|What You Have Not Seen Before on Ambassador College Campus
What Many Didn't Know
See PDF for Ambassador College Campus Pictures
You have seen pictures of very fine buildings and magnificently landscaped grounds on Ambassador College campuses. But here are FACTS you didn't know-facts and pictures that will open your eyes. Here are pictures literally from "the other side of the tracks."
SOME CO-WORKERS APPARENTLY THINK Ambassador College doesn't really need any more new buildings. This has harmed Christ's GOSPEL WORKbecause it has affected special voluntary offerings for the Property or Building Fund.
Every picture we have published of our three college campuses has, naturally, "put our best foot forward." And having seen only our finest, some seem to have drawn the false conclusion that now we have all we need. Frankly, Co-Workers, I think you should know that I wouldn't mislead you.
Our Campuses are beautiful Yes indeed! But they are not yet complete. As the Gospel Work of God grows, our campuses must expand! And the expanded areas are NOT as yet so beautiful!
But I have often said that, "what you don't know, you don't know that you don't know."
They say one picture is worth ten thousand words. So I'm going to give several thousand words' worth of pictures. I think it's about time our Co-Workers in God's Work come to realize HOW MUCH we DO need additional buildings additional SPACE in which to work, in carrying on the great Worldwide WORK OF GOD. And just WHY that Work can't keep on growing, or fulfilling the mission to which the Living Christ has called and commissioned us UNLESS we DO immediately build additional buildings!
One writes: "Why don't you spend all your time and money just PREACHING THE GOSPEL, instead of building new buildings?" He doesn't realize that the radio broadcast is only the first part of preaching the Gospel. We are NOT ALLOWED to preach the WHOLE Gospel over the air! When we purchase TIME on a radio station, the company owning the station are allowing us to take over and USE, for a half hour, THEIR PROPERTY, and THEIR FACILITIES, worth from one to ten or more million dollars. Many listeners would protest if we put the WHOLE TRUTH on the air.
The world has been DECEIVED with a false gospel. If we put the WHOLE TRUTH on the air, it would offend many. Angry protests would come into the station. Pressure would be brought to put us off the air.
Remember, we don't OWN the radio stations. We can use THEIR property and THEIR facilities only AS FAR AS they will allow. Besides, if we simply choke off listeners with Christ's TRUTH which is TOO STRONG for them at first make listeners furious and angry, we would never get their minds open to THE TRUTH !
Yet we MUST preach THE WHOLE TRUTH. We DO preach the WHOLE truth! But we can't put it all ON THE AIR! Then HOW do we do it?
We proclaim over the air that which will arouse INTEREST, attract listeners get millions and millions of people to LISTEN. As they become interested in things which do NOT offend them, they write in for The PLAIN TRUTH, and booklets for MORE things that INTEREST them. It is BY THIS MEANS getting in personal touch with them that we give them what we CAN'T get to them by radio.
Radio alone IS NOT COMPLETE! SO we receive 3,000 to 5,000 letters every day more than 100,000 letters a month! NOW HOW would YOU read and answer all those letters, without a ROOM, or OFFICE, or place to work? How would You print more than a million copies of a magazine like The PLAIN TRUTH, and tons and tons of booklets, and thousands of copies of the Bible CORRESPONDENCE COURSE, without buildings and rooms for your presses, folding machines, and vast amounts of equipment we have to use? How would YOU write the articles, and edit and PLAN a magazine, lay out the pages, arrange the pictures, etc., without A PLACE TO WORK IN?
And could YOU just one person read 3,500 letters every day, answer them, do all this printing, and mailing carload after carload (I mean large freight cars) of literature every month alone by yourself?
Evidently some few think I do all that alone by myself. Well, I did, ONCE with only Mrs. Armstrong's help. But then only a FEW people heard the broadcast only a FEW wrote in we printed only a FEW copies of The PLAIN TRUTH and it was then a little homemade few sheets of mimeographed paper.
RIGHT HERE AT PASADENA HEADQUARTERS, we have to employ HUNDREDS many hundreds of people to do all this work, helping to PREACH THE GOSPEL! They have to have rooms, offices, printing plants BUILDINGS to WORK IN TO PREACH THE GOSPEL!
And in twenty years, on this Pasadena campus, we have only built TWO new buildings!
Co-Workers, it's about time you come to know some things YOU HAVEN'T KNOWN about GOD'S WORK!
It is emphatically NOT a matter of wanting unneeded finer things or a matter of unwise planning or extravagance. I know of no other work or activity on earth as efficiently conducted or where every dollar accomplishes so MUCH!
I want you to know the TRUTH!
I want you to SEE, as far as cameras can show you, just how jammed up, packed in, and crowded we are, crawling all over one another trying to do God's Work with insufficient space here at Headquarters. And the situation is just as bad at the other two campuses. The space we now have may be sufficient to have conducted a Work the size this Work was, five or six years ago. What we had then was not sufficient THEN. Of course we have acquired additional property and some houses or old buildings since then but not nearly enough, because THE WORK expands faster than our property and building expansion program does.
This great WORK OF GOD actually DOUBLES in size and scope every two years and nine months - just a trifle under 30% every year. It has been growing at that unheard-of rate for 33 1/2 years!
Started the Smallest
As I have said many times, when GOD Himself does something, solely by His own great power, He does it in a stupendous, mighty, and perfect way. Like, for instance, the creation of the sun, the earth, the vast universe. But when He does something through humans, if it truly is GOD'S doing, the humans must start the very smallest like the grain of mustard seed but it continues to grow, and grow, until it becomes the GREATEST.
That is the way God's Work, to which He has called us, was started, and it now is becoming comparatively very great!
It started on one smallest-powered radio station, with 100 watts of radio power per week. It has now grown to some 45 MILLION watts per week, more than any other radio program on earth!
The PLAIN TRUTH started a tiny homemade mimeographed "magazine," with not more than 250 copies circulation, but has grown into what many readers term the world's finest magazine, and one of the comparatively FEW magazines on the whole earth having more than A MILLION copies circulation!
And what about office space for the conduct of the Work? Mrs. Armstrong and I started, beginning 1934, with a tiny office which was an anteroom in an old former Masonic Temple hall. I had engaged this second-floor hall for evangelistic meetings at a rental of $10 a month, and when I had to give up the hall and rent another after two months, the owner allowed me to continue using the little anteroom "office" free.
Later, he required the use of the room, and offered me the use of a small inside room in the Hampton Building, which he owned, for $5 per month. This was the little room that had no windows, nor outside light and no ventilation except a transom over a locked door leading to a stale, smoke filled room used for night meetings of a labor union. We used a couple of old scratched-up tables for desks, and cardboard cartons obtained free at a grocery store for filing cabinets.
...but Grew Big
But today God's Work at Headquarters employs hundreds of people, using hundreds of steel filing cabinets, typewriters, printing presses even a computer in offices that long ago outgrew the campus, and have spilled over into bedrooms in old houses, and old buildings as far as almost a mile from the campus.
Mrs. Armstrong and I did not gripe or complain about our lack of sufficient office space at the start of this Work. We were just THANKFUL for what we had, and the privilege of being used of God in His Work. Our department heads, officials, secretaries, and workers do not gripe or complain today because of the over-crowded condition.
But GOD'S WORK IS BEING HAMPERED, its progress impeded and IT CANNOT GROW unless we can build additional buildings IMMEDIATELY!
They are needed to preach the gospel!
So I have decided to show you WHY God's Work cannot grow any further UNLESS and UNTIL we do have some new buildings.
I think you should have enough FAITH IN THE LIVING JESUS CHRIST, who is the HEAD of this great Work of God and who GUIDES, DIRECTS, and blesses it to know that He would not put or leave a man at the earthly head of HIS WORK who would mislead or deceive you; or who would have such bad judgment that he would embark on any unneeded or extravagant spending spree.
Your Part in God's Work
Nevertheless, I want you to KNOW just how serious is this need of more office space, more work space. I realize that, never having seen this side of the picture not knowing many of these facts and existing conditions under which we work but having seen only pictures of the beautiful, even fabulous properties God has given us, you are in no position to judge whether there is real need. And of course that is not your responsibility or your part in the Work but I'd like you to know, anyway.
In showing you these not-so-pretty pictures, and this impossible over-crowded condition under which we are struggling to carry on God's Work, I hope it will help you to realize that if I write and tell you there is a NEED, YOU may be sure THERE IS A NEED! I DO know the facts, and I DON'T lie to you or mislead you.
First, let me tell you again how God maneuvered circumstances so that some fine and even fabulous properties came into our hands for His Work, at little or no actual cost.
In November, 1946, I was led providentially to our first-acquired block of property. On it stands the present out- grown Administration Building today not one-twentieth large enough the Library building and the "Garden Theatre" with its beautiful Tempietto as a stage at one end and the pergola at the other, beside a few pools and fountains.
The Administration building originally had been a barn in the horse-and-buggy days. There were horse stables below, and haymow above. When automobiles came, the central part of the ground floor was converted into a 4-car garage, with servants' living quarters on each end and on the second floor. That's the way it was when we bought it.
But, by turning this into the office building for God's Work with our printing shop, our mail-reading room and mailing list and addressing machines, beside Administration offices for the College and by putting our own radio recording studio in the library building (where it still is jammed and packed in unbelievable manner!!!) we saved $1,100 per month we had been spending up in Eugene, Oregon, on office rent and broadcast recordings. We obtained the property with NO down payment, and $1,000 per month payments.
Thus we came into OWNERSHIP of this beautiful property with majestically landscaped grounds in a manner just like BEING PAID $100 PER MONTH to accept and own it! In other words, it cost us $100 per month LESS than NOTHING! Of course there was remodeling to be done and the grounds to be cleared of weeds.
That was the start.
Our four pioneer students had to find their own living quarters. They found low-cost furnished rooms. They had to feed themselves in these bedrooms as best they could for they could not afford to eat at restaurants.
Next property acquisition was Mayfair, a beautiful and proud old 3-story English Tudor mansion. It was acquired at very low price, with very low down payment. It was then a high-class rooming house. For a year we retained several of the roomers. It was an income-producing property NOT AN EXPENSE!
Fabulous Properties Like a Gift
In 1956 the most fabulous property in Pasadena came to us almost a gift. Literally it had been offered as a gift only the prospective donors failed to come up with the money. This was explained a month ago in the Autobiography in The PLAIN TRUTH. Anyway, we obtained it at a cost lower than the ornate iron fence around the Orange Grove Boulevard front would cost today! It was easily worth more than ten times what it cost us.
No furniture or furnishings were included in the purchase except one large, heavy, carved rosewood center table in the Rosewood room. I think they found it too heavy to move out. Afterward, I bargained for the purchase of the really fabulous solid mahogany, ornately carved, round dining table, and massive high-backed, hand-tooled, leather-covered dining chairs a dozen of them that had been designed and built just for the dining room of this building at the time of original construction. This table is so heavy it takes seven men to lift and carry it.
How many thousands of dollars it would take to have such furniture made today I have no idea. Of course it would have to be custom manufactured all by hand there's certainly nothing like it in any furniture store. Anyway I do know what I paid for the table, fine bevelled mirror top and all, including the great chairs exactly $100. That is not a misprint. One hundred dollars! That's all!
There was a 200-foot-wide strip of property between this Merritt mansion and what was then our campus. And on this property was a very superb mansion of Mediterranean-type architecture. This we needed badly as a student residence for college women. We expected to have to pay a certain sum if, indeed, the owners ever became willing to sell. Suddenly they offered it to us for exactly ONE-THIRD of what we believed would be the lowest price the owners would consider!
...even in England
I have written before of how the fabulous Memorial Hall, with its several acres of grounds-beautiful grounds with the choicest Cedars of Lebanon left in the world, so far as we know, and with the ornate formal garden in the front with its costly giant urns, the aviary, the fabulous rose garden, the exotic, superbly beautiful Japanese Garden, the dazzlingly colorful English sunken garden, the several greenhouses and the big building as fine as the fabulous Merritt mansion in Pasadena all this came to us for $22,400. That sounds incredible, I know! But this is GOD'S WORK and He guides and BLESSES IT!
Of course all these properties had been neglected and let go, so far as spic-and-span maintenance is concerned overgrown with weeds. We had to clean them up, and even do some repairing but that expense was negligible compared to present appraisal valuation.
You have probably read all this before. But I want you o-Workers to REALIZE how God Himself set the CHARACTER STANDARD for the physical properties of His COLLEGE and His earthly head- quarters where His WORK is conducted.
These truly fine and magnificent properties came PROVIDENTIALLY! They do not represent reckless management. They Do represent THE KIND of properties the Living CHRIST has shown us HE WANTS for His WORK!
Co-Workers, we need to realize IT IS NOT WRONG to have the finer things IF one can afford them. In our case God put these finer properties in our hands at LESS COST than any cheap, poorly constructed, unsightly properties (giving us the same usable space) could have been purchased for!
How GOD Lives
Do you think God WANTS us to live in slums, ghettos, or in drab, depressing, UNbeautiful surroundings? He does NOT want us to live beyond our means but He does want us to use our minds actively and alertly, and to work hard and faithfully, and to improve our surroundings even as we improve our spiritual character.
Did you ever stop to think about how GOD lives in what kind of environment what kind of surroundings? And our Living High Priest Jesus Christ is right now in that GLORIOUS environment, at the right hand of the Father, on His (the Father's) THRONE. Read it in the 4th chapter of Revelation the 1st of Ezekiel. There is flashing brightness, brilliance, all the colors of the rainbow in dazzling radiance the sparkling brilliance of the rarest, costliest stones and of course, since it is not MATERIAL, but spiritual and glorious, our minds simply cannot picture the glorified splendor of it probably millions of times more beautiful than anything we mortals have ever seen!
Is it so strange, then, that God has providentially maneuvered circumstances so as to set His earthly headquarters of His Work in an environment that is comparatively nice and beautiful, as things go here on earth?
Other Side of Picture
But all parts of our campuses are not beautiful and fabulous! Not by any means!
About half of our Pasadena campus was in an area that was the nearest thing Pasadena had to a slum section. In order for the college to grow for GOD'S WORK to grow we had to buy many dozens of small 40- or 50-foot-wide properties, most with two houses on them, one behind the other and these houses all very old, run-down, dilapidated.
WE DID NOT PUBLISH PICTURES OF THESE PROPERTIES!
For years we had to use most of these unsightly houses for offices for student dormitories even for school classrooms. Of course we cleaned them up. We gave them some paint, and even a slight amount of repair to last until we could erect needed new buildings and demolish them.
Our new physical education facility gym, natatorium, handball courts, etc., and baseball diamond this occupies one square block which had some 16 or 18 of these old small houses.
The new Student Center building, with its new dining hall, social center, student bookstore, student post office, student barbershop, faculty dining room and lounge this building occupies a site formerly occupied by another 18 or 20 small semi-slum houses.
How Old Houses Used
In fact, Garner Ted Armstrong lived a few years in one of them then David Jon Hill lived there a while, and then visiting ministers were housed there. A two-story corner house next door was a men's dorm for years. Three of these houses on that property were used as classrooms.
We have had to put every available inch of floor space to active USE. But, naturally we have not published pictures of these!
In two very old but larger houses, which Mr. Merritt had moved onto a vacant property one block north in this area, we housed the offices of the Transportation Department, the campus barbershop, the campus first aid and infirmary, the News Bureau, our legal office, and others. The barbershop is now in the new Student Center building (Dining Hall), and the Transportation Department, first aid and infirmary, have been moved into other old buildings (to be wrecked later). The legal office, together with Church Administration offices, has been moved into rented space, off campus and over a drugstore. The News Bureau has been moved into a new temporary, portable building. And those two larger old houses from which they moved have been demolished and cleared away, to make room for the new Administration Building which WE HOPE we may begin constructing next year.
The Printing Plant
Our printing plant has outgrown its quarters, and been moved to larger (but old) buildings four times in the last nine years. Today the main printing plant, housing the presses, folding machines and mailing room, are in a remodeled former lumber shed which a new freeway will replace; the composing and typesetting room is in another leased building a block and a half away; and the bindery in still another building almost a mile away from the campus.
We are FORCED to construct, off campus, and the other side of the new soon-to-be-built freeway, a new printing plant of 170,000 square feet of floor space. A second big web-fed press is on order in England, due to arrive late next fall.
Since we moved into our present main printing plant, the State Highway Commission has routed the new freeway to go right through it! We MUST MOVE IT!
If we are to continue publishing The PLAIN TRUTH, books and booklets, and the Correspondence Course, the printing plant must expand. That, with the broadcasting, is the very lifeblood of God's Work!
Architects are now working on plans for this new printing plant put it all under one roof. Almost half of it will be housed in an older existing building about 70,000 square feet which we have purchased (but do not yet have possession).
We have acquired most of the remainder of a whole square block for this purpose. It, also, is in this semi-slum area, but across the Union Pacific tracks, and across from the soon-to-be- constructed new freeway. In this area, now being upgraded into a modern, light manufacturing district, we can build with low-cost- type construction.
It is vital that the printing plant be housed all under one roof. It is a MOST important phase of God's Work. And our Pasadena printing plant is now one of the largest on the west coast of the United States.
Also in this area we MUST construct a new television studio IF we are to go on television coast to coast in the U.S. and Canada. In a way, we are already on T.V.. But we are only on a minor UHF station channel 22 in Los Angeles and it has very few viewers. We are not now equipped to produce programs of a quality that the VHF stations would accept (channels 2 to 13). Equipment to produce that kind of programs could not be housed in present quarters MUST be in a new T.V. studio.
However, the present programs on Channel 22 are giving Garner Ted Armstrong and our technical production crew the experience they need to produce programs of a quality that the VHF stations will accept. The transition from radio to T.V. requires some very difficult adjusting, and takes time.
But I can tell you this: My son is making splendid progress, and when you do see him on T.V. all over the country, the program will be one of the highest rated in its category. And I think you'll see that Garner Ted Armstrong is a more effective speaker on television than the leading network newscasters.
Only TWO So Far
Some of our Co-Workers seem to have the idea that we are building all sorts of new buildings. That is not true.
In the TWENTY YEARS since Ambassador College was founded, we have built on the Pasadena campus ONLY TWO NEW BUILDINGS the Physical Education facility and the Student Center building. Except for those, we have had to get along in a makeshift manner with the old buildings, constructed between the 90's and 1908.
Time Too Short?
Another point some need to be straightened out on is WHY we need new buildings, with TIME so short.
Some WHO DO NOT UNDERSTAND are saying, "Well, if we have only about four and a half more years to go, why build any more new buildings?"
Well LISTEN! It's time for us to UNDERSTAND THE TRUTH!
First, we cannot be SURE of only 4 1/2 more years. We cannot set dates and be SURE! We think that probably that is all the time we have left.
But, first, WE MUST ACCOMPLISH MORE IN THAT 4 1/2 YEARS if that is all we have THAN IN THE PAST 33 1/2 YEARS SINCE THIS WORK STARTED! And that is now possible because there are more of us bigger organization now.
We CANNOT expand the Work as it MUST expand to fulfill our great commission UNLESS we can construct more buildings QUICKLY!
This great Work of God MUST grow to TWICE the size it now is, in the next 2 3/4 years. By the end of 4 1/2 years IT MUST BECOME ALMOST FOUR TIMES its present size!
THAT IS IMPOSSIBLE IF we are to lay down on the job now. This Work cannot grow ANY bigger, without more buildings. We have gone as far as we can go with what we have!
What Will Christ Say to You?
What is the living glorified CHRIST going to say to YOU, when He comes to call YOU to account and you have to FACE HIM? Is He going to ask YOU, "Why did you QUIT, right at the most important time of all? WHY did you LAY DOWN ON THE JOB, give up and quit just when the race was almost run?" (I Cor. 9:24 and Heb. 12:1 please read.)
What would you think of a man in a mile race who was running so well he was just about to WIN the race and set a new world record and then, half way through the "gun lap" (the last lap), he just quit running and sat down to rest and say, "Ho Hum!"
Jesus Christ has called and commissioned YOU AND ME to PREACH His WORD HIS TRUE GOSPEL and to give this dying world gospel "meat in due season!" The MOST IMPORTANT SEASON of all is right NOW and these next 4 1/2 years, or whatever time is left, JUST BEFORE Christ's coming!
The closer we get to THE HOUR of His coming, the MORE IMPORTANT it is that we feed this spiritually starved world Christ's MEAT IN THIS DUE SEASON!
The Living HEAD of THIS WORK, Jesus Christ, says to us: "Therefore be ye also ready: for in such an hour as ye think not the Son of man cometh. WHO, then, is a faithful and wise servant, whom his Lord hath made ruler over his household, to give them meat in due season? Blessed is that servant whom his Lord when He cometh shall find so doing!" (Mat. 24: 44-46.)
Will He find YOU "so doing"?
Or will He find us saying, "Well Lord, I thought there was so little time left we didn't need to keep right on in your Work. I thought it was now so late, we might as well lay down on the job, give up and QUIT!"
No Time Now to Quit
Co-Workers, I'd be afraid to have Him find ME laying down on the job, making the wretched excuse I thought there was too little time left!
Brethren, if God allows me to live right up to His coming, He is going to find me so DOING!
If we knew Christ should come TOMORROW, and we needed a new building for His Work, and today was the day to start building it, I would break ground and start that new building on its way TODAY! And I would be busy building it tomorrow as I would be caught up to meet Him!
Local Church Attendance Not Enough
Today Satan is going about, seeking whom he may overthrow and devour. Satan would like to devour YOU, as one individual member of the Body of Christ! He will do everything in his power to cause you to lose out!
Satan is clever subtle. He has alienated the world as a whole from Christ by DECEPTION! He has this whole world DECEIVED!
But he knows he can't deceive you and me once we really understand and know the TRUTH! So he tries to overthrow us by OTHER MEANS!
One of his snares he sets for you is to get you all wrapped up in just your local activities!
Headquarters seems so far away. After all, isn't that just Mr. Armstrong's work?
Answer: NO! It is not just my work it is GOD'S WORK, into which He has called YOU as well as me! I have told you many times that all I could do by myself was hitchhike out to a country one- room schoolhouse and preach to 40 people. It is what YOU Co-Workers do, with your prayers, your tithes and offerings, and your interest in GOD's WORK AT HEADQUARTERS that makes it possible now for Garner Ted Armstrong and me to preach to more than FORTY MILLION PEOPLE every week, all over the whole earth!
And I repeat again: In 33 1/2 years of this Work, I have noticed that those who grow spiritually are those whose hearts and interest are in THE WORK GOD'S WORK, carried on from Pasadena Headquarters! And those who individually fell away, lost out (and will go into a LAKE OF FIRE instead of the Kingdom of God) were those who were interested only in their own personal spiritual development, and had no interest in getting the gospel to the world!
In the churches of this world those deceived by Satan their local church is more of a social club than anything else. Satan would like to get all you Co-Workers into that trap. Your NUMBER ONE INTEREST ought to be GOD'S GREAT WORK AS A WHOLE, carried on from Pasadena Headquarters, if you are to make it into God's glorious Kingdom!
Students Have Worked
The Pasadena campus of Ambassador College is MUCH MORE than just a college for students. It is also HEADQUARTERS for GOD'S WORK!
I mentioned earlier in this article how we have had to clean up old properties, and even remodel many. It now occurs to me that perhaps we never have explained to you Co-Workers all over the world just HOW most of that has been done.
We maintain here a good-sized organization a major Division of the whole Headquarters organization, directed by Mr. Jack Elliott. Under him are architects on our own staff, a professional interior decorator, planners, a whole construction department, with carpenters, painters, plumbers, electricians, cabinetmakers, etc. Then also there is a large maintenance crew janitors, gardeners, repairmen. While foremen and department heads are full-time men, MANY STUDENTS are employed part time in this Division.
In the early days of the college, MOST of the repair work, and "restoring the old places," was done by STUDENTS outside of class hours. Mr. Roderick Meredith, Dr. Herman Hoeh, Dick Armstrong, Raymond McNair, others, worked hard on these jobs. Our students help IN THE WORK more than you realize with their tithes and offerings, their personal labor, their prayers WHILE they are studying to prepare themselves for full-time responsibilities in THE WORK! Their HEARTS ARE IN IT, just as YOURS must be!
NOT Too Late
If some of you have been listening to Satan saying it is now too late to think of new buildings thinking that there just isn't enough time left then LISTEN TO THIS!
I say we must accomplish more in the Work in the next 4 1/2 years than in the last 33 1/2. How can that be done?
Let me explain HOW! And WHY!
The first year of this 33 1/2 years of the Work, Christ directed just myself and Mrs. Armstrong. There was no organization. After two or three years we added a part-time stenographer still going to business college. Little by little, the staff around us grew. By 1947, when we moved the Headquarters from Eugene, Oregon, to Pasadena, we had a staff of about 15. All those years we were reaching a tiny audience of a very FEW people.
It has grown in organization, size of operation, number of people reached, at a rate of about 27 1/2% increase per year! Almost 30%!!!!
The power and effectiveness of this Work of GOD accomplishes MORE in ONE MONTH, now, than it did in the first SEVERAL YEARS COMBINED! That's why we can and MUST accomplish more in 4 1/2 years than the past 33 l/2!
And it should become almost FOUR TIMES larger in the year 1971 than it is this year! That means we MUST HAVE space to work in!
Financing New Buildings!
NEARLY ALL of our regular income is committed to BROADCASTING, PUBLISHING, receiving a HUGE mail, sending out requested literature by the tons, answering letters, and ministering to people all over the world who request a personal visit and counsel by a minister. Beside conducting the three college campuses, training more people for the growing Work!
Sure, we COULD HAVE started the desperately needed new Administration Building several months ago. But if I had used that kind of judgment, and said, "Go ahead," we would have had to cancel out a number of radio stations perhaps miss one or two numbers of The PLAIN TRUTH, and/or use up necessary reserves and ruin our financial position.
Actually, some months back, Mr. Albert Portune, head of the financial and business administration of the Work, came to my office and said: "Mr. Armstrong, I don't see how this Work can continue to function and grow unless we can start construction immediately on the new Administration Building. We have carefully gone over and rechecked the budget. We can start the building at once, and pay for it but if we do, it means cancelling out several important radio stations a few million people would not hear the Gospel any more. It would mean cutting down other important activities in God's Work. It would give us a black eye at the bank, and ruin our credit standing, because it would so greatly reduce, or wipe out, our reserves."
I have to make all such momentous decisions.
True, God has now provided for His Work VERY ABLE, knowledgeable, experienced, dedicated, consecrated and expert executives, to bring me ALL THE FACTS, and counsel with me. But the final decision is MINE! This is one reason I NEED YOUR CONSTANT PRAYERS, that God will give me wisdom, and guide me in making RIGHT DECISIONS HIS decisions, as HE directs His Work!
I knew what was GOD'S decision and I made it.
"We shall not cause God's Work to go backward, going off radio stations. Nor will we reduce our reserves or injure our fine financial standing! We will POSTPONE the needed building at least six months more if necessary and FIND A WAY to keep the Work going with such facilities as we have."
How We Obtain Financing
Now when we DO start construction on that desperately needed 4-story Administration Office Building, I do not anticipate we shall have to pay, during construction, more than HALF the total cost.
The REASON is another MAJOR BLESSING FROM GOD!
God has given us sufficient wisdom in the conduct and management of the finances of His Work, so that we have reached a AA-A1 financial standing. God is able to cause even our enemies to be at peace with us. He is able to give us grace and favor in the eyes of those with whom, in the world, we must deal in the conduct of His Work.
He has given us such favor in the eyes of banks and financial institutions. Just today, I received a letter from a bank which I believe is the largest in East Texas, explaining that they are in position to give us, for our Texas campus, "MAJOR Bank" service, and soliciting our account.
Some few years back one of the largest banks on the west coast, (outside the giant Bank of America, world's largest), invited our business and got it! They have loaned us large sums of money. Also two or three years ago the largest International Bank in the world, and the largest in Britain, came to us soliciting our business from the English campus. They offered us enough inducements to influence us to switch our account in England over to them. They, too, have given us large-scale credit.
Brethren, do you realize how important this is, in the efficient conduct of GOD'S WORK?
On the recommendation, and influence, of such banks, and of the fine financial statement we can show, two eastern insurance companies, for the first time, to either a church or a college, so far as we know, have made us large-size, 15-year loans for construction of new buildings. Those are now built.
Such institutions NEVER customarily make big long-term loans to churches or colleges. Of course they always want security, and they regard security of a church or college of little value, because they are afraid of public reaction if they ever did have to foreclose and take property away from a church or college!
When they have made us loans, it was because they have enough confidence in our financial stability and honesty of Radio Church of God and of Ambassador College that they feel they will never have to foreclose.
The parables of Jesus show that God is CONCERNED about what kind of STEWARDS we are in the handling of His money. And this is His WORK, and all the money in the world BELONGS TO GOD so we are handling HIS money, for all the money that comes to us is God's tithes and offerings.
We are VERY CAREFUL in our stewardship of GOD's MONEY. We want to be able, not only to give a GOOD ACCOUNT before the world's largest banks, but also to Jesus Christ when He returns so that He may say, WELL DONE, GOOD AND FAITHFUL SERVANT. YOU have been honest, and faithful in a few things, have authority over BIGGER things!
I feel it should give YOU some real satisfaction and gratitude to know that the Work of God, to which YOU have voluntarily become a Co-Worker, is handling its material affairs in the manner God Himself approves!
Loans from Co-Workers
In Co-Worker Letters I have often mentioned loans from individual Co-Workers. Right now, IF YOU have a larger sum you are not able to GIVE as a donation, but do not need to use for a year or more, it would help greatly if you would LET IT BE WORKING where the Living Christ is directing, guiding, and blessing.
And if the biggest banks and insurance companies have confidence in the integrity of this Work, I'm sure you can. I have mentioned before, we do maintain a special and separate adequate cash reserve, as a GUARANTEE of our ability to repay such loans, if and when necessary.
At this point let me explain something that has not been clear to a few. Once in a while someone will say: "It's WRONG to borrow money. Doesn't the Bible teach us we must owe no man anything?"
No! The Bible does not teach that!
The one verse that has-caused some to suppose the Bible teaches against borrowing is Romans 13:8. As translated in the King James English, it reads: "Owe no man anything, but to love one another: for he that loveth another hath fulfilled the law."
Actually, it should be translated, from the Greek language in which Paul originally wrote it: "You do not owe your individual fellowmen anything, but love." At least that would make the MEANING clear.
The Bible commentaries are not always correct in their understanding, but the Adam Clarke Commentary is correct on this verse. I quote it:
"In the preceding verses," (read them in your own Bible), "the apostle has been showing the duty, reverence, and obedience, which all Christians, from the highest to the lowest, owe to the civil magistrate; whether he be emperor, king, proconsul, or other state officer; here [verse 8] he shows them their duty to each other: but this is widely different from that which they owe to the civil government: to the first [government] they owe subjection, reverence, obedience, and tribute [taxes]; to the latter [individual fellowman] they OWE nothing but mutual love, and those offices which necessarily spring from it. Therefore, the apostle says, Owe no man; as if he had said: Ye owe to your fellow brethren nothing but mutual love, and this is what the Law of God requires, and in this the Law is fulfilled. Ye are not bound in obedience to them as to the civil magistrate."
I think that makes it clear. The passage in the Bible is explaining what the law requires. Man's law man's government requires that we owe taxes, obedience to laws and ordinances, etc. But to fellowman, GOD'S Law requires we owe him LOVE that is all. IT IS NOT SPEAKING OF MONEY DEBTS!
It is NOT wrong to borrow money or to loan it!
WHY Special Property Fund
Although it would not be wrong to use regular tithe-and- offering income for new building construction, I have always felt that MOST, if not all, of the funds for new property purchase and for new construction ought to come from special, extra, separate offerings over and above tithes and regular offerings given specially for this purpose.
That is why I have set up such a special fund, for those who are willing, to send in an extra and SPECIAL offering over and above tithes and regular offerings, marked specially for this Property and Building Fund. I do feel we ought to do our very best to keep up this fund as well as God makes possible, according to the ability of each.
We desperately need the new Administration Building. It is now our most pressing need. Our new classroom buildings the Science Hall and the Fine Arts Building are progressing, and should be completed and ready for use by March 1st.
Architect's plans were completed almost a year ago for the badly needed new men's dormitory, but we have had to postpone the start of actual construction. We did obtain a $550,000 long- term (15 year) insurance company loan commitment for it. When I decided to let the loan go back, the insurance company, in spite of the then very "tight money" situation, did renew the commitment.
It is still good, but unless our Co-Workers can realize this serious NEED for these buildings, and increase this special fund, we shall probably have to lose this loan altogether. And that would be a real shame! When this building is completed, we shall have all the student housing we shall need on the Pasadena campus. We shall not go above 550 resident students.
According to present plans, we must start in a few months, the 170,000-square-foot-floor-space building for the enlarged PRINTING PLANT 70,000 square feet of that is already there in a building we recently bought.
There will be some internal remodeling on this, and the other 100,000 square feet must be added on to it. Since this is made necessary because our present plant is in the way of the new freeway, to start construction in 1970, the State will have to pay us for our present printing plant, which they will demolish. Thus they will HELP pay for our new plant.
Present plans call for ground breaking for the Administration building by next March or April and much sooner if possible! Then I HOPE we may begin the postponed men's dormitory to house 150 men students by a year from now fall of 1968. Then we MUST start the Auditorium by 1969.
Co-Workers, I hope this answers a lot of questions and opens your eyes to a LOT OF FACTS you never before realized!
Link to original Co-Worker Letter: August 28, 1967 C-Worker Letter