WORLDWIDE CHURCH OF GOD
PASADENA, CALIFORNIA 91123
HERBERT W. ARMSTRONG
President and Pastor
February 19, 1984
Dear Brethren and Co-Workers with Christ:
THINK OF IT! We have reached and passed the 50th anniversary of this great worldwide Work of the living GOD in these very end-time days of this present world.
I presume you already have received your 50th anniversary number of The PLAIN TRUTH. It seems like only yesterday since my wife Loma and I carried the entire printing of the first issue of The PLAIN TRUTH in our arms across the street from our little one-room unventilated office in Eugene, Oregon, to the post office. Today it requires several large freight cars to transport the paper for just one issue of The PLAIN TRUTH.
Fifty years ago it had a circulation only in a couple of counties in one state. Today its circulation of over 6 l/2 million copies goes out over every inhabited continent on earth, and most inhabited islands of the seas.
Yet that is only one phase of this great Work of God in which YOU, with me, have your vital part to play.
The television program now brings in a telephone response from between eight and twelve thousand viewers within minutes after every program each week. Today multiple thousands are requesting counseling with one of our ordained ministers, educated at Ambassador College, regarding baptism, and thousands are being converted and receiving God's Holy Spirit, begetting them as very children of the Great GOD.
God has moved swiftly and with vitality and power to put HIS PEOPLE back on the track, more fully consecrated and dedicated and deeply committed to HIM and his Work since 1978. Tremendous strides have been made.
THANK YOU! THANK YOU! for your own dedication and zeal in prayer, financial sacrifice and even personal volunteer service on the part of many of you in this recent upsurge in the most vitally important and precious Work and activity on earth in these closing days of this age.
It has not been easy. This modern END-TIME Work of God was started when God knocked me down, as surely as he did to the apostle Paul, only in a different manner. He took away from me all material gains for which I had worked so diligently for 26 years in the magazine and newspaper business. He brought me to total defeat in the material world of mammon, challenged me, opened my eyes to his Truth, brought me to real repentance and FAITH in him --then began using me, continually revealing to me much biblical TRUTH that had been lost. From that point, starting 57 years ago, there has been opposition, persecution, hindrances. But on conversion, God had shown me that giving my life to him would mean not only hard work and perseverance, but opposition, persecution, troubles. I realized then I had to count the cost. I did, and accepted it. To use a paraphrase of Jesus, the rains descended, the floods came, the winds blew (at hurricane force), but the Work to which God had called me was FOUNDED ON THE ROCK OF CHRIST, and it survived the fiercest storms.
Co-Workers, I know much of this is due to your constant and prevailing PRAYERS, both for me, and for the Work.
Yes, it has survived and it has grown, and grown, and GROWN!
In looking ahead to the NEXT 50 years, it appears certain that the END OF THIS WORLD and the advent of the wonderful WORLD TOMORROW -- the KINGDOM OF GOD ruling the world in righteousness and PEACE -- shall have come. IT WON'T BE LONG NOW!
Meanwhile, nothing else in our lives matters -- really. It is often darkest just before dawn. This world will quickly now enter still DARKER times. The greatest world troubles of all history are immediately ahead. But then -- SUDDENLY! -- the DAWN of Christ's coming, and world PEACE at last! Soon Satan will be banished from mankind. Soon troubles will be replaced with joy, GLORY and ETERNAL LIFE in vigorous happiness! Till then, we must FIGHT ON! PRAY as never before.
With deep love, in Jesus' name,
Herbert W. Armstrong