The Painful Truth About The Worldwide Church of God

Email To The Editor
(Page 56)

(Mail from Kooks, Nuts and Loonies is on another page)


10/7/01

 Hello,

 My name is Denise from Cincinnati Ohio and I'm an ex member and my parents still attend. I know for a fact that Worldwide Church is a cult because they had a summer time mini feast in Athens Ohio. And during that feast, not only were they up to their same tricks begging for money, they were still using their same old brainwashing techniques and manipulation.

First of all, the point of having a mini-feast was to gradually wean people away from the cult ways so that worldwide can keep soaking up tithes. But that is not the case. They are having the feast in 2002 in Atlanta next year. I believe they are having the feast in this exciting city to lure people into full attendance once again. They aren't trying to wean people off the feast, they are trying to recapture the "Glory Days." Rodgers (who ever he is, he's on of them) was saying how a large percentage of members don't pay tithes anymore and they were begging for the money the members had traveled to Athen with. He wanted all of their money just like when they would take the remaining second tithes on the Last Great Day. No concern with anyone's salvation.

 Also, Tkatch made a blanket statement saying that 92% of all people who speak in tongues are faking. See, the same manipulation is going on where they brainwash these people into believe that WW holds all of the answers.

 They also made some wack attempt to have a racial reconciliation. To me that's garbage. I don't know what the church's angle is for all this racial reconciliation (you know they don't give a damn about minorities) but I know they have something up their sleeves.

 I just hope that everyone flees from WW because the church operates under a spirit of witchcraft and religion. That spirit is still there. Not only that, it's coming back around for a second time around and this time is going to be worst than the first time. It's going to destroy what it didn't the first time.

These [victims] are going to the feast in the summer? At least while under Armstrong, the feast took place in the fall which at least can be referenced in the Bible. That's how deep it is this time.

Since I have an inside scoop, I'll keep The Painful Truth updated on the madness

Denise


Dear Editor

 I read your website religiously (ha ha) and wondered why you bother to argue with people who just don't get it. Nothing you say gets thru to them because as I say "faith is the tourniquet to the brain." You talk perfect sense. You say 2 and 2 are 4 but their ministers say "Not so, faith says 2 and 2 are 638, and its an insult to God to believe otherwise and you'll burn in hell fire for not believing or how dare you question God." How can you, Editor, argue with these people and not feel like you're banging your head against a wall? Its frustrating I'm sure. But then in all honesty I have to say that when I was in the worldwide church of god I used to believe with all my heart just as strongly as they believe now. I believed all the bullshit too. Then my brain kicked in. 2 and 2 are now 4 no matter what anybody says............

Pete


 To those listening,

It was not an easy task reading my fathers letters concerning Worldwide Church of God. It was very healing though. What was not covered in depth, as in any abusive situation, was the found strength of former members. Certainly being a child in the situation, allows me a right to speak from, I believe, a welcome point of view. Let me just say a few things first:

For those of you that don't know, my father left Worldwide Church of God in Hawaii. The church split in two that day. Dennis Luker got up and spoke about us moving back to California, and how we were fortunate to be selected for a sabbatical. A rush of emotion and murmurs went over the church at that moment. I began to cry to myself. My father got us all up, our family of five, took us out in the hall, and I have never been more proud of him. He said, "Don't you worry, we're not going back to California. The church is wrong, and we are going to work it all out, but we are not going anywhere". I learned, at that moment, that no matter who, or what, comes into your life, you have a choice to take care of yourself. And here he was standing up to the Churchour life. My future. -And he was right. I learned how to do my very best, and how to leave a situation if need be; a strength most people never have.

I am sure that there are thousands of others who are better people because of the church. Yes, it was a horrible situation. I saw more than my father may think. I still do.

I remember eagerly awaiting the feast, and the toys, and seeing our friends. Although I missed out on a lot, those were some wonderful times. I didn't have another life to compare it to. I don't regret my childhood. Would you like a pleasant memory?

While having a church picnic on a deserted beach on Oahu, I discovered things in the water. We were on an old military base, and I found these great looking items in the sea while snorkeling. I collected about 20 of them and wanted to take them home, piling them in a stack on the sand by the waters edge. I'll never forget the look on my dads face as his jaw dropped, and he quickly led me away from the pile of unexploded mortars I had found. I was a hero to my friends...It wasn't all bad.

I think the forum of exposing the truth is valuable. Very much so. And in this, there is a healing. Most importantly, there must be a forgiveness as well. My father may say he forgives himself, but the wound is very deep. Myself and my two brothers, all turned out well, we're not criminals, and we are all successful. Rebellious? Yes. Rough times to get through? Yes.

But please, let us not forget, God, however you think of God, keeps life going, heals, and doesn't hold grudges.

To all the parents out there: I remember you as good people, honestly trying to do the right thing. Your loyalty may have been misplaced, but my goodness, you guys stood up for things most people will only mumble about. This strength needs to be used to make the world a better place now. All the folks in Hawaii, and California, you have my love and respect. And certainly not my judging. You made choices that we the children of Worldwide Church of God parents won't make. But I'll bet in 8 out of 10 cases, you ended up, maybe the hard way, making us stronger adults.

Let me tell you that today, if someone messes with my kids, or their beliefs, I am consoling immediately to my children, and a bear to that person or organization that offended them. I do not let it stand for a second. The churches principles made everyone involved very strong. Strong for the wrong reasons, but strong non-the-less. I realize the damage done, but if you are one of the damage makers, and you are healing, please don't be like the AA meetings where people come back for years, rehashing the same pain. Please grieve, and then get back to making the world a better place. Wasn't that the goal? The reasoning behind the goal was wrong, but didn't you all try and do that in principle? Tell me this former Worldwide Church of God people, are you doing this now? Although ignorant back then, I'll bet that some of you have great memories being a part of something bigger than you. A sense of importance. You still are important, and you have proven you have the courage.

I was lucky, to hear my dad prove these things over and over again. It will do you good, if it is now used to heal. Then your greatest mistakes, become your greatest blessing.

I love my father, my dad, and am proud of him. I am sure other grown children like me are proud of many of you too. Please realize that we children don't hold the mistakes you made against you as you do. We still love you.

God Bless,

John O jr



    I came across your site because after having read the sickening hate speech Jerry Falwell and Pat Robertson were spewing as to the blame for the WTC attacks, I wanted to see what old GTA had to say about it all.  My search brought me your site and man am I blown away!  I had no idea what was going on in my little sect.


    My Father, in the mid 60's (Mother faithfully followed) began looking for a religion other than his Methodist, and on about the third try ran across Garner Ted Armstrong on the radio.  So in 1968 (I was 8 at the time) he packed all of us in the family station wagon and drove the two hours (one way!) from our little village in upstate NY to Mt. Pocono, PA for church services!


    My older siblings split upon there graduations from High School, leaving me alone to deal with the insanity from 1972 through 1980 (I actually held on for three years after high school feeling, by then, that I had nothing else to turn to).  


    While I knew nothing about the inner workings of the "church" until coming across your site, I always felt, due to some unusual behavior, that something was slightly out of kilter in the "one true church."


    Around 1976 or '77 my Pastor (Britt Taylor) separated from his wife because "she wanted to pursue a singing career" (secular music I assume).  What struck me strange was that he held custody of their daughter in a time when fathers rarely won full custody save something more sinister than a "singing career" in the woman's life.  


    Shortly after the split this "man of God" who was in his mid to late 30's (an educated guess) at the time, began shamelessly hitting on a girl that I had been dating (by dating I mean we sat together during services, that was about as bold as we dared get).  This girl was 15/16 at the time!  Nothing, of course, came of it, and he remarried shortly afterward, but his behavior, cutting in on her dances with me at church socials, and actually showing me up and one-upping me at church gatherings... showing his machismo I suppose (remember I was 17/18 at the time) just struck me as Unchristian, immature and quite sick for a minister and a man his age. (I looked him up, he is in the Envoy from the late 60's so I know he was truly a HWA educated Pastor)


    When I Graduated High School I actually passed up some fine schools in NY to attend AC in Pasadena.  I made this decision based on many contradictory factors including wanting to get as far away from my parents as possible (because they had imprisoned me in this sorry church) and yet wanting the safety and comfort of these whackos that I had spent more than half my life with.  


    As it turned out AC Pasadena abandoned its Liberal Arts program just about the time I was preparing to attend (summer 1977).  So, unless I wanted to be a minister (out of the question, even my Father scoffed at the idea) I would have to attend the Big Sandy campus.  Well, I was having no part of Texas!  I actually left church right after the service in which they announced these changes and hitchhiked home (by this time we were attending church in Binghamton, NY so the hitch wasn't bad).


    I became a pariah at the church (a bad influence at the age of 17).  Everyone began looking at me as if I had turned my back on God, Herbert W. Armstrong, Garner Ted Armstrong and Britt Taylor.  To tell the truth I had never really fallen for their lines anyway, I was only there because it was all I knew!  


    A friend from the church, who was a year older than I, had attended AC and he and I decided to drive out at Christmastime, 1978.  We lived briefly with his uncle, Roman, who was the manager of the Ambassador Auditorium at the time.


    After moving out and sharing an apartment with other young church members (one of whom, Rick Shallenberger, has been an editor of youth magazines for the church and also a church minister in his home area of Mishawaka, IN) I eventually landed a job at the college postal center.


    That fall (1979) the Liberal Arts program was reinstated at the Pasadena campus, so I signed up.  This is when the true nature of the beast began to show itself to me.  What cataclysmic event was it that made me run (eventually) hard and fast from the WWCoG?  Actually there were several, but the first was I met the Meredith and McNair boys!  If you ever meet two bigger expletive deleted monkeys than these two I'll give you a banana!  They were the epitome of the spoiled little rich kids (how did they get rich while my Dad and Mom were living hand to mouth?) and about as Christian as your average Catholic schoolboy.

 
    Next I was honored to attend a "Women's Club" dinner which had Mr. McNair as the guest speaker.  He politely sat and listened as young girls stood and spoke on the sad situation with the hostages in Iran, the upcoming election year etc..  He then rose, cleared his throat and began gently chastising them for wasting time mulling current events when it could be better spent discussing recipes and clothing patterns!


    Not to mention sitting in on Mr. Meredith's "Harmony of the Gospels" class listening to his life story growing up in (was it Joplin?) MO for the umpteenth time, and his rantings against the present Carter administration.


    I must say if it weren't for having to attend classes and church services I did have a fun semester, fell in love (unfortunately with a true believer) and spent many an evening drunk and disorderly.  It all ended with two of my comrades and I getting tossed out on our ears by Greg Albrecht (dean of students at the time) for such abhorrent behavior as plugging a shower with toilet paper and slamming a cue-stick on the pool table!  If my name had only been McNair or Meredith...sigh.  Truthfully though I was ready to leave by then.


    Back to NY I went with my tail tucked between my legs.  The ever respectful sleazoid Britt Taylor questioned me about my dismissal which I thought was just so perfect considering his childish behavior of the previous year.  He was soon replaced by Mr. (Bill) Pack, who I believe is Dave Pack's brother.  
    Mr. Pack found it in his heart to admonish me, during his sermon, in front of his faithful flock, for falling asleep during the service.  This being an indiscretion I had witnessed so many times by so many of our members, but had never seen punished in any way, let alone in this extremely humiliating fashion.  Needless to say I moved back to California again in late summer of 1980 and have never returned to the church.


    My father died, penniless, still working his fingers to the bone, at the age of 67 in summer of 1987.  To their extreme credit the church came through big time for my mother and payed off the mortgage on her house (it wasn't much but still!) and has continued to help her to this day, through all of their upheavals.
    I know this doesn't really count as a horror story, but I thought it might be an interesting glimpse into the life of an unwilling yet unsuspecting 13 year attendee of the WWCoG.

joel


To Editor,

Your "Painful Truth" website is a real eye-opener. I really do get a lot out of this website, especially the Ambassador Report section. After being with the Worldwide Church of God for 20 years since ('76 to '96), it's really sad how ones' life can be so messed up after going through so many different religions prior to this and really thought that this was the "real McCoy". I can't blame you (Ed) for being bitter about all of this and after reading much of the information, it's easy to be bitter and angry about the way we were led as "dumb sheep." It literally blew me away to see how much corruption and greed that (and still) exists at the Worldwide Church of God! I should have known better that if a "prophet" prophesizes in the name of God and it if didn't come to pass, then he has not been sent by God! After making over 200+ prophesies that didn't come to pass, wouldn't just one failed prediction be enough to prove otherwise? Go figure!! Keep up the good "work" (pun intended) and your update on the "sputtering-splittering-splittery-split-splats"!!!

 Best Regards, D.C.


 Hi Editor

I have been a frequent visitor to your site and think that this group of overstuffed do-gooders need to be seen to be believed. This is a response that I received earlier today and I had been hesitant to get on this forum as I had heard that they were egotistical stuff shirts. But it blows my mind that they can call themselves Christian and be so hateful.

 This is the Likeminds Forum and they are mostly likeminded in hatefulness as you can see in the attachment. I will send more if you are interested.

 Jake

REPLY:

 Jake,

YOU WROTE:

But it blows my mind that they can call themselves Christian and be so hateful.

REPLY:

Well, take a look at the Inquisition, the Crusades, the Witch burnings, etc. Are you still surprised? They are not Christians because they follow the teachings of Christ. They are Christians because they follow the bible and religions that come out of the bible. They get it all out of that "good book."

 Editor

 


Dear Editor,

 I know you're a busy man but when you get a few minutes could you tell me what your thoughts or theories are about something? It's rare for me personally to find anyone who believes the same as I do. If you don't believe in "God" people act like you have Aids or something. I have the "John Edward" thing figured out to my satisfaction (the man who speaks to the dead) but I can't figure out the "ghost" thing at all. If there is no life after death (and I don't believe there is sadly) then what is the phenomena of ghosts about? Do you have any theories or ideas on the subject? I'd appreciate your input if you have any.

Thanks, Pete

REPLY:

 Pete,

I have the ghost thing pretty well nailed down: There are no ghosts. There are no evil spirits, demons, devils, etc.

I have seen no ghosts. I have felt no ghosts. I have seen no evidence of ghosts. Ghosts only tend to appear before people that are already disturbed or illiterate, just as with flying saucers.

Its all part of the religions/superstitions/fairy tales/delusions that hold sway over people's minds. The more you read and educate yourself, the less you will believe in anything without proof.

Editor


 Hello Editor

 Well I am not against goodness or the Scriptures as they stand -just against men and their hate-mongering leaderships that dictate and destroy people's lives.

 You appear to be a man with a past. Do you mind if I ask why and what? Because you know you are letting your past dictate your future-and you can do that, but it will eventually catch up unless you drop that weight you are carrying around and unload.

 Jake

REPLY:

YOU WROTE:

Well I am not against goodness or the Scriptures as they stand -just against men and their hate-mongering leaderships that dictate and destroy people's lives.

REPLY:

Look. Let's make it perfectly clear: THEY GET IT ALL OUT OF THE SCRIPTURES. It is the Scriptures that are the problem, not the men. Get rid of the scriptures and religion and you will not have the tools to dictate and destroy lives.

YOU WROTE:

You appear to be a man with a past. Do you mind if I ask why and what?

REPLY:

Do you mind if I ask why you have written to me without reading the FAQ? I don't know how I can make it any clearer to sanctimonious idiots like you, that you are to read it, all of it, before writing to me.

YOU WROTE:

Because you know you are letting your past dictate your future.... (blah, blah, blah..........)

REPLY:

Do you mind if I ask why you think that I care one little bit about what you think?

Editor

 


I will save you from my long sad story about my sister, as you have your own.

I was hoping you might have some information on Assemblies of God, Assembly of God, AOG, First Assembly of God...they all seem to be the same "church." My sister is a DEVOUT member of this church and it is starting to frighten me. I am certainly not looking for advice -I will figure out what I must do, I am only looking for as much information as I can possibly find on the denomination. I did notice that in a response to an e-mail you refer to the AOG as a cult as much as your former church. Is there anything that you can tell me, or link me to in my trying to learn why I fear her affiliation with AOG so much?

Any help would be GREATLY appreciated.

Kimberly

REPLY:

 Kimberly,

I don't know where the AOG would stand in the list of most harmful cults. I don't have any specific information to expose the AOG. I had some interaction with some of these people as they tried to infiltrate our local Worldwide Church of God, just before I left for good. I was not attracted at all to any of their beliefs. Kind of weird.

I would be very careful, if I were you, not to offend your sister. If she is really into this thing, she is not going to be open to hearing anything bad about it, even if it is true. She will not be able to accept it and it will just turn her against you.

Instead of just looking for bad things about the church, why don't you get some cult books and show her how the things that her religion teaches show that it is a cult? Try: Releasing The Bonds: Empowering People to Think for Themselves
 by Steven Hassan, to start with. Hassan has a lot of good books.

I have a nephew in the AOG and I know that I have to just let him alone and let him figure things out for himself. The problem is that he will be ruining a lot of other lives, because he is a minister. I say this from experience. Nobody could have convinced me that I was not in God's own church. Logic and reason have nothing to do with religion. People "believe" because they WANT to believe. They don't "believe" because there is any evidence. They will not change their beliefs because they don't WANT to change. There has to be some kind of crack in their armor for you to get through to their brains.

Good luck and be careful.

Editor


Hi Editor:

Several years ago, I remembering an article from "The Bible Advocate," which is the CG7 official (equiv of the PT), which reminded me of your article of the ACTS OF GOD.  Although I respect other's opinions, I sometimes wonder where there brains are located.

The article explained the story of a woman whose husband was a pilot.  I believed he flew a Cessna 172.  Since I'm a licensed pilot, I KNOW how careful we must be when taxing to the ramp, and also, how stupid some people can be.  There are innumerable cases when people, who are NOT looking, simply stroll out and look at the sky, then walk into whirring props, and become hamburger in a few seconds.  So caution is always needed.

This woman got out of the Cessna before the prop was shut down.  The pilot needed to do two things after closing the throttle.  #1 Shut off the mixture, and  #2 Turn off the ignition.  Apparently he did neither before she exited the plane and walked into the whirring prop.  She was left with part of her arm missing, bits of her head in pieces, and other fragments of flesh scattered across the tarmac.  However, she survived.

Although this is a tragic accident, it's what that followed in the article that shocked me.

She praised "God" for keeping her alive.  She praised Him/Her/IT for giving her the sanctity of life - even though she'd been mutilated by the propeller.  She actually thot that God had given her a "favor." 

Wouldn't it be more logical to have been more cautious?  Wouldn't it be more logical to INSIST (like I did) that everyone stay belted and within the machine until we shut off the mixture and turned off the ignition?  Then wait till the prop stopped whirring?  What's the sense in "thanking" God for a mutilated body when God could have prevented the whole thing?

Let's look at things logically.  God is the life force ONLY, but what we do with IT is up to us.

For wot it's worth.  JohnO


I would like to suggest another book for your list.

 Deus Lo Volt! by Evan S. Connell

It is a book about the crusades and graphically describes the horror that the religions of Christianity and Islam brought about as they butchered each other in the Crusaders attempt to "liberate" the "holy land."

 Thomas


10/25/01

 Subj: The Boogie man's cookbook
To:NoMoreCults

Superb article. I read it from time to time. I send it via email to friends and enemies. Armstrong scared the shit out of me. I no longer fear being burned alive by god. Thank you Jim, I owe this site my peace of mind.

Greg

  REPLY:

Greg, Your encouragement is much appreciated at the moment. JohnO has been saying that a lot of articles on the site are being emailed to a lot more people than we realize.

Like several others, I am just a contributor to the site. The editor deserves all of the credit, and he has to put up with an awful lot of shit.

If any of your enemies can find any gaps or oversights in the article, let me know. We will fill in the gap or oversight and see if the editor will repost the article.

thanx again,  JimV


 I was given your site as a link from a good friend who was subjected to "the church" as I was. I began reading and clicked from the home page to the "Rebellion 1974" and then the "Rebellion 1974 Comments." I then clicked on the link "30 YEARS IN THE WORLDWIDE CHURCH OF GOD PARTS 1-4." Once there, I tried to click on the broken link of "Manpower Committee" regarding employee assignments at AC. The message is that the link is mistyped.

I know that the page is not as important as the apology page, but I am nosily curious as to how those idiots thought so highly of their capable judgment of others that they would dare assume what job someone else was deemed/doomed to do.

Thank you for your page and whole site. It's good to know that we all feel and think about the problems caused by one man. However on the flip-side of that coin, it is NOT GOOD to know that we all were subjected to this man and therefore must feel and think about these problems in the first place.

 Meredith

  REPLY:

 Thanks. I think that I am going to have to fix a lot of links because I had to move the AR's off site because I was running out of space on Tripod. All I can say is to look at the address that the link is to and then try to substitute the new address on the other site: http://www.w orldwidechurchofgod.f2s.com/ar/index.htm

I'll be fixing the problem in a couple of weeks. Too busy.

Editor


 The terrorists all believed in feel-good religion and were sincere, too.

The long quote below comes from the advice to the love-lorn (usually sex-lorn) column in "The Onion" of 20-26 SEP 2001. "The Onion" is a humorous, fake newspaper similar to "National Lampoon" which appears to be produced by students in or near the U. of Wisconsin in Madison. This column is written by Dan Savage, and he calls it "Savage Love". Normally he gives humorous, assertive, but reasonable advice to those writing in. This time he had some very good things to say about religion in regard to the terrorist attacks on 11 SEP. I have never seen the show or movie "Godspell", but if you have then this should be especially poignant.

 "... Really, all I can think about right now is, well, Godspell, of all things. Stephen Schwartz's 1971 musical retelling of the Gospel according to St. Matthew was made into a film in 1973. Victor Garber starred as a hippie Christ being followed around Manhattan by 13 flower children/disciples. According to the video box, Jesus & Company "form a roving acting troupe that enacts the Parables through the streets and landmarks of New York," where they perform "show-stopping dance numbers."

One of these show-stopping dance numbers is performed on top of the World Trade Center. Jesus does a little soft-shoe on the roof and sings "All for the Best," a song about suffering: "When you feel sad, or under a curse / Your life is bad, your prospects are worse / Your wife is sighing, crying / and your olive tree is dying... / Your mood and your robe / are both a deep blue / You'd bet that Job / had nothin' on you / Don't forget that when you get to / heaven you'll be blessed / Yes, it's all for the best."

For some reason, I haven't been able to get that goddamn song out of my head since I turned on the Today show just in time to see the World Trade Center collapse. ... The song that's stuck in my head is no comfort to me. In fact, it makes me furious. The idea of Jesus Christ dancing on top of the World Trade Center and telling us that no matter how bad our lives are (however much our wives cry, however Job-like our suffering), really, it's all for the best ... Well, it makes me wanna go kick in a stained-glass window. What happened last Tuesday was not "all for the best," and the people I saw falling from the upper floors of the World Trade Center are not now in heaven being blessed. They're just fucking dead.

"There's a real need to turn to prayer," said one of Jesus' employees on Wednesday night. Msgr. Thomas Hartman told Tom Brokaw that "there's a real need to turn to God."

Who could be against prayer at a time like this? Or God? Well, I am. Does anyone doubt for a moment that the people on those four doomed planes were praying? Or that the people hanging out the windows at the World Trade Center were praying? After the first tower collapsed, how many people watching events unfold on their television sets started praying for the second tower not to fall? Jesus, I even slipped up and said a prayer. And what good did all that prayer do?

"If we believe absurdities," Voltaire said, "we will commit atrocities." On Sept. 11, suicidal Islamic radicals, their heads stuffed with absurdities, committed the most appalling atrocities. And what do we do in response? We trot out some absurdities of our own: Pray to God. God listens. God cares. Does He really? If so, I'd really like to see Him get off His ass and prove it every once in a while. ... Listening to Msgr. Hartman promote his own brand of absurdities, "All for the Best" playing on tape loop in my head, I remembered something from Mark Twain's unfinished essay, Letters from the Earth. After spending some time walking up and down on the Earth, Lucifer writes home to the other archangels. "[Man] prays to God and thinks He listens. Isn't it a quaint idea? Fills his prayers with crude and bald and florid flatteries of Him, and thinks He sits and purrs over these extravagancies and enjoys them. He prays for helps, he prays for favor, and protection every day; and does it with a hopefulness and confidence, too, although no prayer of his has ever been answered."

Twain was on to something, I think. Even if God exists and all evidence would seem to indicate otherwise our crude and florid flatteries don't seem to have much of an impact on Him. They never do. So to hell with prayer. Let's get revenge. Let's catch every last bastard who had anything to do with the attacks on Sept. 11, throw 'em in prison, and get busy rebuilding the World Trade Center. Once the towers are up, let's drag the bastards to the top by their balls, set their asses on fire, and toss them over the side. That would be all for the best, don't you think?"

copyright Dan Savage

  Works for me.

Bill Fairchild
Douglas, Mass.


 From: Ron Bangle

Subject: tired tirade

wasted talent splashed with bitterness. I can only pray for you

  REPLY:

 Well then I'm pretty safe because I know nothing will happen when you pray except that you will be wasting your time.

Tell you what, try praying for something that we can prove one way or the other and put a time limit on it and let's test your "god" to see if he will do what you ask. Otherwise you worship a paper god.

Editor


 My wife and her family are former members of Worldwide Church of God and her father was also a Deacon in the church in Birmingham Alabama. They were kicked out of the church some years ago and started a splinter group church. They split off from the splinter group church a few years ago and her father started his own church. I grew up a Methodist but not very religious. They almost had me believing everything they were trying to teach about following the laws of the Old Testament, Sabbath, Holy Days, clean/unclean, etc. I started my own Bible study due to my new found knowledge and began to find something totally different which began with the heading in the KJV of the Bible Righteousness Through Faith, etc. What I discovered over the last year is that my wife and her family, thought they claim to be Christians, are actually practicing Mosaic Jews. They actually claim to be Israelites and not Gentiles though they are of Scottish & Irish heritage. I put together a 22 page Bible study showing all of the teaching of Jesus Christ and the Apostles, showing that we are no longer under the schoolmaster, how Christ fulfilled the law, avoiding foolish strivings about the law, Christ has redeemed us from the curse of the law, the law is fulfilled in one word Love thy neighbor as thyself, etc. It all made no impression on her in the least. I also showed her that only the men traveled to the Feast, but she is still taking my son with her family for 8 days while I stay home to work and fend for myself.

I am at a loss as to how to work through this and even talk to her about it. She is totally controlled by her father and gets very angry and defensive when I try to talk to her about it.

Having been there yourself can you offer any suggestions for how to even get her to talk about this and look beyond the Old Testament? Thanks for any help.

Morgan

 REPLY:

 Morgan, It will be as easy for you to talk her out of her belief in the OT as it would be for me to try to talk you out of your belief in the NT. Too much arguing.

Sorry, but you are both wrong. Leave her alone, just as I will leave you alone. We all have a right to be wrong, if we want to be.

See my Bibliolatry page for more information.

Good luck to you.
Editor


(Personal email to a radio talk show host.) 

Mark,

I don't know how much time I should devote to this since you probably won't read it or finish it if you do start to read it.

 I just have to tell you that I have listened to your show since you first came on WISN. And I mean every day I can. I have enjoyed and reveled in your attacks on the liberal Democrats. Now, I find your attacks on my patriotism to be very disappointing.

 I served my country for four years during the Cuban Missile Crisis and the beginning of the Viet Nam war. When the terrorists struck the towers, I was one of the first to want to show my patriotism and support by putting up my flag, and it is lighted at night so that I can display it at night. I respect my country's flag, I consider myself a patriot and I love my country.

 I am conservative. I do not vote for liberals because I find what they want to do to our Constitution to be a threat to our country. I thought that the election of George W. Bush was one of the best things that have happened to our country in a long time. I still think so.

 A little of my personal history: I'm 58 years old. I was in a right wing religious cult for over 25 years. I know your bible better than you do, I would bet. I probably know what your religion believes better than you do. I left the cult and religion seven years ago. I left because I finally woke up to the fact that none of these religions is based on any facts or anything that can be proven. They are all based on Faith. Faith being a belief in something that cannot be proven. Twenty-five years of brainless belief was enough. From now on I need some proof that what I believe is true. If there really is a god, I don't think that IT will mind if I use my brain to try to figure out what IT wants from me.

 I have no problem with other people believing in god or practicing their religion, but they have to leave me alone. Myself, I see no evidence of a god that is involved with mankind, at all. I'm not saying that there is no god, it is obvious to me that there is or was, but I would be very interested in you showing me just how this god is doing ANYTHING for anyone on this planet. I see just the opposite.

 I find it repugnant that there is a reference to this ineffective, uninvolved, uncaring god in the Pledge of Allegiance. I have no problem with a pledge of allegiance, but why do you have to have your god in there and then say that, if I don't like it, then I am not patriotic? This is a little scary for me because I see the same brown shirts about to go around again, breaking windows of all those who will not accept their god. You say that I can just leave out the words "under god" if I don't like them. I say that you can just silently put them in. I say that we have never been a "Christian Nation," we have been a free nation. Our founding fathers were made up of quite a few Deists, not Christian, including Thomas Jefferson, George Washington, Thomas Paine, Ben Franklin, and possibly Lincoln, to name a few. Most Deists believe that God created the universe, "wound it up" and then disassociated himself from his creation. I would be interested in any proof that you or anybody have to the contrary of this belief.

 I know you will say that you are talking about a non-denominational god not a Christian one; well fine but this does not take into consideration those of us that find the usage to be as repugnant as putting in "one nation under Casper the Ghost." And, I don't care if the majority of the people in this nation do believe in some kind of god. This is not a nation ruled by the majority. What if the majority were Satanists but you were a Christian? We are ruled by our Constitution and I am ever so thankful that it is there to protect me from those who want to force their beliefs on me through the government that I pay taxes to just like everybody else.

 Just what is so important to you about having this word "god" in the Pledge? Do you feel that this is like a little rosary thingy that if you just get enough people to say it enough, then your non-involved god will finally DO SOMETHING? Is it just that you are looking for someone to blame because your god has failed you so miserably? It is this same "god" that you, now, want, in some way, to "Bless America" that could have saved us all a lot of grief by blessing us just a little bit by not having those hijackers do their dirty deed in the first place. But now, this "god" that betrayed all its believers is the one that we are supposed to acknowledge in the Pledge of Allegiance or we are not patriots. Well, forgive me if I find your thinking just a little irrational but, when it comes to religion, rationality is not a requirement or even possible.

 So now, I am not a patriot, according to you, and I am not a liberal, according to me. The liberals don't want me because of my conservative beliefs and the conservatives don't want me because of my religious beliefs.

I guess that I am a man without a country.

And that is what we will all be if you succeed in carving up our Constitution to make it say what you want it to say. You are no better than the Liberals in this regard. You, sir, are the one who is not patriotic.

Ed Sr.


Hello my name is Carla,

I really need some advise-my son who is 16 1/2 has stared going to an Atlanta church of god with one of his friends, I had reservations about him going at first and now I really do, I don't know where to get information regarding the church.

From what it seems I feel like it is a type of cult-but I have no one to ask any questions-are my gut feeling justified? I found your web site from askjeeves. I hope you don't mind me e-mailing you.

We have never been strongly connected to any one church but we have instilled Christian values and being a good person but now he seems to have blinders on concerning how he was raised we are scheduling a meeting with the pastor at our church to speak with and our son.

Are there any web sites that will help me involving the church practices? Any help will be appreciated.

Thank you, Carla

 REPLY:

Your son is probably no worse off in the Worldwide Church of God than in the Assembly of God or any other wacky church. I consider all of them wacky.

I have no problem with "Christian values" as long as they follow the teachings of Jesus. When they go beyond that, that is when they start screwing up people's lives.

Your son would be better off not being in any church. So would you.

Editor


 It is my understanding that the KJV bible proves itself in the book of Revelations and even in Daniel. What do you make of this?

Wes

 REPLY:

 How can anything prove itself?

It must be proved by something outside of itself.

Can a telephone book prove itself without your trying out all of the phone numbers? If all of the numbers get connections then it is true. If some of the numbers do not get connections then the book cannot be trusted. It is "proved" by testing its' veracity.

You cannot use just some of the things that are said to be "proven" and say that the bible is written or inspired by god. A godly inspired book is not going to have ANY errors in it otherwise the god is not perfect. The Bible has errors in it, flagrant errors. It therefore cannot be inspired by a perfect god. It cannot be trusted for basing a spiritual life on it. Period. Case closed.

Editor


 

Hello,

When I was a child I used to watch Herbert W. Armstrong in The World Tomorrow. At the Time I found him most entertaining. I mean he was the TV preacher who came across as a raving lunatic and he Thrilled me with his most obvious use of the self supporting "circular" reasoning. I would laugh hysterically at his statement that the end time was upon us, because it stated in the bible that in the end time Christ's true teaching would be once again proclaimed and "I Herbert W. Armstrong am proclaiming the true teachings of Christ". or something like that.

At the time it didn't even occur to me that anyone out there would not see through his shallow attempts to gain power and influence or Money maybe. Of course I wasn't really raised with a whole lotta respect for TV preachers anyway. But H. W. Armstrong was the most blatant example of just how outrageous they could be.

It wasn't until many years later that I heard of the incest charges against him and such.

I'm really sorry if this seems insensitive towards those caught up in his ministry and you say that you and your family once were.

I just wanted to thank you for your web site and add my name to any personal list of people who have written in support of what you are doing.

It is unfortunate that there are people out there that only call themselves Christians rather than following the teachings of Christ.

Aloha and God Bless


----- Original Message -----

From: Christian
To:
Subject: Remove My Name ASAP

 To whoever runs this website please remove the name Christian ***** from your Email page.

You have no authorization to use my name for someone else's email. I did not write these things.

If my name and email is not removed from your website within 30 Days I will have to take this matter to Tripod for unauthorized use of my name and email.

 REPLY:

Oh yes you did write it &#$@*. I have the original message and it is easily traced to you. I can forward them to Tripod if they need any proof.

And I don't need your &#$@* permission.

So &#$@* off.

Editor

 REPLY:

 There is no need for profanity. Some friends if mine did a name search on me and found your website with my name in it. I in fact did not write it, I do not even talk like that. In the past, people have used my computer to send emails. I think there has been a mix-up. I do not even belong to such an organization and I finished college 10 years ago, I even hate psychology. I "Christian" DID NOT WRITE the things on your website and you have 29 days left. Feel free to leave the message on your website but my name and email needs to be removed from it. You can put "Unknown" for the source or use any other name. You could even remove my email and my last name leaving Christian as the author since we do not know who wrote this.

 Christian

 REPLY:

YOU WROTE:

There is no need for profanity.

REPLY:

Don't send me email threatening me and not expect a little profanity back, &#$@*.

Don't bother counting down your days, do it NOW. I've been through this before with insufferable pricks like yourself. You don't have a leg to stand on regarding your "hatemail" to me.

YOU WROTE:

I even hate psychology

REPLY:

Well, I never fell for your bluff in the first place. Just one more of your lies. You really should get help for this lying problem of yours. It seems to be habitual.

YOU WROTE:

Some friends if mine did a name search on me and found your website with my name in it.

REPLY:

You are such a liar; you make me sick.

I can tell you what happened. You did a search of the internet and came up with your name on my website and now you are worried that it may screw you up professionally if a potential employer, boyfriend or customer may see what a prick you are or what your goofy beliefs are. You screwed up and wrote a hateful message to me after going through numerous cautions that I have to stop idiots such as yourself sending me stupid email. I don't make it easy for people to email me; I make it hard and there are plenty of warnings as to what will happen if you attack me or the contributors to the site.

 YOU WROTE:

In the past, people have used my computer to send emails.

REPLY:

That is your problem, not mine.

I'll tell you what will solve this little problem of yours: Get one of these "people" to write an apology to me regarding the following points:

1. About my being "mentally disturbed."

2. Admit that you are not "obtaining my masters in psycology"

3. You are not "doing a thesis on religion and you should be happy that I have 10 pages dedicated to you."

4. You have not "shared with my professor your site and email."

5. Your "professor" did not say: "His exact words "That boy need professional help""

or

"your site must serve as a type of therapy for you since in the back of your mind you blame the Worldwide Church of God for the death of your wife"

Now, have your "friend" write it all in the first person and sign it with your name. Tell "him" not to say that you never wrote the messages. Tell "him" not to get snotty with me or be a smart ass and I will take "your" last  name and "your" email address off the website.

You get one more reply to me, after that, any further email will be blocked and not even downloaded from my server. Plus, these emails will be placed on a new email page with our dialog and your name and new email address and it will be there for another search engine to pick up.

So, what are you going to do, booby? You don't have 29 days.


 Dear Editor:

Thank you for your efforts in gathering and maintaining The Painful Truth. These are vital pages that hopefully will help prevent others from falling into traps set by the Armstrongs and the Worldwide Church of God. Thankfully, I was associated with the Worldwide Church of God only a short time and did not suffer what many have.

Because I even questioned a number of the arguments made on The World Tomorrow broadcasts, The Plain Truth, and The Good News magazines, the booklets, and correspondence course, I have less excuse than most. Most of what I heard were "circular" arguments, not objective proofs. Yet, because of my desire for what I really already had and probably a good dose of vanity, I listened to my emotions, not my mind, and sold out my heritage as a human being.

Please advise anyone who listens to the successors of the Armstrongs and others like them to run as fast as they can away from purveyors. I hope none makes the mistake I did of running from the challenges of life that I should have faced into the grasping, clutching arms of the Worldwide Church of God.

Thanks. Keep up your important work.

Jerry  


 Editor,

I read Troy Witte's clever quotations on the PT site recently and was reminded of a bumper sticker I saw once that said "God was my copilot until my plane crashed in the Andes and I had to eat him."

Thought you should post that one, too.

Bill Fairchild


 I just recently found your web site. As a former member of the Worldwide Church of God for 20 years I can relate to what you have revealed in your articles. You are doing a great job...........please keep it up.

Unless I am missing something, I see that the last Ambassador Report was published in Oct 99. Have there been issues since then? If so where can I find them. If no issues since Oct 99, will there be news ones forthcoming soon?

Hope you find time to respond. By the way, noticed your comments about AOL. I love AOL, are you sure its not your Internet provider that is the problem? Keep up the good work you are doing.

Jack

 REPLY:

 Jack,

Thanks for your comments and support.

There will be no further issues of AR. Trechak, the editor of the AR is dead. Worldwide Church of God is no worse than any other mainstream church franchise. Nothing much to write about.

The purpose of the PT is to document what really went on and educate people so that they don't let it happen again.

I've had a lot of people also complain about the AOL problem. I respond to the AOL's but I just want them to know that there is a real problem if they don't get a response. It gets really frustrating for me to send a message and have it bounce back.

How do you know when you are NOT getting email from someone? You don't get a message from AOL saying that someone is trying to send you a message but we are screwing you up, do you?

I have no bone to pick with AOL. I just have gotten too many bounced messages when I reply to them even within minutes of them having sent to me.

Regards, Editor

 REPLY:

 Thanks for your quick response to my email yesterday.

I just want to say again, thanks to those who put so much hard work and obviously long hours into the AR. I think you have provided a terrific service to thousands of people.

And good luck to you, who ever you are. I'm sure you have a "real" job in addition to responding to these emails. Good luck and thanks again.

Jack


Re: Prophecies of Armstrong that are not true

 I read your list and I think a few, if not many of them need to be reviewed and taken down, for the predictions are indeed materializing. Most notably the situation in Europe.

As to the ones on communism -we most certainly did not defeat it. It is alive and well in our government and schools and now permeates the thinking of most in our society...to the degree that they believe the nation was founded as a democracy...it was not, it is a republic. There are vast differences.

Anyhow,

 As to some others, you seem to have taken a few out of context. There are a few that were just speculation on a minister's behalf and certainly not Church doctrine.

Maybe your zeal against the Herbert W. Armstrong needs to be cooled a bit. In many places you seem like a madman such as you claim Herbert W. Armstrong was.

Matthew L. McCarty

 REPLY:

 Well, according to the bible, all a FALSE prophet needs to do in order to be branded as FALSE would be to have ONE prophesy that doesn't come to pass. Then, if I recall correctly after being free of that evil book for almost seven years, that false prophet should be stoned to death. All I am doing is exposing the asshole for what he was, not stoning him.

You prophesy nuts must be reveling in the potential for the end of the world coming soon. I pity you. You are mentally ill.

It will be a fitting punishment for you when this world comes to an end and that is just it. Nothing else. You will have wasted your life following a man and beliefs that are worthless. Too bad you won't ever know that you were so wrong. At least I get to enjoy my present life and I take no pleasure in seeing this world on the brink of self-destruction. If it does self-destruct, the fault can be laid at the feet of religious zealots such as yourself.

If there was a god that cared about humankind, he would have created a world free of religion. Religion is the problem not the solution.

Editor

 REPLY:

 Maybe you need to take one of those anger management classes that your kind always love to dream up and offer as a solutions to people's problems.

Oh, also, since you are enjoying yourself so much in this life. Maybe you ought to take up a better hobby such as snow skiing or something. Because your web authoring skills are a lot to be desired. Besides, I am sure the guys and girls on the slope won't be bothering you with "silly religious stuff". There you can feel the wind blow across your face and be invigorated with the thrill of the speed. And while you are at it, maybe you can run into a tree.

Have a good day,

Matthew L. McCarty

REPLY:

 Matthew,

Thanks, I'm having a great day and a great life, free of religion.

I notice that you are no longer defending herbie. I guess you see that he should have been executed long ago, according to the Bible. Would that it had been so.

I refer you to a new article on the PT site by Jim V.: Why Worldwide Church of God Members Continue to Suffer.

Editor


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