The Fruits of the Spirit
The special Youth Urantiathon organized by the Urantia Association International with Urantia Young Adults International (UYAI) and Youth and Young Adults (YaYAs) Committees on December 10th, 2022, was beautiful and amazing. It offered presentations by young students of The Urantia Book from all over the world on the theme “The Fruits of the Spirit.”
The program featured four sections, one for each continent, with presentations given by young Urantia Book students from Europe, Africa, Latin America, and North America, all of whom shared their unique reflections about The Urantia Book and their personal experiences with the teachings.
The European section included two students, Genny from England, who offered a video about a Urantia study session titled “From a seed, to a Fruit,” and Moria Habte from the Netherlands, who presented an online interactive game with questions based on The Urantia Book’s teachings, with several options for the participants to choose the correct answer.
Our Continental African Coordinator, Collins Lomo, efficiently and wisely organized the African section. He skillfully overcame the technical challenges of lack of good connectivity in different African regions. The African presenters included students from Uganda, Nigeria, and Ghana.
Nakayizi Sharon from Uganda spoke about “Experiencing the Gifts of The Spirit of Truth in Our Lives.” She said, “Care for your own soul and spirit, avoiding stressing yourself by appreciating what’s within your means.”
Joy Kugonza from Uganda made a presentation about “Recognizing the Spirit of Truth in Us.” She said: “Meaning of the Spirit of Truth in my life: It is a source of ever-flowing encouragement when times are hard, and I am approached by fear. The divine presence lifts me up. It always equips me with wisdom to understand ideas and ideals. I wouldn’t be in a position to understand these very revelations of The Urantia Book had not the Spirit of Truth been dwelling in my heart.”
Maya Anazodo from Nigeria presented the theme “The Yardsticks for Spiritual Growth.” She said: “Love is the ultimate measure of the fruits of the spirit. You cannot bear the fruits of the spirit if you do not already have love within you; they cannot exist without love. You cannot be kind without love. Kindness without love is just pretense. You cannot traverse the psychic circles until you develop the capacity to love more.”
Jesse Kodua from Ghana presented the theme “The Law of the Kingdom.” He said: “The presence of a kingdom presupposes that there are citizens, that the kingdom has its laws and government, and the citizens have rights and responsibilities, and that there is a sovereign of the kingdom. Whose kingdom? It’s God’s kingdom. Therefore, God is the Sovereign of this kingdom, and citizens are called sons and daughters of God. It is a divine family and accordingly has no earthly, physical/mental segregations such as the rich vs. the poor, short people vs. tall people, slave vs. master, etc.”
The Latin-American section included students from Spain, Mexico and Brazil. They offered the following presentations:
Ismael Barba de la Cruz from Spain presented the theme “Leadership and Spirituality.” We included him in this section despite residing in Europe because he works closely with our Latin-American Community. Ismael said: “Our model leader is Jesus. Those who spread the teachings of The Urantia Book need to apply and embody these teachings because if we only read the book and share quotes, but we do not have the desire to be better persons, our leadership is not going to be spiritual; it is going to be an ego leadership. If we pay attention only to knowledge but do not incorporate that knowledge into our souls, what we are going to do is to draw people away from revelation instead of drawing them in. This does not mean that we should imitate everything that Jesus did; what we must do is inspire ourselves with his life, teachings, and his example of life. We should look mostly at the human part of Jesus’ life, which is like a born of the spirit person dedicated to doing the will of the Father.”
Irene Islas (Mexico) presentation was about “The Mother Spirit of the Local Universe.” Irene said: “Once we begin to understand these inspiring truths and have decided to follow our Heavenly Father, each of us consciousness of the spirit domination will manifest itself in these fruits of the spirit: resignation, gentleness, goodness, faith, humility, and temperance.”
Adriano Santos (Brazil) presented the theme “Courage and Faith!” Adriano said: “To us imperfect human beings in an imperfect world, without a reference to follow, we are left only with doubt and the path of trial and error. How do you know which path to follow? We humans can only have God, the creator of all things, as a reference of perfection. Primitive man tends to create his own gods, beliefs that are fruits of his imagination. That is why there is a revelation, which shows us a direction, gives us a reference, a north, a way forward, and provides us with the freedom to be better and more like God. As we know and understand the truth, it helps us to rebuild ourselves better, to be more like the true reference and to eliminate doubt, discovering faith and certainty based on values that we can discern as true, if we are sincere; divine values such as love, truth, goodness, beauty, ethics, respect, understanding, mercy, and fidelity.”
Alejandro Aran (Mexico) offered a presentation about “Enduring Peace.” He said: “One of the characteristics of today’s society is anxiety, and anguish for the future, with what we have to fulfill on a daily basis. I believe that reducing the anxiety rates we may have in our everyday experience has to be linked to communication and communion with our Adjuster because, at the end of the day, he is the one who brings us the Father’s will for us individually. If we notice that we have anxiety, impatience, or anguish about the future, we should observe how we approach the Father, with what attitude we seek to commune with him and improve how we relate to him. It is not enough to close your eyes and speak with the Father, according to the guidelines suggested by the revelators.
If in our life there is no lasting peace – and this does not mean that nothing affects us, or that in the face of the vicissitudes of life, we remain unperturbed – if we become disturbed or we are too sensitive to difficulties and lose control with anger, and our genuine desire is to do the Father’s will, then we must work on developing our relationship with the Father, because it is in him that we can find a lasting peace that, regardless of what is happening, does not disappear.”
The YaYAs section offered a workshop titled “Spiritual Growth Conversations” and was facilitated by Aprilhelen (USA), Oluwatooni “Toni” Oyeyemi (Switzerland), and Juan Jaramillo (Canada). The workshop consisted of shared prayers, singing, communion, and reflections about the themes presented during the Urantiathon. The audience was divided by language in breakout rooms. In this way, the participants had more personal conversations in smaller groups and engaged in discussions about spiritual growth.
To see the Youth Urantiathon videos, please access the Urantia Association YouTube Channel Playlist: https://www.youtube.com/playlist