WCG denied summary judgment against PCG

By Bill Stough

A judge in district court in California has denied the Worldwide Church of God's motion for a "summary judgment" against the Philadelphia Church of God in the latest round in the dispute between the two churches over WCG founder Herbert W. Armstrong's writings.

The District Court of the Central District of California in Los Angeles on Nov. 5 denied the WCG's move to prevent the Oklahoma-based PCG, founded by Gerald Flurry, from printing and distributing 18 printed works written by Mr. Armstrong.

The ruling does not affect an earlier decision that prevents the PCG from publishing and distributing Mr. Armstrong's book Mystery of the Ages, and the WCG will continue to challenge in the courts the PCG's right to publish the lesser works.

In a 27-page decision, Judge Christina Snyder denied all of the WCG's motions in the current case.

The Journal spoke with WCG attorney Ralph Helge, who works at the church's headquarters in Pasadena, Calif.

Mr. Helge said the WCG will soon submit another motion to have the case dismissed by "summary judgment." The WCG would rather have a summary judgment--that is, a proceeding that is not a full trial--because a full trial would be much more expensive.

Mr. Helge also said the WCG can collect no money for damages or attorneys' fees from the PCG incurred in earlier court proceedings until the legal fight over the 18 other works is over.

The Journal asked if the battle over the lesser works could reopen the Mystery of the Ages case.

"Mystery of he Ages is over with," said Mr. Helge. "It's done. If they [the PCG] can do it [reopen the case], they're magicians. The Supreme Court even refused to hear the case. The only thing still open on that is the damages they must pay."

The Journal invited PCG officials to comment for this article, but they declined to do so.

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