May 9th, 2019
Greetings from Charlotte,
The Council of Elders met this past Monday through Wednesday. Regional Directors and Department Heads gave encouraging and helpful reports on the state of the Work in their areas of responsibility. The Council discussed a number of procedural and administrative issues, as well as issues regarding Bible prophecy. Mark Mager from Australia and Michael Heykoop from Canada were also in town to touch base with Charlotte personnel on matters related to the Internet and Social Media. One sad note from this past week is that Mr. Rod King went to sleep and is now awaiting the resurrection. Mr. King was a former Council member, Regional Director, and Tomorrow’s World presenter and writer. He was greatly loved by all and we are saddened by this news, but we are relieved that his long battle with cancer has ended and his next conscious moment will be in the resurrection. What an incredible reunion that will be for all of us who, as with Rod, remain faithful to the end. Mr. Richard Ames will be in Winchester, Virginia this week for a Tomorrow’s World Presentation, and Mr. Stuart Wachowicz will be in Barrie, Ontario, Canada for a presentation. Mr. Peter Nathan sent in a very inspiring report on his recent trip to Kenya. Please see below.—Gerald Weston
Death of Mr. Rod King
Our fellow servant and much loved friend Mr. Rod King died early in the morning of Tuesday 7 May, after a long battle with his illness. Mr. King was a dynamic individual who loved God with all his heart, mind, and soul. He also served God’s people tirelessly and passionately for decades, with an energy that was felt in almost every corner of the world. Although we are saddened by his death and will deeply feel his loss, we do not grieve as the world does. Truly the knowledge of the resurrection gives us immense comfort and encouragement. As you know, death is likened to sleep, and in a twinkling of an eye, Mr. King will rise from the grave fully healed and clothed in an eternal house (2 Corinthians 5:1).
The memorial service will commence at 10:30 a.m. (arrival from 10:00 a.m.) on Tuesday 14 May. It will be held at the Manningham Function Centre, 1/699 Doncaster Road, Doncaster VIC 3108, Australia. (Free onsite parking is available.) Following the memorial service, there will be time for some refreshments, after which the family will leave for a private graveside burial.
Cards may be sent to the King family at the Australian office: c/o Living Church of God, PO Box 300, Clarendon, SA 5157, Australia. The family kindly requests that no flowers be sent. Please remember Mrs. King and the extended King family at this time. I know they will be deeply grateful for your cards, prayers, and continued support.—Robert Tyler
Ministerial Visit to Kenya
I was able to visit a new group in the Meru District, many of whom I knew back in the 1970s, and with whom I shared the Passover in 1979. I was also able to visit the Kibos Maximum Security Prison to visit our member there again. This visit lasted over three hours, starting with a visit with the new superintendent. He was very welcoming and the time spent in his office was notable for a discussion of biblical material relating to prisoners. The superintendent had a copy of the Bible on his desk, and he really knew the contents. The prison was doing a head count when we arrived, and he had no qualms about talking with us until it was finished and lunch was ready for the prisoners. Once again, we were taken into the central prisoners’ compound to address them. A larger group than last time was present, but many of the prison population were lined up against the wall of the compound waiting for lunch to be served and hence in earshot. When called on to speak, I addressed the Passover, which was just a few days away, and its relationship with sin, using the example of Paul in his first epistle to Timothy (1 Timothy 1:12–17).
In subsequent discussions with the attorney handling our member’s appeal to the top court in Kenya, we were informed that the trial could be held as early as July. This is remarkable, as his appeal was filed in 2016 and the court is still hearing appeals from 2013. On the normal process, it could be three years before they got to his appeal. Our attorney approached the clerks of the court and they offered the prospect of a hearing in three months instead of three years. Your prayers for this to become reality would be much appreciated.—Peter Nathan
Second Passover—Repeat Announcement
The Second Passover this year is on Sunday, May 19, which means that it will be observed on Saturday evening, May 18, shortly after sunset. This Passover is for those baptized members who were unable to take the first Passover due to unavoidable circumstances, as instructed in Numbers 9:1–14.
Charlotte Annual BRiC Weekend (Memorial Day Weekend)—Repeat Announcement
We are now just two weeks away from the Charlotte BRiC Weekend! Registration is underway and many singles from all over are planning to attend. If you are single and interested in joining us for the weekend, please visit our webpage at charlottelcg.org/bric (password BRiC2019) to register. This is truly a great opportunity for singles of all ages to be together. There will be dancing, dinner, sports, and of course, BRiC Talks! If you have any questions concerning the weekend, please contact me ([email protected]) for more information.—Jacob Hall
We are approaching the final days of our 2018–2019 Living Education–Charlotte program. Fourteen young men and women have dedicated the last nine months to learning more about God’s way of life, and building friendships for a lifetime. Graduation from the program will be held next week, on May 17. Mr. Weston will give the keynote address to students, parents, and staff, as we send them off to continue their preparation for a life well-lived. For all who have been praying for the success of the program and watching the progress of our students on lcgeducation.org and on our Facebook page, thanks! We still have a few openings for our 2019–2020 school year, which begins in August. If you know a young person who would benefit from a nine-month program focused on building a biblical foundation for life, making lifelong friends, and experiencing the environment of the international Headquarters of the Living Church of God, then check out the information provided on our website. The address is lcgeducation.org.—Jonathan McNair
Living Youth Program
Adventure Camp Acceptances Sent Out—Must Read in Congregations Where Anyone Is Going to Adventure Camp
This is an important announcement for all 2019 Adventure Camp staff and campers. Congratulations to all those who have been accepted to this year’s Adventure Camp! Please follow the e-mailed instructions to sign in to access your acceptance packet. The top priority is to apply for your Canadian RABC (Remote Area Border Crossing) permit as soon as possible, as this permit is required to enter this remote region of Canada, and the permit may take four to six weeks to process. Log in at https://camp.livingyouth.org/ to access your packet with included RABC form.—Mike Kreyer
Sunday Deadline for Staff Applications for Teen Camp in Texas
The deadline for staff applications for the Teen camp in Athens, Texas, is Sunday, May 12 at midnight (EST). Camper applications are due by June 1. Anyone applying after the deadlines will be accepted only if space allows, and time permits for staff member background checks.
Staff Certifications—Repeat Announcement
First Aid/Lifeguard Certificate and Archery Certificate
If you have a current Certificate in First Aid/Lifeguarding and/or Archery, and you will be serving in this capacity at any of the U.S. camps in 2019, then please send a copy of your certification to Jill Ewers ([email protected]). The certificate must be current and valid through the entirety of the camp(s) where it will be used.
Food Handler Training Program
If you have received certification for the state of Texas through an ANSI-accredited food safety program as a Food Handler or Food Manager, and you will be attending Texas Teen Camp or Texas Preteen Camp in 2019, please send your certificate to Miss Jill Ewers ([email protected]) and copy Mr. Sheldon Monson ([email protected]).
TrainRight Child Abuse Awareness and Prevention Training
Beginning last year, all camp staff 18 years of age or older are required to participate in an online training program for awareness and prevention of child abuse. The program is approximately one hour in length. Once you have been accepted as a staff member at one of the camps, you will receive an e-mail from [email protected] titled “Invite - Child Abuse Awareness and Prevention Training Program” with a link to register for and complete the training online.
Note: The certification for this TrainRight course is good for two years, the year you complete it plus the next year. For example, if you took the course in 2017, the certification was valid in 2017 and 2018. Therefore, you would have to retake the course in 2019 to receive certification for 2019/2020.
Missouri Preteen Camp—Repeat Announcement
With only about two months until the Missouri Preteen Camp kicks off, planning is moving to full speed ahead! If you are considering joining us this year at beautiful Knob Noster State Park and have not yet applied or have not completed your application, then please do so soon. We will be selecting department heads in the coming days and need additional staff volunteers in several areas. Each camp activity provides an opportunity to help our youth develop relationships with one another and even more importantly, with our Creator. We deeply appreciate all those who are able to give of their time and serve our youth in this unique way. See you soon!—Yancy Taber, Missouri Preteen Camp Director.
Are You Teachable? The Scriptures reveal that one of the important qualities of character that God is looking for in future leaders in His Kingdom is teachability—the desire and willingness to listen and learn. Abraham was teachable and responsive to God’s instructions (Genesis 12:1–4). Moses was a very capable leader, yet he was also humble and teachable (Numbers 12:3). David’s attitude comes through in Psalm 119:33 when he writes, “Teach me, O LORD, the way of Your statutes.” Solomon recognized his human inadequacies when he asked God for wisdom and for an “understanding heart” so he could learn to rule God’s people wisely (1 Kings 3:9). When Jesus said the meek and the poor in spirit are blessed, He was emphasizing their teachability and their willingness to learn and grow (Matthew 5:3–5). The Scriptures also make it plain that if we harden our hearts to God’s instructions we will reap serious consequences (Proverbs 28:14). We have been called to reign with Jesus Christ in the Kingdom of God—and being teachable is one of the keys to attaining that reward. Let’s strive to develop that most important quality!
Have a profitable Sabbath,
Douglas S. Winnail
News and Prophecy—May 9, 2019
Deadly Flooding in Mozambique: Just over six weeks ago, Cyclone Idai slammed into the east African nations of Mozambique, Zimbabwe, and Malawi (The Guardian, March 27, 2019). The cyclone displaced “hundreds of thousands of people” while “flooding an area of 3,000 sq km” and killing more than 1,000 people. Cholera is now rampant. Then last week, Cyclone Kenneth, with winds over 220 kilometers (140 miles) per hour hit northern Mozambique (BBC, April 30, 2019). Although the winds rapidly died down, more torrential rains—twice the amount from the first cyclone—caused more severe flooding in this water-logged region, greatly hampering ongoing rescue and humanitarian operations. This is the first time two major cyclones have struck Mozambique in one season.
Destructive rains and flooding have not only swamped the east coast of Africa but also South Africa. However, major flooding in Indonesia has also caused much destruction and many deaths (New Scientist, April 30, 2019). While concerned Christians should certainly pray for those experiencing these tragic events, the devastating rains and flooding in Africa and other areas of the world can provide insights into coming global catastrophes that are prophesied to strike the earth just prior to the return of Jesus Christ. Many of these future events are mentioned in Matthew 24, Mark 13, Luke 21, and Revelation 6. To learn more about coming end-time events, be sure to read or listen to Fourteen Signs Announcing Christ’s Return.
Significance of Notre Dame Destruction: It is sobering to watch the destruction of major historical structures. However, Bible prophecies warn Israelite-descended nations, including France, that God’s punishment is coming because these nations have rejected God and His laws (Hosea 8:11–14). God also warns that in the future, Israel’s “high places” (locations dedicated to other gods) will be brought down because they have rejected Him (Leviticus 26:30).
Even before the fire stopped smoldering, French President Macron promised to rebuild the renowned landmark. Nearly 900 years old, the Gothic cathedral of Notre Dame is known around the globe for its architecture and history, possessing a truly iconic status in France and Europe. Mr. Macron commented that Notre Dame is “the epicenter of our lives” and that “a part of us is burning” (Deutsche Welle, April 16, 2019). Even American President Donald Trump noted that Notre Dame is “one of the greatest treasures of the world… a part of our culture.” Within hours of its burning, hundreds of millions of dollars were pledged for the cathedral’s restoration.
One observer said that the burning of Notre Dame had stricken France “in the core of its identity” (Politico, April 16, 2019). A French historian emotionally observed, “This is not just a trauma. It’s the live amputation of the national memory and identity of France.... What is burning tonight is the heart of the nation—whether Christian believers or not, it is who we are.” Notre Dame is not only a symbol of the heart of France, but also of the heart of Europe!
However, commentator and founder of Prager University, Dennis Prager, observed that Notre Dame’s calamity could also be an “omen” foreshadowing the decline of France, Europe and the West (Dennis Prager.com, April 16, 2019). In his commentary, Prager noted that the principles of Western Christendom throughout Europe have been replaced by “secularism rooted in reason,” and that France has been at the heart of the secular enlightenment. He ended his commentary with the observation, “Europe is burning, just as Notre Dame was.” These are powerful insights worth considering. For more insights into France’s future, be sure to read “Shadows over Europe.”—Scott Winnail, Francine Prater, and Chris Sookdeo