the Book of Revelation is factually honest and the warnings you give are true. Thank you once again for assisting me in my search for the only way—God’s way!
*******

It is unfortunate that LCG continues to try get new tithes paying recruits. But there is no need to worry if LCG has some special understanding of future events. They do not. God is not with them. There is no need to follow LCG to be a Christian. They want us to think that we need them. We do not. LCG are but false prophets just like HWA.

Biblical Hebrew had No Word for "to Obey" Says Former UK Chief Rabbi:

So often HWA and his imitators told us to "obey the commandments." But, according to the Chief Rabbi in the United Kingdom, Biblical Hebrew did not even have a word for "to obey."
Judaism is not a religion of blind obedience. Indeed, astonishingly in a religion of 613 commandments, there is no Hebrew word that means “to obey”. When Hebrew was revived as a living language in the nineteenth century, and there was need for a verb meaning “to obey,” it had to be borrowed from the Aramaic: le-tsayet. Instead of a word meaning “to obey,” the Torah uses the verb shema, untranslatable into English because it means [1] to listen, [2] to hear, [3] to understand, [4] to internalise, and [5] to respond. Written into the very structure of Hebraic consciousness is the idea that our highest duty is to seek to understand the will of God, not just to obey blindly. Tennyson’s verse, “Theirs not to reason why, theirs but to do or die,” is as far from a Jewish mindset as it is possible to be. (Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks, "The necessity of asking questions (Bo 5777)," The Times of IsraelFebruary 3, 2017.)
And all this time the leaders of the COGs told us to obey the commandments and yet Biblical Hebrew did not even have a word to meaning "to obey." Clearly those of us who chose to adopt certain Jewish practices thinking that this the correct way to be a Christian had little idea of what we were dealing with.

What were we doing thinking we understood these things? HWA and his imitators took various Jewish practices without understanding the religion. We should just leave the Jewish religion alone and respect it by letting the Jews observe it without us clumsily and ignorantly imitating a few aspects and practices of their religion while rejecting whatever the COG leaders decide does not need to be observed. Clearly the COGs are dealing in things without proper or respectful understanding.

We should abandon the cultural appropriation of aspects of Judaism that Armstrongism so often promotes.

Saturday, April 15, 2017

Why HWA Banned Easter (Pascha)

HWA banned Easter (and other mainstream holidays like Christmas and birthdays) to keep his followers isolated and alienated from mainstream churches, the competition in HWA's eyes. By insisting that Easter was a tool of Satan this alienated his followers from mainstream churches and made them socially dependent on him. If one had to avoid churches that celebrated Easter then where were they to go? In this state of despair HWA insisted to such persons through his radio and TV broadcasts, booklets and representatives that they should join his organization and pay tithes to it. Most of the COGs imitate HWA's stance on this matter.

There is no need for Christians to refuse to observe Easter. HWA gave his followers the induced phobia that to celebrate Easter would incur (HWA's) God's wrath. This manipulated those who trusted him into abandoning mainstream churches and joining his organization.

He and his imitators say with disgust that the name Easter is derived from the name of a pagan Germanic goddess. That objection ignores the fact that in Greek, the Romance languages, the Slavic languages and others Easter is not called that at all but is called Pascha or its equivalent, the same word as used for the Jewish Passover.

This ploy worked quite well for HWA. He built a wealthy organization with a vast income partly from people who had been persuaded that they could not worship in churches which celebrate Easter. But this does not work so well for the COG groups today since they have been around for decades now and the Internet has made it easier for people to easily access much more information about the COGs than was possible in the heyday of HWA's organization.

It is clear that HWA did not know what he was talking about. When Christianity began to gain acceptance among non-Jews it was decided early on that Gentile converts did not need to become Jewish to become Christians as is inferred in the Council of Jerusalem described in Acts 15 so they did not need to be circumcised to become Christians or celebrate the Jewish festivals described in Leviticus 23. Not needing to celebrate the Jewish festivals since they were not Jews it is no wonder that they would worship in remembrance of the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ in a yearly festival which in Greek and many other languages had the same name as the Passover, namely Pascha.

We do not need to live in fear that celebrating Easter will incur (HWA's) God's wrath. There is no reason for Christians not to celebrate Easter. Let us enjoy this Christian celebration without fear.

Friday, April 14, 2017

PCG Gets Gulfstream G450 Jet for "That Prophet" Gerald Flurry

Banned by HWA has noted that PCG has gone ahead and purchased a Gulfstream G450 jet for the use of their leader, Gerald Flurry. It is sad to see that the money sent to PCG has been used in such a way. It is sad to see the many problems within PCG has led to this.

While one may hope that the money used to maintain the jet is money that will not be used to recruit more people to join PCG it is still saddening to see the trust of PCG lay members being used to make a purchase like this which the vast majority of them will not benefit from.

What a disgraceful spectacle.

Monday, April 10, 2017

Letters to LCG's Tomorrow's World (1999-2001)

LCG's recruitment magazine, Tomorrow's World, features a page of letters sent to them by their readers. They often provide compact accounts of persons bedazzled by what they had read in LCG's recruitment magazine who are often unaware of the problems that exist among the COGs. Most of these letters give little warning that there is anything odd or disquieting about LCG or the COGs in general.

Let's take a look at the letters published by LCG's recruitment magazine, Tomorrow's World.

During the split within the Global Church of God about 80% of its members left to join Roderick C. Meredith and start up the Living Church of God in late 1998. Their recruitment magazine, Tomorrow's World, began to be published with its May-June 1999 issue. In the third issue they began to publish some of the letters they received.

October-December 1999

Here's one letter from Buff Bay, Portland, Jamaica praising an article that promoted the discredited idea that Germans are the descendants of the ancient Assyrians.
Thank you for the first copy of Tomorrow’s World. I am impressed, not only with the quality but also the content. I was especially enlightened by the article “The Fourth Reich.” May God continue to bless you so that this marvellous work can continue.
Here's one letter from a prisoner in Mississippi. How tragic it is to think of people in such a difficult situation being vulnerable to being recruited in this way.
I watch your Tomorrow’s World telecast every Sunday. It gives me more understanding in Bible prophecy than I get here in prison. Here we have many denominations— they all talk about how we must improve our lives, but do not talk about Bible prophecy. Is one-third of our Holy Bible prophecy? Then why don’t these professing Christians teach us about prophecy? No wonder this world of ours is headed toward destruction. Thank you for opening up my mind, heart, soul and eyes to this most precious understanding of world events and how they coincide with Bible prophecy. Your booklets, magazines and other reading materials have given me true understanding. I can reread these teaching aids along with my Bible and see what God is trying to teach all of us. Thank you so very much for your programs and for the materials you offer on your programs. May God bless you all in your work!
January-February 2000

Here's one letter from Mississippi enthusiastic about the magazine from a person who used to read WCG's recruitment magazine, The Plain Truth.
I am so excited about getting the literature coming to me once again. When I started reading the May–June issue of Tomorrow’s World I could not put it down. It is so much like the Plain Truth I used to get. Keep up the good work!
Here's one letter from Couva, Trinidad and Tobago.
Tomorrow’s World is helping me to build myself up spiritually. May the good Lord show His choicest blessings on each and every one of you all who make Tomorrow’s World possible around the world to help me and people like me.
Here's one letter from Long Island, New York, praising the magazine for speaking out against racism. The letter alludes to what is called "Christian Identity," a virulently racist doctrine which insists that Jews are bodily descendants of Satan the Devil which stemmed from the original British Israelism movement.
Thank you for Roderick C. Meredith’s Personal in the July-September issue. I am so glad to know that your magazine rejects the racism that some associate with the Biblical understanding of the identity of the British descended peoples. Our Savior was a Jew, and we must as Christians have no place in our hearts for anti-Semitism or racism of any kind. Thank you for that inspiring message.
March-April 2000

During the Global Church of God era the editors of their recruitment magazine, The World Ahead, made a point of including one letter that criticized them. In the first few issues of LCG's Tomorrow's World they did not do that. Perhaps the stresses of setting up a new COG group made them reluctant to publish such letters in their recruitment magazine. Starting with this issue they resumed that practice with this letter.
You people are the biblical definition of a fool. I doubt very seriously you will go to heaven, and if you do you will be very low because of the curse Christ spoke of to those who change the word of the Gospel.
Here's one letter from Tyler, Texas from a person who seems to be unaware of how marketing "free" booklets is sustained by anticipating that a critical mass of people will start donating and eventually tithe to LCG. The booklets are sent with the anticipation that donations will be sent in response. They send out the booklets to get more income and members.
I would like to take this time to say “thanks” for all the literature that is presented on the Telecast for FREE! As we all know there are few things FREE in this old world any more. So thanks again!
Here's one letter from Big Sandy, Texas praising the writings of Mark Mendiola. In 2006 Mendiola would leave LCG for Dave Pack's Restored Church of God and later would leave again to join Don Billingsley's Church of God Faithful Flock.
I just want to thank you for adding Mr. Mark Mendiola to your writing staff. His articles are so good—hard-hitting, like Mr. Armstrong’s were. I think it is wonderful to be able to read such powerful articles.
Here's one letter from Williamson, South Carolina from a person involved with the COGs since 1975 praising LCG's "Bible Study Course" as teaching things this long time member had never learned of.
I have been in God’s Church for 25 years, yet I am learning things from the Bible Study Course that I never knew before. I especially appreciate the choice of what seem like the “perfect” scripture verses to answer the particular questions being asked. All of the questions and answers tie in so smoothly to the main topic question of each section; as you look them up, you realize how completely they support and answer the question. It is a very satisfying feeling to be studying such “plain truth” again! I know I am growing in knowledge; I just pray that I will also grow in the application of that knowledge.
May-June 2000

Here's one letter from Los Angeles, California praising an earlier issue as being the best this author had seen in years.
Wow! Talk about meat in due season! The Tomorrow’s World issue of March-April 2000 really impressed me as to how well each article builds on the others and of how well everything ties in together. Each article stands on its own, and yet they all fit perfectly together. Each one makes a strong case for God, and all together give a powerful witness which cannot be refuted or denied! Never had I seen so much unity and cohesiveness in a magazine since the Plain Truth under Mr. Herbert W. Armstrong. You touched on all areas of life which certainly affect each and every one of us. These articles truly keep pace with our world and our lives today. Thank you for your timely issue. My congratulations to Dr. Meredith and all the writers for making this the best magazine in the world!
Here's one letter from Washington, DC praising the magazine. The author expresses sadness about the Tkach changes.
First let me say that I am glad there is someone carrying on Mr. Armstrong’s legacy. I was sad to learn of the tragic results when the Worldwide Church of God changed Mr. Armstrong’s teachings and doctrines. It made me question my faith and the church. Then I saw your television program and learned that my spiritual education was not in vain. Thank you for continuing Mr. Armstrong’s ministry and restoring my faith.
The page also contains an editor's note apologizing for including a photo of a woman reading a Christmas themed children's book in an earlier issue.
Editor’s Note: A photo in the March-April Tomorrow’s World showed a Russian lady reading from a book that appears to have a Christmas theme on its cover. As that issue’s “Holidays or Holy Days?” article explains, Christ’s followers should not observe man-made holidays that conflict with God’s law. The photo was not meant to suggest otherwise, and we apologize for any confusion it may have caused.
July-August 2000

Here's one letter from Montreal praising an article in an earlier issue and stating that it inspired the author to take LCG's "Bible Study Course." LCG teaches that mainstream churches are illegitimate in (LCG's) God's eyes for not worshiping on the seventh day Sabbath.
I just received my first copy of Tomorrow’s World, and read the article “What is True Christianity?” It really got to my heart. The article was refreshing and heart-rending, and I will send in the form for the Bible Study Course. I have been searching and praying to know God’s will for me, and have so far only come up with confusion, and enjoyed the forthrightness and outspokenness of that article. I believe that “belief” means not just saying it, but living as He showed the way. Thank you very much for this very encouraging and courageous magazine.
Here's a letter from Ottawa, Canada praising LCG's "Bible Study Course" and relating that the author shared some of LCG's teaching of British Israelism with a work colleague. British Israelism's teaching that white Americans and British are descended from the lost ten tribes is not true.
I enjoyed very much the first lesson of the Bible Study Course. I believe it is truly up to the high standard set by Mr. Herbert W. Armstrong. Well done! I had the opportunity to give a copy of the first lesson to a fellow worker of mine who has expressed a sincere desire to know what the Bible teaches. He is very impressed with the content and quality of the first lesson, and he continues to show an eagerness to learn more. When I told him about modern Jacob and what is ahead, he told me it made complete sense to him. We have had a lot of hearty discussion. Keep up the good work!
Here's one letter from Adelaide, Australia enquiring about an article that condemned racism.
I read the January-February 2000 Tomorrow’s World and really enjoyed everything in it. It really encourages me to see there are other people out there who have faith in a God they cannot see. One letter mentioned a Personal in the July-September 1999 issue against racism. Currently, at school, I am doing research on racism relating to religion. I would really appreciate it if you could send me the July-September 1999 issue, because I believe it could really help me.
Here's one letter from Chicago praising LCG's doctrine of the Great White Throne Judgment.
Thank you so much for the article “Is There Life After Death?” by Richard Ames, in the March-April 2000 issue. It is so comforting to see, from the Bible, that my unsaved family is not going to burn in eternal hellfire just because they did not have the chance to hear the true Gospel message. Just as I have had a chance now, they too will have their chance. The article showed from Scripture that our God is fair, loving and merciful.
September-October 2000

Here's one letter from Jackson, Mississippi praising LCG's doctrine of the Great White Throne Judgment as providing comfort to her after her husband of sixty-five years had passed away.
Thank you for Tomorrow’s World. I have read “Is There Life After Death?” three times. I lost my husband after 65 years of marriage. I can’t let go, but the reading of that helps. I want to know more about the word of God. I used not to like the Old Testament, but now I love it so much. There is so much history. It was not real to me, but now I see real people, and know God is real. God is revealing more to me. Your publications help me to understand more. I look up all the scriptures in the Bible. Please pray that I can understand the Word and know what God wants me to do. Thank you.
Here's one letter from Etobicoke, Canada praising LCG's magazine.
I want to thank you for all the booklets and the Tomorrow’s World magazine I have received. I have also been watching your program on VISION television. It certainly opened my eyes to all the Truth about the Word of God in the Bible. With your careful and diligent research, explanations and hard work on the content of all the articles, it really amazed me. When I read an article and find it to be true after referring to my Bible, I feel the guidance of the Holy Spirit.
Here's a letter from Toronto praising LCG's magazine as a continuation of WCG's Plain Truth.
In today’s world, it is good to see the things written about in Tomorrow’s World. Thank you for carrying on from where the Worldwide Church of God left prior to Mr. Armstrong’s death. Your articles and booklets are not only timely but also a source of inspiration for unlearning the false ways of this world under Satan, and learning the true ways of God. Your ministry helps one and all see the real light. Keep shining!
Here's one letter from Melvin, Kentucky, stating that the author used LCG's "Bible Study Course" in the author's church since they did not have any more study materials. This indicates that this church is not aligned with HWA's teachings. One wonders how quickly it will become apparent to those people that they teach things contrary to what is taught in most Christian churches.
I love all the magazines you send me. They are so spiritually uplifting. I would like to have your Bible Study Course. I am a member of a Bible study group, but they ran out of lessons and they have desperately tried to find some at Bible bookstores, but to no avail. After I read all of your material, I give it to our pastor and he reads it and leaves it in the church for the congregation to read. I hope you will continue sending me anything on the Word of God.
November-December 2000

Here's one letter from Baltimore condemning religion influenced by feminism.
I was so happy to read in your July-August 2000 issue the article “Have You Been Sold a Different Gospel?” by Douglas S. Winnail. In my “quest” during the ‘90s, I had heard about feminists saying that the Bible had been written by men and that a feminine godly being was really the true power. I was almost persuaded then. How naïve I was! It says in the Bible that “lack of knowledge” will destroy a nation. My lack of knowledge almost destroyed me! Thank you for sharing this knowledge to help others.
Here's one letter from Toronto praising Meredith's booklet which insists that weather related disasters are the wrath of LCG's God.
I read and reread the Who Controls the Weather? booklet. It is so timely, and sobering as we see the disruptions and suffering all around the United States and elsewhere around the world. Your booklet makes it plain why mankind is suffering so badly from these weather calamities. Thank you for your teaching!
Here's one letter praising a booklet by Meredith for insisting that Christians must worship on Saturday.
Thank you so much for your booklet Which Day Is the Christian Sabbath? My wife and I have discussed this for years, and your booklet explained the Bible truth so clearly. We are so happy to receive your magazine and other literature.
January-February 2001

Here's one letter from Ripton, Vermont that praises an article by Meredith that called for people to not vote in the presidential election.
Thank you for the cover story in the NovemberDecember issue of Tomorrow’s World—“How Would Jesus Vote for President?” It is just so clear and to the point. The cover itself is an eye-catcher, for the eyes of our country. Most anyone who looks at it will have to be moved off confusion and onto the Truth.
Here's one letter from Naples, Maine, criticizing LCG's ban on voting.
I just received the newest issue of Tomorrows World magazine; and I am deeply disappointed in your stance [in “How Would Jesus Vote for President?”] concerning voting. We were instructed by Jesus to “render unto Caesar the things that are Caesar’s” and certain laws made by man, which you advise us to follow, can only be changed by man. It is not accurate to say it does not matter which candidate gets elected, as there is an obvious choice between blatant evil and concerned good. Your advice to fellow Christians not to bother voting is like voting for the blatant evil, as you do not make a stand for the good. Currently, like it or not, we are citizens of this country; and accountable for how we handle this stewardship.
This ban on voting is designed to make followers less invested in dealing with public affairs and redirect their attention to the group and withdraw their attention from public affairs.

Here's one letter from Downers Grove, Illinois praising LCG's "Bible Study Course" for enlightening him and providing conversations with his brother.
I just wanted to write a short note to tell you how much I am enjoying the Bible Study Course. I have been in many Bible classes throughout my lifetime, but this study goes into the deeper things of the Bible, and I love it. My brother is also enrolled in this same study, and we compare our thoughts and have long conversations about what we are learning. Than you again for this study; I’m sure that when I have finished all these lessons I will have much more knowledge.
March-April 2001

Here's one letter from New Haven, Michigan stating that the author's family will no longer keep "pagan holidays" after reading LCG's condemnation of such festivals. HWA and many of the COGs ban many traditional holidays which has the effect of making people socially dependent upon the group for participating in celebrations approved by HWA and his imitators.
I must say that I am stirred up after reading “What Is Hidden by the Holidays?” (in the November-December 2000 Tomorrow’s World). My family will no longer be keeping pagan holidays. I find your magazine wonderful!
Here's one letter from Los Angeles praising LCG as a continuation of HWA's WCG. Although the author talks of the "demise" of WCG and the Plain Truth they were both still operating but no longer taught Armstrongism.
I was encouraged to see your program on the air this past week. I wasn’t sure if anyone was continuing to proclaim the Gospel of the Kingdom since the demise of the WCG and the Plain Truth magazine. When I came across your program Tomorrow’s World, I was happy to see that the true Gospel was still being taught.
Here's one letter from LCG headquarters' hometown at the time, San Diego.
I needed that November issue of Tomorrow’s World. That was one of the best written articles on the holidays, and how Satan has tricked this country and a big portion of the church on how Christmas came about. Don’t ever get weary of doing good—you are making a difference.
May-June 2001

Here's one letter from Sunland, California praising LCG for publishing a virulently anti-Catholic article which denounced the Roman Catholic Church as being the great whore of Revelation 17. Promoting this idea that has been taught for centuries in certain churches is here praised as courageous.
Your article on “The Harlot of Revelation 17” was AWESOME! Thank you for your courage.
Here's one letter from Beach Park, Illnois praising LCG for printing an article condemning abortion even though many other churches also condemn abortion. The author of that article, Fred Dattolo, would leave LCG to join PCG later that year.
Thank you for the excellent article “Is Abortion Murder?” in the March-April 2001 issue of Tomorrow’s World. Of all the articles I have read by religious authors, yours is the best by far, for showing that there is life in the blood, there is a spirit in the human and there is a dual principle of spiritual and physical birth.
Here's one letter from a devotee of Wicca condemning LCG's condemnation of the occult.
I recently had the misfortune to stumble across one of your articles. I have studied the occult since I was five and I have been an active Wiccan since I was 16. All in all, I’m a normal, happy teen, who just happens to have a different religion. I do not worship Satan or any form of evil! No true pagan would! All we say is that perhaps God is a bit different from what the Bible says. We are a peaceful, understanding, nature loving, and tolerant religion. All we ask is freedom to practice our beliefs and understanding. I don’t hate you, though your misguided attempt to shove your ideas down people’s throats is what makes the world the sad place it is today. I pity you. You people are worse than any plague or disaster that could come along, because you had the ability to stop yourselves.
Here's one letter from Paris, France praising LCG's "Bible Study Course" which teaches people to view the Bible the way LCG's leaders teach.
I find your Bible Study Course very inspiring, for clarity of expression and trueness of the text, for topics discussed and counsel given. Your Bible Study Course has opened my spiritual eyes to understanding God’s Plan, and helped me to understand the future events that will concern mankind. May Jesus Christ and the love of God be with you!
Here's one letter from Wilson, Louisiana praising LCG's "Bible Study Course" as enlightening to the author even though the author had been involved with the COGs since about 1976.
I have been in God’s Church close to 25 years. I have heard many sermons on the material covered in the first four Bible Study Course lessons. I have performed personal research and many personal Bible studies on that material; still, I found the first four lessons very interesting and fruitful. We should all pray for all God’s people to study this course.
July-August 2001

Here's one letter from Guyana in which the author expresses a reluctance of continuing to celebrate Easter. LCG and many of the COGs forbid the celebration of Easter and other traditional festivals such as Christmas and birthdays.
The Tomorrow’s World television program has been a blessing. I have been celebrating Easter for a very long time, but after the inspiring program I saw on Sunday, April 15, 2001, I realize that I need to know more. Don’t ever get weary of doing good—you are making a difference. Thank you also for the March-April 2001 issue of your magazine; I find it wonderful and am truly enjoying it.
Here's a letter from Montgomery, Alabama praising an article by John Ogwyn that condemned the doctrine of the rapture.
The Tomorrow’s World telecasts are great! I especially enjoyed “Secret Rapture or Place of Safety?” My prayer is that you will continue to “cry aloud and spare not.” Keep up the good work.
Here's a letter from Johore, Malaysia praising the magazine and stating that the author reads LCG's writings every Sabbath. Here we see the seventh day Sabbath being turned into a weekly indoctrination session into learning about Armstrongism.
It is a joy, I must gladly say, to receive your truthful and informative magazine, Tomorrow’s World. There are many times I have been surprised and intrigued by the topics in your many articles— one can truly feel the Truth through and through, and I read your issues over and over, each Sabbath.
Here's a letter from Hempstead, New York praising LCG as a continuation of HWA's WCG.
Thank you for my subscription to Tomorrow’s World. I was a Plain Truth subscriber for a good many years. Since the death of Mr. Armstrong, I have felt that somewhere the true Gospel must be being preached today. May God bless you all who are involved in this great Work.
Here's a letter from San Diego agreeing with LCG's pessimistic view of changes in society.
I have received the March-April 2001 issue of Tomorrow’s World magazine, and I feel truly blessed to be on your mailing list. My heart was really lifted after reading “Families in Flux” by John Ogwyn. The article touched perfectly on the family structure in America. I enjoy reading the materials you send to me, and I am learning a lot. Thanks a bunch for helping me find my way.
Here's a letter from Morrisville, Vermont praising LCG's condemnation of all churches outside of the COGs. The author also states that a virulently anti-Catholic article by Roderick C. Meredith "should wake people up".
I have just read your new booklet Restoring Apostolic Christianity. It was excellent in showing people the true Church—that follows all of God’s ways and His government. It also exposed the false reformers of pagan Christianity. I also just finished reading the article “Who Is the Harlot of Revelation 17?” [in the January-February 2001 issue]. It should wake people up who are willing to acknowledge the truth.
September-October 2001

Here's a letter from High Point, North Carolina, that praises LCG as a continuation of HWA's WCG.
I wanted to let you know how moved I am by your program Tomorrow’s World, and how your intelligent interpretation of Bible verses and Bible prophecy has touched my mind and made so many things clear that I was never able to understand before. Many years ago, I watched a program with Mr. Herbert W. Armstrong called The World Tomorrow, and his teachings were very clear and concise also. I remember Richard Ames from that program, and always enjoyed his speaking on the Bible.
Here's a letter from San Salvador, El Salvador praising LCG's "Bible Study Course" and mentions the author's first test on it.
I watched the television program today, on “The Seven Laws of Success.” I am a subscriber to Tomorrow’s World magazine and to the Bible Study Course. I just took my first test, on the first four lessons of the course. Thank you very much; the Bible Study Course is edifying, the magazine is great and the television program is also excellent. May God really bless you!
Here's a letter from Auckland, New Zealand praising the magazine and the "Bible Study Course."
I am writing to you to say “thank you very much” for sending me the Tomorrow’s World magazine and the free Bible Study Course. It is an awesome message that I have learned from these lessons, and it is a big encouragement for me to seek God and read my Bible.
Here's a letter from Roadtown, British Virgin Islands.
It has been my question for a very long time: “Where will Heaven be?” Please allow me to thank you for the eye-opening and revealing article in your May-June 2001 issue, “The Reality of Christ’s Coming Kingdom.” Now I don’t have to guess anymore!
Here's a letter from Beach Park, Illinois praising an article by Winnail for explaining to the author's sister why the author refrained from shellfish and pork. There is no need for Christians to observe those rules.
This last weekend I was visiting my sister. She happened to see the May-June 2001 issue of the Tomorrow’s World magazine, and read your article “Bible Principles of Health.” Her comments to me were most interesting. For many years she knew that I do not eat shellfish or pork. She thought I had adopted Jewish laws for health and diet. My explanations have not helped her understand, until she read your article. She said that the article was excellent and very educational, and that she learned a lot from it. She said she now understands the driving force behind my practice. Thank you for your wonderful article.
November-December 2001

Here's one letter from Libreville, Gabon from a person who had started observing the Sabbath after reading LCG's writings.
Thanks so much for your continuing to send the life-changing magazine Tomorrow’s World. It has built me up in my search for perfection. Since we accepted the Sabbath teachings and you started mailing us the magazine, our lives have never been the same again. We have learned much and we are growing.
Here's a letter from Madison Heights, Michigan from an eighty-two year old person doing LCG's "Bible Study Course."
I am on Lesson Nine in the Bible Study Course. This is my first Bible study course, and at 82 years old it hasn’t been that easy for me, but I’m learning. My eyes have been opened now to see many things that I never knew. Maybe by the time I finish the Bible Study Course, I will understand so many things that have been a mystery to me. I thank you for the wonderful work you are doing.
Here's a letter from Valley City, North Dakota praising a booklet by Meredith which insists that most churches are illegitimate.
I have just finished reading your booklet Restoring Apostolic Christianity. It was very well done. what made it so educational was the fact that you quote so many respected historians. For many years I have believed that faith based on historical fact is the foundation to sustaining one’s faith. Very well done; this booklet is a must for anyone searching for the truth.
Little does the author know that the quotations are largely camouflage obscuring the fact that Meredith's ideas largely come from one man who is not even named in that booklet, namely Herbert Armstrong.

With these letters we can see the exuberance of those who believe they had found something wonderful reading LCG's writings. But many who have journeyed into the world of Armstrongism have regretfully seen that the doctrines of Armstrongism as has been taught by HWA and his imitators within the COGs have been terribly flawed and at times exploitative. Sadly many of those reading LCG's recruitment magazine will be unaware of the various problems with LCG's teachings.

To be continued...