International Service Board at Work – 2nd Quarter Report for 2015


Chris Wood worked closely with the Conference Chair to establish co-hosting agreements for the Association to partner with the Blue Club on the continental conference to be held in Budapest in 2016, and the 2016 Latin American conference to be held in Colombia. He also worked with the Education Chair of The Urantia Book Fellowship towards gaining approval from the Fellowship to combine its 2016 Annual Summer Study Session with the 2016 Annual National Conference of the Urantia Association of the United States (UAUS) that’s being held in San Antonio, Texas. 

Vice President

Andres Ramirez is also the Chair of the Representative Council. He has made contacts with Association leaders throughout Latin America and participated as a member of the ISB Executive Team and the planning team for the 2016 Latin American Conference in Bogota. 

Chief Financial Officer

Bradly Tharp submitted the 1st quarter financial reports and participated as a member of the Executive Team and the Fundraising Committee.


Susan Owen provided meeting minutes and action points for the monthly ISB meetings and posted March, April and May ISB meeting minutes to the Representative Council. She participated as a member of the Executive Team, Education Committee, Website Management Committee, Public Relations Committee, and provided minutes and action points for their various meetings. As a member of the 2014 Annual Report team, she helped to complete the report and submitted it for formatting and printing. 

Executive Team

Members of the Executive Team are Chris Wood, Andres Ramirez, Bradly Tharp and Susan Owen. Following are some of the topics addressed in the second quarter:

  • Training Modules: To develop training modules for new Associations after they have been chartered.
  • Continental Communication Coordinator Project: Antonio Schefer, the ISB Conference Chair, has attended association meetings and conferences in Finland, Spain, and France as a representative of the Central Administration of the Association. Andres Ramiez, ISB Vice President, has made contact with leaders in Latin America, is directly involved in the 2016 Latin American Conference, and plans to travel to Guatemala and Brazil.
  • Template Conference Financial Aid Policy & Application: This project has been completed and approved by the ISB and is being translated for submission to the Representative Council.
  • Recruit Judicial Commissioner: Work is in progress to find a replacement Commissioner. 

Membership Committee

Anton Miroshnichenko and committee members continued to work with Urantia Dach to form an Association covering Germany, Switzerland and Austria.  The committee is also working with contacts in Hungary, Costa Rica and Venezuela. Anton also found an inexpensive translation service for the Central Administration.  

Communications Committee

Kathleen Swadling and committee members published the first and second issues of the Journal for 2015, as well as the April and June issues of Tidings. The 2014 Annual Report was finalized and submitted for formatting and printing. The main pages of the website are now live in Russian and Ukrainian thanks to the work and expertise of Anton Miroshnichenko.  The Spanish, French and Portuguese translation teams are in place and work is progressing. The Events section of the website is being revamped and work continues with the Education Committee on a topical index of study aids for the website. Sub-committees for Public Relations and Website Management were established. 

Study Group Committee

Gaetan Charland had to postpone work on the Study Group committee due to his commitments to the organization of the 2015 International Conference in Quebec, Canada.

Dissemination Committee

David Linthicum and committee members have been working with readers in the Ukraine on a second shipment of books. They have been participating in the planning for the Parliament of World Religions and provided help to Gary Rawlings for the Cardiff Health Fair in Wales. 

The Prisoner Inquiry Response Team has been facilitating communications with a church ministry that handles outsourced inmate correspondence from the Fellowship. It has also been advising the ISB on the prison library book donation project and related funding needs. 

The Reader Services Committee has been developing processes for merging the Reader Referrals and Reader Services functions, working to identify potential contact representatives throughout the world, working with the Communications Chair to develop a Reader Services page on the website, recruited a professional IT manager to oversee the development of the Reader Services webpage, and assumed responsibility for handling reader referral first contact communications from the Executive Administrator. 

Education Committee

Sheila Keene-Lund and her committee members continue to search for high quality study aids and resources and to work to complete the website topical index of Tidings and Journal articles. 

Conference Committee

Antonio Schefer and his committee members obtained agreement from the Blue Club organizers to co-host with Urantia Association International the 2016 conference in Budapest. Antonio attended conferences in Spain, Finland and France; assisted in planning for the 2016 Latin American Conference; reported that the 2016 UAUS, Latin American and Blue Club conference teams have all agreed to adopt a common theme: Jesus as a Teacher. The culmination of this theme of teacher training will be presented at the next International Conference which will be held in Amsterdam in the Netherlands in 2018. Antonio’s team has also been actively using and promoting the Association’s Facebook page and reported that the first two webinars in Spanish, with approximately 25 attendees have been held. A team member is working on presenting one in Russian.

Translation Committee

Chris Moseley and his team continue to provide translation services to the ISB, the Representative Council and the website and to search for more volunteer translators.