This is my story of how I got involved in the Worldwide Church of God. To tell this story I have to go back to 1969. I was 20 years old and attending the State University of New York at Buffalo. I was living with my parents and my brother, none of whom got involved in this organization. I used to love sitting in those classrooms listening to the professors teaching and giving knowledge. Back in the late 1960’s there was a sort of social revolution going on. Young people, including myself, were fed up with the older generation. We were seeking truth and knowledge.
One day I was listening to the radio and turning the dial. I heard this man and what sounded like a lecture on how we were polluting the planet. Well, this was right up my alley. A problem created by the older generation. I made sure I tuned into this guy on the radio again. And, WOW, I could receive free literature. This man on the radio was careful and very clever not to mention any church. That would come later in the literature. I very slowly learned from listening to this guy (who was Garner Ted Armstrong) that there was a spiritual way to solving our social problems. That was found in the Bible. I was ripe for the picking. The more I read the free literature, the more I wanted to keep learning what I thought was the truth, and I slowly found out that there was a group of people locally here in Buffalo that subscribed to all I was learning. This was for me–a lost soul amidst this older generation.
I requested that a representative of this “church” come to my home to tell me how I could get behind this “movement” if you will. Well, two guys showed up and told me where this local “church” was.
WOW! My first time attending a meeting “services” at this “church.” All went so well. It wasn’t very long before I was learning what I thought was “the truth.” I eventually got baptized and the first few years were pretty good even though my parents thought I was nuts. Before too long I got involved with a person that I later married. It was 1975. A true marriage made in Heaven or so I thought. The fact of the matter was that this person who lived in Eden, New York was using me to get out of their house and away from a stepfather. This person, I learned too late, was not following the teachings of this “church.” For example, we were told to study the Bible every day. Not once in our short marriage did I see this person open the Bible.
I started to see the hypocrisy of these people in this “church” (WCG). After I graduated from the university, I got a great job offer in Miami, Florida, one I could not resist. So we moved to Miami and after about a year or so (this was 1976-78) I saw more and more of hypocrisy. For example, those sitting in the front row with their beautiful wives, driving their expensive cars would chummy up to the ministers. There was absolutely no way in the world that these guys could tithe their income, first, second and even third tithe, and maintain the lavish life styles they were living. But did the ministers question this? NO. The ministers chummed up to these phonies because they had money! And they drove real nice cars and the ministers drove up to services in expensive custom made vans. WOW! It dawned on me. Here we are tithing our income, first, second and third tithe, living in a crummy apartment, driving old rusted out cars and the ministers and their friends driving the latest model motor vehicles. Something was wrong. Things were going wrong. I hated my job, I hated Miami and I hated being married to a parasite as well as going to services every Saturday seeing the same very well dressed ministers pull up in their expensive vans. Hey! Wow! Guess what? I was paying for it.
So here were all these idiots I was around every Saturday, my job I hated in a city I hated. Something had to be done before I went crazy.
The answer was to move back to Buffalo and quit tithing my income which was paying for lavish vans for the ministers. I was paying for them eating steak dinners while I was eating hot dogs. I moved back to Buffalo and for awhile attended WCG services in Buffalo. But that soon ended. I left the WCG after I was told I asked too many questions to the minister–a real dumbbell. See, I knew too much. The minister in Buffalo could see that I knew too much of this phony “church” and I was told to stop attending services, which I gladly did.
Fine with me, brother. I felt like there was a huge weight lifted off my back. No more hypocritical “church” and I got rid of that foolish person I was married too as well. I got a good job making good money and no more tithing. My money was mine, all of it, to do with as I pleased. I was for the first time in years, happy!
But according to the WCG, I now lost my chance for eternal salvation because I left “the Church.” Hooey! What gall these ministers have to dictate to me or anyone such a thing as what’s in store for me in the future. When Jesus himself talks to me, I will listen. No more seeing the hypocrites sitting in the front row driving their fancy cars and living in their expensive homes in south Miami. Oh, you know who you are. And the naïve, the foolish keep paying for it.
Get out you people and start thinking for yourselves. Don’t be afraid, nothing is going to happen to you.
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