Letter to the Brethren: June 13, 2019

Dear Brethren and Co-Workers in Christ:

Greetings again from Grover Beach, California.

Pentecost weekend was fine, but a bit tiring, here (we needed to video five messages, including offertories for three holy days).


We received some reports about Pentecost from around the world.

Evangelist Evans Ochieng sent in the following report:

Pastor Dr Bob,

Greetings from Kenya.

The Pentecost went well in Kenya. I have talked with many congregations and telling me positive about Pentecost. I kept Pentecost in Ndhiwa.  I  met three congregations in Ndhiwa. Mbani, Oriang and Ndhiwa gathered together at Ndhiwa. The enjoyed good meals and fruits. I also listen to your Pentecost massage through u tube. I delivered the Pentecost message on that day.

Concerning my visitation, last week I was in kisii. I will be in Nyakach zone as from tomorrow.


Here is a report from Bomet, Kenya:

dear bob,we thank God for the wonderful pentacost we had in bomet
kenya,over 30 people attendant the congregation and they were happy
for the sermon. thank you. tomas koskey.

Here is one from Ethiopia:

Gambella, Ethiopia Pentecost 2019

Dear Dr. Bob:

We are here to greet you in Jesus name Amen. We celebrated Feast of weeks yesterday. Children are happy for doing this Feast. I told to them,  Let we to enjoy whether you are still children. Thank you all.

Koang Deng

Here is one from India:

Nongpok Sanjenbam, India, Pentecost 2019

Dear Sir,

We celebrated the Feast of Pentecost at a place about 15 Km from Imphal towards the east at a pace called Nongpok Sanjenbam.


I spoke on the message showing the similarities between the first Feast of Weeks when Moses received the 10 Commandments and the Law at Mt. Sinai and the first Pentecost when the disciples received the Holy Spirit.

I explained that if the priority were ourselves, we would miss the point.

The priority has to be God first, and others second, and our focus on ourselves is to ensure that we are focused on the first two.

If we are too heavy with ourselves, we cannot be lifted up.

We had a lunch after the meeting and returned.

With regards,

K. Sani Mao

Glad to hear that Pentecost went well in India and elsewhere around the world.

The next holy day will be the Feast of Trumpets which begins after sunset on September 29th this year.


Elder A. ‘Sasha’ Veljic sent the following report:

Dear Bob,

Following the Pentecost service here in Uzice, four of us proceeded to the nearby river canyon to the spot where I officiated the baptism of Aleksandar Stanisavljevic, of Belgrade, who arrived to Uzice to keep the weekly and annual Sabbaths with us, as well as to be baptized.

It was the baptism candidate’s wish to be added to the Body of Christ on the very day that the Holy Spirit descended from heaven to Christ’s disciples in Jerusalem in 31 A.D.  Filip c helped me immerse Aleksandar into the water, and Sloba made a short video of us prior to going into the river and shortly after we came out of the river.  The audio record was made, and I will find ways to send it to Bill.

The newly baptized member Aleksandar Stanisavljevic asked me to convey his gratitude to you and others for your prayers for him to be successfully added to God’s Church, the very Body of Christ.

The weather was favorable to us.  For days it was heavily raining.  In some parts of the country there are floods.  The floods affected a village where one of our prospective members lives.  He had to be involved in rescuing households and residents this Sunday.  Thankfully, the weather was sunny and warm enough, so we were able to perform this baptism without any obstacles.

We send you cordial greetings from Serbia.


We all from Serbia send you cordial greetings, brethren.


Aleksandar Stanisavljevic

The angels in heaven rejoice (Luke 15:7) when one repents. We also rejoice for another baptism in Serbia.


Last week, I mentioned that we hoped to make a couple of announcements related to Mexico.

So here is one.

We now have a Feast of Tabernacles site there.

When I asked about it, Ismael Jimenez sent the following:

A 2 horas de la capital de tabasco.quees villahermosa.aventura en la naturaleza.tambien hay actividades extras como canoas.rapel.tirolesa.lagunas.cascadas.y se escogio habitar en casas de campañas.hay un area para servicios.ybaños propios.comida al aire libre luz.agua.anexo fotos

2 hours from the capital of tabasco.quees villahermosa.aventura en la naturaleza.Also there are extra activities such as canoes.rapel.tirolesa.lagunas.cascadas.y chooses to live in casas de campaña.hay an area for servicios.ybaños own. food outdoors luz.agua.anexo photos

We attempted to machine-translate the email from Ismael Jimenez but it did not translate well. So, I asked elder Sasha Veljic to translate and clarify it, which he did as follows:

He is trying to tell you that the Feast site is located 2 hours away from Tabasco.  The name is Quees Villahermosa.  It has a beautiful nature apt for escapades (adventures) – meaning – one can venture into the nature and enjoy it.  There are other activities at that site, such as canoe ride.  Then Tirolesa (it seems to be some sort of traditional music because I don’t recognize that word).  There are lagoons, waterfalls (cacadas, such as cascades in English).  The lodging is in timber houses.  There is one room where the services are being held (I guess during the Feast).  There are proper facilities for hygiene (banos propios).  There is enough food, clean air.  There is light (he obviously wants to say that there is plenty of sunshine light).  Clean water. And he attached photos of all that (anexo fotos).

It is my understanding that many will be staying in tents there. Services will be in Spanish without translations. So, should you chose to go there, that is something to keep in mind.

As far as translations go, Sasha Veljic retranslated something from Ismael that was in last week’s Letter to the Brethren:

“Greetings brother Bob, greetings from Mexico.  As you had been informed, Louis and we had a marvelous and inspiring Sabbath, which was even more enhanced by Louis’ presence.  God has allowed him to arrive.  As for us, we are at all at your disposal (meaning: ready to serve you, like to serve Louis when he is in Mexico, or when you arrive for the Feast).

What has been done in this small work of God has been done with the help of God Himself.  And it is not important how it works out financially (in a sense that money is not important at all).  God will bless this work spiritually and the brethren are joyous for that reason.  We expect to hear from you and we hope for your valuable support to proceed with the work of God in our area, that is in Mexico and Latin America.  I am at your order (meaning available to you to proceed with the work of God) and at the order of God”.

Note: I added the above translation to the online version of the June 6th Letter.

Video Feast Site – Portugal

We agreed to have a video Feast of Tabernacles site in Maria Luisa beach, of Albufeira county, in Portugal. Near the city of Faro. The planned location is about a 2 1/2 drive south of Lisbon.

Services will be in English without translations into Portuguese.

If you wish to attend, contact J. Kersten. Email is joeygirl82@hotmail.com

Information on all currently expected Feast of Tabernacles’ sites for 2019 is in the following link: Feast of Tabernacles’ Sites for 2019.

World News Items

In his Pentecost message, Pope Francis referred to the Holy Spirit as the “Spirit of unity,” yet the Bible does not do so (see Pope Francis’ Pentecost messages pushes ecumenical unity and trashes social media, ‘Spirit of unity’ or ‘spirit of error’?; ‘Pentecostal’ unity). The Bible does, however, refer to the “spirit of truth and the spirit of error” (1 John 4:5-6). The interfaith-ecumenical unity that the Vatican has been pushing is not biblically true and contains many errors.

There were supertankers attacked today, and some suspect Iran (see Supertanker attacks and US dollar ‘attacks’). Iranian officials voiced various concerns and threats because of US economic policies, including encouraging the world to not use the US dollar in international trade (see Top Iran diplomat warns US it cannot ‘expect to stay safe’).

The German press reported that because of the US using its dollar as an economic weapon, several nations have been accumulating gold as they work to be able to bypass the US dollar for international trade (see DW: Trump’s policies add luster to gold at dollar’s expense). There is a cost to US sanctions and the US will one day realize that the costs are bigger than the American politicians have explained (watch also US Sanctions and Tariffs leading to New World Order?).

The USA is also experiencing ‘extreme weather’ with parts of the country flooded and parts of the West having very temperatures (see ‘Unprecedented U.S. Weather Chaos Continues: 120F In The West, More Record-Setting Flooding In The East’). The Bible shows that weather is something that God not only controls, but also something He uses as a warning to humankind. Yet, relatively few heed those warnings (see also Weather Blessings and Sorrows).

Suggested Sabbath Service

Here is a suggested Sabbath service for this week for our scattered brethren:

  • 2-3 hymns (our songbook, The Bible Hymnal, contains the materials from the 1974 Bible Hymnal from the old WCG with new covers, plus ten additional hymns; there is also some Choral Accompaniment online).
  • Opening prayer.
  • Sermonette, which for most who receive this letter via email will be a recorded one. The one suggested for this week is: ‘Globalism is the New Tower of Babel’. Other sermonettes are also available at the BibleNewsProphecy channel.
  • Announcements (if any; though for many it will be this letter) and one hymn.
  • Sermon, which for most who receive this letter via email will be a recorded one. The one suggested for this week is: What language was the New Testament written in? Other sermons are also available at the ContinuingCOG channel.
  • Final hymn.
  • Closing prayer.

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 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. This is an option we have made available (but we are also looking into ways to improve that as well)–and, of course, we have written article options. Some people have found that if their internet connections are not fast enough, that they can simply listen to the messages that are found at the Bible News Prophecy online radio channel.


Concluding Comments

Matthew recorded the following:

1 Then Jesus was led up by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil. 2 And when He had fasted forty days and forty nights, afterward He was hungry. 3 Now when the tempter came to Him, he said, “If You are the Son of God, command that these stones become bread.”

4 But He answered and said, “It is written, ‘Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God.'” (Matthew 4:1-4)

Brethren, Satan wants YOU to focus on the physical as well. Yet, Jesus said:

31 “Therefore do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ 32 For after all these things the Gentiles seek. For your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things. 33 But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you. 34 Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about its own things. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble. (Matthew 6:31-34)

Yes, I realize that is easier to quote than to always abide by. But that is why we are to “walk by faith, not by sight” (2 Corinthians 5:7).

And yes, sometimes we have to take trials one day at a time.


Bob Thiel
Pastor and Overseer

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.