This Old Pope

The big news of the day, Monday, February 11, 2013, is that Pope Benedict XVI is resigning. Not only is this a surprise to just about everyone, but it is made more surprising since a Pope hasn’t resigned in about 600yrs—since Gregory XII in 1415.

Of course, as fascinating as the whole thing might be, that is not why we are here. We are here because Pope Benedict the Sixteenth was ushered in with such dire fanfare by the Philadelphia Church of God way back in 2005. 

The Force is strong with this one...

The Force is strong with this one…

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The CoG and the Holy Roman Empire–how they got it totally wrong

This is what the Holy Roman Empire is all about: destroying people. Above all, it is a machine of destruction! That is what it is famous for.”

These words came from the illustrious Gerald Flurry in his September ’11 cover article World’s Greatest Danger: Germany

AAAAGGGGHHHHH!!!

Domineers Over Europe Again. 

I’ve been working on this article off and on since I first saw this article. I’ve done some research on the Holy Roman Empire, and found Flurry’s fear mongering wanting. Yes, Germany always wants an empire, but to be honest, so do most other nations. And there is a lot of talk about how the current Eurozone crisis may be giving Germany that empire right under everyone’s noses. Possible, though unlikely. But one thing is clear: the statement, “This is what the Holy Roman Empire is all about: destroying people…” is simply false.

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Dear Brethren and Co-Workers!

One might be well within the bounds of reason to surmise that being disfellowshipped and Marked means our access to inside information for the PCG is severely limited, if not downright cut off completely. However, you would also be mistaken! You see, while the prospect of being cut off from friends and family does keep many in the “pews” (chairs), it is not a policy that engenders loyalty. So, in truth, PCG is merely keeping spies in their midst that would happily fade away given the chance.

More’s the pity.

However, one man’s loss is another man’s gain, and that is where we come in. AD has a network of insiders passing us vital documents, like the most recent Co-Worker letter! … Continue reading.

Twenty-One

We here at AD have been remiss, as we missed the big news of the 21stanniversary of Germany’s Reunification! Of course, that could be a sign—a sign that it isn’t really that big a deal. There were no parades of proud military might and pomp. There were no bombastic speeches about a reunited Germany coming of age and ready to take her rightful place among the great nations of the world. No, there were cautiously optimistic speeches about “we’ve come a long way but there’s still a long way to go”. Continue reading

Desparate Measures–PCG’s Embrace of Worldly Punditry

Gerald finally gets the notoriety he deserves.

A newly published Trumpet article by one of our favorite PCG editorial tools (Brad MacDonald), entitled Welcome to the Fourth Reich, demonstrates better than most this sub-cult’s long-fermenting tryst with “worldly” ideologues and their convenient pronouncements. It is not necessary, surely, to point out that this relationship looks better on PCG’s resume than it would on that of her “lovers” (the biblical phraseology seems appropriate here, so please, bear with me–as creepy and sexist as it sounds). It is, in fact, a love affair that is wholly one-way. FOX “News”, for example, has never given PCG any lovin’ to speak of (though PCG has been “nailed” with some “fair and balanced” coverage on a local FOX affiliate station–once), nor have any of the other talking heads she refers to in her propaganda pieces.

Unrequited though her love may be, PCG does not appear in any sense jilted by the fact her lovers have nothing good to say about her. She still continues to mine their statements from afar, reading between the lines for hints of unconscious approval. And these hints she then weaves into grandiose claims of “worldly” confirmation of the Armstrongist world-view, which are subsequently fed to the little flock of credulous sheep she keeps around for fleecing purposes.

It all works so well, since these sheep never take it upon themselves to take a critical look at what it all means. They don’t ask the difficult questions and are therefore easily persuaded that a “worldly” authority’s seeming approval of cult dogma should count as irrefutable confirmation of everything they’ve been spoon-fed by Gerald and Co. But the kind of analysis that is foreign to sheep is precisely what we at AD are here for. So, we want to ask the following questions: (1) What is behind PCG’s reliance on “worldly” sources?, (2) Are they using those sources appropriately?, and (3) Are those sources reliable to begin with? … Continue reading.

F-16s Fly-over of Church Campus in Edmond Raises Questions.

WTF?

On June 28, 2011 the Edmond Sun announced that “Armstrong Auditorium’s 2011-12 performing arts series will kick off July 3 with the screaming thunder of F-16s from the 138th Fighter Wing of the Oklahoma Air National Guard … when four F-16 Fighting Falcons fly over the campus of Herbert W. Armstrong College …” Armstrong’s marketing director Shane Granger said the fly-over was “part of our Independence Day celebrations at Armstrong,” the Sun reported.

So the Pentagon is helping Gerald Flurry’s Philadelphia Church of God kick off their concert series. This might seem innocuous at first, but if we take a closer look, it raises some disturbing issues. … Continue reading.

Deutschland Uber Alles?

Eric Sell

During the past several months we’ve published several articles on the subject of prophecy–specifically, the brand peddled by Armstrongism. However, to date we have not specifically written about one of the biggest pieces of Armstrongism’s prophetic pie—the doctrine of a re-emergent, militant Germany! Today, that omission is rectified. Continue reading

Islamic Revolution…in Prophecy?

REVOLUTION (inshallah)!

Our nemeses over at The Trumpet are positively bubbling over with self-congratulatory excitement! Their schoolgirl hysterics come in response to the news of civil unrest currently taking the Arab world by storm. With all their usual propagandist tricks on display, they are riding their little ship of “prophecy” on the wave of worldly analysis and prognostication as far as they can take it. As Brad MacDonald put it,

Here at the Trumpet, the political revolution currently afoot in Egypt arouses a great deal of excitement. For 20 years, we have forecast that the moderate government in Cairo will be replaced by hardcore Islamists who will quickly align Egypt with the anti-Israel, radical Islamic administration in Tehran. We are currently watching this happen.

But did they really “forecast” these events 20 years ago, or is there something a bit deceptive going on here? Let’s take some time to examine the reasoning on offer: we’ll see just how uncanny their so-called forecasting actually is. … Continue reading

Totalitarianism and the Churches of God

Eric Sell

Ignorance is Strength

The fact that the term “dissident literature”, a term we are familiar with from the world of Armstrongism, was originated in communist Russia is far more relevant than it might first appear. The defining aspect of totalitarianism is the control of all areas of life—public and private; the easiest way to control people is to control what they think, and the best way to control what they think is to control information. Thus the stricture to avoid “dissident literature”.

Wait a minute, wait a minute, wait a minute. I can’t be serious, can I? How can I compare the Armstrongist churches of God to a totalitarian dictatorship? The church doesn’t have enough power to control what info the laity have access to! Almost all the members live in the countries of the Western industrialized world! Democracy! Freedom of speech! Freedom of the press! The internet! Nobody except, maybe, China or North Korea can control all that! Oh really? Actually, its easier than you might think. … Continue reading

History in Prophecy

I recently read a very interesting article by Brad Macdonald in the Trumpet Weekly (dated Oct. 7, 2010). Good old BradMac was touting the virtues and wonders of HWA’s revelatory abilities. He gushes about how Mr. Armstrong prophesied that “the American dollar would one day be in ‘jeopardy of being devalued‘” and this would “ultimately lead to ‘eventual economic collapse for the United States’” (obviously, emphasis theirs throughout). He goes on to laud Herbert’s faith in Bible prophecy being so strong that as early as the 1960s (1968, to be exact) he said WW III was already underway…but just the early part which would eventually wreck the US economy.

“Forty-two years later, the trade war that will end in the collapse of America and Britain is here.” …Continue reading