Greetings from Charlotte,

This has been a shorter work-week due to the Labor Day holiday in the USA last Monday. Mr. Meredith has finished a co-worker letter and has conducted several meetings. Mr. Ames is preparing for a Tomorrow’s World Bible lecture in Toronto on the day after the Feast of Trumpets. I had a very pleasant and profitable trip to Long Island, New York, last weekend for a Sabbath service, a Spokesman Club Ladies’ Night and a mini-conference with the leaders from New England on Sunday. This weekend, I will be in the Cincinnati, Ohio area for a Sabbath service and another mini-conference on Sunday. Mr. Gerald Weston and Mr. Henry Cooper report positive results from recent Tomorrow’s World Bible lectures in Canada and in Dublin, Ireland, respectively (see reports below). We are also glad that Mr. and Mrs. Crockett decided to return to Charlotte after their trip to the promised land—Little Rock, Arkansas!
Mr. Frank Best, Canadian Area Pastor, who recently underwent quintuple heart bypass surgery, would like to thank everyone for your outpouring of love and support through your prayers, cards and telephone calls, during his recent illness. He writes, “I am now resting at home, feeling stronger every day, and looking forward to the Feast of Tabernacles. Once again, ‘Thank you’ from the bottom of my heart for your love and support.”
As most of you know, the Church uses the tithe of the Festival tithe to pay for many Festival expenses, including convention meeting halls, as well as providing help to many of our international and needy domestic brethren. If you have not already sent in your tithe of the Festival tithe, now would be a good time to do so. Thank you, brethren, for your help in this matter!
For those of you who want to help the Work cut down on paper and postage costs, or who want to experience the speed and convenience of e-mail delivery, you can now subscribe to Dr. Meredith’s Co-Worker letters by e-mail. When you log in on MyLCG, just go to the “New! Your Co-Worker Letter” box at the right-hand side of the page, and indicate whether you want to receive an e-mail co-worker letter in addition to, or instead of, the printed letter.
Church Administration
Two Healings
From South Africa, Mr. Pieter van der Byl, writes: Mrs. Joy Higgs, a member of the Cape Town congregation recently experienced God’s intervention with regard to her deteriorating eyesight. She has had reduced eyesight in one eye for some time, and she recently lost all sight in her other eye. Last week her eyes became infected and were very painful. She requested to be anointed, and prayers were offered on her behalf. A few days later she visited her eye specialist and he gave her a thorough check up. So amazed was he by what he found, that he requested a very highly trained and experienced professor to validate his findings. Their conclusion: “It’s a miracle.” Mrs. Higgs’ eyesight had greatly improved in her “good” eye, so much so that she is now able to see steps, etc. even without her glasses, and she has also recovered some sight in her previously blind eye. In her seventies, she now has the “pressure” reading of a teenager! We are all greatly encouraged by this very happy answer to our prayers for God’s intervention.
This week in Missouri (United States), a four-year-old daughter of Church members fell 12 feet on a playground, seriously hitting her head. Considerable blood loss was reported. The accident took place during a Church campout, so the little girl was immediately anointed by the ministry present before being taken to the hospital. The girl’s mother wrote, “When Mr. Smith, Mr. West and Mr. Oswald were anointing her… the congregation gathered around Faith (even the little children) on their knees to pray… even some of the campers not in our church who came to see what was going on bowed their heads during prayer. Faith is doing wonderful.  We could hardly even find a bump… Beside all the scrapes and bruises, you wouldn’t know she had been through so much. God is wonderful, amazing and AWESOME!”
Canadian Update
Mr. Gerald Weston reports: This summer we held TW Bible lectures in British Columbia, Saskatchewan, and Ontario. We are all very encouraged when “new” people catch the vision and want to step out, change their lives and help us do the Work.  Enough time has passed that we can now better judge how effective these studies were at bringing new people along toward Church attendance.  A total of 224 brand new people attended the nine lectures and 22 have begun attending services regularly.  It is still too early to know how many will stick with it, be baptized and be in it for the long haul, but we are encouraged to see these people in attendance with us.  One thing that is clear is that some cities and regions produce better results than others.  As Paul said, the Bereans were more fair minded than people in Thessalonica; and God indicated to Paul that He had many people in Corinth. 
When Mr. Ames comes to Toronto for Trumpets, our plans are for him to give a lecture on the following day to what we believe will be a very substantial audience.  Our first e-mail was sent to 1,040 individuals and more than 100 pre-registered.  All told, about 6,000 are being invited by color brochure, hard copy letters, e-mail, or a combination of these.
Follow-up Tomorrow’s World Lecture in Dublin
Mr. Henry Cooper reports: We were pleased to host 14 returning visitors to our second Dublin lecture last Sabbath. Many of these visitors displayed a good knowledge of the Truth, having subscribed to Tomorrow’s World for quite some time and obtained booklets. One man even told us he was first visited by a WCG minister in the early 1970s—the same minister who first visited my wife and me, in 1971. He attended services once in Dublin in the 1980s and had no further direct contact with us until he received the invitation letter of some weeks ago. Sometimes, when the seed falls on potentially fertile ground it can take a long time to germinate! Something encouraging for us all.
Feast of Tabernacles 2009
Health, Feast Travel, and Swine Flu
As we prepare to depart for the Feast of Tabernacles, it is not uncommon for God’s people to “push themselves” and compromise their sleep and diet. Many of us try to get multiple tasks accomplished ahead of time (regarding work and school) so that we can attend the Feast without worry. Often this “push before the Feast” results in too little sleep and unhealthy eating habits. Then, when we finally get in the car, on the train, on the bus, or on an airplane, our bodies slow down and we get sick. In past years, this has resulted in some bringing the flu or a cold to the Feast site and spreading it to other Church members. If we do arrive at the Feast feeling ill, for the benefit of our brethren, it is important to avoid fellowshipping and attending services until all our symptoms are gone.
This year, especially for those traveling internationally for the Feast, Feast-goers need to be aware that many nations have instituted very tight public health controls in reaction to the Swine Flu. Many nations are requiring a “health disclosure” in order for tourists to enter their nation. Any tourists displaying signs and symptoms of the flu may be detained by the local government until the flu-like symptoms are gone. For God’s people, this could cause us to miss part or even all of the Feast of Tabernacles while we are detained in local quarantine. For this reason, it is essential, as you prepare for your Feast of Tabernacles travel, to get adequate rest and maintain a healthy diet filled with a lot of fresh fruits and vegetables. Parents should make sure that their children also get adequate rest and eat a very healthy diet before the Feast. For our older brethren, these actions are imperative! In taking measures to stay healthy and improve your health before the Feast, not only will you be more likely to arrive at the Feast “healthy” and not be temporarily detained by the local health officials (if you are traveling abroad), but you will also be physically and mentally prepared to partake of the powerful spiritual food and fellowship that God is preparing for you.
Guidelines and Recommendations for the Feast of Tabernacles
Dance Guidelines: Guidelines for Church dances at the Feast: The Church of God teaches that dancing is an acceptable form of recreation for members and their families. The rules and traditions we have established for Living Youth Camp dances teach the way of outgoing concern and of decency. These rules and traditions are as follows:

1. All music must be chosen carefully, with a very conservative approach, and with the approval of the Festival Coordinator or an individual he specifically assigns this task.
2. No “free-style” dancing is permitted since this usually involves inappropriate music and brings out an attitude of abandoned inhibitions and showing off, thus focusing attention on the self rather than showing outgoing concern for others. Exceptions to this are some line and novelty dances.
3. Fellows should politely ask a young lady or woman to dance, i.e.: “May I have this next dance?” If the lady accepts, he should offer his arm to lead her out to the dance floor. When the dance is over, he should lead her back to her table or chair.
4. Concerning teens, we do not want anyone left out. Therefore we discourage “pairing off” of teens at our Church-sponsored dances and encourage dancing with many partners, particularly noting who sat out the last dance. Older singles and engaged couples who are of age may be exempt from this rule.
 5. Music should not be so loud that those who prefer not to dance have a difficult time carrying on a conversation.
6. Lighting should not be turned down so low that the average person could not read a book with ease.
7. At any dance organized primarily for youth, all parents are welcome to visit.
8. Appropriate attire for a Church dance in the northern hemisphere is slacks, coat and tie for adult and young men and modest knee-length dress or long gown for adult and young women. A Church dance is not the place for a “personal statement.”
9. Chaperones should stay for the entire dance.  A minister should be present for the entire function. 
10. Small children at a family dance should be supervised and not allowed to run or engage in horseplay.

The above guidelines and traditions should apply for all our ballroom dances, because they are based upon godly principles of love toward others. Some of these guidelines obviously do not pertain to square dances, barn dances and dances in other cultures.
Beach Parties—Appropriate Swimwear: Appropriate beach attire for women and men is swimwear that is modest and in good taste. We are to be guided by the two great commandments–to love God and love neighbor (Matthew 22:37-39; Mark 12:29-31)—so as not to offend God or neighbor in their dress at the Feast.  Fathers and husbands have a responsibility to be leaders in their family to teach and guide regarding what is appropriate and what is not (Ezekiel 22:26).

Children’s Conduct AND SAFETY in Meeting Hall and Adjoining Rooms: Children are a joy to parents and fellow Feast-goers.  The Feast is a family time, and it’s inspiring to see children attend the Feast with their families!  But parents—please remember, children are not permitted to run or engage in horseplay before or after services.  Children darting in and out among fellowshipping brethren can be a trip hazard.  For the elderly, this can be dangerous, even life-threatening.  Parents need to be aware of and responsible for their children at all times.  Also, for their own safety, children are not allowed to wander around unaccompanied on Church property (including leased/rented property at the Feast—these places are open to the public).  Young children should not go to restrooms or wander the halls of hotels unaccompanied by an adult. 

Children—Sitting With Their Parents: God instructs, “you shall rejoice in your Feast, you and your son and your daughter.” Clearly God wants families to rejoice together at His Feasts. Experience has shown that children and teenagers pay attention and therefore learn more from the messages when sitting with a parent than when sitting with a group of children off by themselves. Therefore, it is the policy of the Church for children and teens to sit with their parents during services. An exception may be allowed where an individual child or teen sits with a friend who is sitting with his or her parents. Obviously, a teen whose parents are not in attendance would be exempt. The Feast is a time for families to grow together. Let us use the precious time we have during services to further that goal.
Attention Area Pastors: Please ensure that the following announcement is made at your congregations before the Feast: “Brethren are encouraged to bring a hymnal (one or two songbooks per household) from their local congregation’s supply for use at the Feast, but they should bring back to their congregations the same hymnals, after the Feast, so that an equal number of books is returned to each congregation.” Area Pastors should also designate someone from each of their congregations to bring along extra hymnals for use at the Feast. 
Kauai, Hawaii
Mr. Jim Meredith, Kauai Festival Site Coordinator, has sent a number of e-mails with updates and new information to everyone registered for the Kauai site. If you have not received these updates, please e-mail him at fothawaii@aol.com. He needs to receive all payments for Feast activities no later than September 18, 2009. All of the activities are described on the website www.fothawaii.org. Please print the activity form, fill it out and send it in with your check.
Holy Day Offering Envelopes (USA)—Repeat Announcement
By now, all members in the USA should have received a set of green Holy Day offering envelopes with the member’s name, address and Personal Identification Number (PIN) printed on them. Please use these preprinted envelopes for Holy Day offerings.  By doing this you will save the Work money and facilitate processing. If you have not yet received Holy Day envelopes, please contact us at donations@lcg.org or jruddlesden@lcg.org, or call 704-844-1970 and we will mail you a set of preprinted envelopes.
The Dynamics of Friendship: The Scriptures reveal that if we want to have friends, we must be friendly (Proverbs 18:24, KJV), and that true friends are supportive during difficult times (Proverbs 17:17). Jesus indicated that He could confide and share important thoughts and concerns with His friends (John 15:15). Real friends may not always agree with us, and sometimes they will tell us things about ourselves and our plans or actions that we need to hear, but may not want to hear (Proverbs 27:6, 17). The Bible warns that we should chose our friends carefully because we are influenced by the company we keep (Proverbs 12:26). Abraham chose to be a friend of God by obeying His instructions to leave his former way of life (James 2:23; Genesis 12:1-4). Abraham understood that friendship with the world and its ways would alienate him from God (James 4:4). We need to remember that the friends we choose can have a powerful influence on our lives. If we choose to be a friend of God and Jesus Christ and to build friendships with those we come in contact with, we can be lights to the world.
Have a profitable Sabbath,
Douglas S. Winnail  
News and Prophecy—September 10, 2009
Arab Europeans “Push” the Dutch. In retaliation to a Dutch cartoon that targeted Muhammad, the Dutch arm of the Arab European League recently published a cartoon against the Jews. Now, “Dutch prosecutors… will charge [the] Arab cultural group under hate speech laws for publishing a cartoon that suggests the death of 6 million Jews during World War II is a fabrication… Ronny Naftaniel of the Center for Documentation on Israel, which filed a complaint against the cartoon, said Jews had nothing to do with the Muhammad cartoons, so it didn’t make sense for the league to retaliate in this way” (YnetNews.com, September 2, 2009). The pending Dutch lawsuit in retaliation for the League’s publication is important because it highlights the growing antagonism over perceived European bias toward Israel. Arab groups considered suing over the Dutch cartoon that insulted Muhammad, but dropped charges when the prosecutors determined that the cartoon was aimed at Muhammad and not all Muslims. Daniel 11:40 describes an escalating power-struggle between the king of the North and the king of the South. While this struggle appears to involve physical conflicts, most wars begin with words. When a Dutch insult of Muhammad results in Muslims insulting Jews, what might happen next?
Disproving Darwin. Scientists at Duke University Medical Center in North Carolina recently completed research that contradicts Darwin’s suggestion that the human appendix is a “vestigial” or obsolete organ. For many decades, scientists and physicians have assumed that the appendix no longer has any use to the body, but is just an evolutionary artifact of our ancient, “plant-eating ancestors.” The recent research, however, indicates that the appendix not only may play a role in the body’s immune function, but may also be a storehouse for beneficial bacteria in the gut—repopulating the gut with beneficial bacteria following a bout of severe diarrhea. These findings, reported in the August 12, 2009 edition of the Journal of Evolutionary Biology, prompted one researcher to suggest, “Maybe it’s time to correct the textbooks” (YahooNews.com, August 24, 2009). David knew his body was “fearfully and wonderfully made” (Psalm 139:14) and not loaded with useless organs. The Apostle Paul observed that God is not a God of disorder (1 Corinthians 14:33 and that “the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who suppress the truth in unrighteousness… For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and Godhead, so that they are without excuse” (Romans 1:18, 20). As more evidence for God’s creation and evidence against man’s humanistic theories continues to emerge, the excuses for not believing in the Creator disappear. 
Coming: More Natural Disasters?   International scientists meeting in London suggest that more earthquakes, volcanic activity, landslides, and even tsunamis as far north as the UK will occur as global temperatures rise. Climate models measuring the impact of shrinking ice sheets on erosion, as well as tectonic plate activity, are sobering. One scientist noted, “Global warming is not just a matter of warmer weather, more floods or stronger hurricanes. It is a wake-up call to Terra Firma” (Mail & Guardian online [South Africa], September 6, 2009). Although some scientists disagree with aspects of the global warming hypothesis, the results of the London conference should give us pause in light of Bible prophecy. God warns that, at the time of the end, there will be powerful earthquakes all over the globe (Isaiah 24:17-20; Matthew 24:7). During the great tribulation, a “great” earthquake (perhaps combined with a massive volcanic eruption) will blacken out the sun and cause the moon to become like blood (Revelation 6:12). Ultimately, every mountain and island will be moved out of its place, resulting in people hiding themselves in caves (vv. 14-15). However, if these prophetic events can be linked to global warming, humans may dismiss warnings from those preaching in the name of the Lord.—Scott Winnail

COGwriter 2009

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