Analyses Today's News, with the Prophesies of THE WORLD TOMORROW
Box 111, Pasadena, California
Publishing: The PLAIN TRUTH a Magazine of UNDERSTANDING
Dear Co-Worker Family:
Here's GOOD NEWS! The impossible has been accomplished again! AMBASSADOR COLLEGE started on schedule, on the postponed date of October 8th. God performed another miracle for His work, and Ambassador, HIS college, is a living reality — another monument to FAITH, and the power of God, to deliver His people and His work from every obstacle — every seemingly impassable barrier!
Many I know, held back, doubting, saying; "I'm going to wait and see if he makes it — I'm going to hold up my support until I see whether God delivers him out of this crisis — I'll wait and see if this really IS God's work. If it is, it can't fail." And in turn I can't help wondering when the "doubting Thomases" will be convinced. Be that as it may, God has again proved, as He has proved repeatedly time and again over the fourteen long years of the existence of this work that it is HIS work — that He will never stop the work He has begun — that He will never leave us nor forsake us — that He will supply all our need, according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus — that, altho "many are the afflictions of the righteous, the Eternal DELIVERS HIM OUT OF THEM ALL!"
When I was suddenly confronted with the stunning notification that our main college building was NOT solid reinforced concrete, as had been represented — as we supposed and as architects and appraisers I had employed to inspect it for me had passed it — and that it did not meet the local building codes for an educational institution and MUST BE COMPLETELY FIREPROOFED THROUGHOUT THE INTERIOR — which meant new fireproof walls, and complete new conduits for electric wiring throughout — it seemed as if the bottom had dropped out of everything.
It seemed impossible, then, that the college could start this year at all. I know many of our co-workers thought it was impossible and gave up. But I didn't give up. I did spend days in prayer — fasting and prayer, seeking reassurance of God's will. I received it. I KNEW God had inspired the idea of starting Ambassador College. I KNEW He had performed miracles to open to us the unbelievably fine buildings and grounds, with its magnificently landscaped campus. I KNEW He had performed another miracle in providing us with such a superb faculty. I honestly doubt whether any college ever started with so fine a faculty — and no college can be better than its faculty.
After much figuring with architects and contractors, we finally signed up on an original estimate of $10,000 for this emergency job of reconstruction. By the time work had started the estimate had climbed to $13,000. I had about half that much on hand or promised by that time. On sheer faith, KNOWING this was of God, I started the work. The bills were payable weekly. Each week the contractor would ask for an advance of $1,000 or $700, or $1,500, toward the following week in addition to the current week's bill. Each week I was able to meet these requests, until we came down to the final week before college started. That week, in order to have the building ready on time, and while I was forced to be away, in Oregon, the work was pushed with a great deal of over- time, — and, as always, unforeseen extras had to be added on, and a final week's bill estimated to run about $3,000, skyrocketed up to $12,000, — so that the entire cost to date is $26,000, or two and half times the original estimated cost!
I arrived back in Pasadena from Oregon, with college having actually started two days before in my absence, to be presented this overwhelming bill, instead of an amount around $3,000 as the contractor had estimated the week before. It was as if the sun, moon, and stars had all come crashing down on my shoulders! I had the estimated $3,000, and paid that on account, leaving a balance of $9,000.
But THE COLLEGE WAS STARTED! Nothing, now, can prevent that! Ambassador is a going, living, institution! At first the contractor was unwilling to wait, even twenty four hours, for the balance of this reconstrucional cost. But, though it is working a most severe hardship on his business, has agreed to hold off a week or so until I can rush this letter to you co-workers, acquaint you with the facts, and manage somehow to raise the money now due. Of course all his bills are in the meantime being carefully checked and re-checked by our auditors.
Also, meantime, there has been no way to prevent getting behind with our large radio audience. Remember we use the most powerful stations in the hemisphere almost every night and every morning. They carry the true Gospel Message to a cumulative audience of FIVE MILLION PRECIOUS SOULS EVERY WEEK! By almost unbelievable economics, EVERY DOLLAR you place in our hands carries the true Message of Jesus Christ out to TWO THOUSAND PRECIOUS SOULS! That is AMAZING efficiency and economy in method! But five million is a lot of people, and the total cost of this work is great, so that it is costing thousands of dollars a month. Now, unless we catch up on payments to these radio stations immediately we are threatened with being put off the air! We cannot, MUST not, and WILL not fail! But this present emergency of this work is such that it is going to take the VERY UTMOST effort of every single co-worker to meet this tremendous test.
But let's look, for a moment, to the BRIGHTER SIDE of the picture.
"All things work together for GOOD, to them that love God." So says the Scripture, the Word of God. But COULD these terrible blows that have hit us with such crushing force bring us GOOD? Is that POSSIBLE? I confess I could not see how, at first — but NOW I see it so very plainly.
Listen! 1) this emergency reconstruction we were forced to rush thru so suddenly, while it cost $26,000, has actually increased the value of the property by perhaps a quarter million dollars! Before, there was perhaps question among real-estate and insurance people as to whether this property was worth $100,000 — although $400,000 was actually spent in building and landscaping it originally. But now it has blossomed out into a place of such breath-taking beauty, it is freely admitted by all that it is worth today not less than $350,000! It is now one of the most beautiful places in Southern California or anywhere in the world! And don't forget, THIS MONEY WE HAVE BEEN FORCED TO SPEND IN RECONSTRUCTION IS NOT THROWN AWAY — we still have it, and this greatly increased value of the property with it in the property itself! It has, then, been a most profitable investment forced upon us.
And, 2) being forced to meet this overwhelming test of faith has STRENGTHENED US — everyone who has helped, and had a part in it — it has added to the development of our character, and our faith, an amount that can't be measured in money.
And, 3) it has greatly reassured hundreds of thousands in our vast listening audience — strengthened THEIR faith — shown them that God IS able to deliver His people and His work from such sudden predicaments, proved again that this IS God's true work! Yes, it has worked together for the GOOD of THOUSANDS, and of all concerned! GOD'S WORD IS TRUE! Even God's work itself is a living testimony to God's power, and illustration of how God works!
True, this terrible emergency did force us to hold up publication of the college catalog, and delay accepting enrollments of students until about the time other colleges began. And this cut down student enrollment to a bare handful. But is this so tragic? NOT AT ALL! For ALL THINGS started of God thru human agencies must start SMALL — always the SMALLEST of all at the beginning. Always like the grain of mustard seed — the SMALLEST of all herbs, but it grows and grows until it becomes the GREATEST! God started the entire human race with ONE MAN. God started His nations ISRAEL, now a multitude of nations, with ONE MAN, Abraham. God started this present work the SMALLEST of all — out in a one- room country school house, without a dime of money — just on FAITH ALONE. He started the radio broadcasts the same way, on the SMALLEST station (100-watts), at a cost of $2.50 per week. But it has grown and grown, these fourteen years, until now it reaches FIVE MILLION precious souls a week, in THREE NATIONS — and plans are now being laid to carry it, later, into EVERY NATION as a witness, before the END comes!
Ambassador College has had to start smaller than any college I know. But our professors tell me they know of NONE which ever started off SO FINE — with such fine buildings and campus. I know none ever started with a finer faculty, or better students. We are AMAZED at the aptitude of our handful of students. They are superior students — young men and women of ABILITY, personality, and character, an I am proud of them! Ambassador College is off to such a splendid start, on such a high plane of excellence, that its GROWTH is assured!
Now other encouraging facts: We are now in the time of year, when radio waves reach out better again, and our radio audience is increasing rapidly! And while, during this terrible emergency, I have been simply unable to keep up with the broad- casts, and the stations have been forced to repeat programs by transcription, I feel sure, if you co-workers will now respond with YOUR utmost, and relieve me from some of this terrible financial pressure, that by doing MY utmost I can keep new, fresh, live, vigorous and more INTERESTING and spiritual broadcasts going out daily. At least I pledge you my utmost effort. Again by having moved our headquarters from Eugene to Pasadena, we are now in position to reduce operating overhead of this work by more than $1,000 per month, which can go into the college and enlarging the work. And still further good news, I find that in Los Angeles we can get an eight-page PLAIN TRUTH printed for $1,000 less than we had to pay in Eugene, and a corresponding larger saving on a sixteen-page number. This means, as I fervently hope, and believe, that at last we will be enabled to get out The PLAIN TRUTH regularly and MONTHLY! That has been my goal for years. STAND BY ME NOW, and I know it will be accomplished!
Now, let me say that establishing and operating a college costs a lot of money — yes, A LOT OF MONEY! The fact we have had to start with so few students, due to this terrible emergency, means the college cannot be supported this year by tuitions, and it is going to cost quite a sum to operate it. We have six high- ranking professors on full-time salary, two more on part-time. By next year — perhaps by the beginning of the 2nd semester in January — I hope student tuitions will carry a large part, if not all, of this load. In due time I feel sure the college will more than stand on its own feet financially. But it has just been born — it is still an infant, unable to stand on its own feet as yet!
A marvelous property adjoining our campus has been offered to us, and on most favorable terms — a 26-room place, already fire- proofed and meeting all codes — which will house 55 students. But due to this financial predicament thrust upon us, I have had to defer the purchase of this very necessary property, — and WILL defer it until we are in position to afford to acquire it. But it is absolutely VITAL to the future growth of Ambassador College, and we may already have lost it — three others were seriously considering the purchases of it a few days ago. The very wonderful opportunity awaiting us to acquire the magnificent five-story villa in Switzerland for the European home for the college and head- quarters for the work over there, also must be passed up for the time being. This, too, is essential to the future of this work. I am confident, by FAITH, that God will provide the means for these acquisitions in due time. I believe it is His will that they come to us for His work, and He will supply the need — but I DO want our co-workers to know and understand that we are NOT "getting ahead of God" — are NOT "biting off more than we can chew," but are going slow, launching out ONLY where we see plainly God has led, and I WILL NOT obligate ourselves for either of these necessary properties until God has made their acquisition possible. Enemies of God's work seem to delight in spreading false accusations and suspicions to discredit the work of God. So be assured that while I feel these properties are necessary to the future of the college, I will assume no obligation until financial circumstances warrant.
FIRST, we must finish working our way out of this immediate crisis.
Now, remember, we must immediately pay off $9,000 still due on this last weeks bill for the reconstruction of the college. I have met and paid $3,000 MORE than the largest estimate given me to raise for this purpose. This extra $9,000 was totally unforeseen and unforeseeable. We also must raise several thousand dollars within a week or two to bring our large radio stations up to date, OR BE THROWN OFF THE AIR!
These obligations are immediate and PRESSING — the emergency is DESPERATE! It MUST BE MET! And all beside the regular expenses of conducting this great work, and the college — several thousand dollars a month!
This means EVERY SINGLE CO-WORKER MUST NOW STRETCH TO THE VERY LIMIT OF SACRIFICE AND SELF-DENIAL, in a supreme effort, with me, to raise this money at once. We must ALL pitch in, to the limit of our ability! I must now ask YOU, and EVERY single co-worker, to rise to the supreme effort to send in the very largest sum you possibly can, as a very special emergency gift for this great work at this time. It's WORTH sacrificing for! This world is marching on at a faster and faster pace toward IT'S DOOM! Scientists say it's a matter of a few years only, until the new weapons now discovered will blast human life from this earth, unless some means can be found to prevent. NO HUMAN MEANS CAN PREVENT IT NOW! The world's ONLY HOPE is CHRIST! Your money — your property — won't be worth anything IF, and WHEN this happens! OUR COMMISSION IS TO WARN THIS NATION AND THE WORLD, before it is everlastingly TOO LATE. You, dear co-worker, SHARE IN THIS RESPONSIBILITY WITH ME, and will be called to account in the judgment for what you do now, the same as I.
Now, even at greatest sacrifice by all, I realize that we are not going to be able to raise all this money quickly enough by tithes, offerings, and gifts. A few of our co-workers have helped us up to now by LOANING us money they have felt they could not GIVE. Some have said they may never need to take the money back, but in case they do need it, they have our note and guarantee it will be promptly repaid. One or two had money saved up they may need a year or two from now, and they have placed this money at our disposal to help us over this terrible emergency, letting their money WORK FOR GOD now, to be repaid to them, if, and when they will need it, later. One has borrowed money on some property he owned, and we are making the payments to him to pay his bank, as the payments and interest come due. Some have sold bonds, or securities, and loaned us the cash, to be paid back in the manner that fits the needs of each one in each case. We need now to borrow several thousand dollars more on this basis. In each case I give the lender a note, binding the Radio Church of God, incorporated, to repay on whatever terms are agreed upon, as fit the need of the lender. Some need it back in large sums — $300 per month, or even in sums of $500. Some on a basis of $25, or $50, or $100 per month, or a stated sum each quarter. To assure our ability to repay all such loans when due, we have established, and are building on God's tithing plan (tithing 10% of the income of this work, for the time being, and until a sufficient sum is thus accumulated), a special cash surplus fund, which is kept in a special and separate bank account, and this surplus fund is being kept at sufficient size to guarantee our ability to meet all such commitments we have been forced to make in this emergency. Now understand, we do not expect to have to repay these loans out of this surplus fund, but out of regular income of this work, later. But we are establishing this surplus fund as an extra safety precaution to protect our co-workers who loan money to this work, and to GUARANTEE that if we are not at the time able to repay the money out of regular funds, we have this surplus from which to draw. Later, we expect to be able to write annuities to those who will place sums in the college, as most colleges and universities do — but for that we must be specially licensed, and so for the present we are accepting all sums loaned on a straight loan basis, giving a plain note therefor.
Dear Co-Worker, Mrs. Armstrong and I have had to suffer more than I can describe thru this crisis. A mother suffers that her child may be born. We have SUFFERED, as you will never realize, that this fine and splendid college might be born. There is great JOY in the success of meeting this emergency — and both the work, and the college, are LIVING, and proceeding on, and growing! But the terrible pressure is still on me, as never before.
So now I must ask EVERY ONE OF YOU to take this matter IMMEDIATELY to your heavenly Father in earnest, heart-yielding PRAYER! Ask God what He would have YOU do! Some of you have not sent in ONE CENT for this work for six months, or a year. If every one of you who have not helped for that long a time will now send only one or two dollars, each, it will help more than you'll ever know! Many of you, on the other hand, have done your very UTMOST — and I must ask you NOT TO LET UP NOW, but to still stand by me, loyally, faithfully, to the very limit. Even the widow's mites are needed now, as never before!
If you can LOAN the work anywhere from one to ten thousand dollars — or even $500 or less, please SEND THE MONEY AT ONCE AIR- MAIL, stating in your letter how you wish to be repaid — whether beginning now, or a year or two or more from now — whether by the month, or quarter, or how — and in what amounts each payment. If you want interest, tell me what rate. As a minister of Jesus Christ I must say to you that God, in His Word, forbids Christians to receive interest from Christians — the whole interest and usury system is condemned in the Bible. But Israel was permitted to PAY interest, and even to RECEIVE it from Gentiles, so a Christian can PAY it if demanded, or receive it from a non-Christian, if he deems that circumstances warrant. I could never RECEIVE interest from any of you, but God does permit me to PAY it if you, after I have mentioned this Bible teaching, desire it — so just state your own wishes in the matter. So if you can borrow money FOR us on some security you have — on property, or on securities or other investments — or if you have bonds to sell, or savings you can put to work for God, getting it back, if and when you need it, please send the money at once by return mail, stating how you want it repaid, and I will immediately make out a note binding our corporation to repay it on whatever terms you state, and mail it to you. And WITH it, send the largest offering you can GIVE.
And all others, please RUSH your tithes, and most liberal offerings, by return air-mail. Use the enclosed reply envelope. This situation is DESPERATE!
And REMEMBER — WE HAVE MOVED TO PASADENA! Send all mail hereafter to Box 111 (same box number), PASADENA, CALIFORNIA. Please rush it — the emergency is the most serious we ever faced — and may GOD BLESS YOU for your great part in His work. Remember Christ is coming QUICKLY — and HIS REWARD IS WITH HIM, to give to every servant ACCORDING AS HIS WORK SHALL BE! God bless you!
With AMBASSADOR COLLEGE now a reality — with the best radio season here again, with facilities for issuing The PLAIN TRUTH regularly at last, at a saving of over $1,000 per issue in printing costs, this work now TAKES ON VIGOROUS NEW LIFE — it now is ready to take a new leap ahead! Let's all get together, now, and see God's work go forward!
Sincerely, in Jesus' name, Herbert W. Armstrong
NEW ADDRESS: HERBERT W. ARMSTRONG BOX 111 PASADENA, CALIFORNIA