October 2, 2014
¡Ha llegado la temporada de la Fiesta de Tabernáculos! Y siempre para Jelly, la Fiesta le inspira a imaginar un mundo de paz y armonía después del regreso de Jesucristo y el establecimiento del maravilloso Reino de Dios (Isaías 11:6, Levítico 23:29-43).
Peter Eddington—Media and Communications Services, United Church of God
September 29, 2014
Peter Eddington—Media and Communications Services.
Reviving Ancient Biblical Principles — 21st Century Christians to Celebrate the Coming Kingdom of God
Some 2,000 years ago, Jesus Christ observed an ancient Hebrew festival called the Festival of Tabernacles, which was recorded for future generations in the New Testament book of John. Beginning at sunset on October 8, multiple thousands of 21st century Christians and families of the United Church of God will follow this example of Jesus at more than 50 Festival sites around the world (including the United States and Canada), beginning eight days of celebrating a future time of unprecedented peace and prosperity—the coming biblically prophesied Kingdom of God.
Following the example of the 1st century Christian Church as recorded in history, about 13,000 members and families of the United Church of God will observe the annual biblical Festival of Tabernacles, which will take place at more than 50 Festival sites across the world. Beginning at sunset on October 8, the eight-day Christian Festival, which includes more than 14 sites in the United States and Canada, runs October 9 through 16.
Festival sites for worship are organized through North and South America, Africa, Canada, the Caribbean, Europe, Australia, New Zealand, Malaysia, the Philippines and elsewhere. All of like and peaceful mind are welcome to join in Festival worship services.
As the Church teaches from the Bible, the annual Festival prophetically reflects a biblically defined time of unprecedented peace and prosperity, representing the establishment of the Kingdom of God here on earth and the coming reign of Jesus Christ. The United Church of God is a Christian fellowship which follows the example of Jesus Christ (as recorded in the 7th and 8th chapters of the book of John) and the practice of the early Church in observing these important festivals. Numerous biblical and historical accounts record the commitment of 1st century Christians to observe these days, which ultimately were gradually eclipsed by ancient Hellenist (Greek) and other influences. The Church restores the observance of these festivals to come into spiritual alignment with ancient biblical principles, as opposed to human tradition.
“As part of the United Church of God’s commitment to restore and follow the example of the first-century Church, we keep these days, even though they are essentially nontraditional in today’s age and not largely observed by other religious organizations,” explained Victor Kubik, president of the United Church of God. “As authoritatively emphasized in the Old Testament, the Bible teaches that all nations will observe this festival once the Kingdom has truly come,” he continued, referencing chapter 14 in the book of Zechariah.
These three seasons, the Passover and Days of Unleavened Bread, the festival of Pentecost and the fall festival season, were all observed by Jesus and the first-century Church. The latter season is capped by the seven-day Festival of Tabernacles and Eighth-Day observance. The three general biblical seasons are originally outlined in the book of Leviticus in chapter 23.
Mr. Kubik pointed out that from a biblical perspective, the Festival of Tabernacles pictures the coming time when Jesus will return to earth and directly rule the world for 1,000 years. “As the Feast of Tabernacles represents a coming time of unprecedented harmony and peace, we conduct this annual eight-day event with a strong family focus,” Mr. Kubik explained. Accordingly, members and families take part in daily church services and a whole range of positive family-based activities throughout the Festival.
Church services conducted during the Festival typically focus on the coming Kingdom of God which Jesus taught about extensively during His earthly ministry. The annual festivals observed earlier in the year by the Church represent the Christian’s redemption from sin through Christ’s sacrifice, the commitment of Christians to put sin out of their lives and the coming of God’s Holy Spirit to strongly empower a Christian to live life in harmony with God’s law and prepare for eternal life.
Originating from the Florida festival site, Mr. Kubik will deliver a church-wide message by Webcast on Saturday, October 11. Details for the Webcast and other presentations are available at feast.ucg.org.
“The emphasis placed by Christ on the coming Kingdom of God is important, and Church members accordingly take the opportunity to observe this Festival very seriously,” explained Mr. Kubik. School-age children attend the Festival with their parents, and the Church provides tutoring and academic support at many sites to help students stay abreast of coursework while attending the Festival.
Cities in the United States hosting the festival include Bend, Oregon; Bigfork, Montana; Branson, Missouri; Cincinnati, Ohio; Jekyll Island, Georgia; Lihue, Hawaii; New Braunfels, Texas; Ocean City, Maryland; Oceanside, California; Panama City Beach, Florida; Phoenix, Arizona; Pigeon Forge, Tennessee; Steamboat Springs, Colorado; and Wisconsin Dells, Wisconsin. Sites in Canada include Canmore, Alberta; Midland, Ontario; Kelowna, British Columbia; and Prince Edward Island. Thirty-seven other cities hosting the Feast of Tabernacles are in Australia, the Caribbean, Latin America, Europe, the British Isles, Africa, Asia, and the Pacific.
More information about the Festival is available in the downloadable Church publications: God’s Holy Day Plan: The Promise of Hope for All Mankind, This is the United Church of God, and The Gospel of the Kingdom.
September 9, 2014
Hundreds of guests have signed up for the United Church of God’s first “Why Were You Born?” seminar to be held in Cincinnati, Ohio, at 7:30 p.m. EDT on Wednesday, September 10, at the Holiday Inn Eastgate. Plans are to expand the series across the United States as funds allow.
After advertising the event on Time Warner Cable, Pandora Internet radio, through e-mail campaigns and through online advertising, the Church is now expecting a good turnout for this special event featuring San Antonio and Austin, Texas, pastor and Beyond Today television host, Gary Petty.
If you are not in Cincinnati, you can still join Gary Petty for this seminar live via webcast. The presentation will also be archived on the Church’s website.
Mr. Petty will ask his audience, “What’s your purpose in life?” The question comes when we least expect it. When we’re dazzled by the spectacle of a star-filled sky. Or when we gaze into the innocent eyes of a newborn child. Or when we’re in crisis and all seems lost. The Bible says you were created in the very image of God. What does that mean? The answer can change your life.
We invite you to tune into the seminar at 7:30 p.m. via the webcasting service, or watch the archive later.
Please pray for the ongoing success of the United Church of God as it does its part to preach the good news of the Kingdom of God.
Peter Eddington—Media and Communications Services, UCGIA
August 27, 2014
Humanity’s Most-asked Question: “Why Were You Born?” to Be Addressed by Gary Petty at United Church of God public Bible Presentation on Sept. 10
From BBC research to legendary psychologists, the age-old question “why were you born?” shows up as the most-asked question in human history. “In the uncertain age that we live in, understanding the answer to the question ‘why was I born’ can help people find peace, meaning and real spiritual strength,” says national TV host and author Gary Petty, who will lead a major presentation in Cincinnati, Ohio on Sept. 10.
The above quote is a lead-in to a worldwide press release about the United Church of God’s Cincinnati “Why Were You Born?” public appearance campaign. A local, Cincinnati version of the press release has also been published. The PRWeb release can be accessed here: http://www.prweb.com/releases/2014/08/prweb12124005.htm.
News outlets in Cincinnati have already picked up on the release, including the FOX19 television channel: http://www.fox19.com/story/26379831/humanitys-most-asked-question-why-were-you-born-to-be-addressed-at-united-church-of-god-public-bible-presentation-on-sept-10
Here is the press release:
CINCINNATI – High-profile Interstate billboards and other media with the message “Why Were You Born?” (reflecting the most-asked question in human history) announced the upcoming United Church of God-sponsored public Bible presentation during the month of August. Set for Sept. 10 in east Cincinnati, the event will include a multi-media presentation featuring national Beyond Today television host Gary Petty.
“In the uncertain age that we live in, understanding the question ‘why was I born’ can help people find peace, meaning and real spiritual strength,” explained Petty, who pastors three Christian congregations in Texas in addition to his role as a Beyond Today TV host.
“From research conducted by the BBC to legendary psychiatric professionals like Victor Frankel, the question ‘Why were you born’ and its variants ‘Why do I exist?’ or ‘Does my life have meaning or purpose?’ show up as the most asked in all of human history,” said Victor Kubik, president of the United Church of God. “The Bible includes a great deal of exciting information that answers these questions, so Gary will present critical biblical truth that many will find interesting, illuminating and practical.”
The Sept. 1o event will take place at the Holiday Inn Eastgate, just off of the I-275 on the eastern side of Cincinnati (4501 Eastgate Boulevard, Cincinnati, Ohio). The event will be begin at 7:30 and last a little over an hour, all presented free of charge to the public.
Understanding humanity’s purpose from a biblical perspective allows a person to better appreciate and tap the spiritual power available to Christians, continued Kubik. “God has a discoverable and definite purpose for each one of us, and this presentation will make that plain, as well offering practical advice to improve one’s life” he said.
While reservations are not required, they are encouraged so planners can provide adequate space and resources. More information about the event and a registration form is available at www.whywereyouborn.com.
In addition to Petty’s regular appearance on the Beyond Today national TV program, he also makes regular contributions to The Good News magazine, a free international Christian publication available in English, Spanish, French, Italian, German and other languages. He also authored and published a work on early Christian history, titled Plato’s Shadow: The Hellenizing of Christianity, which is available on Amazon and other retail outlets.
During the presentation Petty will be joined by Steve Myers, another host of the Beyond Today program, who also pastors a Cincinnati congregation of the United Church of God. Darris McNeely, the third Beyond Today host, will also be on hand at the event with others. The three men will be available, together with other Church officials, to answer additional questions at the event.
The “Why Were You Born” presentation is being made in the public interest. No collections for funding or appeals to join any organization will be made. “Jesus Christ instructed His disciples, ‘Freely received, freely given,’ and we follow that,” Kubik said. A free companion copy of the Church’s Bible study guide “Why Were You Born?” and other relevant handouts will be distributed free to attendees, he added.
The Church is considering producing additional public Bible presentations in cities across the United States and Canada.
Peter Eddington—Operation Manager, UCG Media and Communications Services
August 15, 2014
As a prelude to the United Church of God’s “Why Were You Born?” public appearance campaign, a short video tease has been prepared to share. The full video will be shown during the seminar on September 10, which will take place at the Holiday Inn Eastgate. Beyond Today host Gary Petty will serve as the featured speaker.
We asked Cincinnati residents just one question: Why were you born? Here’s a preview:
Peter Eddington—Media and Communications Services
August 5, 2014
Answering Humanity’s Most Asked Question
Large Interstate-highway and downtown city billboards started going up around Cincinnati on August 3, marking the launch of inviting area residents to attend the United Church of God’s first major public appearance campaign on Sept. 10.
Asking the question, “Why Were You Born?”, the campaign focuses on humanity’s incredible potential of becoming literal Children of God in the God Family—all within the coming Kingdom of God.
Beyond Today host Gary Petty will serve as the featured speaker for the first event, which will take place at the Holiday Inn Eastgate, a full-service hotel on the east side of Cincinnati.
In addition to billboards, the Church will air TV spot invitations locally on the History Channel, Fox News, the National Geographic channel, USA network and others; and radio spots and illustrated messages will appear on Pandora Internet Radio in the region, all directing people to visit the seminar website at www.WhyWereYouBorn.com.
“Using the same principle that both the apostle Paul first used in preaching the Gospel to the Athenians and that the church later deployed successfully in the 20th century, the campaign will quickly lead directly into a powerful and exciting message about the Kingdom of God,” said Victor Kubik, Church president. “We have spent a number of months prayerfully preparing for this, exploring different ideas, formats, and opportunities. This is the first time the United Church of God has organized a high-impact public event of this magnitude and we know we’re up against the varsity, so prayers from all for the powerful preaching of the gospel will be much appreciated.”
The Sept. 10 event is expected to increase awareness of both the gospel message of the Kingdom of God and the presence of the United Church of God in the greater Cincinnati area. The event will feature a special edition of the Bible study guide What Is Your Destiny, and a live video feed is expected to be available for Church members in the area who would like to view the proceedings. A follow-up special Bible study will be conducted for new attendees and Church members at the home office before the Feast of Tabernacles.
“The video, Web and print production staff at the home office have done a great job in putting together the key elements for this, and the Church was able to leverage negotiated discounts for the media,” explained Mr. Kubik. “If this event is as successful as we hope and expect it to be, we will consider plans to later expand the format into different cities around the United States and Canada.”
Peter Eddington—Operation Manager, Media and Communications Services
Mary, Martha and Lazarus
July 21, 2014
The Cincinnati East, Ohio, congregation of the United Church of God (UCG) is continuing its bi-weekly Bible studies with the series: “How To Be God’s Friend.” The study continues on Wednesday, July 23, at the time of 7 p.m. EDT and is available live via webcast.
Friendship implies a relationship that is intimate and trusting. Friends have influence over one another and hold each other accountable for their actions. They respect and accept each other. In this study we’ll examine these traits in the example of a family in the Book of John. We’ll notice that Martha served, Mary anointed Jesus’ feet and Lazarus died.
Join us as we discover how their friendship with Jesus intersects our lives. And, please make a note of the remaining series topic and presentation date:
- August 6: “David” by Gary Petty”
Plan to attend in person, or you can listen online. You can also view the Bible study using your smartphone Internet browser.
Peter Eddington—Media and Communications Services, UCGIA
July 17, 2014
In podcast 040, Katherine Rowland talks about the Ambassador Bible Center (ABC) library at the Church’s home office. The library has gone through significant reorganization and improvements in the past year. She talks about how the library uniquely serves the Church’s ministry and the local congregations.
For the complete listing, please visit our podcast page at ucg.org/blog/inside-united-audio-podcast.
Peter Eddington—Media and Communications Services
July 11, 2014
We are pleased to announce that as of June 2014, the Mexican TV station Genesis TV has started broadcasting Beyond Today en Español to over 100,000 homes, with a potential reach of 400,000 people. The signal currently reaches Ciudad de Matamoros and the Municipalities of General Bravo and China in Nuevo León, Mexico. The show is broadcast on Mondays at 10 a.m. and 6 p.m., and on Tuesdays at 2 a.m.
This initiative started in 2010 with a group of United Church of God brethren in Colombia willing to record Spanish voice-over to the English Beyond Today programs. Currently they have translated over 40 shows and they are all available online at espanol.ucg.org/beyond-today/archivos.
A few months ago, after watching the show online, the producers of Genesis TV contacted us for permission to broadcast the show on their TV station at no cost. They were impressed by the content and excellence of the show and felt very blessed to be able to distribute such a message to areas in Mexico that are are gravely affected by various violent conflicts.
Genesis TV has plans to expand to other areas in the near future and we look forward to providing more content. We thank God for this new door that has opened to preach the gospel in this new territory. We appreciate your prayers that He opens the minds and hearts of the listeners to hear His calling.
Gabriel Garcia and Debbie Orsak—UCG Spanish-language Editors
July 10, 2014
Over 26,000 Good News Subscriptions Added During 2013-2014 Fiscal Year
In December 2013 we reported that our United Church of God print advertising campaign for the 2013-2014 fiscal year would reach 6,200,000 households in the United States. You may recall that additional, un-budgeted funds were approved and allocated for this special campaign.
Through “card pack” advertising, potential subscribers had the option of mailing a postage-paid card or visiting our website to obtain a one-year subscription to The Good News. They also had the opportunity to order a subscription to Las Buenas Noticias, the Spanish language version of The Good News. Additionally, potential readers could order one or more of the following seven booklets:
- Are We Living in the Time of the End?
- Heaven and Hell: What Does the Bible Really Teach?
- How to Understand the Bible
- Jesus Christ: The Real Story
- The Middle East in Bible Prophecy
- The Book of Revelation Unveiled
- What Happens After Death?
We are pleased to report that subscriber response to this campaign has been excellent. With reply cards and Internet inquiries still arriving at our home office, the current subscription count is 26,235, which equates to a very low cost per response.
Thank you for your ongoing support and prayers for our advertising campaigns. With your help and with God’s abundant blessings, the work of spreading the good news of His coming Kingdom will continue moving ahead successfully.
Peter Eddington—Operation Manager, Media and Communications Services