There are so many things I need to write to you about, and I have only 30 minutes to write it. We are due to land in 35 minutes at Philadelphia, to pick up Mr. Rader who will be flying around the world with me on this trip.
We left Burbank airport (near Pasadena) Tuesday morning, after Orientation of new students last Thursday and Faculty Reception Thursday night. Had Orientation and Faculty Reception at Big Sandy yesterday. Will be at Orientation and Faculty Reception in England next Monday.
I am now flying in our new Grumman Gulfstream-2. It enables me, Garner Ted, and other top officials of the Work to do many things we could not otherwise. For example, I expect to start the Feast of Tabernacles at the new Feast site in France the first night, then speak twice — morning and afternoon — at the English site on the first Holy Day, leaving in this plane at 6:00 p.m., arriving United States east coast at 7:30 p.m., spending night at Mt. Pocono site, speaking there morning of the second day. Flying that afternoon to Jekyll Island, speaking there morning of third day, then on to Big Sandy in afternoon. Will be there two days, then on sixth day speak at Lake of the Ozarks site, leaving at 12:30 p.m., arriving out at Squaw Valley in time for afternoon service, and on to Penticton, Canada site same evening, where I will speak afternoon of Last Great Day. HOW'S THAT FOR FAST TRAVEL?
On this present trip, conferences have been set up for me with Mrs. Gandhi, Prime Minister of India at New Delhi, the Prime Minister of Singapore, the President of Indonesia at Djakarta, then 8 days at our offices in Australia and New Zealand, then conferences with the President of the Philippines, and preach at our Church in Manila, then conference with the Governor General of Hong Kong, then at Tokyo Prince Makasa, brother of the Emperor, has asked if he may arrange meeting with about 300 professors of Japanese universities for me to address — and will be guest of the Prince. Then overnight stop at Honolulu, where I hope to meet our brethren and perhaps speak to them, then Pasadena again. Things like this could never have been done without this plane. Will be in Tokyo on Feast of Trumpets, Pasadena on Day of Atonement, and in France to begin Feast of Tabernacles.
Now about that date — first week in 1972. Many Brethren have somehow gained the FALSE idea that we have said our Work will definitely be finished then, and we will at that time be taken to the place of safety and protection. WE HAVE NEVER SET THAT OR ANY OTHER DATE, except as a POSSIBLE one. There is NO PROPHECY pointing definitely to that date. There have been a number of INDICATIONS of it as a POSSIBLE date, and the first one we consider at all likely. Right now it looks to me as about a 50-50 chance, and at least 50-50 our Work may go on another 5 or 10 years. Some Brethren have gained the idea Mr. Meredith said DEFINITELY it would go on 5 or 10 more years. Mr. Meredith told me he merely tried to correct the idea of a January 1972 date as a CERTAINTY. IT IS NOT A CERTAINTY! No date is, but the January 1972 date is, in my judgment, STILL A POSSIBILITY.
Yesterday, for the second time in two or three days, Jordanian guerrillas made another attempt to assassinate King Hussein. This morning's news says Iraq is threatening to attack Jordan. Such an event might trigger a chain reaction that would cause events to happen SO FAST, that what we have thought possible for January, 1972 can easily yet happen. In fact, events could go on ANOTHER YEAR from now, with nothing startling happening, then suddenly lightning moves in Europe and the Middle East could bring everything to a climax by January 1-7, 1972.
IT STILL MAY HAPPEN THEN. Also it may not happen for 5 or 10 years. ABOVE ALL, REMEMBER WE CANNOT SET ANY DATES!
Now, Brethren I have to tell you that the Work is heading into a crisis again, unless we all move immediately to stop it. You came to the aid of God's Work splendidly last April. But for August, instead of a 30% gain in income as we had had for 33 years up until two years ago, it dropped 3% UNDER August, 1969.
Another thing, it seems MOST OF YOU have cut down on — or quit altogether — sending in SPECIAL OFFERINGS for the building and property fund. It has been WAY below last year. We have to plan to CARRY ON, right up to Christ's coming. HIS WORK CANNOT STOP! We still have to construct new buildings on all three campuses. SPECIAL PROPERTY FUND OFFERINGS ARE STILL VITALLY NECESSARY!
Also the 3rd tithe fund has been slacking off. The number of members is INCREASING, and these funds ought to increase also.
Brethren, we are in THE MOST SERIOUS TIMES of all human history. There are only a comparative FEW of us being used by the living CHRIST to finish His Work. WE MUST PUT HIS WORK FIRST BEFORE EVERYTHING. REMEMBER — this is not MY Work — it is GOD'S and He has called ALL OF US — YOU as well as me — to a great worldwide COLLECTIVE EFFORT. I know that many of you have been relaxing. If you are doing that, YOUR ETERNAL LIFE IS IN DANGER! We need an AWAKENING! We need to GET TO OUR KNEES!
We are now coming down close to the runway in Philadelphia. I have to stop. Brethren, PRAY as you never did before! Make some personal sacrifices. God's Work is MORE important!