Cartwright’s Journal out: The ‘Dig’ and the deaths of Ian Boyne and Burk McNair


The latest issue (says #201, print date December 31, 2017) of The Journal: News of the Churches of God just arrived via email.

There was information regarding the Ambassador College dig project as well as the deaths of Ian Boyne and Burk McNair.

The Journal printed the following related to the AC dig:

Several hundred people—mostly Ambassador College students— were part of a continuing archaeological excavation known informally as the “big dig” in Jerusalem from the late 1960s through the early ’70s. …

In 1968 Herbert Armstrong, chancellor of Ambassador College and pastor general of the WCG, announced that the church had arranged with Hebrew University and Professor Benjamin Mazar to begin participation on an archaeological excavation at the Temple Mount in Jerusalem.

Mr. Armstrong told coworkers in a letter dated Dec. 10, 1968: “Today I can announce this big news at last. “I have just returned from my second visit to Jerusalem in approximately four weeks. Four weeks ago all preliminary discussions took place, and [on] this trip it was made official! It’s one of the most important things that ever happened for God’s Work.

“Ambassador College has just been given the great honor and responsibility of entering joint participation with Hebrew University of Jerusalem in the most important archaeological excavation of our time—uncovering 3,000 years of history!” …

Archaeological digs are a continuing fact of life in Israel, but Ambassador College and the Worldwide Church of God discontinued their involvement …

I recall speaking to some in WCG who had involvement with the ‘dig’ project.

As far as projects go, when I was in Jerusalem back in October 2013, I was approached by a Jewish leader who wanted the Continuing Church of God to be involved in an archaeological project inside the area called Mt. Zion. While we have not yet so participated, I maintained contact with that Jewish leader and tipped him off about the Vatican’s plans for a building in that area (see Church of God on Jerusalem’s Western Hill). That Jewish leader then led a protest that made the international news.

Here is some of what The Journal reported about the death of CGI’s Ian Boyne:

Ian Boyne … died Dec. 18, 2017, in a hospital in Kingston, Jamaica, after a series of four heart attacks in rapid succession from which he seemed to be recovering. Mr. Boyne was pastor of at least five congregations of the Texas- based Church of God International, founded by Garner Ted Armstrong and associates in 1978. He was a frequent contributor of church news and other articles to THE JOURNAL. Mr. Boyne was famous in his native land of Jamaica. He was a print journalist and radio and television broadcaster and was one of the best-known media personalities in the country.

Ian Boyne’s death was covered earlier at the COGwriter Church of God News page (see CGI’s Ian Boyne has died).

The Journal printed the following related to the death of Burk McNair:

Herbert Burk McNair was born to Joseph Schley and Tressie Edith McNair in Camp, Ark., on Dec. 31, 1931. He passed away Dec. 5, 2017 in Denver, Colo. Burk was predeceased by his wife of 63 years, Billie Sue. Together they served more than 50 years ministering to people around the world. ¶ Burk was known for his compassion, kindness and ability to encourage others. He is survived by his children, Kerry Burk McNair (Rhonda), Susie Weaver (Mark C.) and Mark Edward McNair; sisters Bobbie Morgan and Nancy Bald; grandchildren Susan Kirkpatrick, Karen Clark, Cody Smith, Ashley Finsley, Mark Weaver, Brandon Weaver, Kerry J. McNair and Hannah Juch; and 10 great-grandchildren.

I believe that this Burk McNair was the brother of the late Carl and the late Raymond McNair–both of whom I knew. I did not know Burk McNair.

This edition of The Journal also had various letters to the editor, advertisements, and various opinion articles. The advertisements mainly seem to be from possibly Laodicean groups and/or individuals (not all seem to be COG) who seem to think that the ads are somehow doing the work of God (I plan to cover one of those advertisements about ‘Cyus’ tomorrow). More of the real work that the COGs should be doing are in the article The Final Phase of the Work.

The Journal itself has been available by paid subscription (though Dixon Cartwright says some subscriptions were sent free to those who could not afford it). It has tended to have a non-Philadelphian perspective on many COG matters.

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