GREETINGS, in Jesus' name: Time RACES on! New developments in God's great work are happening faster than I can report them to you! Truly, it's later than you think — time is beginning to run out on us — yet this great work is gaining momentum with breath-taking acceleration! Yes, short as time is, GOD'S WORK shall be finished!
I have SO MUCH to tell you! But first let me tell you the last thing that's happened. Just now — in this afternoon's mail — we have received our first letter from a regular listener from BEHIND THE IRON CURTAIN!
I have told you before that we are reaching behind the "iron curtain" with Christ's Gospel — even as far as Moscow — over Radio Luxembourg. But this is the first letter from a listener that has ever gotten past the Soviet censorship, and reached us. But this letter PROVES what I have known and told you before — we are sending Christ's MESSAGE every week behind the "iron curtain" — and the fact that this man in Poland listens every Monday night means that WE ARE BEING REGULARLY HEARD BY MANY IN RUSSIA PROPER. Co-Workers, the dollars YOU send pay for carrying this dynamic last Message from God to be heard possibly by many thousands IN RUSSIA, POLAND, AND OTHER SOVIET-CONTROLLED COUNTRIES!
I know you'll want to read this letter. Here it is:
"Mr. Herbert W. Armstrong. Dear Sir: I have been listening with great interest to your "The World Tomorrow" transmission over Radio Luxembourg 208 meters, 11:30 PM, and I gratefully accept your kind offer — please send me 1) the Plain Truth Magazine, 2) Special booklet on Christmas, and 3) please enroll me on your list of candidates for the Ambassador Bible Correspondence course. I think I can manage a half hour or more per day to make it worth while. I also would appreciate very much a copy of your excellent discourse transmitted Dec. 13th. Your argumentation appealed to me, and, as God wishes us to understand the truth properly and to believe wisely, I thought it might be a good idea to seek your help in this respect. However, I am not so sure that your mail will reach me, so I am asking my sister in U.S.A. to write you also in my behalf. Anyhow, I decided today to write you directly to save time as I am eager to search for the truth in that most beautiful of all books, the Bible. If it is God's will I will receive your mail. Thanking you in advance, and assuring you of my continued listening, I am , Yours faithfully." A Polish Medical Doctor. Name and town must be withheld for his protection.
I hope that letter gives you the same spontaneous thrill of joy it did me, and others here at headquarters.
And now here's the latest news of progress in the work. THANK YOU, dear Co-Workers — all of you who took to heart what I said in my last letter, and who PRAYED with me that the doors of the great station WLS would open to us for every night broad- casting.
God heard and answered our prayers! The program now is in its SECOND WEEK of every night broadcasting over this super-power station in Chicago — every night except Saturday, and the full seven different programs every week. WLS releases the regular Sunday Network program at the regular Network time, 11:30 AM for the Central time zone. Then Sunday night at 8:30, Central Time, a different program is broadcast over WLS, and Monday thru Friday at 10 PM Central time.
Letters are pouring in from almost all parts of the United States from these week-night broadcasts over WLS — even from Los Angeles — from Virginia, Pennsylvania, Wyoming, Texas, Manitoba and Ontario in Canada, besides Illinois, Iowa, Indiana, and all the Middle-West states. Most of these are from NEW listeners, but many letters are coming also from old listeners who live too far away from XEG or XELO for strong and clear reception, and tho, because they are closer to Chicago, are now getting the program over WLS strong and steady and clear.
I want you Co-Workers to realize what this means. Because the Federal Communications Commission has licensed many new U.S. stations in the past few years, in various parts of the country, which are on or close to the same wave-length as XEG or XELO, these great Mexican stations now have more interference than formerly. These Mexican stations are heard with good strong reception in most sections of Texas, New Mexico, Arizona, Oklahoma, Arkansas, Louisiana and Mississippi. But when we get farther north, into the great states of Kansas, Missouri, Illinois, Indiana, even Tennessee and Kentucky, and all the states north of these, and north-east, listeners complain of poor reception, interference, fading, squealing, etc. It is in these states that WLS now gives listeners good strong and clear listening.
Because of the territory it covers, XEG has given us far more listeners than any other station until now. In a sense, it has been the back-bone of this entire work. But the manager of XEG told me, when he heard we were probably going on WLS every night, that it is the one and ONLY station on the North American continent that will give us MORE listeners, and bring us MORE mail, than XEG.
Here's another VITAL point I want our Co-Workers to under- stand. In the past three years Television has cut into radio until radio sets are being listened to only by about 40% as many hours per week as formerly. Yet, while we may use television locally, in just a few cities where we have local ministers to follow up the work and visit viewers personally, television cannot now serve our purpose. this whole great work has been built by RADIO, followed up by the printed Word to those who are interested. And RADIO is only 40% as effective as it was three or four years ago.
DO YOU SEE WHAT THIS MEANS? If it had not been for the foresight of GOD, in opening the doors of the great ABC Network some 14 or 15 months ago, God's work would now be hopelessly skidding down in power and in scope, and it would be too late to stop it. By now the tithes and offerings from listeners would have fallen off so fatally that we would not have the money to do anything to stop the downward trend, and rescue and save the work. It would have been DOOMED, and soon, now, would have either come to an end or else at best to a very small work, unable to carry out Christ's commission of thundering HIS GOSPEL to ALL THE WORLD as a WITNESS TO ALL NATIONS.
Yes, dear Co-Workers that's what would have happened by NOW. But God Himself foresaw what was coming. Frankly I didn't. I take no credit. This is GOD'S work, and JESUS CHRIST is the living, active HEAD of it — I'm not — I'm only an instrument in His hands — and HE had the foreknowledge, the vision, the initiative, to PROTECT His work. It has been a great struggle to hold on to the Network. We have had to go thru a year's financial TIGHT SQUEEZE that has been gruelling. I have had to send you repeated letters of desperation. But, dear Co-Workers, we did hang on! We have, so far, squeezed thru. Being on the major Network gave us a prestige we never had before. Beside the Network stations, other super-power NBC and CBS stations began opening their doors to us, and "THE WORLD TOMORROW" went on WLW, WRVA, WWVA, and others. Now even NBC headquarters, Rockefeller Center, New York, have notified us, thru their Hollywood representatives and our advertising agency, that they expect soon to open up their very top stations to us. This never would have happened if we had not been on the Network.
In other words, while radio effectiveness is DOWN 60%, God has seen to it that HIS MESSAGE is now going out over so many MORE of the biggest stations, that WE NOW HAVE NOT LESS, BUT MORE LISTENERS THAN WE HAD THREE OR FOUR YEARS AGO.
What does this mean? It means that instead of going down hill, GOD'S WORK IS GROWING FASTER THAN EVER IN SCOPE AND POWER! Of course God has laid on us a hard struggle — the necessity to sacrifice and to PRAY, and to keep close to Him. BUT ALL THIS HAS BEEN FOR OUR GOOD, and it has saved and built stronger the WORK.
What does it mean? It proves again that THIS IS THE VERY WORK OF GOD, protected, guided, and blessed by GOD, bearing the FRUITS of God! This is no mere human enterprise. We are merely the human instruments IN THE VERY HANDS OF GOD!
HERE'S MORE BIG NEWS! Now, on the heels of WLS opening the doors to every-night broadcasting — and it was the FIRST TIME that any such major, top-ranking 50,000-watt station in the U.S.A. ever opened its doors to every-night religious broadcasting — the great station of the east and north-east, WWVA, also has opened the door to EVERY-NIGHT broadcasting of "The WORLD TOMORROW."
I have today ordered the program to go six nights a week — EVERY night except Saturday — on WWVA, beginning immediately — at, as I now understand the time, 10:15 PM Mondays thru Fridays; and probably having to continue the present Sunday night time of 11:05 PM, following five minutes' news.
Now many of you cannot hear WWVA — but let me explain. This station has a directional signal, beamed east, north-east, and south-east. If you live west of Ohio, West Virginia, and North Carolina, you probably can't tune it in. But WWVA will give us the LARGEST listening audience of any station in all the states east of Ohio, including West Virginia, Virginia and North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Maryland, Delaware, New Jersey, New York, and all New England and eastern Canada — THE MOST DENSELY-POPULATED AREA OF THE U.S. — the very populous territory we never reached until we went on the Network, where almost 50% of all the people of the United States live.
For more than a year we have been reaching this densely- populated section of the country by the Network stations — but only ONCE A WEEK. Now the people in THIS territory can hear the program every night, except Saturday!
MORE BIG NEWS! The nation's number one station — the first radio station to start broadcasting in America — KDKA, Pittsburgh, one of the greatest basic NBC stations, has opened the door to us, and in addition to our smaller network station in Pittsburgh, the world-wide Sunday program will now be heard all over Pennsylvania and Ohio on super-power KDKA at either 8 or 8:30 Sunday nights.
STILL MORE BIG NEWS! For our many listeners up in Seattle, Tacoma, and the Puget Sound area, we plan, as God opens the doors, to put the program on one of the big stations there EVERY day or every night. At present we are awaiting a decision from KVI, which is considering the matter of opening up 9:30 every night, or a time around 12:30 or 1, near the noon hour. Also the matter is being considered by KOMO, the NBC 50,000-watt station in Seattle. They have tentatively mentioned that the time of 10:30 PM might possibly be made available, but perhaps only four nights a week could be cleared. Our advertising agency is in contact with those stations, and we are making every effort to work something out for our many thousands of listeners in that area.
Meanwhile, the work is growing in England and the British Isles, in Europe, in the far-east, and around the world. But right now, with television competing with radio, we have had to strengthen and greatly enlarge our radio coverage in the United States, or the whole work would have stopped. Heart-touching letters are coming in now, in large bunches, from all over the world — especially from the British Isles. I can take space for only one, and I want that to be the letter just received from the woman who was the first one to be baptized of all our many thousands of listeners abroad — baptized last September near Crew, Cheshire, England, by Dick Armstrong.
"Crew, Cheshire, England. Dear Mr. Armstrong: Thank you for your letter inviting us to attend the Festival of Tabernacles. God willing, we shall both attend. Could you tell us a little more about it? How much will it cost? When it is held, how long it will take us to travel there, attend the Festival, and travel home again. We are quite prepared to live as economically as possible, and save all we can in order to pay the expenses ourselves. We don't feel very comfortable about letting anyone else share the expense and I am sure there must be some other people whose need for financial help is greater than ours. Best wishes to Mrs. Armstrong. Most sincerely."
THE CORRESPONDENCE COURSE: The second month's lessons of the new Ambassador College Bible Correspondence Course have now been mailed out to those who started out as pioneer students of this course — and that was many thousands of enrolled students. Others enrolling later, of course, start off from enrollment with Lesson Number ONE. The response to this course has been ENTHUSIASTIC! Many are writing me, like an 83-year old man in Mississippi, "This comes to express my great appreciation for the Bible Course you sent me. I do think it to be the greatest teaching on the Bible I ever saw. And this is the third course I've taken." Another writes: "Have never enjoyed anything so much." A woman in Iowa tells how she spent December 25th: "I spent about FOUR HOURS on it (the 1st lesson) December 25th. Every time I would look up the reference, I would read whole chapters, and I was so thrilled with the Book of James. Never before did I know what it contained. I am LEARNING, and so happy about it. Enclosed find $10.00 to help with getting this Course to those who have enrolled." I surely feel that, over a period of two to four years, IF YOU REALLY SPEND THE TIME ON IT AND STUDY, this Course will give you a thorough, well balanced, and UNDERSTANDING knowledge of the Bible. Yes, you can come to really UNDERSTAND and to KNOW the Bible better than 99% of all preachers. Never before has there been any Bible Course like this. Some of you Co-Workers have not yet enrolled. If you are one who has not, WHY DON'T YOU DO IT RIGHT NOW, while it's on your mind? Use the enclosed envelope. This Correspondence Course is one of the GREATEST leaps forward this work has ever taken!
JUST THINK how this great work of God is growing and expanding in power and influence! Now broadcasting around the world! The program now going out EVERY NIGHT, not only on the super-power Mexican stations, but also now on WLS and WWVA! These are beyond doubt the TWO most valuable radio stations in the United States, TO US, for every night broadcasting. The Correspondence Course now going out. Just THINK how much these things, all started in the last month or so, have increased the USEFULNESS and VALUE of this work to God and to millions of people!
Yes, TIME races on! This world is fast coming to its END! But GOD'S WORK races on, too! God is BLESSING IT — GUIDING it — PRESERVING IT — EXPANDING it — and thru it producing a BOUNTIFUL HARVEST! God bless you for your part in it!
MOST VITAL NEWS OF ALL! Now last, but not least, comes the most VITAL news I have to give you at this moment. Every-night broadcasting at the best available time on such super-powered stations with such vast audiences COSTS A LOT OF MONEY. Of course they are WORTH it. The most effective way — the cheapest way we can reach large masses of people with Christ's Message is by EVERY NIGHT broadcasting over these largest, most powerful stations. It is very low-cost — per thousand people reached. But it does reach SO MANY hundreds of thousands that it costs a great deal of money. I have started every-night broadcasting on WWVA on sheer faith. There is no doubt whatever in my mind that God opened this door. In just two months the people hear as many broadcasts, six nights a week, as they do in whole year on a Sunday-ONLY program. And people become MUCH MORE INTERESTED when they can hear the program EVERY NIGHT, just as most of you did.
So here's what this means: It means another TIGHT SQUEEZE and need for you Co-Workers to sacrifice and send in every dollar, or hundred dollars, or thousand dollars, that you possibly can for another three or four months. It means that THOUSANDS of those who have started listening in the past year on the Network in the eastern and New England states can NOW for the first time hear the program EVERY NIGHT. It means reaching about HALF of the population area of the United States, which we never reached before the Network, can now hear the true Message EVERY NIGHT. Just think what that means! IT'S TREMENDOUS! As I have been telling you for many months, all this additional radio power is now bringing in new Co-Workers — but these latest additions mean a continued financial tight squeeze for another three or four months.
Co-Workers, I have to ask you to RESPOND, more generously than ever — to STAND WITH Me, and to continue loyal and faithful, to the very limit of your ability. Time is growing shorter every day. Every week that passes means we have one less week left in which to FINISH the work God has given us to do. We must LEAP FORWARD with God's Work!
Customarily the last half of January means a falling off in tithes and offerings received at headquarters for God's Work. This month we DARE NOT have a falling off. KEEP ON PRAYING! I ask you now, before you lay this letter down, to go to a private room and close the door, and in private PRAY EARNESTLY for this work, and for me, and for all our other Co-Workers. I ask you Co-Workers to PRAY for one another, that you will not become lax or slack in your great responsibility for YOUR part in God's work. I ask you to spend more time in earnest prayer than ever before, and to keep it up! WE ARE ALSO NOW ENTERING THE TRYING AND TESTING TIME, TO TEST MANY OF US, to tempt us to grow careless and lukewarm, and slacken in our zeal, our willingness to sacrifice and go without things we have wanted, in order that there may be more money for God's precious Work! Once again, I have to ask you — send in by return mail, or at the very earliest possible, the largest amount God has made possible — whether that largest amount is only a dollar or two, or whether it may be several thousand dollars. Put generous OFFERINGS into God's work, beside the tithe — the TENTH or your income which belongs to God for His work. Please, now, GO AND PRAY FIRST. And keep on praying, and send in your tithes and offerings AS OFTEN as possible. GOD BLESS YOU RICHLY — as I know He will!