Thursday, 12 November 2009

2012 - 1936

As the hype hits around 2012 the movie, Wired magazine reminds us of its apocalyptic predecessors, including a certain someone who had the year 1936 tagged.

1936: The Second Coming

America’s heartland is literally covered in dust as Hitler begins exterminating Europe’s Jewish population amid a worldwide depression. Not surprisingly, evangelist Herbert W. Armstrong finds a ready audience for his message that Jesus will start the world over from scratch in 1936. (When that doesn’t happen, Armstrong revises his apocalypse deadline to 1975.)

(Thanks to "DP" for the tip-off)

10 comments:

redfox712 said...

Here's another place you can find mention of the 1936 disappointment.

Anonymous said...

It makes me sad to realize I had the message of a liar like Herbert forced on me from a very very young age. 1936, 1975, ... how many lies will he continue to get away with amongst his blind followers. Spiritually, intellectually and rationally blind followers. Three blind kinds of mice.

Please don't let other children be forced to believe such nonsense.

Lake of Fire Church of God said...

Anonymous 07:21:00 PM NZDT said..."Please don't let other children be forced to believe such nonsense".

MY COMMENT - An excerpt from my unpublished essay is relevant to this post:

I look back on my Church experience and I now realize how unnatural my own youth was. I literally grew up old! Let’s face it: The impending world destruction and “the end of the world” is pretty heavy stuff. Having Armstrong’s influence first introduced to me at age 7, I was “an old 20” by the time I realized Armstrong might not be right and I finally stopped attending this unhealthy church. In life, there is a time to be young and a time to be old. I feel I missed out on my youth and look back with much regret for my lost youth. I suffered from severe depression often during what should have been the best years of my life because I didn’t see any future for me and always felt “time was very short” as Armstrong said. Compounding the hopeless feelings, I also grew up feeling that I was different from other kids. I felt very inferior – I believe it was the partial effect of the periodic reminders of the Church’s teaching that I was “the weak of the world”, “a base thing”. I had virtually no friends in school because they were all “in the world”. We didn’t associate with people outside the Church, and I did not participate in any school activities. I remember I use to ask myself, “Why me?”

Additionally, I had the very heavy burden and grave knowledge of the impending 1972 great tribulation and the destruction of the whole world thinking all my classmates would soon be dead! Thus, I trace the origins of becoming a “loner in life” to my Worldwide Church experience (I’ve spent most of my adult life single and alone. At age 39, I had my only real relationship that lasted only 4 years but did produce a wonderful daughter).

I didn’t feel that I fit in anywhere. In fact, in retrospect I now realize I didn’t even fit in in the Worldwide Church. When I applied to the Church’s S.E.P. summer camp program and to its Ambassador College, I was rejected in both cases. I remember a conversation I had with a girl at church who also applied to Ambassador College. At church, I had informed her that I had received my letter notifying me that I was not accepted to the
College. She hadn’t heard yet whether she was accepted, but promptly informed me that she had hoped to get into Ambassador “because that was where the best guys are”. Thanks, I really needed that! She was eventually accepted, and hopefully, she learned some tact at Ambassador.

I did not feel good about myself in the years I grew up in the Church and the feelings of
inferiority that the Church helped nurture stayed with me for many years. I sold myself short in a number of instances in my professional and personal life because I didn’t think I was worthy of good things happening to me. Although the Church prepared me for a 1972 German attack, the Church did not prepare me for life itself. To demonstrate the mindset of people in the Worldwide Church in the early 1970s, I recall telling a member that I was planning to go to College. The member replied, “Why go to College? The World is going to end soon!”

End of Excerpt

Richard

Anonymous said...

Anon posted: "Please don't let other children be forced to believe such nonsense."


AMEN

Leonardo said...

Amazing, however, how HWA's latter day supporters still INSIST, in spite of all these past unambiguous failures, that his understanding of the outline of prophecy was correct and has withstood the test of time, such that they still ardently build their lives and worldview around it to this very day.

“Only two things are infinite: the universe and human stupidity, and I’m not sure about the former.”

Albert Einstein

Leonardo said...

Lake of Fire Church of God wrote:
"In life, there is a time to be young and a time to be old. I feel I missed out on my youth and look back with much regret for my lost youth."


I hear what you’re saying – and I both agree as well as sympathize with you.

When I was out at Ambassador College in the late ‘70’s about 95% of the student body then was made up of "church kids."

In the close social life of the campus, and especially dorm life, I befriended many of these fellow young people, and noticed rather quickly how angry and angst-ridden so many of them tended to be.

But it wasn't until years later that I fully realized the CAUSE of such underlying psychological (and often physiological) angst and frustration.

I also learned from a professional psychologist who specialized in de-programming young people out of cultish environments (like Moonies, for example) that the experience and subsequent problems of those raised in obvious cults like the Unification Church and those raised up within the environment of the Worldwide Church of God were virtually identical. This psychologist had experience dealing with many WCG-raised kids, as a number of them sought out his services once they entered into the adult phase of their lives.

And it is truly tragic that this is STILL going on to this day in many of the COG splinters, especially in the more obviously unbalanced ones lead by loonies like Pack, Weinland, Flurry, etc. No doubt yet another new generation of troubled kids will be needing professional help as a result of their fundamentalists “end-time” upbringing.

PurpleHymnal said...

"I also learned from a professional psychologist who specialized in de-programming young people out of cultish environments (like Moonies, for example) that the experience and subsequent problems of those raised in obvious cults like the Unification Church and those raised up within the environment of the Worldwide Church of God were virtually identical."

I have been following the Anonymous movement recently, and reading through the various blogs and websites that have sprung up as a result of the protests. Despite the (poorly-plotted) science fiction elements of the CofS theology, I am put very much in mind of our church the way it was, in the early '90s, shortly before everything blew up.

Some of their splinter groups forming now are almost carbon copies of the squabbles between PCG and UCG and "the mother church". Angry letters being sent back and forth read just like an updated, Star Trek version, of In Transition.

They had a different leader, and a different philosophy than us, but they had the same top-down structure, the same don't-question-the-ministry paradigm, disfellowshipping and marking (called by a different name) those deemed to be "troublemakers", and contact with others outside of the group was discouraged, including family members.

Sound familiar?

As the link Redfox712 provided in the first comment illustrates, our theology was rotten to the core to begin with; the totalitarian regime it was implemented under, just made things a thousand times worse. Especially for those of us born and raised in the church, who knew no differently.

The church may have been harping on the "we never set dates brethren" mantra by the time my generation came along, but my experiences very closely paralleled Richard's. Always waiting, stuck in a forever kind of limbo.

Forgetting the past, barely paying attention to the present, and holding on to a soap-bubble dream of a future that's never going to come.

I still don't know how to get out of that mentality, not completely. Maybe I never will. I, too, echo the sentiments of Anon 7:21 and Charlie, and Leo: That no child should have to go through their lives as strangers in a strange land, once they are adults and (if) they are out of the church.

It has its advantages, some days. But other days are not very good at all.

Anonymous said...

Interestingly enough, msnbc.com has a slide show on 10 failed doomsday predictions:

Guess who didn't make the list


For all the money we sent in, radio, tv, magazines, pamphlets, and books 'ol herbie didn't even make the list.

What a powerful end time work he did for his 'Great Commission'.

Corky said...

Charlie said...
Interestingly enough, msnbc.com has a slide show on 10 failed doomsday predictions:

Guess who didn't make the list
.

Hey, Ron Weinland made the list. He is an Armstrogist, right?

Anonymous said...

Corky,

Methinks Ronnie boy made the list because he was the most recent comic relief...