Sunday, December 7, 2014

UCG: God's Most Favored Church of God Averages No More Than 20-30 Members In Attendance Each Week

God's most favorite Church of God ever has admitted it's not as favored as they would like it to be.  They continue to give the impression each week that they are the most unified and most awesome Church of God ever to exist, yet underneath that dirty facade is a crumbling superstructure that's aging and falling apart.

Roy Holladay from the United Church of God reports in the Nov 4th member news that the church is struggling to find members to ordain as leaders in its church.  

We in the home office administration would like to share with you some of our manpower plans for serving our nearly 200 congregations and Bible study groups in the United States. Several of our full-time pastors will be retiring in the next several years after many decades of faithful service. However, the work of leading and shepherding those congregations must continue and we are asking God to show whom He may be calling to serve in the pastoral ministry of His Church. It’s a very important role. One of UCG’s goals from inception has been to give each congregation a live speaker and not become merely a video or Internet church of God.
As you may know, many of our congregations are quite small, often with no more than 20 or 30 in attendance each Sabbath. Our current model has been to give our full-time pastors two, three or four of these smaller churches that may add up to a total attendance of 80-100. But this approach has significant drawbacks. The pastor may not be able to visit any single congregation more than once or twice a month. His travel incurs a great amount of mileage costs and takes a physical toll on the elder and his wife. We believe there are other ways to consistently and effectively serve our brethren in these small, widely scattered congregations.

What we have been doing in some areas, where there is a smaller congregation, is to find a qualified man who is already gainfully employed (or retired), who could be appointed as that congregation’s pastor at a part-time salary or volunteer basis. Before assuming the pastor’s position, he will need to be mentored and have online instruction in pastoral care to equip him with the tools and knowledge for this service. As you know, there is a lot more to pastoring than just speaking or visiting brethren. He would also have access to a mentoring pastor, who would be familiar with his area and would be available to advise and make occasional visits.

A part-time pastor serving only one congregation has the following advantages:

• The pastor and his wife will have only one congregation to serve each Sabbath. They will have more quality time with the brethren, knowing that they do not have to leave quickly after services and drive many miles to another church service.
• The pastor and his wife will be in his congregation the vast majority of Sabbaths, which is not possible for full-time pastors serving three or four churches.
• There will be lower mileage reimbursement costs for distances traveled, which will enable us to be wiser stewards of the money that God provides to care for our members.
• The pastor and wife can develop closer relationships with the brethren because they live in the same geographical area.
• The pastor would not necessarily need to forsake his chosen career.


Black Ops Mikey said...

And God STILL isn't giving the increase...

But He certainly seems to be providing the entropy....

Byker Bob said...

Wow! This is just awesome, encouraging news. I am sure that we, here, are partially responsible for the atrophy of UCG! Here, here! Group pat on the back!


Anonymous said...

This is what all that talk about moving to Texas was about. Using all that extra money from all that growth that "god" was supposedly going to provide (all of a sudden after more than a decade of declining to provide it) to build a huge new compound in which to spend a couple of years training classes of new ministers to go out into fields, white and ready to harvest.

Why is their "god" saying "no" or "wait" to their prayers for growth (and cash)? Aren't Armstrongists and "god" on the same page? Don't they want the same things? I guess not.

Okay, well, since the remaining leaders of UCG were right, that the Texas plan really would have bankrupted them (aw, shucks), I guess these are the only humble dreams that Herbert's god was ready to fulfill. An untrained, unpaid, volunteer ministry. Gone are the days of the fleet car, the expense account, the rent-free home on Waverly, the all-expense-paid vacation, the divvying up of the 3rd tithe between them. And all that prestige and respect of being adored by hundreds of fawning members trying to curry favor. *sigh* Those were the good ol' days.

Interesting that the COGWA folks DID move to Texas after all, but after that, all thoughts about why they said they wanted to go there (training all these new ministers) went totally out the window. I guess "god" has been saying "no" or "wait" to their prayers for cash too!

But not to worry, their "god" will continue to keep "blessing" them and "opening doors" for them "in small ways," exactly like he is now, at every point along the descending spiral that leads down the drain. Thank "god" for "small blessings."

Can't they tell that this is a slow-motion train wreck?

Anonymous said...

This appears to be some handwriting on the wall. Let me use my entirely uninspired and mundane “writing on the wall” interpretation skills.

The writing — needing no metaphysical interpretation — is this. “Hey, we aren’t growing at all, and a lot of our congregations are ‘aging out.’ We got problems that are going to get ever more ominous.”

Thankfully, I discerned the truth when it was revealed to, and then by, Joseph Tkatch, Sr., the truth that salvation comes, alone, through Christ, by grace, not by avoiding pork, doing no work on Saturday, or paying tithes for unaccounted-for end uses. I’m now joyfully worshiping in a mainline protestant church, not worrying if I’m keeping enough of the Levitical laws to be kept from being thrown into the Lake of Fire.

But my church, too, has a lot of older people “aging out” of Christianity. Frankly, these wonderful elderly people are dying, and we don’t have as many young members and families as we’d like. But we have a few, and they hear and believe the authentic Gospel, where the burden is not heavy, but the rewards, both here and the hereafter are wonderful.

We have some handwriting on our wall, too. It says, “Persist.” Our persistence will yield greater outcomes than the archaic and ominous doctrines of Armstrongism. In those cults, new members may well have initial joys, perceiving that through their baptism and keeping of certain laws (just the portions Herbert W Armstrong so carefully selected) will keep them from the horrors of the Great Tribulation. Then, in time (sometimes very quickly), those new to Armstrongism will learn that they can never be sure that they are “righteous enough,” that their salvation is utterly dependant on reaching some unknown standard of personal righteousness. Fears and tears will be core feelings.

Who’d want to get themselves mired in that? Armstrongism no longer has any alluring magic.

Anonymous said...

If UCG supposedly the largest COG and can only get 20-30 in attend face WCG week it also shows us that Flurry, Pack, Meredith and other splinter cults have even less members attending than they claim. We've know all along that Pack and Flurry were liars in this regard, now we know it is a fact.

Anonymous said...

I laughed out loud when I read UCG's sad state of affairs. Only 20-30 people in most churches. Pathetic beyond belief.

old EXPCG hag said...

Is anyone learning anything...yet?

Anonymous said...

In February 1999 I heard a very interesting sermon, titled God's Government Part 4, where portions of the sermon predicted that most (if not all) of those who left WCG to form man-made split-off congregations would one day become small and have financial troubles.
Here is a partial transcript of that sermon to show some context and the prediction of unpaid ministers and/or half paid ministers:
"...Listen to this and see what is happening in all of your little groups out there!
[[Ezekiel 34:]]10 “Thus saith the Lord GOD…”
He wants to make sure this isn’t someone else’s opinion. This is what God is saying:
“…Behold, I am against the shepherds…”
I am against the shepherds…
“…and I will require my flock at their hand, and cause them…”
These shepherds…
“…to cease from feeding the flock; neither shall the shepherds feed themselves any more; for I will deliver my flock…”
I will deliver my flock…
“…from their mouth, that they may not be meat for them.”
He says it kind of plainly, doesn’t He? We didn’t know what that meant. Obviously, when everyone was nice and tidy there in the Worldwide Church of God and everything seemed to be going along fine: how could this apply?
But, what has He done? He has taken these so-called ministers and just flipped them all over the place! They’re all scattering around out there and all of these hirelings are running around trying to grab the sheep…
… They had to do it. They had to keep the flock. They had to gather the flock, so they could all follow them and they could lead them into the Kingdom of God, because; otherwise, “How could these dumb, stupid, sheep ever get there by themselves?”
Well, I think how they would get there by themselves is by the true Shepherd, which was always there, and never left them and the true Shepherd was not them. The true Shepherd was Jesus Christ. It’s interesting!
So, in effect, He fired them, didn’t He? All of the paid ministry: take note! God has fired you and when you left the Worldwide Church of God: you left your ministerial credentials behind anyway!
You were only there as Mr. Armstrong’s little helpers; that’s all. You were never a servant of God! You were only helping the servant of God, who was Herbert Armstrong. You thought you were pretty good, didn’t you? But you weren’t! You were nothing, and a “nobody” and it was all false; wasn’t it?
Who was important to God? Was it you, shepherds, the little hirelings, the little helpers of Mr. Armstrong? No, it was His flock, the flock you never took care of, the flock you were never jealous of!...
...A bunch of wimps that were on the payroll; it was just pathetic, honestly! So, God fired them all, didn’t He? He just fired them that: I will cause them to cease! What’s happening out there to their little flocks? Oh, they’re just getting less and less and less and more ministers get: they get on half pay. They get on no pay, and it just keeps going that way and it’ll continue to go that way!..."
For the most part the individual who gave the above sermon gave virtually all of the sermons. He didn't bother any unpaid ministers to ask them to take time to prepare sermons, because he knew they were busy enough with just doing their own normal jobs to support their own families.

What the United Ass. is planning to do with their half-paid, unpaid, ministry sounds very similar to what Joey Tkach Junior did with the former wcg, now grace communion fellowship/group has been doing for some years now.


Ed said...

The founders/leaders of the UCG are just trying to dress up Armstrongism to make it palatable to the general public. It clearly is not working. The numbers don't lie. This is like putting lip stick on a pig.

Anonymous said...

Do you realize what this means?

It means that all the poor deluded Ambassador grads who, expecting to be set for life by being hired by Herbert, but who somehow were not (I think this was starting in the late 60s, when the bureaucracy was fully bloated), have all had their chance now, and it's still not enough. (Some of these guys jumped
immediately to a splinter because they saw it might be a chance, at last, to be a "minister.")

It also means that ALL the self-important, snooty veteran lay members, who told you how great they were JUST BECAUSE they'd been in the church for decades, and who believed themselves worthy of ordination to SOMETHING (and finally got that when they jumped to a splinter) -- they've all been tried out, too.

There really is just NO ONE left to carry on.

Bye-bye, COGs!

Anonymous said...

I'm surprised at you all!

Where's the empathy for Joe Moeller (UCG Member), who said he has a pile of munitions on his ranch with which he and his "bad-ass-wife" plan to shoot hungry people in the head with- when they come to his ranch in the near-happening tribulation looking for food?

Ole Joe deserves a pat on the back and an "Attaboy, Joe!", for being proactive in such an Armstrongey way!

Anonymous said...

I do have to wonder if most of the ministers are just holding on long enough to secure their retirement nest egg. Surely they have to know they are steering a sinking ship.

I also cannot imagine having a worse life to look back on in old age ... knowing all the people they scammed, lives they ruined, false doctrines they preached.

Anonymous said...

Anon. 8:45, and you would let them kill you and your family? I'm not a COG member, but certainly they should be allowed to defend themselves and their property as a last resort, if threatened.

You should join the NRA!

Anonymous said...

Yup, today Jesus would be an NRA member and would shoot people who are hungry.
Awesome faith and planning!

Lake of Fire Church of God said...

UCG: God's Most Favored Church of God Averages No More Than 20-30 Members In Attendance Each Week.

MY COMMENT - 20 to 30 a week is a far cry from the Worldwide Church of God at its zenith. In my Maryland regional area, there were 550+ in the Washington, D.C. congregation; 650+ in the Baltimore, Maryland congregation; 150+ in the Hagerstown, Maryland congregation; and 100+ in the Maryland/Delaware Eastern Shore congregation.

Where did all these people go? This has to be very bewildering to the hard core adherents to Herbert W. Armstrong - some of whom can be found in UCG.

Lake of Fire Church of God

Anonymous said...

You don't see a difference in attitude between the people who got hungry while hearing the sermon on the mount, and some tribulation-crazed psycho looters who want to kill you, steal your food, and rape your wife?

Get real. You're just here to mock.

James said...

All the cog's fail due to HWA who claimed he was inspired by God, chose the wrong man to fill his shoes. As a prophet he should have saw that coming!

Anonymous said...

So, Jesus feeding the hungry after hearing the sermon on the mount was like feeding people who were hungry after a elongated Waterhouse sermon?

Get real, dude!

Black Ops Mikey said...

They're like Jax Teller who can't be anything but who he is.

They're unlike Jax Teller because they will never realize who they really are.

Anonymous said...

'47}}}} Negatory on that, chief. Jesus didn't have anything to do with any ongoings in Armstrongism. Also, people coming out of a Gerald Watercloset extravaganza didn't want food! They wanted cyanide!

R.L. said...

I know of one UCG Pastor who has been overseeing seven U.S. congregations for the last several months.

Yes, seven - straight outta Rev. 2-3.

That's being adjusted down to 5 1/2 in January (he's only being required to visit one congregation once per quarter) - but that's still a lot of mileage and road time.