Letter to the Brethren: February 27, 2014

Dear Brethren and co-workers in Christ:

Been trying to plan the trip to London (England) and Nairobi (Kenya) for next month.  Some items I want to take are bulky, while others are heavy.  As there will be limitations, various ones in Kenya will likely be disappointed as I will not have the room to bring everything I originally wanted to.  That being said, I still plan to bring Bibles, song books, banners, and some literature.

Over here in California, the weather has been warm, but the rain sparse.  At some point in time this could prove catastrophic for various ones here.  The cattle industry and certain other agricultural industries are already experiencing significant problems.

Passover and the Days of Unleavened Bread

Yes, it is still Winter in the Northern Hemisphere, but we are starting to think about planning for the Spring Holy Days.

Passover will be after sunset on April 13th this year, with the Night to be Observed the next evening and the first Day of Unleavened Bread.

Because most of us are quite scattered, many will not be able to meet with others of like-mind and spirit.  But we should try to if at all possible.  If you are willing to host Passover or Unleavened Bread services or simply the Night to Be Observed, please let me know via email (cogwriter@aol.com).

Note: We have a new Passover service on video, so if you do host this, you will not need to give the message personally, etc. as the video contains step-by-step instructions.  There is also a short video that can be played on the Night to be Observed, and we plan a new one for the Days of Unleavened Bread.

To help you remember the dates of the Holy Days, here is a link to our English language Holy Day Calendar.

The Feast of Tabernacles

While it is not even time to start the Spring Holy Day season, we do need to look at possible locations for the 2014 Fall Holy Day.  The Feast of Tabernacles begins the evening of October 8th in 2014.

Although no specific locations have been completely finalized, there are four locations that we are currently expecting.

In the USA, probably somewhere in Northern Florida.  Specific cities under consideration at Daytona Beach, Panama City Beach, Pensacola, and ?  Last year, the Feast of Tabernacles was held on the West Coast of the USA, so we felt that trying to put a location more towards the East Coast made sense for 2014.

If you live in or near those areas and would like to possibly assist with visiting one or more locations, please contact me.  My email remains cogwriter@aol.com.

Last year, we had a site in Northern New Zealand, and in 2014 a more southern location is expected, possibly even on the South Island. For more information, contact John Hickey, email john.h@vodafone.net.nz.

In Kenya, it is expected that Ndhiwa will be used as the primary Feast of Tabernacles’ site, but there could possibly be others.

If you are not from Africa and decide to attend here, please realize that this is not a wealthy area and is not a site for those who expect various Western comforts.  However, this will be a unique experience for any who do decide to attend here.  This site is expected to have people from Kenya and Tanzania. For more information, contact Evans Ochieng, email evochieng74@gmail.com.

It is possible that we will have a video group site in the Philippines (Silay City) and perhaps other locations.

We are just in the process of looking into all of this, but wanted you all to be informed about what is happening.

More information is expected to be added to the draft article Feast of Tabernacles’ Sites for 2014 as it we get closer

The Bible Hymnal

We were, with permission, able to secure a computer file for a songbook in the language of Kiswahili from another group that I have contacts with.  Also, even though they are not in the English language edition, Mark Graham graciously told me that we can use the songs he wrote that are available in the Kiswahili language (without them there will be a much shorter Kiswahili songbook and/or too many songs will be untranslated from the English language).

Earlier this week I dropped off the basic file with Burdine Graphics so that they could get started on this.  But we need more assistance.  So, I have asked Evans Ochieng to see if someone in Kenya can translate the front and back covers and the first couple of pages of the English edition of our The Bible Hymnal into Kiswahili.  If this can be done quickly enough (and currently there are doubts), it may be that I will be able to bring some songbooks in Kiswahili with me when I visit next month, though this may be difficult to do.  Please pray for the success of this project.


I did one hour as a radio guest on the Genesis Communication Network  today for the show named the Nutrimedical Report. Topics covered included the Pope’s agenda and growing Protestant acceptance of it. According to the host, this program reaches multiple million of people over dozens of actual and online radio stations, including now also providing coverage in Africa and Asia.

The host posted links related to the topics that I sent him including:

Charismatic Kenneth Copeland and Anglican Tony Palmer: Protestants Beware! This is a YouTube going over the latest outrage concerning ecumenism with Pope Francis.
Beware: Protestants Going Towards Ecumenical Destruction! What is going on in the Protestant world? Are Protestants turning back to their ‘mother church’ in Rome? Does the Bible warn about this? What are Catholic plans and prophecies related to this? Is Protestantism doomed?
Venezula protests dividing country; Francis appeals to ‘Mary,’ while government hopes for Carnaval distraction  Should people turn to a Marian apparition to help the situation in Venezuela?  Pope Francis says yes!
Church of God on Jerusalem’s Western Hill Could this building, often referred to as the Cenacle, which is located on a Mount Zion, possibly have been the oldest actual Christian church building? There is also a video titled Does the ‘Cenacle’ deal have prophetic ramifications?
Vatican continues to press for control of Mt. Zion building  People in Israel are worried that Pope Francis may end up with the original Christian church building.  Are there prophetic ramifications?

This is a way we can reach many people around the world at no financial cost (we do not pay to be on the program or get the links posted).

World News Events

The situation with Ukraine has been in the news (see Vladimir Putin mobilizes troops, while pro-Russian supporters demonstrate in east Ukraine; but PCG is still not right about the ‘prince of Rosh’).  From violence to government coups, the situation in that region of the world has been tense.

Of course, it is not just there. Venezuela is having major problems and protests.  Pope Francis told people yesterday to pray to an alleged Marian apparition to intervene in Venezuela (see Venezula protests dividing country; Francis appeals to ‘Mary,’ while government hopes for Carnaval distraction).  This pontiff repeatedly is trying to turn people to his version of ‘Mary.’

Also, the government of Egypt resigned on Monday and some fear that what is happening there will lead to autocratic rule (see Egypt’s interim government resigns–dissatisfaction against those who replaced the Muslim Brotherhood).  And, according to Bible prophecy it will once the King of the South of Daniel 11:40 rises up.

Consistent with something I wrote nearly five years ago, the US Army announced that it plans to cut manpower to levels not seen since prior to World War II (see US Army plans to shrink to pre-WWII levels).  While there is a lot of technology today, ground troops can play a unique military role that technology cannot truly replicate.  Eventually, the USA will find that since it will not rely on God, that it will not be able to rely on its military for protection (cf. Daniel 11:39).

Speaking of something else I wrote about five years or so ago, the Protestants are more and more accepting Catholicism.  Kenneth Copeland praised Pope Francis, showed a video from him, and had an Anglican Episcopal bishop declare the the age of the Protestant churches was over and that all are now Catholic (see Protestant endorsement of the ecumenical agenda: Kenneth Copeland do you not understand?).  I originally had planned a different BibleNewsProphecy sermonette subject, but after looking into this, changed to covering this.

Pope Francis has an ecumenical agenda, the Bible warns against it, yet more and more Protestants and others are embracing it.  Of course, since we in the Continuing Church of God are not Protestant, and strive to live by every word of God (cf. Matthew 4:4), we wish to have no part in the world’s babylonian system (cf. Revelation 18:4).

Suggested Sabbath Service

Here is our suggested format for Sabbath services this week:

Note: If you have a slow internet connection, you can watch these by starting the video, then below it (and towards the right) look for an outline of a gear–if you click on that, it will allow the YouTube video to be played with lower video quality, but at least it will not stop often–you can select a quality as low as 144p.

If your internet connection is still too slow (as my home one is) and/or you prefer audio messages to audio-visuals ones, go to the YouTube link for the message, click on SHOW MORE related to the description. You will then see something that says, “Download MP3.” Below that is a link to an MP3 file. Most computers (and even some cellular telephones) will allow MP3 files to be downloaded and played. So, this is an option we have made available (but we are also looking into ways to improve that as well).

Concluding Comments

Notice the following from the Book of James:

1 My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials, 3 knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience. 4 But let patience have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing. 5 If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all liberally and without reproach, and it will be given to him. 6 But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for he who doubts is like a wave of the sea driven and tossed by the wind. 7 For let not that man suppose that he will receive anything from the Lord; 8 he is a double-minded man, unstable in all his ways. (James 1:2-8)

Brethren, many of us are going through tests and trials, and while they do not always seem joyful at the time, they do help us build character and assist us in our spiritual growth, which has eternal rewards (e.g. What is Your Destiny? Deification? Did the Early Church Teach That Christians Would Become God?).


Bob Thiel, Pastor and Overseer
Continuing Church of God

Posted in Letters to the Brethren
About CCOG
The Continuing Church of God, which attempts to represent the most faithful remnant of the Philadelphia (Revelation 3:7) portion of the Church of God, bases its beliefs on the Holy Bible. Read CCOG's statement of beliefs for more information.