Cartwright’s Journal Out: C. Wayne Cole


The latest issue (says #186, print date June 31 2016) of The Journal was sent out electronically and just received. This was another relatively short edition.

The most newsworthy item seemed to pertain to C. Wayne Cole.

Here is some of what Dixon Cartwright reported related to him:

BIG SANDY, Texas—Wayne Cole, known to thousands of present and past Worldwide Church of God members as C. Wayne Cole, in a sermon in Tyler, Texas, on July 2, 2016, listed lessons he has learned in his 61-year Church of God ministry.

The address was officially Mr. Cole’s farewell sermon, although the 86-year-old former Worldwide Church of God evangelist did not rule out the occasional religious discourse or other speaking engagement. He did say, however, that he want- ed to quit while he was ahead, while he could still competently speak and expound Scripture. His sermon included a description of a memorable meeting he had with Herbert W. Armstrong and three other church officials in Tucson, Ariz., ca. 1979. …

Mr. Cole’s preaching over the past 20 years has consisted of sermons delivered before geographically wide- ranging venues. However, much of Mr. Cole’s personal Sabbath fellowship has been with a group called Texas Fellowship that since 2007, when its attendees split from the Church of God Big Sandy, has met in halls and homes in East Texas, including Lindale and near Hawkins. In the beginning Mr. Cole was active in speaking and other ministerial responsibilities beginning with his graduation from Ambassador College, Pasadena, Calif., in 1954. His duties continued in various but uninterrupted forms for 25 years, until his sudden and unexpected exit under a cloud when WCG founder Herbert W. Armstrong relieved him of his church responsibilities in 1979. Mr. Cole’s last assignment under Mr. Armstrong was to assist the WCG pastor general as chairman and president of all church operations every- where in the world. … Mr. Armstrong abruptly fired Mr. Cole not long after officials of the State of California assumed legal control of the church through the office of the California attorney general.  …

Known to hardly anyone but close family members was their move to Texas and their joining up with the new Church of God International ministry of Garner Ted Armstrong. But the Coles’ career with the CGI was short-lived, only about six months. Beginning in 1980 they dropped out of sight even of the CGI and reemerged in the parallel universe of the non-COG. They began successful careers brokering real estate in the Tyler area, not returning to regular Sabbath-service attendance until 1995. That year marked the beginning of a major crackup of the Worldwide Church of God prompted by its major doctrinal and administrative changes.

Big Sandy fellowship

The Coles in June 1995 began attending Sabbath and feast-day services of the Church of God Big Sandy and continued for several years with that fellowship. …

But Mr. Cole also frequently visited with and spoke widely in congregations affiliated with other Church of God ministries, mostly with brethren who would describe themselves as “independent” or “interdependent.”

For example, in 2004 the Coles assisted Guardian Ministries, based in Pasadena, with its Feast of Tabernacles observance. Guardian sponsors the Pasadena Church of God, pastored by David Antion.

In a sermon in Big Sandy in 2005 Mr. Cole talked about his experiences as a student at Ambassador in the 1950s and his founding, over the years, of seven congregations on behalf of the Radio/Worldwide Church of God. He “raised up” new congregations in Corpus Christi, San Antonio and Houston, Texas; Pittsburgh, Pa.; Akron, Ohio; Memphis, Tenn.; and Little Rock, Ark. He also pastored RCG/WCG churches in Tacoma, Wash.; Portland, Ore.; St. Louis, Mo.; Chicago, Ill.; Milwaukee, Wis.; and Sydney, New South Wales, Australia.

As an administrator in the RCG/ WCG he served as regional director for Australia and New Zealand for 11 years and as vice president for finan- cial affairs, church administration and ministerial services for Australia, New Zealand and the Far East. He served as regional director for the church and college in Canada for two years. He conducted baptizing tours in Southeast Asia, Australia, New Zealand, Thailand and other countries. He was a founder of the Ambassador International Cultural Foundation.

His last position in the WCG was as assistant to Mr. Armstrong for all operations of the church and college internationally.

It is possible that I saw C. Wayne Cole in person in 1977, but I never actually knew him personally–though do recall when he left WCG in 1979 (for information on one group he was part of, see the article Teachings of the Church of God, International).

On other matters, the following was on the front page of The Journal:

THE JOURNAL is listing contact information, locations and dates of Feast of Tabernacles observances for 2016 in several issues this year.

Those associated with the Continuing Church of God, and we submitted them to The Journal can be found in the article Feast of Tabernacles’ Sites for 2016.

As far as The Journal goes, it also had the usual letters to the editor and other advertisements, various comments, and 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. More of the real work that the COGs should be doing are in the article The Final Phase of the Work.

The Journal itself is available by paid subscription (though Dixon Cartwright says some subscriptions are free to those who cannot afford it). It tends to have a non-Philadelphian approach to many matters.

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