"The PLAIN TRUTH"
HERBERT W. ARMSTRONG, Editor-in-Chief
Pasadena, California 91123
March 11, 1976
Dear PLAIN TRUTH Subscriber:
Here is an important DOUBLE ANNOUNCEMENT:
Effective immediately, "The PLAIN TRUTH" will return to magazine format and with it, YOUR annual RENEWAL NOTICE and an opportunity to help us INCREASE our Work of GIVING to others by donating $5 or more. Please read every word of this letter before you lay it down.
Many subscribers will be elated at the announcement that "The PLAIN TRUTH" is going back to the newsmagazine format, as it was until February 8, 1975. Since then it has been published on low-cost newsprint paper in tabloid form. It was a necessary step due to budget considerations.
Budget considerations have NOT improved. Due to inflation, rising costs of magazine production, and lack of sufficient increase of income, the very serious ECONOMY need is still with us.
But SO MANY have expressed preference for the previous magazine format that I have decided to return immediately to that format -- even though we simply cannot at this time afford the former glossy (slick) and expensive quality of paper, and the heavy enamel-finish cover. We shall have to print it for the present on less costly paper.
And I AM HAVING TO DO EVEN THIS ON FAITH that a sufficient increase in income will make it possible.
Since there has never been a subscription price, "The PLAIN TRUTH" HAS ALWAYS BEEN A WORK OF FAITH! No other publication is, or ever has been, like it. It has now been a long time since I have shared with our millions of readers the facts of how "The PLAIN TRUTH" came into existence -- and how it has survived through the years -- especially without subscription-price income, or advertising revenue -- as other publications have.
It was back in 1927 that I first conceived the idea of publishing a magazine of UNDERSTANDING to be called "The PLAIN TRUTH." I employed a professional letter artist to do a front-cover design I had originated. But it was to be seven years before I was able to actually produce the first copy. And even then, it was a mimeographed "magazine" printed on a borrowed mimeograph. It started with a circulation of approximately 350 copies. I know of no magazine that ever started so humbly and so small. But it won an enthusiastic reading!
And it grew. And it GREW -- and GREW -- G R E W -- to the more than THREE MILLION copies -- with a readership of some TEN MILLION people, over all continents of the earth -- and in FIVE LANGUAGES! "The PLAIN TRUTH" has become one of the world's LARGE-CIRCULATION magazines. It took FAITH -- and HARD WORK -- AND PERSEVERANCE!
HOW YOUR SUBSCRIPTION IS PAID
Many, I have said before, have been puzzled. They have asked, "Why has my subscription been prepaid? Why can't I pay for my own?" Many, I know, WANT to pay for their own subscription.
Then many ask, "How can you publish so valuable a magazine without either subscription-price income or advertising revenue? Obviously, it costs money to produce and mail. WHO pays the bills?"
The answer, I have said, is astonishing, and yet very simple. We are doing something never done before. We operate in a way that is UNIQUE.
Our readers know that in the past six or seven years I have devoted most of my time to worldwide travel as an ambassador for world PEACE, having personal meetings with many heads of nations -- emperors, kings, presidents, prime ministers, and others high in government -- over all continents of the earth. They discuss freely with me their problems and the rapidly worsening world troubles. They show astonishing interest in hearing what I have learned about the CAUSE and the SOLUTIONS -- not only of world evils and international disputes -- but also of personal, individual, and family problems as well.
For every effect there has to be a CAUSE. In "The PLAIN TRUTH" we deal with the CAUSES -- and the SOLUTIONS -- bringing to our readers the MISSING DIMENSION IN KNOWLEDGE as no other magazine does.
We explain the reason for things as they are -- we give you UNDERSTANDING of personal and family problems as well as world conditions. And today, heads of nations and their staffs are asking me to speak in public appearances before masses of their people. "The PLAIN TRUTH" brings YOU this UNDERSTANDING so vital to us all right now.
I show those high in governments how there are, broadly and basically, just TWO ways of life. I simplify them by calling one the way of "GET," the other the way of "GIVE," or, when you understand it, the way of "LOVE." For love is an outgoing concern for the good and welfare of others equal to one's self-concern. This world is living on the "GET" philosophy -- the way of HUMAN NATURE -- the way of vanity, lust, and greed, of jealousy and envy, of resentment of authority, of competition, strife, and violence. It regards the saying, "It is more blessed to GIVE than to receive," as an impractical platitude. But I personally have put that way to the TEST for 49 years, and it has PROVED TO BE the practical way that pays the biggest dividends!
I said our Work is unique. We operate on that "GIVING" or "LOVE" philosophy. Our SUCCESS formula -- and subscription policy follows that formula. This magazine, and our Work, are supported solely by the "GIVING" method -- by contributions from interested readers, and from listeners and viewers of my son, Garner Ted Armstrong -- on radio and television -- and by tithes and freewill offerings from members of the Worldwide Church of God.
We call these LOVE inspired contributors Co-Workers. These Co-Workers have voluntarily contributed so that others could benefit, as they have.
It does cost money to produce "The PLAIN TRUTH." Magazines which do charge $5, $10, or more per year subscription rate find that this does not anywhere near pay the costs of editing, publishing, and mailing their magazines. They make up the deficit by advertising revenue. WE cannot. It is going to mean a cost increase to go back, now, to our former newsmagazine format.
But our Work always has been a work of FAITH. I am stepping out on sheer FAITH, to provide you with this better and more desired form of magazine.
YOUR RENEWAL IS DUE NOW!
This brings us to the second part of this important announcement letter -- YOUR RENEWAL. With this change in format, we need to be assured that you want to continue receiving "The PLAIN TRUTH" each month. Your next year's subscription is ALREADY PAID and reserved for you -- yours for the asking!
It does seem incredible, I know!
You never heard anything like it! Your subscription ALREADY PAID FOR with dollars contributed by others! That's the unselfish "LOVE" philosophy in action!
Renewing your subscription is SIMPLE and EASY. Just fill in the card and return it to us in the envelope provided -- THAT'S ALL! Just like our other ten million readers, you won't want to miss a single issue. Never was your "PLAIN TRUTH" subscription so important to YOU as now! NEVER has the world seen such unprecedented conditions.
But NO ONE can understand the REAL MEANING of the frightening, fast-moving world events, rapidly accelerating toward world-shaking climax, without UNDERSTANDING the PURPOSE being worked out here below! You get this from NO OTHER source except "The PLAIN TRUTH" and the WORLD TOMORROW broadcast (radio and TV). The VERY EVENTS WE proclaimed 35 years ago ARE HAPPENING NOW! It makes no difference what our readers may hold religiously -- THESE THINGS WE FORETOLD ARE FRONT-PAGE NEWS TODAY! The prophecies are sure! You get them, COMBINED with an intelligent, knowledgeable grasp of world news, ONLY in "The PLAIN TRUTH!" And you need to be informed!
"The PLAIN TRUTH" is THE VOICE IN THE WILDERNESS OF TODAY'S CONFUSION, daring to SPEAK OUT with TRUTH and REASSURANCE in these times of perplexity and doubt. It is a magazine of understanding -- refreshingly DIFFERENT!
You can't afford to miss a single issue. Articles of tremendous import will be appearing each month during the next calendar year.
A WORD ABOUT CONTRIBUTIONS
I have said that publishing and mailing "The PLAIN TRUTH" is a work of FAITH -- that we are-supported entirely by contributions from our faithful readers and co-workers. Naturally, many readers might prefer a straight subscription price, but our rather unique policy allows us to continue sending the magazine to those who could simply not afford it otherwise -- as a GIFT from those who can!
If you would like, voluntarily, to pay for one or more subscriptions by sending a freewill contribution (tax deductible) and have a part with us in GIVING TO OTHERS, it will be gratefully received. It costs us in excess of $5 for each annual subscription (see renewal card).
And, regardless of whether you can afford to send a donation or not, you may certainly continue receiving "The PLAIN TRUTH" free -- no obligation. But be sure to RENEW your subscription NOW! DON'T DELAY! It is OUR pleasure to send it, and I THANK YOU from the heart for allowing us this privilege.
Most sincerely and in LOVE,
Herbert W. Armstrong