AR 5 August 21, 1978
With Garner Ted Armstrong's departure from his dad's church, all hell has broken loose in the "Worldly" Church of God (WCG)-the church that claims to be the "one and only organization telling world leaders the way to world peace." As we reported in our last newsletter, Herbert Armstrong-who for the last ten years has been wining and dining kings and tyrants-finally found out that his son had been slowly and subtly dismantling "God's Work" while he was off in Southeast Asia. Enraged, Herbert stripped his son of all executive authority, but as our last news letter went to press, we learned that Herbert's golden-throated son had somehow talked his way back into his dad's favor. At that time it looked as if Garner Ted the "professional repenter" had won another bout with his dad. But since we mailed our last letter, an incredible series of events has unfolded.
On June 13 it was announced that Ted had been commanded to take a six-month leave of absence. He was accused by Stan Rader, Herbert's lawyer, of taking God out of the work. What really irked Herbert, though, was that Ted was taking him "out of the work." (One GTA offense: using "Garner Ted Armstrong Productions" in place of "Worldwide Church of God" on corporate letterheads.)
Time Magazine Carries the Story
By this time, the power struggle for control of the WCG had become national news. On June 19, Time magazine, quoting Rader and Ambassador Report, came out with a provocative article on the "byzantine power struggle" between Ted and Rader. During this time acrimonious letters were flying back and forth and heated discussions were taking place behind the scenes between the proud old warrior and his rebellious playboy son.
Finally, in an eight-page letter to members and co-workers dated June 28, Herbert, breathing out fire like a wounded dragon, condemned his son's recent actions, revealing how he had long "covered up" his "son's sins and mistakes." He admitted, just as Ambassador Report had claimed, that he had been "a respecter of persons" and that he had protected his son "to the detriment and harm it has brought to God's Church and Ambassador College!" But Herbert justified this unbiblical favoritism by saying that "love covers." He should really acquaint himself with the apostle Paul's command to Timothy concerning sinning elders: "As for those who persist in sin, rebuke them in the presence of all..." (I Tim. 5:20, RSV). When it came to other ministers' sins, Herbert has often publicly brought out all the sordid details to his congregation. But when his own son committed adultery-over and over again, Herbert suddenly invented this shallow "love covers" argument. In fact, even to this day Herbert refuses to admit that his son was an adulterer, claiming his faults were drinking, gambling, and rebellion against apostolic authority. If Herbert had heeded the words of Ephesians 5:11-"Take no part in the unfruitful works of darkness, but instead expose them" (RSV)-the church would have been a lot better off.
In the June 28 letter referred to above Herbert asserted that Ted "has subtly been destroying me.... He sent me by special personal messenger the day before yesterday a seven-page single-spaced typed letter literally breathing out 'threatenings and slaughter,... the most hostile embittered father-dishonoring letter I could imagine-except under Satan's inspiration."
Ted, claiming his dad was being subtly manipulated by Stan Rader and the church's right-wing evangelists and realizing his dad's heart was hardened against him, had taken the unpardonable step of going to the news media with his side of the story. In an AP wire service article, Ted "predicted a downfall of the religious empire because of its leaders' lavish spending habits and poor financial management." In a June 26 Los Angeles Times article he charged that the church was "shot through with fear. People are fearful to say what they know, fearful to talk to each other, fearful their phones are bugged, and fearful of their jobs." You know, that's exactly what we pointed out in our 1977 issue of Ambassador Report. Ted also admitted that "the church has been forced by inflation and extravagant expenditures to borrow money to meet its payroll." These comments caused Herbert to blow an apostolic fuse. He disfellowshipped and exiled his dazed son, claiming "his entire attitude the past weeks and months has certainly indicated the impossibility of leading him again to repentance."
Garner Ted Armstrong's furniture was removed from his Pasadena home by movers. He's now living near Tyler, Texas.
Garner Ted Strikes Back
For one month Ted disappeared from the public spotlight amid speculation that he was preparing to put on a new act of repentance for his dad. But suddenly, without warning, Ted attacked. In a rambling apologetic nine-page letter to all WCG ministers dated July 25, Ted announced the formation of the Church of God, International. We understand its board is composed of Ted, his wife Shirl, and his brother-in-law Guy Carnes. To divert suspicion that he was writing the letter simply to draw WCG ministers into his camp, he claimed he composed his letter because "there are those who are interpreting my silence as tacit admission of some 'guilt' of some sort.... Now, I must write a partial reply...."
To gain sympathy from his readers, he began by saying, "I have recently received a letter from Mr. Rader, offering me a $50,000 (before taxes) salary per year, for retirement.... In the letter, he goes into great, legal detail about my remaining silent about certain confidential information I have concerning the work. Further, he offers me the free-rent use of the Tahoe Cabin. However, it is stated that this 'retirement' salary and the access to the cabin may be terminated at any time 'with or without cause.'... I utterly reject all such offers, and all such strings attached.... Such offer is tantamount to taking God's tithes ... and paying me not to preach the gospel with those tithes!"
We fail to see why Ted was so upset with Rader's generous offer. Being second in command in the WCG, Ted himself had engineered and/or approved such "deals" with a number of former high-ranking WCG officials who "knew too much." Ted never before griped that these "unearned gratuities" were a waste of God's tithes. Why now?
On page 3 Ted reveals that the WCG has denied him his mail marked "personal," "confidential," or "private," and Ted encloses his June 12 letter to Pasadena Postmaster K. Wilson as proof. Amazingly enough, it was Ted who tried to prevent Ambassador College students from receiving their mail back in February 1976. (See "Mail Censorship Sparks Student Protest," Ambassador Review, June 1976, p. 28.)
Next, Ted bewails the fact that he was being denied his "Justly deserved and honestly earned severance pay." But for years it was his own policy to not give severance pay to ministers who went to the press with the church's dirty linen! Obviously he doesn't feel guilty pocketing tithe money sent to his dad while plotting to form his own church.
Ted also objected to the manner in which he was disfellowshipped and marked "with character-destroying innuendo." But when Milo Wilcox, a WCG minister for almost 9 years, was suspended, disfellowshipped, and marked on the sabbath all because of a mere rumor, Ted never condemned this as unethical. In fact, when Milo demanded an apology, Ted had him fired. Perhaps Ted has forgotten the role he played in cruelly and mercilessly disfellowshipping and marking Ernest Martin, Al Carrozzo, Ken Westby, George Kemnitz, Jim Morrison, Richard Plache, and dozens of others. Ted, however, thinking his motives and actions are righteous and pure declares, "Though I have been 'marked'...I bear it gladly.... I can only believe that God is moving to allow this to happen so that His perfect purpose and will be made known. I believe He is tired of the mindless, confusing, constant change; tired of corporate inertia; tired of the strength-sapping drain of huge imponderable expenses constantly depriving the main part of His commission from being done."
With his usual hallucinatory braggadocio Ted wrote: "I have never been merely a paid voice; an alter-ego; an employee. Never was I proclaiming the message of some man- I was no mere hireling, paid a wage to speak what others told me to speak; I was, specially equipped; formed, tempered, tried and tested, shaped and created...." He went on to state: "From henceforth, I will bow my knees to no man." Of course, by this Ted doesn't mean that you should feel this way. After all, if everyone did Ted wouldn't have a church at all. Would he?
In closing Ted rejoices that he no longer has to associate with the hypocritical bootlickers who surrounded him in Pasadena. He angrily writes, "Some of these men didn't have the courage to come to me, face to face, and voice their complaints-but my father has admitted they had been coming to him for about one solid year, behind my back, to get rid of me." Maybe Herbert is guilty of judgment based only on hearsay and gossip but Garner Ted's finally getting a taste of his own medicine.
Herbert Armstrong Explodes
On July 31, Herbert retaliated by launching a stinging attack against his son whom he said he loves "above all people on earth." He accused Ted of raising "a hand against his father" and attempting "to draw away disciples" (Pastor's Report, p. 1). One of Herbert's charges was that Ted's radio and TV programs were becoming secular. Herbert conveniently forgot how it was he-not Ted-who introduced the secular approach not only on "The World Tomorrow" broadcast but in The Plain Truth.
Warning his hirelings, Herbert wrote: "I know many of those former ministers [who have forsaken the WCG] have had to take jobs working with their hands to earn a living. That is justice!" The statement reveals much about Herbert's attitude toward money, work and religion. Of course he neglected to point out that many of those who have left the Armstrong ministry and gone into honest work are now earning two or three times what they did as his hirelings.
In a letter to Ted included in the Pastor's Report, Herbert told Ted: "You completely overstepped the authority I delegated to you." Then Herbert explained how, when he was under authority, he "took criticism" and "took orders." This argument didn't convince Ted for one moment that his actions were wrong for Ted was well aware of how his dad had left the Church of God back in the 1930s and started his own church after refusing to cooperate with the other Church of God ministers and constantly undermining their authority. (For complete documentation of this, read "Herbert Armstrong's Religious Roots," Ambassador Report, 1977 issue.)
Herbert also tried to cow Ted into submission by referring to himself as "God's anointed" (p. 3). But Ted knows this is only so much religious rhetoric. Herbert was ordained, not by another Church of God minister but by lay members of the Oregon Conference of the Church of God (Autobiography of Herbert W. Armstrong, 1973 edition, pp. 365-66). Ted also knows that Herbert didn't receive some special baptism from God or even from a Church of God minister. Herbert himself admits a Baptist minister baptized him (The Good News, August 1969, p. 4).
Following Herbert's diatribe was a long-winded letter by "Mr. Loyalty," C. Wayne Cole. His letter is, in fact much more logical than Herbert's, and he zeros right in on Ted's Achilles' heel- his own statements. He quotes Ted as saying during the January 1978 Ministerial Conference: "If I leave this Work-don't follow me. I know the lesson of Absalom.... The quickest way for me to destroy myself is to attack my father.... I have said publicly to the area coordinators if I cannot write a deep lesson of loyalty to my own father... how could I ever expect loyalty on down the line " (p. 9).
When you get right down to it, Garner Ted is guilty of doing the very thing he has condemned vociferously for years. Rader, who is an expert in this area, rightly called Ted a "hypocrite," saying that all Ted "is trying to do is lead people away to follow him" (Pasadena Star-News, July 31, 1978). When a member of the press asked Ted, "Do you intend to compete with him [Herbert] and draw members away from his church?" Ted replied with a self-contradiction: "Of course not. That's not my purpose at all. He left me no choice. I think he knew that I would have to continue to speak and to preach" (Los Angeles Herald Examiner, August 6, 1978).
But what caused Ted to do the unthinkable and split off from his dad? Perhaps his comment in the Herald Examiner (August 6) answers the question: "My father is a very strong, self-willed man. He was trying to spank his boy (now 48 years old), and this time his boy just wasn't going to be spanked. He always starts out his talks that he was called when I was 3, and in his mind I think he thinks I am 3."
GTA- Sheep Rustler
No matter what Ted says, it's obvious to all that he is trying to lure away his father's sheep. In a July 31 letter to the entire membership of the WCG Ted not only attempts to counter the allegations made against him but attacks some of the bedrock doctrines of his father's church. Here are a few excerpts:
I did not start Quest... I never even bought a subscription. I spoke out strongly against demon art in the magazine; against taking God's name in vain in its pages, pictures of naked architects on the cover, and other things which I felt were not in the interests of the Church.
My father wanted accreditation from the beginning-but on his own terms.... he still chooses to equate accreditation with "secularism" or "satanism," and will not change his mind. Of course, accreditation is merely the insuring by professional educators that Ambassador is actually giving its students what it says it is giving them; only trying to determine whether the substance of real education is there, as well as the form; only striving to insure that real academic excellence is maintained-so students aren't "ripped off" by shallow, non-professional educational practices.
He said, toward the end, that we "didn't have enough money" to conduct "colleges," but then went into detail about giving away money to a King in Thailand, to educate ignorant hill farmers to quit growing pot, and start growing vegetables, instead.
My father's new governmental ideas are not Biblical, at all. There were many times in history, and there is predicted to be a time in the future when there is more than one man of equal rank in God's work!
Check Hebrews 3:1, and find out who in the Bible, exclusively, is ever called "God's Apostle!" Paul calls himself "an Apostle" or "the Apostle of Christ"-but only Jesus Christ Himself is called "God's Apostle!" I am embarrassed for my father for all the many powerful statements of the assertion of authority!
The Gospel is much, much more than just "an announcement." Read I Corinthians 15:1-6 and see! Its primary focus is on Jesus Christ and "him crucified"-and on the fact of His life, teaching, example, death, burial, and resurrection," as well as the fact that He is the soon-coming King and world-ruler. I intend preaching it all as God so wills and inspires.
Pray for my father, that he can see Satan's wiles at work right around him.... I believe Jesus Christ wants to see some humility, and some service, and some kindness, and some meekness, for a change, and is growing tired of seeing all the claims of great office, power, authority and hearing shouting, angry messages which produce fear.
If you would like to read Ted's letter in its entertaining entirety, why not write Garner Ted requesting your own FREE copy. His address is: P.O. Box 2525, Tyler, Texas 75710.
The psychological technique used in Ted's letter is almost a carbon copy of Herbert's 1939 Good News article which justified his defiance of "church government" in breaking away from the Church of God, 7th Day. It's certainly ironic justice that Ted should use the identical break-away defense that his father used when he drew away members and their tithes in 1939.
For those readers who have not read the "39 article," we strongly recommend that you write to us for a free copy. It's an excellent item to give to friends or acquaintances still in the Armstrong cult because it's Pope Herbert's own "inspired" words.
Ted's New Church
Garner Ted's new church is picking up steam rapidly. A week ago he announced to a new congregation of 75 in Tyler that his church was making over $2,000 a day from donations and that he had a good response to his first radio broadcast. He intends to go on new stations immediately. One individual who was present at the first service of Ted's church told us Ted looked like a new man-happy, relaxed, fulfilled. The same individual also visited the Big Sandy church where Herbert was preaching that very sabbath and said Herbert looked grim and bitter.
The church members in Pasadena are noticeably discouraged because, with Brian Knowles, Dave Antion, and Garner Ted-the church's most fluent speakers-now removed from the sermon schedule, they know they will be subjected weekly to the long-winded, unimaginative harangues of the right-wing ministers. Church attendance has already plummeted, and with Ted's magic voice gone, it is expected to drop even further. The WCG's donor income (as opposed to co-worker income) has also dropped drastically, and WCG officials are frantically selling off assets to obtain cash. Stan Rader told the Los Angeles Times (August 5), however, that the WCG "is more stable how than it has been at any time in the past 10 years." One source says that, contrary to Rader's rosy statements, the WCG may already be in receivership but that this is being kept secret from the members by the church and its bank. We are investigating this and hope to give you more details in a future Report.
One ex-member made an interesting observation concerning the present father-son power struggle. He reflected: "You know, it's interesting how Herbert has said for so long that it was his commission to turn the hearts of children to their fathers (Malachi 4:6), and yet Herbert has never been able to win the esteem and affection of his own son." Several in fact have asked us what caused Herbert, knowing the charismatic drawing power of his son, to treat his son so harshly and alienate him. On NBC's "Tomorrow" program hosted by Tom Snyder (July 28) Stanley Rader hinted that it was the publicity surrounding Ted's "emotional problem" (adultery) which was responsible for his removal from office. But what apparently incensed Herbert above all was Ted's refusal to submit to his apostolic authority in every detail and Ted's comment to the Los Angeles Times that "it is my belief that before long all that will be left of the Armstrong empire will be the AICF and Quest magazine."
Herbert, stung by Ted's penetrating logic, replied: "He [Ted] has spread the point blank lie that Mr. Rader is now actually heading the Church and Work. Brethren, I brand that as a Satan lie!... I have given the direct order to Mr. Rader to sell or dispose of the magazine Quest/78 as soon as possible."
The Fate of Quest/78 and Everest House
Nevertheless, Quest/78 is not going to be sold-at least not for six months or a year, if ever, according to Rader. Roger Lippross, a top WCG publishing official, commented at a July 12 meeting at Ambassador's press that Rader has put Quest under his personal control in the AICF. Guess that shows who's really the boss once and for all!
Not only does Rader have increased control over Quest, but now he has quietly placed the WCG's new publishing venture, Everest House, under the AICF. Almost nobody in the WCG, though, is aware of what the Everest House publishes and who founded it. Even its catalogue is kept out of church members' reach, lest they learn what it is publishing. Stan Rader gave birth to it and hired its present operating head, Lew Gillenson, in 1977. Everest House shares office space with Quest/78 in Pasadena and New York City. Informed sources stated that the New York office suite, located at 1133 Avenue of the Americas, costs $18,000 per month for rent alone and that additional office space has been acquired.
The fall 1978 Everest House catalogue offers 22 books for sale, a number of which run completely counter to the WCG's long-time teachings. (Keep in mind that the WCG is subsidizing Everest House with tithe money from its members.) For instance, Dark Dimensions-a Celebration of the Occult, advertised on page 1 of the catalogue, has accounts of homosexual acts, a brutal mutilation, sadism, sex perversion, and paints the occult in a very favorable light. Then there's the book Strange Seed, described as "a contemporary novel of unutterable terror," as well as the books How to Make Your Own Knives and Living Jewish, something you'd never suspect a Christian organization would subsidize. The LTR Money Book is billed as "the personal finance guide for every kind of living together relationship." It includes practical financial advice for heterosexual and gay couples and contains instructions' for gays who desire to marry or divorce. Zen Running, the last book listed, discusses how to let your mind go, through the use of Zen.
On July 12, Roger Lippross said that Everest House and Quest/78 are dismissing all their WCG employees and will accept no new ones because the church members get too emotionally involved and this causes problems and bad publicity. What he is really saying is this: Church members become disgusted and enraged when they see the trash and anti-church material Everest House and Quest/78 publish. So all the art work, layouts, jacket designs, copy editing, and typesetting previously done by WCG employees in Pasadena will soon be done undercover in New York-out of sight from the prying eyes of "emotional" church members whose tithes are helping to foot the bill.
Termites Get Revenge at AC Library
Not only have there been disconcerting upheavals in the church recently, but Ambassador College (AC) has been having monumental problems of its own in, of all places, its library. AC's main library building has been a health hazard since April 27 when exterminators used the toxic pesticide lindane to exterminate termites there. The fumes permeated the whole building, and soon 16 of the 18 employees there became ill. Several quit, and most of the others, refusing to see a doctor because of the church's teaching on divine healing, prayed to God for help. Eleven weeks later, the college administration made a half-hearted attempt to alleviate the problem by installing charcoal air filters throughout the three-story building, but typical of ACs "high regard" for the well-being of its employees, AC officials didn't replace the charcoal in the system soon enough-it would have cost money- and soon afterward many of the library employees in the main building became ill again. A number of the library's patrons also complained of getting headaches after being exposed to the library's atmosphere. One employee was checked for nerve damage, and many reported headaches, chest pains, dizziness, respiratory problems, and unusual exhaustion. A noted toxicologist and an industrial hygienist confided that all the exposed staff members will now have an increased sensitivity to the DDT family of pesticides because lindane is a cumulative poison that resides in body fat permanently.
Now the main library building, housing everything but the periodicals and the termites, is closed until the problem is remedied. However, the building was not closed because of AC's concern for its employees' welfare. It was shut down because the employees refused to work inside the building.
This is not the tragedy it would seem, though, because the college's chancellor, Herbert Armstrong, in the June 26, 1978, Pastor's Report, just condemned the "leaven of intellectualism" that "was coming in and gripping the college." He vowed that he was "going to root that out of Ambassador College." Since the library is a silo of "intellectualism," it is expected that the library's value will be downplayed in the future and that students will be encouraged to seek truth solely from Herbert's writings, not from the library's extensive collection of religious reference material.
A Load of Nonsense
As many of you know, Herbert Armstrong recently boasted in a May 21, 1978 co-worker letter that he was to co-host a charity function with Queen Elizabeth. Suspecting that something was amiss, we wrote Her Majesty and expressed our dismay that such a collaboration was to take place. Ambassador Report also wrote to the British Home Office, the BBC, and the News of the World newspaper. We were not alone. Other concerned individuals also wrote Her Majesty and voiced their concern for her reputation. There was little to be worried over, however. The following transcript of a July 2 BBC broadcast tells the story:
Broadcaster: Over the years we've carried out a number of reports on the activities of an organization known as the Worldwide Church of God, a multi-million dollar American concern, run by a millionaire called Herbert Armstrong and his playboy son Garner Ted Armstrong. Through its magazines Plain Truth and Quest, the church actually seeks members who are prepared to stump up three-tenths of their income. Well, recently the Worldwide Church of God has been in some state of array. Its star preacher Garner Ted no less, once suspended for immoral conduct, has been suspended again. Members have apparently been leaving in droves and in California there's now an organization called the Anti-Worldwide Church of God. Meanwhile over here members have been receiving an extraordinary letter from millionaire Herbert Armstrong himself. Ted Harrison reports:
"God's great work to the whole world," writes Herbert Armstrong, "is, truly, going ahead now as never before with a new start. July 8 I am scheduled," writes Herbert, "to co-host an important premiere of a charity motion picture to raise funds for the handicapped children in Britain. Queen Elizabeth II has promised to co-host this premiere and banquet- and in the event she is unable to be present, either Prince Charles (the next King) or Prince Philip will be there." Quite an accolade for Herbert Armstrong and his church it would seem. But the plain truth of the matter is Herbert Armstrong's claim is a load of nonsense. Buckingham Palace has no knowledge of such an occasion. The Queen, in fact, has a day off on July 9, no premieres or banquets in the diary of any kind. And Prince Charles will be in Aldershot. The only charity we could find which had planned to have a film premiere on July 8 was the Society for Mentally Handicapped Children, but the premiere has been postponed, and the only dealings they've ever had with the Armstrong organization was three years ago when they had to complain to Herbert for using the charity's name without permission and inaccurately in one of his publications. I twice telephoned Herbert Armstrong in California to ask him about his extraordinary claim, but on both occasions I was told he was unavailable. So to cast some light on the matter I went to see a former member of the church and a man who knew Herbert Armstrong well, Sir Anthony Buzzard. He told me that one of Herbert Armstrong's main ambitions was to meet top people around the world.
Sir Anthony Buzzard: He felt that if he could do that he would have preached the gospel to the nations through getting at their leaders and after that has been done it was his firm belief that the end of the world would come. I'm sure that to meet Her Majesty the Queen would be his ultimate ambition. He's always had a great love of England, and he would look upon the Queen as being a direct descendant of King David because he believes, or believed certainly when I knew him, that England and America are the descendants of the lost tribes of Israel, and therefore to meet the direct descendant of David would be the highest privilege I think he could conceive of.
A July 2, 1978, News of the World article by John Clare said this:
Cheeky Church Boss's Royal Boast
The cheeky leader of a religious sect told his followers he would be hosting a film premiere with the Queen this week. He said that if she would not come, Prince Charles or Prince Philip would share the honours with him.
But Buckingham Palace has never heard of the man-86-year-old Herbert Armstrong, head of the California-based Worldwide Church of God. And the Queen will not even be at Thursday's premiere in London of the adventure film, "The Wild Geese," starring Roger Moore and Richard Harris. The guest of honour will be the Duchess of Kent.
Yet in a newsletter to his 65,000 members, Mr. Armstrong announced: "I am scheduled to co-host an important premiere to raise funds for handicapped children. Queen Elizabeth II has promised to co-host."
A spokesman for Evan Lloyd, producer of "The Wild Geese," said: "Mr. Armstrong and Mr. Rader have been invited to attend the premiere as representatives of the Ambassador International Cultural Foundation, a charity of which Mr. Armstrong is chairman of. We know nothing about the Worldwide Church of God. It was originally hoped that the Queen or Prince Philip would attend the premiere, but there was never any question of either Mr. Armstrong or Mr. Rader co-hosting the event. They are just ordinary guests and would be treated in the normal way."
The WCG's Future?
With all the problems besetting the WCG, people are asking in private what will happen when Herbert passes away. We say, "Watch Stan Rader!" He will control the AICF, and informed sources say the majority on the church board is now composed of Rader supporters. If this is the case, Stan Rader (with the board) would legally be in control of the church and the college with all their assets. And who knows? Perhaps on his death bed Herbert will ordain Rader as the church's next apostle.
We had hoped to give you an update on the Bagley situation, but Mr. Bagley's trial has again been postponed. The trial is now scheduled for some time in November. We will give you information on this trial and other legal activities regarding the Armstrongs as soon as they occur.
For those who would like more information on Bobby Fischer, we recommend reading "The Pawn Who Should Be King" by John Trechak. It appeared in the August 14 issue of New West magazine. Copies may be obtained for $1.50 by writing to: New West, 9665 Wilshire Boulevard, Beverly Hills, California 90212.
Some have wondered if it's still possible to obtain copies of the large 92-page, illustrated issue of Ambassador Report we published in 1977. Yes, it is. And for those of you who are supporting our efforts we would be happy to send copies at the discounted price of $3.95 each, including postage. Also, if any of you are interested in obtaining bulk shipments for resale or free distribution, please contact us, and we'll be happy to work out an appropriate arrangement.
The recent upheavals that have rocked Armstrong's empire have prompted many letters to the AR from confused and upset WCG members asking for help. Many members are now, at long last, squarely facing the same reality that we all have had to face-that we've been suckered by a bunch of con-artists. Here's one letter typical of the many being received:
I am a confused member of the Worldwide Church of God and I need help very badly. Please tell me, what is going on at headquarters? Who is right? Is it Herbert Armstrong or his son Garner Ted? Is Mr. Herbert Armstrong really in his right mind or is Stanley Rader dominating him? Maybe none of them are right, I just don't know anymore! I only know that I am going out of my mind, my family is being destroyed.
Please help me. I must know the truth. Is Mr. Armstrong an apostle or a fake? Yesterday I talked to my minister (Jim Tuck, Huntsville church) about all this mess. I asked him if it was true about Mr. Armstrong getting a $200,000 a year salary and all he could think to say was "don't you think he's worth it?" He also tried to scare me with gehenna fire if I did not support Mr. Armstrong.
After receiving the AR and related newsletters, this particular individual contacted us again to thank us for all the eye-opening and liberating information. He related that it was the means by which he and his family were able to break the mental and spiritual stranglehold the cult had had on them. In addition, he did make a final contact with his former minister, Mr. Tuck, regarding the AR. Tongue-tied for any refutation of the facts, Tuck's final pronouncement was, "Well, if you believe the Ambassador Report, there's nothing more I can do for you."
We feel the WCG ministry has done quite enough to their members, and it's certainly gratifying to the AR staff as we're sure it also must be for our supporters to know that more and more people are being freed from the Armstrong cult through all of our combined efforts.
To those of you who responded to our last letter, our warmest thanks. Though we're still operating "in the red," your help has made it possible for us to continue publishing. We hope none of you mind the "newsletter format," but we think it still gets the facts out. Again, thanks to all of you.
Ambassador Report is published bimonthly as finances allow.
Publisher-Editors are Robert Gerringer, Bill Hughes, Mary E. Jones, John Trechak, Leonard Zola, and Margaret Zola.
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