UCG’s Good News and Beyond Today Dropping

UCG’s Logo for its Beyond Today television program


The United Church of God (UCG) produces a magazine titled the Good News and a television program titled Beyond Today.  Comparisons with past issues show a dropping of impact for both of those public proclamation tools for UCG.

At its peak, UCG was producing over 500,000 copies of its Good News magazine per issue.  This number has been dropping for some time.  UCG’s  Good News magazine circulation was 328,000 for its latest issue (Good News Magazine, March-April 2011, p. 2). It was 339,000 for its January-February 2011 issue.  And this is down from 362,000 a few issue before (Good News Magazine, October 2010, p. 2).

The November-December 2010 edition of its Good News magazine listed that its Beyond Today was on 215 television stations.  Yet, according to the latest issue, Beyond Today is on no more than 35 television stations (Good News Magazine, March-April 2011, p. 29).   As it turns out, most of the stations that were dropped were public access ones with limited audiences.  But it is still on superstation WGN.

UCG reported a couple of days ago that it received its third highest WGN response of 1,016.  FWIW, this is much less than what LCG’s Tomorrow’s World telecast receives from WGN each week (LCG reported expecting over 5000 responses to its telecast for the same weekend that UCG reported 1016, see the latest World Ahead Weekly Update).  But getting a thousand responses is way better than what UCG usually has received.

Television has never been a top financial priority for UCG.  But going on WGN last summer seemed to be its first real effort to put some significant financial backing to its telecasting efforts.

How long Beyond Today will remain on WGN or similar commercial stations in the future remains a question (beyond whatever contractual arrangements UCG entered into).

For those unfamiliar with UCG, perhaps it should be mentioned that UCG lost over 1/2 of its paid USA ministry and most of its Latin American ministry since June 2010 (174 ministers/elders in total).  Most of them went with a new group that formed called COGWA, who claims to have 170 ministers/elders.  The split mainly had to do with personality matters and not doctrine.

Because of the situation with its split, UCG may encounter financial difficulties which may impact further the number of magazines it produces and the number of television stations it remains on.  Despite its public attempt to act like it continues to push forward as its has in the past, the reality is that a closer look at its own reported numbers shows that it is having less impact.

On a somewhat related note, UCG just reported that it is making changes to its website that will go into effect in May 2011.  FWIW, its beyondtoday.tv website has plunged down to an Alexa popularity of 1,061,135 from 429,811 in May 2010, despite going on WGN last July (the lower the number the higher the popularity).

UCG is trying to cope with what it has been through, but its impact seems to be lessening in many areas.

Some articles of possibly related interest may include:

Polycarp, Herbert W. Armstrong, and Roderick C. Meredith on Church Government What form of governance did the early church have? Was it hierarchical? Which form of governance would one expect to have in the Philadelphia remnant? The people decide and/or committee forms, odd dictatorships, or the same type that the Philadelphia era itself had?
Unity: Which COG for You? Why so many groups? Why is there lack of unity in the Churches of God? Has it always been this way? What can/should be done about it?
Differences between the Living Church of God and United Church of God This article provides quotes information from the two largest groups which had their origins in WCG as well as commentary.
There are Many COGs: Why Support the Living Church of God? This is an article for those who wish to more easily sort out the different COGs. It really should be a MUST READ for current and former WCG/GCI members or any interested in supporting the faithful church. It also explains a lot of what the COGs are all about.
Concerns about Church of God, a Worldwide Association Known as COGWA, this seems to be the largest group that came out of the United Church of God.  Here is some history and concerns about it. UCG’s former president Clyde Kilough and UK CEO Pater Hawkins are part of it.
Should the Church Still Try to Place its Top Priority on Proclaiming the Gospel or Did Herbert W. Armstrong Change that Priority for the Work? Some say the Church should mainly feed the flock now as that is what Herbert W. Armstrong reportedly said. Is that what he said? Is that what the Bible says? What did Paul and Herbert W. Armstrong expect from evangelists?
The Laodicean Church Era has been predominant circa 1986 A.D. to present. These are non-Philadelphians who mainly descended from the old WCG.

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