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Victory Review '97! CM 3159 1/98

By Peter

Dear Family,

1. God bless each of you! Happy Family Birthday! Another year has gone by, and what a monumental year it's been! It's been a fight, but we've won victory after victory! We believe this has been one of our greatest years, and as you read on and see all that we've accomplished with the Lord's help, as well as the spiritual progress we've made, you'll see why Mama and I feel this way.

2.Of course, the year hasn't been without its share of problems, battles, and minor defeats. But that's how war goes when you're fighting a relentless enemy. The way wars are won is by separate teams fighting battles in different arenas. Some soldiers are wounded and some are even killed. Some units suffer defeat, while others win their particular battle. Some struggle and seem to make very little progress, while others overrun the enemy's positions.

3.Oftentimes the individual units don't know if the war is being won or lost, as they're only knowledgeable about what their unit is doing, and are not well versed as to how the other units fighting on other fronts are faring. The generals who direct the war effort, however, get the information about each of the fighting units and can tell which direction the war is going, whether it's heading toward victory or defeat.

4.That's how it is with Mama and me.We get a great deal of information concerning the overall war. We hear about the progress and victories being won, defeats and setbacks, and all the rest. And we want to assure you that from our vantage point it's clearly evident that the war is being won, which the Lord has also confirmed from His Heavenly Headquarters! Praise the Lord!

5.We're making headway, winning major battles, and moving ever forward toward ultimate victory! Of course, the Enemy is fighting back, looking for our weak spots and attacking us there. We've lost some soldiers, suffered some defeats, and failed to progress as much as we would have liked in some battles, but we're winning the great majority of the battles, and that's what wins the war!

6.By our sharing the victories won since the last Family Feast, we hope to show you what your work, your efforts and your part in this great war for the hearts and souls of men has done toward the overall effort of winning the war. We will be presenting to you a composite of what we've all accomplished together! The stats of souls won, the pioneering of new countries, Homes and ministries, the progress made in the Spirit, are all fruits of your labors. So as you read about these victories, remember that the individual stats from your ministry--your work, your fighting--are added together with those of others worldwide. These victories are the result of your doing the job, your obeying His commission to witness, giving your life to Him and His service!

7.When Mama and I see what you've accomplished this past year, it makes us so proud of you for the wonderful job you're doing! We hope as you read about these worldwide victories, you will feel the same, and these testimonies will make you proud of the Family and your brothers and sisters, proud of all the Lord is accomplishing through us as we strive to give our best for Him!

8.No matter how proud Mama and I are of each of you and how proud you can be of each other, this is nothing compared to how proud the Lord is of you,His precious Family, as He looks down on you with such love and tenderness. He's so happy for each of the love gifts that you've brought to Him and laid at His feet. He's so pleased with all that you do for Him day after day--the many sacrifices you make for Him, as you take up your cross and lay down your life for Him daily; being a living sacrifice by burning brightly, despite personal battles and the spiritual warfare that you have fought so bravely. You're all soldiers that He's proud of, and you're going to live and reign with Him!

9.So this is a victory celebration in which we're going to show off all your gifts of love that you've given Him throughout the year, which have cost many of you much blood, sweat and tears! Jesus wants you to feel it's worth it all--worth the battles and worth the fight. Every soul, every heart, every gain, every tract, every smile is a victory--these are gifts that He's so grateful for! You're going to see for yourself by the stats we're going to share with you that the victories far outweigh the hardships, and the rewards far outshine the sacrifices and the problems. There are many more victories than problems, because the victories and the rewards will last forever, but the problems will always come to an end! Victories are eternal and difficulties are temporal!

10.So let's now concentrate on these victory gifts which you've given so abundantly to Him through the year, which glorify Him and His power through you. These will encourage you in the future when you look back and remember the great things the Lord has done through you. You'll have the satisfaction of knowing that your labors over the past year have been worth it and have made a difference, and that there are not more problems than victories. There are many, many more victories than problems and difficulties, because Jesus is victory and He is greater than all, bigger than all, and all-encompassing!

11.These are such precious gifts you've given to Him--victories of tapes out, lit out, videos distributed, souls won, and nations reached--and not only these, which can be added and counted, but also the innumerable diapers changed, children taught, meals cooked, dishes washed, provisioning done, hours spent in follow-up, and time spent loving each other. These cannot be bought, for they are without price. They're part of you--your heart and love for Him.

12.Jesus was His Father's gift to the world--you are Jesus' gift to the world! All you do for Him are gifts for Him, presents that He will enjoy forever and that will make Him eternally happy. Let's start by looking at your love gifts to Jesus in the witnessing department this past year, and how we've been able to make Him even happier this year!

Witnessing Victories!

Distribution:

13.For 1997 the Family distributed over 20 million pieces of lit--more pieces than any year since 1984! This is the equivalent of 181 million pages! We've gotten out more of the message in 1997 than in any of the previous 13 years!

14.This past year you distributed 8.8 million posters, which is the highest amount for the last five years. You've also distributed 360,000 audio tapes and CDs, 141,000 videos, as well as 307,000 Living Waters and Daily Foods, and 11 million other pieces of lit.

Fruit--souls won:

15.The fruit of our witnessing and distribution this past year has been the winning of 1,087,919 souls for the Kingdom! This is the highest number in nine years, since 1988, and only the eighth time in our history that we've won over a million souls in a year. So it was a really great year, and you can see why Jesus is so proud of you and so happy, because you've given Him the gifts that He's most pleased with, and that will make Him happy for eternity! Praise the Lord! This comes to over 90,000 souls per month, or 3,000 souls per day for 1997!

16. Of course, these souls won are those that you've personally prayed with. However, many more souls have been saved and countless other lives have been changed as a result of the Lord's message in our lit this year. The Lord told us: "Many million more lives have been changed forever because of the message you have distributed, My Words. Your message has been greatly multiplied, like a rock thrown into a pond, or rather the sea of the peoples of this Earth. The stone, the rock Christ Jesus, has been flung by the arm of the children of David with great force, causing a mighty splash. You see the splash and count the souls thereof, but the many smaller waves and ripples are hidden to you. Yet they are there, and these ripples influence much more of the water than the first big splash. They spread across the pond, even as your message spreads from hand to hand, mouth to mouth and heart to heart, reaching a multitude no man can number!" (End of message from Jesus.)

Comparative stats:

17.For any who may be wondering if the Family is making more headway since the implementation of the Charter, here are some comparative stats:

18. * In 1994 (the last year before the Charter) our total souls won came to 800,000. This has progressively increased each year since, culminating in over one million souls this year! That's a 35% increase in three years!

19. * We distributed 8,890,000 pieces of literature in 1994.This too increased in each of the next three years, reaching 20,631,000 this year--an incredible increase of 132%!

20. * Poster distribution has increased from 1994's low of 4,442,000 to this year's whopping 8,835,000--an increase of 99% in three years! Double!

21. * While our audio and video tape distribution has gone up and down over the last three years, it has now far surpassed the 1994 levels, with audio tapes up 26% and video tapes up 18% over 1994 levels!

22. * Personal witnessing has also increased each year since the Charter. In 1994 we personally witnessed to 6,716,000 people, and each year since then we've done more, until in this year we personally witnessed to 7,965,000--an 18% increase!

23. * Follow-up has been doing better as well, as Daily Food/Living Waters distribution has had a steady increase year by year, going from 1994's 139,463 to this year's 307,563!--A 120% increase!

24.So, dear Family, if anyone is trying to tell you that we're not progressing, you can be assured that they're feeding you a line! We're moving forward, making progress, and winning--and you certainly deserve this victory review and celebration! Praise the Lord!

25.Since the Family's beginning, we've won 20,757,000 souls and distributed 966,000,000 pieces of lit, which works out to about 4.5 billion pages! 99,260,000 posters have been distributed since 1985, which is when poster distribution started. 7,175,000 audio tapes have gone out since 1985, and 1,188,000 video tapes since their beginning in 1989!

26.How's that for preaching the Gospel and carrying out the Lord's most important commission to us? No wonder He's so proud of you for your obedience to do what others are failing to do! Imagine, we've distributed almost one billion pieces of lit! We've distributed almost 100 million posters! Isn't that incredible? We've witnessed personally 222 million times, and at least 20 million inhabitants of Heaven will be there because of your witnessing!--Probably many times over that, "a multitude no man can number," as the Lord indicated above! Praise the Lord!

Population stats:

27.We now have 749 Charter Homes, up from 265 at the onset of the Charter! This is a phenomenal increase of 182%! In 1997 alone we grew by exactly 100 Homes--one new Home every three or four days on the average. CM Home size has gone down dramatically, from 33 members per Home just prior to the Charter to its present 13.3. We have 552 Fellow Member Homes with an average size of 5.8 members per Home. Our FM population now makes up 25% of our combined CM/FM membership. So we have a combined total of 1,301 Family Homes. That's our highest number of Homes since 1983, or in 14 years.

28.The Family now, with 13,943 total members, has the largest population ever in our history! This consists of 9,937 Charter Members, 3,222 Fellow Members, 598 Live Outs, and 186 Catacombers! That compares to 12,884 members just prior to the implementation of the Charter at the end of 1994.

29.Our Charter Membership has increased by 1,289 since 1994. Between new disciples, babies, and Fellow Members who have changed their status to Charter Member, we've increased our Charter Membership by 15% in three years.

Births:

30.In 1997 we had 349 Family births, which is an average of 29 a month, or nearly one a day! Births in 1994 were at a 20-year low of 324. However, with more of you younger ones getting mated and having babies, the rate is beginning to rise: 338 in 1995, 338 again in 1996, and now up a bit to 349 in 1997. Praise the Lord! The 68 betrothals we had in 1997 will probably help to add to next year's birth stats as well! God bless you newlyweds and all of you dads and moms who had new bundles of love this last year! We're proud of you!

Nationalities:

31.As of 1997, the Family is made up of 93 nationalities! Considering there are only about 180 nations and principalities in the world, that means that over one-half of the countries of the world are represented in the Family. That's pretty amazing--especially considering we live communally and that all of these distinct nationalities and cultures have to live together in harmony! Only in God's new nation--where race, color and creed have blended together in Jesus--can such a feat be accomplished.

32.The largest nationality is U.S. Americans at 30%. They are followed by Brazilians at 8%, Japanese and Canadians at 6% each, British 5%, Mexicans and Australians at 4% each, and French, Argentineans and Germans at 3% each.

Countries:

33.The Family is presently located in 85 countries around the world! That means we are in nearly half of the countries of the world, too! 22% of us are in North America, 26% in Mexico, Central and South America, 15% in Western Europe, 9% in Eastern Europe, including Russia, 3% in the Mideast and Africa, 4% in the Indian Subcontinent, 6% in Southeast Asia, and 15% in the Orient and Pacific region.

34.We pioneered or re-pioneered six countries in 1997: The Dominican Republic, Uzbekistan, Ghana, Reunion Island, Cameroon, and Botswana! And Family teams are still laboring in such far-flung places as China, Vietnam, Burma, Malaysia, Nepal, Madagascar, Zimbabwe, Kenya, Nigeria, etc.! You name any country, and chances are about 50/50 we have a Home there!

35.We're growing, we're moving, we're pioneering, we're winning! Praise the Lord! We hope this proof of what the Lord is doing because of your dedication to His Family and your obedience to His call is as great an encouragement to you as it is to Mama and me!

Finances and Investments!

36.Since financial matters are also very important, let's take a look at how we're doing in this area. The Homes' average monthly income this year has risen by 18.5% over last year. This is the third year of progressive increase, and our Family income today is 63% higher than it was in the year before the Charter! Praise the Lord!

37.Of course, increased income to the Homes means increased income to WS, through your faithful tithing; and increased income to WS has meant increased services to the Homes! The tithes and offerings you send in are used to serve you, and we try to use them in the most effective and economical ways possible.

38.In my travels this year, a number of people have asked me why WS doesn't invest its funds--meaning why don't we put the funds in banks, stocks, bonds, etc., in order to collect interest, thus gaining more money. The short answer to that is that we do invest our funds--not in banks or stocks and bonds, but in you, in the future, in things that will reap eternal dividends! We explained this in some detail in the Letter "Mama's News and Views!--Part 2" (ML #3049, GN 676), but let me try to explain again, using some current examples.

39.One of our largest investments in '97 was publishing the Word that feeds the Family and the world. This year you received 261 regular publications from WS, up from last year's 179--a 45% increase! On top of that, there were a number of GP pubs and two major book printings sent out. Let's take a deeper look into this.

New GNs!

40.There were 46 GNs pubbed this year (Dec. '96 through Nov. '97), totaling 805 pages. That's one GN pubbed every eight days, with an average size of 17.5 pages, roughly categorized as follows:

--4 issues about overcoming trials and tests (The "Crisis of Faith" series and "Jesus Our Good Shepherd").

--2 issues containing the last Summit '96 Letters.

--2 menopause and midlife issues.

--4 current events issues (3 "Currents" plus the "Hale-Bopp" GN).

--3 GNs devoted to helping our JETTs and Junior Teens (the "Call to the Rescue" series").

--2 GNs devoted to the "Outward Appearance" of our young people--and older adults' attitudes.

--2 "Mama's Memos" issues.

--2 "Spirit Stories" GNs, which produced a brand-new pub: Heaven's Library.

--1 Endtime issue (The Future Foretold, an updated "Signs of the Times" GN).

--2 Family news issues ("Victories of 1996" and "Where We're Headed").

--5 witnessing/missionary issues (including Letters like "'Instant' Witnessing," "Be a Missionary" and "Come to India").

--2 GNs of visions: "The Birthday Party Vision" and "Victory '97."

--1 GN continuing the Reconciliation Ministry: "Letter to Current and Former Family Members."

--6 prophecy issues (including the "Mama's Surprise" issues, "Believing Prophecy," "Hearing from the Lord Step by Step," and "Endtime Prophecy Power").

--2 GNs on communion and the resultant unity ("Come Together in Love" and "Dad's Christmas Message").

--1 GN majoring on Mama's birthday ("Birthday Yieldedness").

--2 GNs on "Loving Jesus" ("Our Husband and Lover" and "It's Cool to Love Jesus," from last year's Feast).

--3 other Feast Letters from last year (the intro, the "Commitment" GN and ceremony, and "Celebrating Our Second Anniversary of the Charter").

Other Pubs!

41.Besides the GNs, you received 19 FSMs, 10 WNDs, 23 Grapevines, 11 Zines, 21 Heaven's Libraries, 14 Hope TKs, 24 MLKs, 25 FARs, 10 Prayer Lists, 6 Power and Protections, 5 Family in Actions, 2 Kidz mags, 2 Kidz Biz mags, 4 Praisin' U mags, 35 children's posters, 6 other Family Care pubs, 6 Reflections, 1 Mountain Streams, 1 Home Educator, 20 LNFs and other notices, 2 songbooklets, and the 1997 Family Movie Guide!

42.Besides all of this, five new tracts for distribution were published: "What Heaven Is Like!" "True Love--Forever Love!", "What's Wrong with This Picture?", "Check Me Out," and "Hale-Bopp: The Comet's Tale!" There were also three new GP distribution booklets: "A Christmas to Remember," "The Future Foretold," and "Glimpses of Heaven!"

New Books!

43.On top of this monumental feat of publishing such a wide and abundant array of important Word, WS and a dedicated team in Thailand took on a task of almost impossible proportions, which they accomplished, by the Lord's supernatural grace and anointing: The publishing of 31 books in this past year, the highest number of books we've ever published in one year--10 of which you should already have, and 21 which are on their way to you now.

44.These books are: DB 11, Junior DBs #1-3, Lifelines 19-22, Junior Lifelines, From Jesus--With Love #1 and 2, To Jesus--With Love #2, Word Topics, General Reference Handbook, Childcare Reference Handbook, Kidz Mag book, Kiddy Cat book, Power and Protection book, Teacher's Activity Guide, the Revised Dito book, MLK book #1, Victory in Babylon/LOG book, Hope of the Future True Komix, Vol. 1, Kidz True Komix, Vol. 1-4 (reprints) and Activity Book 1-4 (reprints).

HomeARC!

45.And let's not forget the 3 CDs of HomeARC 98,which contain the great majority of all the Family material ever published! When seeing all the Word that's been poured out to us this year, it's easy to see why the Lord has said we are billionaires in spirit! The gold and jewels of His Word are priceless, and He pours them on us in great abundance! We're so blessed!

More Children's Pubs!

46.Towards the end of 1996, the Lord told us to focus on getting the Word to our younger ones, as they were in need of strengthening. In order to achieve this and other goals, in early 1997 WS restructured its publication units personnel and streamlined their procedures. With added personnel, Family Care has been able to increase their production greatly, publishing 14 Hope TKs in comparison to the previous year's 3, and 24 MLKs as compared to 9 the previous year. (A welcome new addition to Family Care are two new young artists, ages 17 and 21, who have begun to add their art to upcoming Hope TKs, MLKs and other childcare pubs.)

47.This increase of new Word in Komix form, along with 13 of the 31 above-mentioned books, which were published specifically for our young people, should make it much easier for them to read and absorb the Word, thus strengthening them in spirit. The eight books published specifically for parents should also go a long way in benefiting the younger ones as well.

Spirit Stories!

48.Of course, we'd get howls from all of you if we forgot to include the spirit stories of Heaven's Library in our listing of important pubs! As we found out from the many reactions that we receive, these are being a blessing not only to you younger ones, but to you older ones as well! From the sounds of it, everyone loves these stories and benefits from them. But they have especially been a blessing to our young ones, giving them exciting new Spirit-filled stories to read and regularly reflect on.

49. The spirit stories have been a big hit with the GP, too, judging by the success of "A Christmas to Remember!" From what we've heard so far, this new outreach tool went very well. Homes got out so many of these new booklets that some Service Centers actually ran out of stock, even though they'd done large print runs.

50.Really, the spirit stories project and the resultant Heaven's Library pub is phenomenal! It has been nothing less than amazing to see these stories poured out in prophecy! But one of the neatest things about it is that the majority of them come from you on the field! Thus far we've received 381 spirit stories (a series such as "The Perfect Ones" is counted as only one story), making up roughly 1,900 pages of stories from Heaven! 281 of these stories--73%--were sent in from you folks on the field, with the other 27% received by WS personnel. Of the 381 stories, 80 (20%) were received by our second generation (25 and under).

51.Talk about a fulfillment of prophecy!This project was given through prophecy, has been directed through prophecy, and the stories are received through prophecy. Go back and take a look at the Letter "Spirit Stories!--Heavenly Ghostwriting!" (ML #3119, GN 733). It's incredible to realize how much the Lord has fulfilled what He has said there! And there's more to come! So far, less than 100 of the stories have been published, so we're praying for ways to get more to you more quickly. There are some terrific stories yet to come, so hold on to your hats! Please pray for our small Heaven's Library team as they work to get more of these stories to you! You might be interested to know that this team consists solely of second generation personnel.

52.Another outcropping of the Heaven's Library projects has been the use of more Family art, much of which is being drawn by field artists, including some of our veteran adult artists and a number of up-and-coming second generation artists. God bless all of you who have been contributing your artwork. If you have artistic talent and want to try your hand at doing art for the spirit stories, please write the Heaven's Library team via the Grapevine.

53.From the multitude of reactions to the story books which we've received, and from what the Lord has told us, it sounds like Heaven's Library has been a hit and has had a major impact on the Family! Here's what the Lord said about the influence the spirit stories are having.

54. (Jesus speaking:) This has been a year of great blessings, of showers of blessings from Heaven, of showers of spirit stories from many storytellers! I spoke of the piles and mountains of precious jewels that would tumble down upon the queen's house!--So much so that you and your helpers wouldn't just be handling the jewels and picking them up, but that you'd have to bulldoze the volume of precious treasures which would be given to you! And so it has been.

55.Not only has this year of storywriting been a great blessing and inspiration to the departed saints in Heaven, keeping them busy and fulfilled in helping the Family through their stories and testimonies, but it's also borne wonderful fruit in the lives of the Family.

56.First of all, it's helped to stretch the faith of manywho at first might have thought this was very unusual,and wondered if it would even work! Now they've not only seen it working, but it's given them more faith to expect not only spirit stories themselves, but answers in prophecy for their personal situations. It has helped to spur their faith to believe in the unseen, the supernatural, the miraculous, and given many the faith to exercise their personal channel. It's benefited and encouraged many talented channels to receive truly inspired stories from the spirit world, and has even given some a ministry in storywriting and the beautiful satisfaction of seeing these valuable stories go out to the Family and be an encouragement to thousands!

57.Your sample, My queen, in seeking Me for guidance and direction in the spirit stories project as an answer to the needs of our Family youth for more reading material, and in having the faith to implement it, has been a wonderful sample to parents of all ages, that they too can seek Me for answers and solutions for their situations and for their children's needs. If there's a problem, I will give a solution; I will provide if they ask Me.

58.Parents, teachers, childcare helpers and all those in the Family are rejoicing to have inspired, Godly, educational, inspirational reading material for all ages! They can't thank Me and you and the storytellers enough for such wonderful stories to feed their young children. They use them constantly--at bedtime, for inspiration, when traveling, for school time, for drama class, etc.--and have found within the variety of stories a great wealth of good material to read with the children.

59.And they're not only for young children, but YAs and teens have been very impressed with the intricate, well-written, suspenseful, dramatic, interesting, lesson-filled and inspired stories from beyond. It's made them proud of the Family and proud to share these stories with each other, and some with those they're witnessing to. It's given young people something inspiring and new that they can do together--something they enjoy and look forward to doing.

60.This in turn has provided them with some common ground for fellowship while reading the latest edition of Heaven's Library together. It sparks conversation about the spirit world, about the characters, or points in time, whether it be historical or in the future. It creates an atmosphere of faith. It draws their thoughts into the realm of the spirit and builds their faith to receive more, to seek Me for answers, to ask Me about things that they wouldn't normally ask about. Thus I'm able to speak to My young people about more intimate and deeper spiritual matters. I'm able to feed them through the open door and vacuum that they create when their mind is fixed on the spirit.

61.It's made them proud of the Family's anointing to receive and understand the things of the Spirit, and proud to associate with other notable figures from history. It's helped many to keep the Heavenly vision and to realize that all that has been spoken in My Word and My promises will come to pass. They receive confirmation and affirmation time after time through the spirit stories of Heaven, the spirit world, the Endtime, and much more. And through all this their faith, inspiration and conviction is being strengthened and is growing.

62.Every story and every issue of Heaven's Library is a reminder to the Family of the awesome reality of the spirit world! It's a fresh, new voice from someone who has spoken from beyond, and it helps to strengthen their connection and faith. What began as an inspiration, a far-out idea, has blossomed into a great work which is feeding, strengthening and helping many. New spirit helpers have been raised up to help the Family, and many have received their own personal spirit helper, or helpers, as a result of their faith and spiritual senses being sharpened.

63.There's just much more personal interaction between the spirit world and people in the Family as a result, and in this I am well pleased! The channels are opening everywhere! People who didn't normally receive much from the spirit world are now receiving more--not only in stories, but through personal prophecies, through prayer and meditation and communing with Me, because they're expecting more as a result of seeing the fruits.

64.So it's a great thing and a wonderful blessing from Heaven, and the blessing will continue to flow and overflow upon all who seek and are willing to receive. There will continue to be showers of blessings, mountains of jewels, and piles of stories all around the house of the queen! And she and her helpers will continue to polish the precious jewels and pump them out to the Family as fast as they can! (End of message from Jesus.)

65.(Peter:) Isn't that wonderful? Please keep sending those stories in, as they're having a wonderful effect! If you have the gift of prophecy and haven't tried to get a story yet, why not give it a go? It's thrilling!

Investing in the Future!

66.Well, the spirit stories are just another example of some of the investments we were talking about. As we said, we're investing the Lord's funds in the Family, in the future. By increasing the flow and availability of the Word, we're investing in a stronger Family. By investing in children's and young people's pubs, we're investing both in the present and in the future. If our children are fed spiritually, they grow in the Spirit, and thus are happier and have fewer problems, making it easier on the parents right now. It also helps to strengthen their foundation, so as they grow older, they're better connected to the Lord, thus being an investment in the future.

67.It costs a lot of money to publish as much as we do. You probably realize that, since you participated directly through the "attack days" to raise funds for the printing of the books. God bless you for your wholeheartedness in working toward and reaching that goal. You'll be getting the payoff in the form of the rest of the books soon. Praise the Lord!

NPCs' Output Doubled!

68.With the addition of the Grapevine, the Free Zine and Heaven's Library, we've added tremendously to the NPCs' workload--almost to the breaking point! I had the privilege of visiting four of our NPCs last year, and was so impressed with the sacrificial brethren who work day in and day out to get the Word to you. In most of our NPCs there are just two or three people doing the job. So you can imagine how much harder they've had to work when over the last 18 months we've added the Grapevine, the Free Zine and Heaven's Library, as well as increased the output of some of our other pubs.

69.The NPCs have virtually doubled their output! In order to help them keep up with the work, it's been necessary for WS to invest in upgrading much of their equipment, including printing presses, folders, staplers, collators, etc., all of which has been very expensive. This increase in pubs also means increased paper, postage and other costs, which has required an 18% increase in their budgets and a 25% increase in the LIMs' budgets. Again, this is all part of the cost of getting the Word to you each month. As Dad used to like to quote, "The Gospel am free, brethren, but it costs somethin' to pipe it to ya!" (ML #1885:43).

Music Ministry!

70.Another WS investment in the Family and to feed the GP this year has been through our music ministry. Early last year I was able to hold a one-week music seminar in Japan with representatives of all the studios. The prayer, fellowship, workshops, forums and meetings were a boost to the overall ministry. During this seminar we evaluated the needs of the studios, and WS invested in some very needed pieces of equipment for three of the studios.

71.In 1997, ten new tapes were sent to the Homes. These were: "Dropped Out," "Desiring You," "Breakin' Down the Walls," "Destined," "Heaven Is," "Shangri-La" and "Wild Wind," as well as three GP tapes: "Higher" (comprised almost entirely of newly recorded songs), "Uncharted," and "Free Zone" (the latter two being made up of songs previously released on FTTs). Along with these tapes, the South American studios completed and sent to the Homes in Latin America the beautiful Spanish tape, "Ritmos Sin Fronteras!"

72.There were 103 new songs recorded and sent to you this past year, and many others have been recorded and will be coming out shortly on new FTTs. Our music team, consisting of Mama, myself and others, went over and approved 248 songs that were sent in from the studios this year. Not all of these were FTT songs; some were for the GP tapes, the new Treasure Attic series, the Family Funs, and the upcoming adult tapes.

73.This year, brethren in three different cities--Rio, Miami and Atlanta--took the initiative to get together the needed equipment to open their own studios to produce music for the Family on a part-time basis! These studios raise all their own support, so whatever music they are able to produce for your enjoyment is in their "spare time," so to speak, God bless them! You should soon be hearing some of their recordings on upcoming tapes.

74. I'd also likely to clarify that while most of the other already-established studios receive some help from WS (or the Common Pot in some cases), they are not fully supported by WS, and most have to raise part of their support through witnessing or other means. So please keep their support in your prayers so they can continue to serve you.

75. When you add the three new studios to our other producing studios--JAS, DCS, BAS (now the RAD, Rio Audio Department), EAS, PAS and TAS--it gives us nine studios which produce Family music in English! Of course, three of these studios (PAS, TAS and EAS) mostly produce songs in the local language for local language tools, as does the BLAST studio in Brazil and the Japanese local language studio.

76.The DCS has been producing CDs, which they've been offering to the Homes, including "Dropped Out," "Intimate," "Accelerated," and most recently, the "Loving Jesus" set of "Open for Love" and "Desiring You." (See Grapevine 34, page 9.)

77.Some have asked why the DCS is the one making these CDs available, and whether they get to keep all the profits. The reason they're producing these CDs is that it was their idea, which they asked us about. It seemed like a good venture, and WS delegated it to them since we were unable to take on the project. As far as the funds that come in, WS has worked out an arrangement with them for their Home and WS to split the income up to a certain amount, to cover their expenses, time and work. Then any funds coming in above that amount go to WS, which uses it to pay for equipment upgrades for our music studios worldwide.

78.We felt this was a fair plan, as it would benefit the musicians in all the studios who originally produce the music, and would give DCS some remuneration for the work and time they put into the production and mailing of the CDs.

79.You might wonder why we consider the studios and their products an investment. For starters, they produce all the music that is used in our outreach tools. Otherwise the seven million audio tapes and 1.18 million videos that have been distributed, as well as all the funds generated for the Homes from these, would not have been possible.

80.But besides this, the work and finances put into the FTTs have generated a great deal of new music for our young people, which they greatly desired. The Lord wants us all to be happy and wants to give us what we need, and having FTT music is part of His love for the young people--although I must admit that I too like this music, as do most of the rest of you adults!--At least some of it, ha! Many of you young people have written in telling us how having FTT music has helped you to cut down on or stop listening to System music altogether, which definitely makes it a worthwhile investment for WS.

The FEDs!

81.Another big victory, and an investment, has been the FEDs (Family Education Departments). This year the FEDs in each area kicked into a higher gear and were able to supply the children and parents with many new items--a total of approximately 650 pages of childcare/family and educational counsel, and children's material produced by the 5 main FED centers around the world. (Note: Not all of this material will come to your Home, as some was produced by individual areas for their needs. However, some other areas' FED pubs will also be printed in your area, depending on the need and the ability of your area to handle the extra printing.) They've also focused on the CVC, sending out many certificates and diplomas earned by CVC students, and answering students' and parents' questions. In some areas, they held seminars on how to use the CVC, getting our teens and YAs turned on to trying out the CVC course.

Family Fun and Treasure Attic

82.Also, there was one Family Fun video (#15-16) sent out this past year, as well as another two-hour tape with Burn Free #3, the Praise Time Special (FFN#17), and a DFO spot--"The Bible." These tapes are a big hit with our young ones and help to bring the Word alive through the great skits, songs and stories. God bless the IVM and BVM for working so hard on them!

83.Speaking of the IVM, they've been working extremely hard on the new series of Treasure Attics. They've already filmed 13 shows worth of material inside the Attic, in both Spanish and English, and are now working on filming the songs. Solomon (Uncle Jim) and a team have been in the U.S. for the past few months filming there in order to have a more diverse range of material and nationalities. They're working toward having these 13 shows completely filmed, edited and ready sometime around June 1998.

84.This has been a major undertaking, requiring a complete revamp of the IVM's and HCS' mode of operation. God bless them for putting their all into this. We're sure we will all benefit from their present labors, as we have so greatly through the past video tools. And most of all, many little lives will be touched and feel Jesus' Spirit of love through these wonderful programs!

GPU Update!

85.Another investment of this past year has been the GPU (GP Unit), which resulted in the three new GP booklets, as mentioned earlier. The GPU has gone through many phases since its inception and has made an incredible amount of progress--most of it investigation, organization, research and development, and other detail work. Through all of this we have learned a lot more about where our strong and weak points are, and where we should focus our energies and work.

86.Before the GPU began their research, the vision was to publish books through the System, getting them on the bookshelves in stores everywhere. However, after a great deal of investigation and seeing all the time, work, and System hoops which would have to be jumped through to accomplish this, the Lord showed us that we should expend our efforts on tools which would be of more immediate benefit to the Family. While we still hope to get books in the stores, we are setting that aside for the time being.

87.Rather than trying to tailor our book publications to the glutted, "sophisticated" rich West, namely the U.S., the Lord is leading us to instead focus our attention on the specific needs of the mission fields. The Lord has shown us that He wants the GPU to produce books, posters and possibly other Gospel literature geared toward the needs of individual fields, and that the GPU should find out what those specific needs are from the Family members on these targeted fields. This will necessitate putting a hold on trying to break into the System market for now, and instead focus on publishing GP material that you Family missionaries want and that fits your needs.

88.Immediately after receiving this change of direction, the GPU contacted a number of Homes in Africa, where we now have a burgeoning work. Many of them indicated that they would greatly appreciate some customized posters with an African setting, black African characters, etc. Most of the African countries where we have Family members are English-speaking, so the material produced for them won't have to be translated. A new African "Incredible Journey" poster is being drawn, along with a new text backing which has an African story line. A few other posters are also in the works. Two Mountain Streams books are also being finalized, again with the African field in mind. Of course these Mountain Streams might be suitable for other fields as well, either as is or with slight modifications.

89.Once the GPU has helped supply the Family in Africa with their needs, they hope to do the same for other mission fields where there is a clear need for customized literature.

90.Besides this, they've finished work on a new updated "Signs of the Times" poster textwith current facts,based on The Future Foretold booklet, which should be available for worldwide distribution shortly. They've also been working on a Treasure Attic coloring book that many of you have asked for as a supplementary tool, which should be through the production line fairly soon. They're also planning to produce some posters geared to the Black community in the U.S., to assist in our outreach there.

91.It's our desire to give you the tools you want and need. The GPU is gearing up to do just that, so if you have ideas or feel your area needs a specific tool, be sure to send your ideas and suggestions to the GPU so they can prayerfully consider them. Please also pray for them, as their team is small. Their paramount desire is to do the best they can to help the Family in the different mission fields.

Witnessing on the Web!

92.The Family web site has certainly been a good investment, as it is turning into a major witness! We had 21,165 people log on to our site this year--a 125% increase over last year's 9,391 cybervisitors! The site averaged 1,764 visits per month, but just recently visitors skyrocketed to over 3,000 a month, or 100 per day! Over six billion bytes (6 gigabytes) of information were downloaded from our site, which equals 1.2 million GN pages! The equivalent of 3,363 pages per day!--That's witnessing!

93.Some of the most popular items on the site are the photos of Dad, of which 11,043 were downloaded this year. The MLs are also a great hit, with 7,523 DBs being downloaded this year. Some of the other popular items are Daily Mights, The Future Foretold, the Zine, video clips, FARs, legal, lit trunk, and audio tapes.

94.Besides 24 major changes, additions, and revamps on the site, a new "Members Only" section has been added. It contains: Find a Friend, Bulletin Board and Discussion, Computer FAQ and Links, Pubs Download Section with tracts and other pubs, Family Songbook and Chord Dictionary. You can find the monthly password for this section in the Grapevine each month. If you have Internet access, why not pay it a visit? You'll find it fascinating!

95.The web team consists of one FGA, two SGAs, one YA, and one senior teen, two of these working on it full-time, and the others part-time. They have lots of great new ideas and hope to post regular updates and changes on the GP and Members Only sites. Some of their plans for the new year are: A chat room for live, on-line chatting, additional songs for the songbook, movie list database, Hope TKs, lots more pictures of Dad, and much more! Please pray for them, as it's a huge job, but one that serves as a witness and testimony to outsiders and a place for some of you cybersaints to chat with one another, share your ideas, and get lots of helpful information.

The Family Aid Fund!

96.Another major financial investment has been the Family Aid Fund (FAF). As you know, the Charter Member Homes give 1% and WS tithes 10% of its income to the FAF. When we all agreed to start the FAF back in 1995, it was quite a step of faith for us all. You had to decide whether you were willing to give an extra 1%, and WS had to budget itself in a way that it could give away 10% of its income. Thank God we all had the faith for it, as the FAF has carried a great financial load!

97.Earlier this year, the FAF approached a crisis point, as the expenditures were outstripping the income, thus taking it below the minimum FAF reserve needed to cover emergencies. In "Where We're Headed" (ML #3136, GN 746) we explained that we were contemplating cutting back on the pioneer gifts, but the Lord told us to hold on, that He would supply--and He has! Praise the Lord! The FAF went from being 11% below our minimum needed balance in December '96 to 22% above the minimum now! That's a 33% increase!--Thanks to your prayers and faithfulness in giving your 1%, WS' 10% giving, a number of inheritances, windfalls and large gifts, and most of all to the Lord's unfailing promises!

98.So what has all of our giving to the FAF accomplished in this past year? The FAF gave out 175 HERs to new Homes, 190 pioneer gifts, 863 Tool Fund gifts, 343 baby bonuses or passed-on gifts, 241 Home loans, 78 reimbursements to HERs for legitimate expenses, and seven other gifts to needy situations! That's a grand total of 1,897 gifts going out from the FAF to the Family for 1997, or 158 gifts a month, over five a day for the entire year. Since there are now about 750 CM Homes in the Family, this means that most, if not all, CM Homes have received some direct benefit(s) from the FAF during the year.

99.Folks, that's investing! It's investing in the Family! Think of it, 190 pioneering teams received cash and tools to help them get started. 175 new Homes received an emergency reserve to have on hand in case of dire need. And when 78 Homes found themselves in an emergency situation, they had funds on hand to cover the expenses, and were then reimbursed by the FAF for those expenses. Seven other serious emergencies also received FAF help. 241 Homes--that's one-third of all our Charter Homes worldwide--received an interest-free loan to help them in some way. The parents of the babies who were born this year received a gift to help purchase baby needs, and those who had a loved one go to Heaven received some financial assistance as well.

100.Imagine the help all of that has been, and how many people these gifts have affected! And even with all that giving, the Lord increased the FAF balance by 33%! Let me tell you, folks, there's no bank or financial institution that's going to beat that! Investing in God's work, in His Family, pays off!--Big time!

101.To date, since May of 1995 when the FAF began, it has supplied 580 HERs to new Homes, 658 pioneer gifts, 1,592 Tool Fund gifts, 634 baby bonuses, 564 Home loans, 152 reimbursements, and 39 gifts to needy situations.--A total of 4,219 FAF gifts given out since the FAF began! And because of your faithfulness, virtually all of the Home loans have been paid back, thus making more available to loan out again! Praise the Lord!

More WS Investments!

102.Some other WS investments this past year have been the sending of free copies of all new audio and video tapes to all CM and FM Homes, and the duping and sending of master copies of the HSV (Home School Videos) and VTV (Vocational Home School Videos) to the CRO centers, to be made available to the Homes as well. In addition, each CM Home received one free set of the 3 HomeARC 98 CDs.

103.Also, I was able to make three major trips during this past year. I was able to visit the CRO offices, NPCs, FEDs, some PPCs, Service Centers, ABMs, LIMs and Lit-Pics in Japan, Thailand, Europe, Russia and North America. During these trips I also visited with the IVM and JAS, the GPU, and held the music seminar in Japan. All of the above was part of "Strengthening the Structure," which the Lord instructed us to do last year.

104.While in Europe I was able to hold missionary meetings in Switzerland, Hungary, and three in Russia. Videos of these meetings, along with the Bellwether meeting videos, were duped and sent to the CRO centers and have been shown in many areas around the world.

105.Of course, one other major investment is our WS missionary giving. WS gives 57 monthly missionary gifts to various Homes, services and ministries in 15 different countries, besides numerous one-time gifts to those in need. These monthly gifts are generally given to countries or areas that are either very poor or difficult to minister in, such as Russia, China, Albania, Romania, Vietnam, Burma, the Mideast, etc.

106.Besides all of the above-mentioned investments, WS funds the CRO offices, LIMs, legal, media, and other service teams, all of which provide an overwhelming amount of work, services and support to you Homes worldwide, and without whom the Family couldn't function.

107.So as you can clearly see, WS does invest its funds;it invests them in you who are faithful to preach the Gospel! We try to use the Lord's funds as wisely as we can, and as Dad always taught us, in ways which benefit you spiritually, materially, or through various services which help to make your job possible.

108.Some time back when we asked the Lord about investing funds in banks, etc., the Lord said, "I say unto you to invest, yes, invest! Invest in the Kingdom of God. Invest in the children of God. Invest in the best investment there is, the investment of the work of God. For he that invests in the work of God is a joint investor with God and reaps the rewards of God. So invest, yes, invest! Invest in the work of the Lord your God, and reap, yes, reap the dividends of God! For the dividends of God are greater than the dividends of man. The dividends of God are eternal!" (ML #3049:93,96).

109.We have invested in the work of God, and as you can see, we are reaping His dividends, both now and in the life to come! Praise the Lord!

Family Meetings!

110.Another phenomenal occurrence this past year was the number of meetings held around the world. In response to the need to strengthen our JETTs and other young ones, at least 29 OC/JETT/junior teen meetings were held in the major areas around the world. There were also at least 10 YA/SGA meetings, 12 delegates type meetings, six major CM/FM meetings, 11 Family camps, four live-out, and three national meetings, added to 30 major visitation trips during which the Summit/Bellwether/Russian videos were shown. There most likely were many more such meetings held, as the above are only the ones that were reported to the Grapevine. The 11 Family camps held in the U.S. had a combined attendance of about 2,600 people.

111.From the very rough records we have from this, it looks as though at least 6,000 Family members, young and old, both CM and FM, participated in some sort of area meeting this past year. It was encouraging to see how so many of the Charter and Fellow members fellowshipped together in these meetings. The Family is truly bridging the gap between the two, which has helped to heal many of the old hurts that some of our Fellow members had in the past. Thank the Lord!

112.Many have written to us and shared how much these meetings have meant to them. Many of our youth said that these meetings were what gave them the vision to keep on going for the Lord. In a number of these camps, where the organization or shepherding was a bit lacking, or there was too large a group of young people to handle at once, some young people were negatively affected by other young ones attending.

113. We've taken steps to make sure future camps don't experience these same problems--to be sure that these camps are well shepherded, and that the children are kept in line and in the Spirit. Any ungodly behavior will be dealt with immediately, and disruptive young people will not be allowed to stay. Still, despite any past problems, the fruit from the camps has been good overall, and many have been helped, strengthened and encouraged. God bless all of you who hosted these camps. It was a monumental job, and we thank you for your sacrifices!

Family Care Foundation!

114.Another big step forward this past year was the formation of the Family Care Foundation (FCF). As you know, back in July '96, Mama and I asked Gary if he would be willing to help the fledgling GPU get rolling. Originally we anticipated Gary would only need to be involved with this for about six months or so. However, the Lord obviously had other plans up His sleeve! It became quite clear that in order for the GPU to get off the ground, Gary would need to stay for quite some time, perhaps even permanently, to which he agreed. Eventually he and others working with him discovered the possibility of starting a foundation, which they pursued and which is now operational.

115.In time, Gary met and fell in love with Sharon and her three children, and eventually they were married, with the Lord's and our blessing. Quite early on, once it was clear that he would need to remain away from us in order to do his work, Gary wrote us the following: "While we've communicated on this next subject before, it seems we've all come to realize that the Lord has done a new thing in all of our lives. Having already taken a year's leave of absence from my previous responsibilities as your Prime Minister, I would like to now officially offer my resignation from this position in order to be able to continue working with FCF, and thus be able to devote my full time to this exciting and challenging project. While this constitutes quite a 'midlife career change,' so to speak, I believe this is the direction the Lord wants me to pursue."

116.God bless sweet Gary! We miss having his help in our administrational work, but due to his work with FCF, we accepted his resignation at that time. We have him and the Family Care Foundation in our prayers. They're doing a great job and their work is going a long way toward helping missionaries around the world. Following is an excerpt from the FCF Year-end Report:

117. "During the course of the past year, Family Care Foundation was able to license the distribution and broadcast rights to the three children's video series, 'Treasure Attic,' 'Fantastic Friends,' a revamped version of 'Kiddie Viddie,' and 'Countdown to Armageddon.' These videos, rich in family values and Christian principles, significantly further our exempt purposes, and our right to distribute them is a valuable tool to help us accomplish our stated mission. Negotiations are underway for various contracts here in the States, as well as possibilities for the same being explored abroad. With the help of a top agent here in the States, these children's shows are being offered to a number of U.S. networks, including satellite networks, from which we are awaiting responses. We also have had agents representing us at two major international television broadcasters' conventions, from which we hope to generate international interest.

118. "We have the opportunity to develop a direct marketing business, offering these children's video series, and it appears that we have secured favorable advertising for such on a nationwide children's program. We also expect to have 'Countdown to Armageddon' marketed both nationally and internationally in 1998.

119. "Sizing up the marketing potential of your product is not unlike fishing. You put as many lines into the water as you can and wait to see what the fish bite on. However, unlike fishing, there's a lot of energy, expense and time spent in getting the bait out there. We're hoping to land a couple of big ones in the new year. Please pray for these opportunities to come to fruition. Thanks.

120. "Our fundraising initiatives have been successful, as has a project we undertook getting our paperwork all in place for an 'umbrella program,' making it possible for missionaries around the world to be able to work together in partnership with the Foundation. Their operation as a Family Care Foundation project helps us to fulfill our exempt purposes and to fulfill our greater mission, and they benefit from the credibility of having a registered charity behind them. A development tool that works hand-in-hand with our umbrella project is a two-hour video on fundraising tips and techniques which we hope to make available to missionaries worldwide at the start of next year.

121. "It's been a very fruitful first year for FCF, and we've been able to help a number of missionary projects around the world financially and otherwise that meet the criterion of the Foundation. Our plans are to continue to pioneer new fundraising efforts throughout the new year with the hopes that we'll be able to channel even more funds to missionaries abroad, thereby fulfilling one of our main tax exempt purposes.

122. "As you know, FCF is registered in the State of California as a Public Benefit Corporation; that is, a nonprofit organization. Our three main exempt purposes as recognized by the IRS are (1) missionary activity, (2) religious publishing and (3) supplying goods and services to the poor. We very much appreciate your support toward this end, so that we in turn can be a blessing to others."

The Ministry of Reconciliation

123.(Peter:) The Ministry of Reconciliation has made a great deal of headway this past year as the Family overall has taken a more tolerant and understanding attitude in regards to former members. Those working at the 1-800 number in the U.S. have been ministering to many who call and write via e-mail. They have now started a monthly magazine for former members called "The Wine Press," which is getting very favorable responses. If you know of former members or close friends of the Family who you would like to receive a copy of "The Wine Press," then please see Grapevine 31, pg.1, on how you can have their names added to the mailing list.

Missionary Movements!

124. One of the most exciting things that has occurred throughout this past year, as well as since the Charter, has been the continued movement of people to the mission field in obedience to the calls the Lord has given. During the three years since the Charter, there's been a steady flow of personnel moving to the mission field, with the biggest increases in Eastern Europe and Russia, Africa, China, Mexico, India, the Mideast, and Taiwan. The total Family population in these areas has risen by over 400 people this year alone, and by over 1,200 people since the implementation of the Charter. The Family population in Russia and Eastern Europe has doubled since the Charter was implemented at the end of 1994!

125.The work in Africa grew from a mere 30 people before the Charter to 187 one year later, and now is up to 257! It's a rapidly growing work that is in need of more dedicated missionaries! In case you aren't aware of it, millions of people throughout Africa speak English or French. So if you're an English or French speaker, it could be just the field for you!

126.Mainland China had no Family Homes before the Charter, and now we have a number of Homes there. Taiwan has seen more personnel as well, with an increase of 70 people since the Charter. A number of these are people in different stages of preparation for going to Mainland China.

127.India saw a decrease in personnel after the Charter, but bounced back in '96 and '97 with 76 new missionaries. India is a fruitful mission field where English is widely spoken. Although visas and support take faith and initiative, we'd like to encourage you to pray about it as a mission field if you speak English, as there are close to a billion people there who need the message!

128.Mama and I would especially like some of you young people in Japan to consider the Indian subcontinent. A lot of you wound up in Japan because it's your parents' mission field and you grew up there, but now find yourselves struggling with how much work and time it takes to reach the Japanese, which causes you to feel unfruitful in your witness. Many of you just don't have a burden to work in Japan, and thus you have no burden to witness, and consequently you are dying on the vine spiritually. Please pray about going to India, where you can witness in English and make a difference. Is India calling you? Will you answer? A lot of the young people from Australia are moving there. How about you? Pray about it, won't you?

129.The missionary work in the Mideast has been progressing very well and is bearing a lot of good fruit. Many are being reached through our music and our message of hope. We're working on getting more of our tools into Arabic and other Mideastern languages. Please pray for security and open doors for our work with these precious and needy people.

130.This year Mexico has seen an increase of about 200 people. This has been in direct response to the message the Lord gave about some of the U.S. brethren moving there. God bless those of you who have taken up the challenge!

131.It's interesting to note that right after the Charter there was quite an influx of personnel to the U.S. The Family population there grew by 18% through 1995 and 1996. However, in '97 it dropped by 8%, praise the Lord! Many are heading out to foreign mission fields. Since the Charter, the population in Eastern Europe and Russia, Africa, China, Mexico, India, the Mideast, and Taiwan has risen by 68%,so many are going, many are answering the call! Praise the Lord!

More Participation!

132.Your participation in Family matters has also increased greatly over the past year. Take the Grapevine and the Zine, for example: Virtually all of the articles in these two mags came from you. Over 3,000 of you have written into the Grapevine alone--sharing news, giving observations and opinions, and taking part in open forums. Many are writing into the Zine as well, sending articles, poems, photos, art, and you name it. Hundreds of you have written to Mama sharing your hearts, lessons, ideas, and thanks. Hundreds of you are sending in spirit stories, artwork, and songs. You're getting the point that the Family is all of us together, and that we need you to participate to make it work and grow! And you are, more now than ever before! Praise the Lord!

A Job Well done!

133.To hear more of what the Family has accomplished this past year, please be sure to read the Family's year-end activity report (YEAR), which shows in even more detail than we can recount here what a tremendous job you're doing.

134.We hope that reading in this GN of these many victories and the tremendous progress that you've made worldwide has given you a clear picture of what the Lord is helping the Family to accomplish. We're witnessing more, winning more, getting out more literature, tapes and posters, producing more Word, more music, more publications, going to more mission fields, giving more, and progressing by leaps and bounds! Now can you see why the Lord and Dad are so proud of you, and Mama and I are as well? God bless you for a job well done!

Family Survey!

135.What other victories have been won? What other progress has been made? Thus far we've shown you with statistics the mighty victories we've won and that prove we're getting the job done. But those haven't been the only victories. There have been victories in the spirit as well! We're sure that every one of you can tell of personal spiritual victories won during this past year.

136.When praying about a way to show you how the Family has progressed spiritually, the Lord gave us the idea of sharing some information we gathered from a survey earlier this year during my trip to Europe and Russia, and from a number of North Americans during some of their Family camps. Questions such as personal use of prophecy, which pubs each person read, and their attitude toward "Loving Jesus" were asked, among others. The surveys were filled out anonymously, so that everyone could feel free to answer truthfully without any embarrassment. Mama and I were very thankful for everyone who participated, as it gave us some very helpful information. We believe this survey provides some very helpful insight into how the Family is doing spiritually, how they are accepting the New Wine, and their overall level of happiness. We feel the following results will encourage you!

137.373 Charter Members, ages 16 and up, participated in the survey, which is 8% of the Charter Family's adult population, which should give a fairly accurate projection of the entire Family. When results of surveys and polls are reported in the world news, only a fraction of a percent of the total population is polled, and from that they tell you what the general population supposedly feels or believes. Often they only question one thousand people, and from that, extrapolate what a whole country of millions feels. If a news organization were to poll 8% of all Americans, they would have to poll 20 million people! So the fact that our survey is answered by 8% of our adults is a substantial number and thus gives a fairly accurate picture.

138.The 373 people surveyed were of the following age breakdowns: 105 were 16- to 21-year-olds, 143 were 21- to 29-year-olds, and 125 were 30 and over. 212 were female, and 161 were male. Okay, here's what those folks told us:

--83% said that they have the gift of prophecy; 17% don't.

--75% of those who receive prophecy do so either daily or at least once or twice a week.

--19% receive prophecy once or twice a month.

--6% receive prophecy less than once a month.

--75% of the Homes use prophecy daily, or at least once or twice a week.

--82% of Family members take praise time at least once a day.

--86% percent accept and practice "Loving Jesus."

--12% say they believe in "Loving Jesus" but don't practice it; however, 53% of these say mild love words to Jesus. (Note: Actually, saying love words is "loving Jesus," so for your encouragement, you who do so are loving Him as His Bride!)

--86% of the males and 86% of the females accept and practice "Loving Jesus."

--93% of those 21 and over accept and practice "Loving Jesus."

--71% of those 16-20 accept and practice "Loving Jesus," while 26% accept but don't practice. Only 3% don't accept.

--88% of those who practice "Loving Jesus" said it made a great or significant improvement in their lives.

--14% of married couples share outside their marriage at least once a month.

--17% of married couples share outside their marriage only once every 3 to 6 months.

--11% of married couples share outside their marriage only once a year.

--57% of married couples share outside their marriage less than once a year.

--42% of singles share at least once a month.

--33% of singles share only once every 3 to 6 months.

--7% of singles share only once every year.

--18% of singles share less than once a year.

--85% said life in the Family is better or easier since the Charter.

--5% said life is about the same as before the Charter.

--7% said life is more difficult since the Charter. (3% didn't answer the question.)

--95% said they have the freedom to make decisions that affect their personal lives according to their own faith and the Lord's leading.

--3% said others have too much say in these personal matters.

--2% said others usually dictate personal decisions.

On Board with the New Moves of the Spirit!

139.For the most part these survey stats are quite encouraging, aren't they? The stats on married couples sharing aren't so good, and some singles don't appear to be getting their sex needs met often enough. But overall the Family seems to be accepting and practicing the new moves of the Spirit, which is probably one of the reasons the Lord is blessing in every way, as seen by the results in our witness, finances, Word output, and all the rest. The Lord said if we'd love Him, if we'd listen to Him, if we'd praise Him, He would take care of us, He'd supply, He'd bless--and He has!--Because you have! Obviously the great majority of the Family are doing the things He's asked, so He's doing the things He's promised!

140.We've heard from a number of CROs who have spent a great deal of time on the road visiting Homes that the Homes who seem to be the most fruitful, the happiest, have the most supply, and the least overall problems, are those that are practicing the New Wine; and that those that don't, generally have a more difficult time. Of course, every Home has its share of problems, but their observation is that those who actively participate in the new moves of the Spirit have less problems and accomplish more.

141.From the looks of things, most of you are on board and doing your best to follow where Jesus is leading today! God bless you! He loves you for it and blesses you because of it.

Summary of Victories--from Jesus!

142.When praying and asking the Lord to give His synopsis of the victories of this past year, here's what He had to say:

143. (Jesus speaking:) These are the days of great freedom, days of plenty, days of the showers of My blessings, days of spiritual riches! You, My children of David, have been blessed beyond many on the face of the Earth, for I have given to you great treasures of the Spirit, beautiful gifts of My Spirit, priceless jewels from Heaven! And so have the children of David overflowed with the blessings from an abundant flow of My Word, and through this have won many victories and have made great progress.

144.Many were tossed to and fro, being tormented with doubts and questions and fears--doubting My Words and My voice, as the Enemy sought to destroy the usefulness of any who would fall prey to his doubts. But now has the Enemy fled, the chains of doubts have fallen off, and your brethren have been strengthened and are winning victories of renewed faith day by day as they allow themselves to be further strengthened through My Words of truth and My voice of prophecy.

145.Oh, what a year of rejoicing that more and more of My children seek Me personally and have opened their ears to hear every Word that I whisper to them! What a tremendous source of strength, encouragement, comfort and direction has been given to My children, and how they cling to My voice for their guidance and help!

146.Through this wonderful key of the Spirit have great and lasting victories been won! Not only in the lives of individuals, but in the smooth operation of their Homes, in their outreach and ministering to My sheep, in their relationships with each other and their relationship with Me, and an even stronger link with My Spirit. They've seen that I am their good and loving Shepherd Who is always ready to give them the answers and direction and counsel that they need, and so they're eager and hungry and willing to seek and ask Me.

147.Before, many of My children struggled in their own strength to find the solutions, not knowing what to do or how to do it. But now they feel the tremendous relief and strength of knowing they can come to Me directly and hear My voice of counsel for themselves. They faithfully seek My face and are blessed beyond their own understanding with message after message from My throne. It is because of their faith to seek Me that great doors have been opened in sensitive countries, and that My children have come before kings and queens and great men of the world and are being used mightily by My hand to minister in places that few are able to go.

148.The Family has humbled themselves and bowed before Me with a fresh spirit of humility, and asked for the downpouring of My blessings and My Spirit upon their lives. They've sought Me in earnest prayer for the renewal of their faith, their love, their conviction, their loyalty to Me and to their queen and king, and so have I answered and blessed them with the desires of their hearts, and great have been the victories won! All who have sought Me sincerely in spirit, who have laid their all on the altar of sacrifice and have wanted My will above all else, have indeed been given the keys to great victories, and great is the rejoicing in Heaven!

149.I am well pleased, My beloved children, with your willingness to once again commit yourselves to Me, your King and Husband, and to let Me rule your lives. You have done this through your continual hunger for My Words and My voice, and feasting on My Words, and letting My Word and My voice of prophecy lead and guide you.

150.The more the Family has tapped into the power of prophecy, the more they want! They've learned the power of hearing My directions and leaning on the power of My Spirit, and thus many have sharpened their weapon of prophecy and are following Me more closely than ever before. This in turn has defeated the Enemy's further attacks on My children, for he has not been able to get past their wall of faith, and this has been a great victory of My spiritual protection in their lives.

151.They've gained much more peace of mind and heart, knowing that they're letting Me lead them directly, and thus have I been able to lead many to the mission field to reach My lost sheep. Many others have a renewed vision and desire for witnessing and being a missionary wherever they are or whatever their age.

152.So much more has been accomplished in outreach and ministering and witnessing because of the Family's willingness to follow the New Wine and the new moves of My Spirit. I've been able to open great doors of service, great doors of pioneering, great doors of ministering and reaching thousands who never would have heard had not the Family been willing to once again follow and obey the moves of My Spirit and My commission to witness.

153.Through the Family's giving and sowing of My precious seeds of life, through their willingness to scatter the seeds abroad, as well as their willingness to minister to their own--their youth, their fellow members--they have reaped the thrilling benefits of My Spirit in their lives: Blessings of greater joy and love and unity within their Homes and families and marriages; blessings of My greater protection on their mission fields; protection from the things that they don't even know about, and from the Enemy's attempts to hinder and stop their work; protection of their health and that of their loved ones. As the days grow darker, there is more and more evil that the Enemy desires to unleash upon the world, but My children will be able to walk safely through a dangerous land under the shadow of My protection.

154.There have been great victories in the lives of each of My children--victories of greater intimacy with Me and the spirit world. Through their hunger for more and more of the spiritual, they have drawn closer to Me and to each other. They've won peace of mind, assurance of My leading, confidence in My anointing in their lives and their ability to hear My voice. All of this is a power tool in My children's hands and has made it so much easier for them to work out their problems, to come to decisions, to work together with more unity, to counsel together and hear from Me and to have the faith to follow. They know how important My voice of prophecy is, and because of it they hunger for more and more, and are taking the time to hear from Me more; thus I'm able to direct and guide and provide all that they need.

155.The Homes that regularly seek Me are happier, more fulfilled, more fruitful, more united, and accomplishing My highest will! I've been able to bless and reward them and use them mightily. Through the united loving efforts of the teens, YAs, SGAs and adults, many of your younger JETTs and junior teens have been won to My full-time service who otherwise would have fallen by the wayside and given up in hopelessness. But the love and prayers that were poured into their lives moved My hand to perform the miracles needed to encourage and help them to keep going and keep believing, and their hearts have been strengthened and given new faith.

156.These young ones will be the new hope of tomorrow,and through them, many greater deeds than these will they do. You will be eternally grateful that you answered the call to help them through to victory. They are small and unseen at the moment, but the day will soon come when they will be raised up to be a mighty fighting army amongst the darkness, and great will be their light! All that you have sacrificed and poured into the young ones will be returned to you. Great will be your reward as you see them shine, and see the miracles that I will do through them!

157.Many great spiritual victories have been won this year, which is laying the foundation and paving the way for even greater victories ahead when I will use My children even more mightily! You now have more help from the spirit world through the releasing of many powerful spirits who stand at your side to fight with you in the saving of the lost. They will also help you personally and be your friends and companions in the spiritual warfare that you fight. They go into the new year with you, and together you will be an unbeatable foe that will again conquer and win even greater victories for My Kingdom! (End of message from Jesus.)

158.(Peter:) Isn't it encouraging to see all the victories through the Lord's eyes? Praise the Lord! Of course, in this prophecy the Lord wasn't listing the problems we face or the areas we need to progress in, which we all know there are plenty of. The incredible thing is that with all of our faults, our problems, our lacks, and our difficulties, the Lord is still able to cause us to go from strength to strength.

159.Like Dad recently said in prophecy, "It's pretty easy to focus on the problems, and they have to be focused on sometimes. But I'll tell you, from Here the overall tree of the Family looks pretty healthy, pretty strong. Sure there are some branches that aren't doing well, but there are so many healthy branches that are bringing forth fruit, so you have to remember that too."

160.Please don't think that in presenting all of the progress made, Mama and I have our heads in the sand about the problems the Family faces. We don't! We are quite aware of them. In fact, in the next GN we plan to address some of them as we look forward to where the Lord wants us to go, the progress He wants us to make, and the goals He wants us to reach for in the year ahead.

Don't Be Caught Unprepared!

161.When praying about this victories Letter and asking the Lord what points to cover, He said something significant, something each of us needs to keep in mind as we move through this year:

162. (Jesus speaking:) Remind them again that these are the days of their preparation, days for them to practice, to prepare for war. Warn them not to be complacent, not to be as the watchmaker in the military who got so busy fixing watches that he forgot what he was there for. For I say unto you, there is war ahead; it is coming! But I am being very merciful to My children by warning them and giving them a period of time to grow in spirit.

163.I am well pleased that many are using this time of peace and plenty to grow, and will use this upcoming year to grow even further. But it saddens Me to see many who do not strive to grow. For when the time comes that they need to fight, they will be weak and not have enough strength, nor the skills that they need. So caution them about this matter and warn them again that their time of peace is limited. (End of message from Jesus.)

Growing Intolerance of Non-Mainstream Religions!

164.(Peter:) That is a very sober warning--one which we all need to take to heart. Don't be caught unprepared when the time comes because you wasted this time of peace by not preparing for what's ahead. As the Lord said above, there is war ahead, and if you look, it's easy to see that clouds of spiritual warfare are on the horizon, especially in Europe, Russia and the other former Soviet republics.

165.As you know, in October Russia passed a law against minority religions, making it illegal for unregistered, officially nonrecognized religions to pass out literature, to do CTP work if it involves religion, to hold meetings, etc.--virtually all of the things we do! The Orthodox Church, along with the ACM, worked very hard to get this law passed, and are continuing to work to have similar laws passed in the countries of the former Soviet Union, with some success. The ACM and others are also trying to get similar laws passed in other European countries, with some success. Following are a few condensed clips from reports and news articles we've received about the situation.

166. The European CROs wrote: "The mindset and sentiments of the general public in Russia are rapidly changing from being liberal and open to being very suspicious and dubious of foreigners and religious groups, and the attitude of some people now is becoming more like it used to be under communist days, when people were suspicious and fearful. Even when just giving a tract to a passerby, Family members have been questioned as to whether they are legal and if they're registered. Some Homes who have had CTP ministries going have been questioned by the establishments they've been helping as to whether they are legal and if they have registered themselves. People are very cautious that everything is legal, and very dubious of those who are not."

167. Homes in Russia reported the following:

--In our city the new law restricting religious freedom went into effect even before being printed in the papers. Two days after it was printed we received a call from the local Religious Committee, who called us in for a talk.

--We phoned one of our Live-Outs to ask her if someone from another Home who didn't have the proper registration could stay with her for a little while, and in this same phone conversation we asked her if she wouldn't mind storing our stocks of posters at her house. She agreed. That same day she got visited by the police and was questioned about what foreigners she had staying with her, who was registered as living with her, etc.

--A couple of young people from a Home in Moscow were out on one of their regular singing engagements at a bar downtown. In talking with a member of the Canadian Broadcasting Network news team that was in the bar, he said he had just learned that the Family are on the top of the government hit list of the groups that they want to get rid of in Russia!

--We were just informed by one of our friends who did a little checking up on us that we are on the top of the KGB blacklist here as being a dangerous religious sect. They have been tightening up on our visas as a result of this.

168.Apparently Romania, Kazakhstan, Moldova, and other countries are working toward passing laws similar to Russia, which will affect the Family in these countries.

169.One newspaper reported: "A small Lutheran congregation in the Russian region of Khakassia has apparently become the first church group to have its registration revoked under a new law restricting 'nontraditional' religions, a church official in Washington said yesterday."

170.When reporting about the shifting tide of religious tolerance in Western Europe the Washington Times reported: "A network of psychiatric, legal, media and socialist groups are pressuring European governments to outlaw or curtail the activities of well-known religious organizations, a new report states. With groups such as Catholic charismatics, Hasidic Jews, Baptists, Mormons, Jehovah's Witnesses, Quakers, Buddhists, and the YWCA now being listed as 'dangerous sects' by state panels, American human rights groups are raising concerns.

171. "Massimo Introvigne, a Roman Catholic scholar from Turin, Italy, said that in several countries anti-sect lists or reports are being compiled, with a German report citing 800 groups, Belgium listing 187, and France 172, including Baptists.

172. "Anti-sect groups propose laws to list groups, outlaw 'mind control' by sects, bar them from opening bank accounts or renting meeting halls and to set up government bureaus to monitor groups.

173. "'We have been getting reports of a live intolerance in Europe, especially under the sect commissions,' said Karen Lord, legal counsel for religious freedom at the Helsinki Commission. 'Some of the groups they list are Opus Dei, which is blessed by the pope, and Campus Crusade for Christ.'"

174.The Washington Times reported: "The Austrian Parliament yesterday passed Western Europe's strictest law regarding religious minorities, designating a group of second-class faiths that may gain legal status only after a 10- to 20-year probation period. Though Austria is the first to pass a law on minority faiths, several European countries have established state-funded commissions to develop reports or lists of 'dangerous sects.' The lists include many faiths widely accepted in America, such as Pentecostals, Jehovah's Witnesses, Baptists, Buddhists, Hasidic Jews and even the YWCA. The new Austrian law is considered the strictest religious limitation in Western Europe, even more so than Greece, which does not monitor groups but outlaws proselytizing by any faith except the Greek Orthodox Church."

175.(Peter:) As you can see, many countries are becoming more and more intolerant of non-mainstream religions and are seeking to impose restrictions,and in some cases trying to ban them altogether. The amazing thing is how fast this is moving! Imagine, it was only last October that the Russian law passed, and almost immediately it had an effect on the Homes. In the middle of last year, the French, Belgian and Swiss governments came out with negative official reports against minority religions, and the ACMers are constantly lobbying the European Parliament to take strong measures against them. In just one year there has been quite a change of attitude on the part of many governments, which is causing a general tightening up, making it much more difficult for us to carry out our ministries.

176.On top of this, the formerly strong economies of many Asian nations have tumbled, which is already causing financial depressions in these countries, which could have a major effect on the worldwide economy very shortly. The economic troubles in the East all transpired within just the last few months of last year. So you see, things can move very quickly, and they are. Sometimes we can tend to get a bit complacent, thinking that all things will continue on as they are, but seeing how fast things can change should help us all to take heed to the Lord's warning.

177.Please remember, the Lord said that these are the days of preparation, and He is warning us to get prepared, especially in spirit, by living His Word, listening to and obeying His voice, and by winning spiritual victories in our lives. Let's use this year ahead to make further progress, further preparation in the spirit, so we will be ready for what's ahead!

Messengers of the Endtime!

178.(Jesus speaking:) My beloved children of David, you don't even see and can't even fully understand all the wonderful things that have been accomplished through you and the great victories that you have won! But I see them all. I see you growing stronger with each battle fought, and with each day that you faithfully proclaim My love. The Enemy thinks to wear out My children of the Endtime and to see your defeat. But instead, his attacks have only caused you to cling even harder to Me and refuse to give up your crown, and this is your greatest strength, which will never be broken.

179.So rejoice and shout with joy for your faith, which has not only remained firm and strong, but has grown even stronger! For this reason have I chosen you, the children of David, to be My messengers of the Endtime! I am preparing you to do great exploits, and I will use you to do things that none other has done, because of your faith and willingness to accept the new moves of My Spirit. For none other is willing to believe the unbelievable, to change and adapt to the new, to forsake the old and rejoice in the new, to dream the impossible dream and see it come true, to follow Me through any obstacles and know that your victory is assured!

180.All this is possible because of your faith, and because I am able to work mightily through vessels that are open to the power of the Spirit! I have touched and anointed and ordained it to be so, and no one can steal your crown of service or fruitfulness as long as you hold fast to that which is rightfully yours and allow My power to work through you.

181.The days of greater things are only beginning, and you will see even more power andmore anointing! Greater works, amazing miracles and wonders of My Spirit will I unravel before your eyes as you continue to believe. I will give to your queen that which none other will receive, and will tell her the truths and revelations and visions of My Spirit which will herald the beginning of great things. For she sits and waits for the whispers of the future, and much will be given to her. I will use her to prepare the hearts of My children for that which is ahead.

182.The future will come, and all that I have spoken will come to pass. Just as I have spoken to the ears of your Father David, you will be as a mighty army of the Endtime to whom the world will gather and beg you for your great truth! You are being prepared, My children, for greater works and greater days ahead. So learn well and be diligent, so that you can lead many to righteousness. (End of message from Jesus.)

183.(Peter:) Mama and I love you so very much and are so thankful for you. You are very special to us and the Lord--so valuable to His service, such wonderful, willing, yielded tools in His hands, doing His work and reaping a mighty harvest! May the Lord bless you and help you to do your very best in this new year, to prepare for what's ahead, to obey His call, to preach the Gospel and to win many to His Kingdom, so that one day you will hear Jesus say to you, "Well done, thou good and faithful servant; enter into the joy of thy Lord!"

Copyright (c) 1998 by The Family