July 9th, 2020
Greetings from Charlotte,
Tomorrow’s World will debut this Sunday morning, July 12, on WATL-TV 36 in Atlanta, Georgia, at 10:00 a.m., and on WLAJ-TV 53 in Lansing, Michigan at 11:00 a.m. These are two of a number of stations and new network times we plan to announce over the next several weeks. Be sure to pray for the success of Tomorrow’s World on these new stations.
We held more Feast of Tabernacles meetings with site coordinators and Regional Directors this week. Mr. Rod McNair and I spent 4½ hours on Wednesday exchanging information with these men and discussing the challenges facing them during these uncertain times. We appreciate their wise counsel and I will be writing a letter to all of you spelling out decisions that will affect all of us at what is shaping up to be the most unusual Feast of Tabernacles ever. More and more it is looking as though the approach of smaller and local has given us the flexibility we need as every nation, state, province, and territory has its own set of changing regulations. No one knows what our world will look like in three months, but the challenge in planning is only growing.
Our U.K. office reports that they have seen a 350 percent increase in new subscribers for Tomorrow’s World for the first six months of 2020, and income is holding up very well.
Please see the update below on Mrs. Lynn Meakin.—Gerald Weston
Update on Mrs. Lynn Meakin
Dear Brethren, unfortunately in the past week or two my wife has markedly deteriorated and can no longer stand unsupported. Thankfully, she is not in pain and remains positive and in good spirits. She continues to have complete faith in God’s power to heal her, but without a miracle she knows that her days are numbered. She loves you all, and thanks you for all your continued prayers on her behalf.—John Meakin
Contacts/Inquiries from the Media
As you may know, Mr. Dexter Wakefield is Director of Public Relations for the Church; handling inquiries from the media is his responsibility.
Therefore, please direct any and all contacts from the media (“reporters,” news organizations, magazines, journals, newspapers, etc.) to Mr. Wakefield. If you receive a call from someone in the media, simply refer them to Mr. Wakefield by providing the contact information, or link to our Press Kit, as noted below. If the individual wishes to leave a message, then please obtain his or her name, the name of the organization they work for, and their contact information and convey that by phone or e-mail to Mr. Wakefield. If you receive an e-mail from the media, please forward it to Mr. Wakefield.
Here is the contact information for this purpose:
Mr. Dexter Wakefield, Director of Public Relations
2301 Crown Centre Drive
Charlotte, NC 28227-7705
Phone: (704) 844-1970
E-mail: [email protected]
The link to the Church’s press kit is: https://www.lcg.org/press-kit.
Feast of Tabernacles Special Music—A Virtual Worldwide Chorus
With modern technology, we cross international boundaries and time zones to assemble together and listen to instruction. But, through the marvels of technology, we also have the opportunity to praise God in song as one harmonious body. This year we plan to create a chorus of the voices of members from around the world contributing to a special musical presentation for the Feast of Tabernacles. In order to form this virtual worldwide chorus, we need singers from our congregations around the world to add their voices to the project. If you’d like to participate, go to our webpage, www.lcgeducation.org/virtual-worldwide-chorus for more information!
New Hymn Composition Project
Thank you to those who have contributed new compositions to be considered for inclusion in our collection of hymns! More than a dozen song-writers have participated so far. For more information and to contribute a song, go to our special webpage, www.lcgeducation.org/new-hymn.
Online Course: Tools for Christian Growth
We will be opening the newest addition to our Living Education library of online courses with a unit titled “Tools for Christian Growth: Prayer” on July 20. This will be the first in a four-part series that will be produced and launched over the next year. Stay tuned for more information!
Men’s Training Camp—Blowing Rock, North Carolina
The Men’s Training Camp scheduled for August 21–23 in Blowing Rock, North Carolina, has been rescheduled to February 12–14. More information about participating in the program will be provided later this fall.—Jonathan McNair
Feast of Tabernacles
Festival (Second Tithe) Assistance Requests—U.S. Only
Attention U.S. Pastors: The deadline to submit Festival Assistance Request forms to the Church Administration Department is Monday, July 20. All forms should be properly completed by the members requesting second tithe assistance to attend the Feast this year. Then, the Area Pastors should write their recommendations/comments on the forms before submitting them to CAD. The forms are available to ministers on the MyLCG website (www.cogl.org).—Festival Office
Festival Registration 2020
Festival Registration is tentatively scheduled to open on Sunday, August 2, at 12:00 noon (Eastern Daylight Time, USA).At that time—on August 2—all LCG members and guests will be invited to register for their assigned site.
Test Your MyLCG Account
We encourage all brethren to test your MyLCG account in preparation for Festival Registration. Your MyLCG account must be working for you to successfully register for the Feast. You can test your account by going to the MyLCG webpage (www.cogl.org) and logging in. If you are not able to log in, follow the help menu instructions. If you still cannot log in, contact [email protected].
Status Updates Needed for Festival Registration
Attention Pastors: One of the most common technical difficulties in registering for the Feast occurs when a person’s “membership status” is not updated on the Church’s files. For example, if someone is listed as a “Co-Worker” or “Subscriber” in the Headquarters database, the person will not be able to register. His or her status will need to be changed to “Prospective Member” or, if baptized, to “Member.” Please look over your area’s member lists and let us know if anyone’s status needs to be updated. This could especially apply to brethren who have just recently started attending with us. We need the pastor’s notification to change anyone’s status, so please send any status updates to [email protected].
Two Additional Feast Sites (USA)
As previously announced, we are asking brethren to attend their assigned Feast site this year, due to the COVID-19 crisis and related circumstances, including that some states, provinces, or territories are restricting access or requiring quarantine for residents coming from other jurisdictions. With that in mind, please note the following Feast-related announcements:
- Festival Registration will open (tentatively) on August 2.
- Even though Festival Registration is not open yet, we are announcing U.S. sites which have signed contracts. Thus far we have announced 20 such sites (see the MyLCG website for the complete list). This week, we are announcing two more (see below).
- If you attend a congregation that is assigned to the sites announced over the last three weeks, you may make housing arrangements.
- For the two new sites—Hickory, North Carolina, and Roswell, Georgia—please wait until Monday, July 13, to make housing reservations. This will allow the hotels to prepare their systems and organize their staff to take the calls. Housing reservation information can be found in the Feast Housing Review, on the MyLCG website.
This week’s new U.S. Feast sites are:
Hickory, North Carolina
Feast Coordinator: Mr. John Strain (903-316-3160, [email protected])
North Carolina: Asheville, Charlotte, Kannapolis, Statesville, Sylva
Feast Coordinator: Mr. Dan Hall (903-920-6601, [email protected])
Georgia: Atlanta, Braselton, Columbus, Warner Robins
South Carolina: Anderson
Living Youth Program
2020 Texas Teen Camp (Lone Star Camp, Athens, Texas)
By way of reminder, the Texas Teen Camp will be closed to non-participants. Only those who have completed camp applications and been accepted to the program will be allowed on campus, except to drop off or pick up campers and/or staff, as this is a private function. At drop-off, parents will be met at the gate when they enter the camp and given instructions regarding check-in procedures. For those arriving on Friday, please stop by the office upon arrival to receive instructions and housing assignments. Please do not arrive before 2:00 p.m. on Friday afternoon. Sabbath services this Sabbath will be held in the large outdoor pavilion, beginning at 1:00 p.m.
We will move forward in faith, knowing that God Almighty is our Protector and Healer (Exodus 15:26; Deuteronomy 7:15), and lay hold of these promises. Please pray for a safe and successful summer camp! We are looking forward to it!—Sheldon Monson, Living Youth Programs Director and Jason Fritts, Assistant Living Youth Director
Texas Teen Camp: Christian Living Livestreaming and Contact Information
We are again pleased to livestream the Christian Living classes from Texas Teen Camp. They will be presented each morning, beginning Tuesday, July 14, at 10:00 a.m. Eastern time. To join, log in at https://live.livingyouth.org using your MyLCG credentials. Check our Facebook page for new photos posted daily throughout camp, as well as information on the next livestream broadcast.
Parents who wish to send a care package may send it to [child’s name], c/o LYP Camp, 6829 FM 317, Athens, TX 75752.
If you need to contact the camp, please call the office using one of the following phone numbers: 980-254-0132 (Jenny Penman) or 704-519-5371 (Joshua Penman). You can also e-mail the office staff at [email protected].—Joshua Penman
A Real God Guides History: We live in a world where prominent voices claim that God does not exist, that no one can predict the future, and that human beings must determine their own future. However, the Bible reveals just the opposite! Isaiah 46:9–11 clearly states that only God can predict the future and bring it to pass. Job stated what many have forgotten today, that God “makes nations great, and destroys them” (Job 12:23–25). Daniel told King Nebuchadnezzar that God “removes kings and raises up kings” (Daniel 2:21)—that God actually intervenes in human affairs to work out His plan and purpose. When Daniel explained a vision that Nebuchadnezzar had about the future, he told the king, “The dream is certain, and its interpretation is sure” (Daniel 2:45). Nebuchadnezzar later concluded that God “does according to His will” and “No one can restrain His hand” (Daniel 4:35). The Bible is a unique book that contains specific prophecies recorded thousands of years ago—that predicted events that are making news today. Amos 3:7 states that God will reveal His intentions to His servants the prophets, so they can alert the world about the significance of coming events. All this is possible because there is a real God who reveals the future and guides the course of history.
Have a profitable Sabbath,
Douglas S. Winnail
News and Prophecy—July 9, 2020
Locusts Swarm in South America: Many are aware of the devastating locust swarms in East Africa, the Middle East, and India. Now, news agencies report that a large locust swarm is taking hold in northern Argentina. The swarm covers an area of 15 square kilometers (almost 6 square miles). Farmers are worried the locusts will destroy their crops. “The insects, which can cover a distance of 150km (93 miles) in a day, have already travelled from Paraguay to Argentina and it is feared Brazil and Uruguay could be next” (BBC, June 29, 2020).
At this point, officials are not overly concerned about the locusts as it is winter in the Southern Hemisphere and the cold weather has kept locust reproduction down. However, when temperatures get warmer, the locusts could become a real problem. Argentina experienced locust swarms in 2017 and again in 2019. Yet, on the back of the almost uncontrolled COVID-19 outbreak in Brazil and the political instability in many nations in the region, a locust plague would add more stress to an already volatile situation.
Locusts are ubiquitous in certain areas of the world. However, end-time Bible prophecies indicate that pestilence and natural disasters will become far more frequent than normal, and far more deadly, as the end of the age approaches. Students of Bible prophecy should watch as the Four Horsemen of Revelation 6 intensify their ride prior to the return of Jesus Christ. To learn more about the future and signs of the end of the age, be sure to read or listen to Revelation: The Mystery Unveiled!
New Pandemic Threat! An alarming study recently appeared in the highly respected journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. Examining viruses found in pigs from 2011 to 2018, Chinese scientists identified a strain of the H1N1 flu virus that has “all the essential hallmarks of a candidate pandemic virus” (Reuters, June 29, 2020). “The study highlights the risks of viruses crossing the species barrier into humans, especially in densely populated regions in China, where millions live close to farms, breeding facilities, slaughterhouses and wet markets.” Scientists know that pigs are critical “mixing vessels” for viruses and these animals can enable viruses to change until they are transmissible to humans. Individuals most at risk of contracting this virus are those who work in the swine industry, given their daily contact with pigs.
While there appears to be “no imminent threat” that this new, highly infectious virus is about to rapidly spread among human populations, some pig farmers and some of China’s general population have already developed antibodies to the virus (Deutsche Welle, June 30, 2020). This indicates that the virus has already passed from animals to humans in some instances. However, scientists do not yet have evidence that the virus can pass from humans to humans.
It is sobering to realize that another pandemic could be in the making. The instructive truth is that many of these viruses with pandemic potential arise from animals that the Bible clearly forbids to be eaten (Leviticus 11; Deuteronomy 14). Exposure to these “unclean” animals puts the human population at great risk. For greater insight into why a loving God would allow global disease events, be sure to watch our hard-hitting program “Why Does God Allow Pandemics?”—Scott Winnail, Francine Prater, and Chris Sookdeo