Highlights: Bringing People Together
Whether we are event organizers or participants, bringing kindred spirits together gives all of us a wonderful opportunity to express the will of God in a social context. Many of us have come away from Urantia meetings with renewed feelings of fellowship and spiritual purpose—as if we were “walking on air.”
Feelings such as these are borne out in the ongoing testimonials and reflections of conference participants, many of which are documented in our Tidings articles.
International Conference – The Netherlands
Jaap Terra, President of The Netherlands Urantia Association and conference organizer, said:
It’s an impossible task to reveal just how much this conference touched us—all the wonderful people who attended and who were so deeply moved, inspired, and motivated… Feeling brotherhood as God intended, meeting new friends, experiencing fine conversations, making many international “boundless” contacts left us with beautiful and valuable memories to take home.”
Jorge Buckingham from Peru said:
Groups were formed with consideration to native languages. The group leaders assigned tasks and offered references and questions for discussion so participants could link theoretical concepts with daily life experiences. It was a dynamic and interactive way of doing things because all the attendees had the same opportunity to express themselves and contribute their ideas.
“It was very gratifying to get to know and share, throughout four days of intense activity, with so many fellow readers of The Urantia Book from all the continents of the world, all united under the same flag… different people, people from different races, ideologies, or nationalities… all united in the name of Jesus of Nazareth, committed to giving the best of themselves, in the task of loving and serving humanity.”
Mairam Durand from Peru said:
I personally spent time talking to Urantians that have read the book for many years and we shared anecdotes we have had in our experience while studying The Urantia Book. Thus we verified how it changed our lives and realized we all had the same objective: to increasingly disseminate the teachings of the fifth revelation.
“I must conclude this little note thanking each of the organizers because, at every moment each one from their supporting roles, made us feel comfortable, at home, and as if we were members of a family… the great family Urantia has to offer us.”
Ghana Conference – Africa
Alice Wood from the United States said:
I felt as though I was standing on the ground floor of what will become a towering continental Urantia community. Young Africans are thirsty for truth and that seems to instill in them fertile soil for conversations about God, religion, and the positive method of living demonstrated by Jesus. Women from Urantia Africa shared how The Urantia Book has changed their lives and created a sense of empowerment. They made it known that they are strong, wise, and passionate. They have given me joy in the knowledge that the teachings of The Urantia Book will live and thrive in people around the world.”
Latin American Youth Conference – Brazil
Alexandre Nakai and Cintia Angeles from Brazil said:
Young readers from all across Latin America met to exchange experiences, get involved, have fun, and make decisions for the future. We see plenty of potential in these young people who express good ideals, genuine experiences, great talents, and a great deal of faith in the Heavenly Father. The entire event exceeded our expectations. Some of us have left our churches and often carry a tremendous emotional weight because of it. We were able to share our sorrows and experiences, but it was not a painful process, it was a relief.
“Our goals were to foster a solid base of youth groups, volunteering, and transcontinental integration with youth strategies and spiritual adventures. It is essential that our efforts are motivated by spiritual purpose and a personal and genuine relationship with God and service to others. By the end of the conference, we began to feel like a family.
“From Brazil and all of Latin America, we thank all our brothers and sisters for providing such an experience and for strengthening us in ways we could never have imagined. I hope that young readers across the globe can feel inspired to get more involved as well.”
Italian-French Urantia Conference in Italy
Sebstian Nozzi from Germany said:
The main goal of this conference was to bring Italian and French readers together. The subject was the “Teachings of Jesus” with focus on doing the Father’s will. The main organizer, Danielle La Scala, has ties with both the French and Italian Urantia Book reader communities. Although the Italian community is very enthusiastic and growing, it is still relatively new. The Urantia movement in France is older and more established, with more experienced longtime members. These conferences in northern-Italy have the goal of bringing these two groups together to foster learning, cooperation, planning and growing.
“After reading we held very intense and lively discussions (as you can imagine when you put Italians and French in one room together to deal with such thought-provoking subjects as those in The Urantia Book!) We were able to understand each other pretty well, often by relying on the language similarities, but mostly thanks to the tireless efforts of Danielle to translate the dialogue back and forth. Truly, the whole event would not have been possible without her awesome multi-language capabilities and her dedication. To her we give our gratitude and appreciation!
“It showed how language barriers don’t matter so much if you share higher common goals and values. It also serves as an inspiration to see members of neighboring countries (even with different languages) willing to meet and help each other, and certainly an example to follow and emulate elsewhere.”