Blast from the past, 1997…
You that are AC grads or former students know what you went through and the hardships you endured to build character at your masters feet. It was not pleasant, and sometimes it was heart breaking they way you were treated and abused. But you were told it was for your good and that gods, (once again I did not forget to capitalize the “g”) ordained ministers knew what was best for you. I really think that they should have issued high top boots to each and every student as they enter college as a freshman, they needed something to protect their feet as they wade through all that bull.
By Bob W.
All of us have emotions that drive us. Some of these can help achieve almost any goal, and to be victorious in life’s seemingly endless battles. But sometimes emotions can drive us to do some very stupid things and for the most irrational reasons.
Everyone wants to be accepted and admired by their peers. But peers should not be the ones that determine our growth and individualism. When the cart pushes the horse, strange things can begin to happen…
It was important for the men in the Ambassador clubs to become the best and most effective leader possible. They would practice for hours on end the vocal exercises, and stand in front of a mirror and practice facial expressions, hand, and body gestures. One of the requirements for all male students was to give a speech that was an “unusual experience” that the student had gone through. And for any student that lead a sheltered life, either in the church or out, it was a most difficult and challenging task. The pressure to produce drove the students, and sometimes in the weirdest directions with results that could be hazardous if not down right dangerous.
One bight and intelligent (?) student got the incredible idea of doing a speech on divorce. Now that presented a problem because the speech must be from personal experience. And since this student had never been married, let alone divorced, it presented an almost insurmountable obstacle. But being a good and creative AC student he soon came up with what he thought was the perfect solution. And indeed it was both creative and ingenious.
Somehow, and God only knows how, he managed to talk a sympathetic, understanding, but totally naive coed to travel with him to Mexico, which is within a few hours drive from Pasadena, and file for a divorce. Now things were really starting to get complicated and the situation was headed for disaster. And it would not be long before things would really start to heat up.
He was well on his way to getting first hand experience on the divorce proceedings. The only problem, well not the only problem but a major one, was that he and this lovely coed were not married. That’s right, he talked a coed into traveling with him into a foreign country, and to file for a divorce, which was a fraud, since they were not married.
To give you a perspective of the seriousness of the situation: seven years earlier to this situation, when I was in high school, which was in Southern California, several of the students ventured into Mexico and were involved in an auto accident. It was not even their fault, none the less it took the parents, school officials, the governor and a congress man more than two years to get these students released from the Mexican jail. And that was in spite of the fact that a couple of the students were seriously injured in the accident and needed specialized medical attention that was not available in jail.
For the AC students a seemingly fun project all of a sudden turned in a very frightening situation to say the least!
These two AC students were not innocent but were guilty of a major fraud! The Mexican government was not pleased, they were not sympathetic about the students stupidity, they were outraged. They considered this situation to be an arrogant attempt on the part of the two Americans to embarrass and mock the Mexican government. Even though this was not the students intent to do so, they never the less were in deep doo doo.
Mr. Armstong himself stepped in and through the connections of the church office in Mexico City were able to get the students released into his custody.
This was one of the rare exceptions that HWA actually intervened to help someone out. Well actually, he helped a considerable number of men and women out…but it was usually right out of the church. But in all fairness I must add that HWA did brag about helping out, on occasion, a student that was having financial difficulties. He said he would on these rare occasions pay the students college bill in full out of his own pocket. Although I knew many students, I never met one that he actually did help out in this manner.
But thankfully they were able to rescue these two students, otherwise their fate would have been a miserable one indeed.
The male student? He did get the most effective speech for his “Unusual Experience” speech. He never did make into the ministry though, he just did not fit in with the rest of the boys.
The young lady? She married a graduate who did wind up in the ministry.
Isn’t life on campus interesting?