May 16th, 2019
Greetings from Charlotte,
Mr. Ames returned from a successful Tomorrow’s World Presentation in Winchester, Virginia earlier this week, where 26 guests were present. This is the end of the one-year on-site Living Education program for 14 pioneer students. Congratulations to all of them. Please see the announcement below for further details. One of our television buying agents flew into town from Phoenix, Arizona to touch base on a number of items. I am scheduled to fly out to Dallas, Texas for the Sabbath, and then conduct a meeting on Sunday for our ministry for Texas and the surrounding states. Many plans are coming together regarding summer camps for the Northern Hemisphere. Please make sure all who need the information contained in this update are given that information. Our work in the Spanish-speaking world continues to grow. Mr. Hernandez has been called upon to counsel Spanish-speaking prospective members in Canada on more than one occasion.—Gerald Weston
Charlotte BRiC Weekend (Memorial Day Weekend)—An Opportunity for Singles
This is the last week to make plans and register for the annual BRiC Weekend in Charlotte! Registration is open and we encourage singles of all ages to come and take part in this special event. You can visit our webpage at charlottelcg.org/bric (password BRiC2019) to register and view the activity schedule. We look forward to this wonderful opportunity and hope that anyone who is interested will attend. Come and enjoy a Friday night Bible study, the Uptown Challenge, BRiC talks, a cookout, bonfire, and more! If you have any questions concerning the weekend, please contact Mr. Jacob Hall ([email protected]) for more information.
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.
This week marks a milestone for our new Living Education program. Fourteen students will receive a certificate of completion for our nine-month training program. With so many competing choices facing our young people in how to spend their time, it’s encouraging to see their willingness to spend this year in classes focused on building a basic understanding of the Doctrines of the Church, Christian Living, and the Old and New Testament Studies. Mr. Weston will give the commencement address as parents and guests honor the group for their dedication this year. Our graduates include:
Feast of Tabernacles
When Making Housing Reservations: Word of Caution
From time to time, our Festival Site Coordinators are contacted by brethren asking for help because they are having trouble with their Festival accommodations. Sometimes the issue involves housing that members booked through the Internet, on their own, outside of the Church’s arrangements. Please Note: If you make your housing outside of the Church’s arrangements, our Festival Coordinators have no way to help you. Our advice is to go through the LCG Festival site and follow instructions, using the phone number provided (and any special codes, if applicable). That way you are working with the Church’s contacts, and our Festival Coordinators can help you with any issues that arise.
Feast Registration Announcements
The following International Feast sites are closed to further transfers:
- Liverpool, Nova Scotia
- Carry-le-Rouet, France
The following U.S. Feast sites are closed to further transfers:
- Williamsburg, Virginia
- Boerne, Texas
- Sandestin, Florida
- Lake of the Ozarks, Missouri
The following U.S. Feast sites have ample room, and we encourage brethren wishing to transfer within the United States to register here:
- Mt. Snow, Vermont
- Cathedral City, California
- Hilton Head Island, South Carolina
Goa, India—Open to International Transfers—Repeat Announcement
Goa, India, will once again host the Feast and it is open to international transfers! The Feast will be held in Candolim at Le Seasons Beach Resort, which epitomizes Goa’s true spirit and flavor. It is the sole luxury resort in Candolim, and is just 600 meters from the beach. The resort offers the best in accommodations and cuisine, with facilities and services to serve as the perfect host venue. There are 38 well-appointed, spacious rooms, and expansive options for dining, from Pan-Asian to delectable Goan cuisines.
Goa is a state in western India, stretching along the Arabian Sea. Panaji is the beautiful state capital, and Vasco da Gama the largest city. Goa is beautiful and exotic, and is best known for its sun-drenched beaches, serene blue seas, and lush greenery. Popular beaches, including at Baga, Calangute, and Candolim, stretch the length of the coastline, intersected by the city of Panaji and laid-back fishing villages such as Agonda. The historic city of Margao, preserved 17th-century churches, and the area’s tropical spice plantations evidence its long history as a Portuguese colony. The Portuguese first landed in the early 16th century as merchants. They conquered it soon thereafter, and for about 450 years, Goa was the Portuguese overseas province of Portuguese India. It was annexed by India in 1961.
Many international and domestic tourists visit Goa each year because of its white sand beaches and World Heritage-listed architecture. Come to Goa for a memorable and wonderful Feast site in 2019! More details can be found on the Festival website at fot2019.lcg.org. For more information, contact Mr. Rajan Moses, at [email protected].
Living Youth Program
Texas Preteen Camp Update
Summer camp season will be upon us soon, and we’re ramping up for a great Preteen Camp in Texas! There are still openings for both campers and staff. If you would like to join us, please send in your application soon.
- We need more Adult Staff and/or Teen Staff! If you are interested in contributing to the success of an important Church activity—Preteen Camp—now is the time to fill out an application! There are still several areas where we could use volunteers to serve.
- We have a greater number of girl campers this year, and there is still room for a few more girls, but we would love to have some more boys to help balance things out.
- We need more who are able to serve as lifeguards at Preteen Camp. If you are already certified, that’s great, but if you have allowed your certification to lapse, we can help there. Apply for camp and let us know you are interested in being involved in the re-certification class.
We’re working hard to make this a memorable and rewarding camp for all—campers and staff alike! Sign up soon!—Phil West
West Virginia Preteen Camp—Applications Deadline!
Registration for the West Virginia camp will close on June 1 for both campers and staff. There is still room for more campers and staff at this time, but after June 1, applications will only be accepted if there is room and/or need. Join us in West Virginia for a week of serving the youth in God’s Church by signing up soon!—Mark Sandor
Deadline for Camper Applications for Teen Camp in Texas
The deadline for camper applications for the Teen camp in Athens, Texas, is June 1. Anyone applying after the deadlines will be accepted only if space allows. Staff applications should already have been submitted.
Adventure Camp Acceptances Sent Out—Must Read in Congregations Where Anyone Is Going to Adventure Camp—Repeat Announcement
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
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.
The Importance of Patience: The Apostle Paul urged Christians to develop the mind of Jesus Christ (Philippians 2:5). The Scriptures describe the patience of Jesus Christ (Revelation 1:9), that God is patient (Romans 15:5), that patience is one of the fruits of the Holy Spirit (Galatians 5:22), and that true saints of God strive to develop and exhibit this important quality of patience (Revelation 13:10). We are encouraged to be patient and persevere during trials (Romans 12:12; James 1:4) and to trust in God (Psalm 27:7) as we seek to build character and learn important lessons (Psalm 25:5). We are admonished to be patient and gentle in our dealings with others, so that we can truly reflect the mind and character of Jesus Christ and our Father. The Apostle Paul wrote, “Pursue righteousness, godliness, faith, love, patience, gentleness” (1 Timothy 6:11). He also wrote, “Now we exhort you, brethren… be patient with all. See that no one renders evil for evil” (1 Thessalonians 5:14–15). The Apostle Peter even stated, “when you do good and suffer, if you take it patiently, this is commendable before God” (1 Peter 2:20). True Christians should not be impatient, impulsive, vindictive, or seek to get even. If we have the mind of Jesus Christ, we will strive to develop this important quality of patience.
Have a profitable Sabbath,
Douglas S. Winnail
News and Prophecy—May 16, 2019
The Tragedy of Dairy Farm Contamination: A dairy farmer in the state of Maine is facing the financial ruin of his 100-year-old dairy farm because milk from his cows was proven to be tainted with harmful chemicals from a questionable source (Reuters, March 19, 2019). Subsequent testing showed the harmful chemicals are present in ground water and soil on the farm, and public health officials believe the contamination is associated with a fertilizer program that the farm participated in from the 1980s through the early 2000s. This government-sponsored program provided farms in Maine and other states with biosolids—the marketing term for sewage sludge from public waste facilities. These biosolids contain nutrients like nitrogen and phosphorus, but also toxic substances that impact the environment and human health (see bioscience source.org and wte-ltd.co.uk). In recent decades, the use of recycled sludge as an inexpensive fertilizer has become a big business. However, years of use have led to the build up of toxic substances that are transferred from plants growing in the contaminated soil to cows feeding on them and to their milk—both of which are consumed by people.
It is sobering that with all the advances in the twentieth and twenty-first centuries, humanity is still using human waste (“night soil”) as fertilizer. This is an area where the Bible demonstrates wisdom beyond its time. In the book of Deuteronomy—written some 3,500 years ago—God directed the Israelites to bury their waste (Deuteronomy 23:12–13). These burial points were to be “outside the camp” and away from areas humans frequented. Today, the wisdom and public health benefits of this ancient command are becoming obvious, and we see how breaking this ancient but important principle results in illness and suffering. To learn more about ancient biblical health laws that are still relevant and even “cutting-edge” today, be sure to read “Bible Health Laws.”
War in the Middle East This Summer? Hezbollah Secretary-General Hassan Nasrallah has apparently warned his top generals in a secret meeting that “there will be a war with Israel this summer and that he may not be around to support them”—because he and other top officials may be killed by Israel in the near future (Jerusalem Post, April 21, 2019). He also noted that this war would “take everybody by surprise.” These and other comments were reported in Kuwait’s respected daily newspaper Al Rai. Some believe that this admission raises the probability of a war with Israel from “50/50” to “70/30”! Nasrallah believes that, should a war break out with Israel, other nations would be drawn in, including the U.S., the U.K., and some Arab states. Hezbollah sources deny the report. Hezbollah is believed to have between 130,000 and 150,000 rockets that can reach deep into Israel.
Will war break out between Hezbollah and Israel this summer? And should it happen, could such a war draw in other nations? Israel and specifically Jerusalem are home to three world religions: Islam, Judaism, and Christianity. And it is Jerusalem that is at the heart of the struggle between Israel and its Muslim neighbors. The Bible shows that Israel and the region around it will indeed burst into conflict one day, before the return of Jesus Christ. Bible prophecy reveals that although Jerusalem is and will be a “cup of drunkenness,” and that the surrounding nations will “lay siege against Judah and Jerusalem” (Zechariah 12:2), Jesus Christ is going to return to Jerusalem and make it His capital (Isaiah 2:2–4). Jerusalem’s future will be tenuous for a time, but it will ultimately have a majestic, peace-filled future. To gain a better picture of what the future holds for Israel and Jerusalem, be sure to read or listen to The Middle East in Prophecy.
Abortion—The Leading Cause of Death in 2018: In 2016—the most recent year for which global statistics are available—roughly 9.5 million people died from heart disease (World Health Organization). About six million died from stroke and three million died from lung diseases. The same year, the top ten causes of death worldwide resulted in just under 31 million deaths. However in 2018, the leading cause of death—by far—was abortion (Lifenews.com, December 31, 2018)! Abortion numbers are not included with global mortality statistics for sadly obvious reasons. However, for those who do keep track, the global estimate of abortion deaths in 2018 was just under 42 million—roughly four times the number of global deaths from heart disease in 2016. Forty-two million is about the size of the population of Argentina or Iraq. And it is significantly larger than the entire population of Canada, Australia, or Saudi Arabia.
The scale of global abortion deaths is astounding, yet it is an unreported figure when it comes to global mortality data. This is because abortion is not seen as the destruction of a human life. The Bible, on the other hand, makes clear that the life in the womb is truly life, and that those who take it should be held responsible for that action (Exodus 21:22–23). Today’s society labels abortion “a woman’s choice,” yet it completely ignores the lack of choice available to the developing baby. When society condones the killing of unborn babies contrary to God’s commands (Exodus 20:13) on the scale of the populations of entire nations, there will be consequences (see Jeremiah 2:32–34; Hosea 8:12–14). For greater insight into this important topic, be sure to read or listen to “Abortion: The Real Story.”—Scott Winnail and Francine Prater