We Have Modernized Urantia Association International

As the Chief Financial Officer of Urantia Association International and Chair of the Association’s Finance Committee, it has been my privilege to witness the growth and transformation of the International Association. This modernization has been due to the quality leadership and exemplary service of many talented volunteers, committing their professional skill, personal idealism, and loving dedication to the mission of the global dissemination of The Urantia Book and its teachings. Upon such a foundation of idealism, vision, and effort by so many, the Association has constructed an organizational infrastructure that reaches around the world today, bringing together thousands of students and believers in fellowship with one another, in a shared ministry of in-depth study and a mission of service.

The dawn of the digital age has intersected with the successful efforts of Urantia Foundation to achieve global book distribution and offer more than a dozen translations of The Urantia Book for worldwide availability, both hard copy and digital download. This new era has brought steady growth to the Association, along with new communication capabilities, allowing face-to-face meetings for all its members and local leaders around the world. We now offer multilingual virtual study groups, live-streaming and archiving of presentations, workshops and training, a digital archive for future access, and social media communities in many languages. Our Representative Council, International Service Board, and expanding continental leadership teams now conduct virtual meetings with real-time translation and document sharing online. We have also developed shared website and database development systems, including integrated business software applications and organizational tools for our National and Local Associations. Other benefits of the modernization of Urantia Association are local volunteer recruiting and training for service to regional associations, banking, budgeting, and global cash transfer capabilities, which now reach around the world to any association. All these and many other new tools for building and connecting community were not available or even imaginable just two decades ago!

Urantia Association has entered and fully embraced the digital age to modernize the way we present our mission and ministry to the world. This has taken many years, hundreds of thousands of dollars, and the work of dedicated servants and servant-leaders to accomplish. Every dollar was a donated dollar and every hour of time was a donated hour—expressions of love, loyalty, duty and opportunity for service. But we are not done here; there is more to do, so much more!

The revelation teaches us a simple fact and truth: the more potential that is actualized and realized, the more potential appears. And Urantia Association has certainly realized much of its former potential this past decade. That success has created and unleashed much more potential for our future leaders to tackle with enthusiasm. Certainly, the timing of the publishing of the revelation was no coincidence but was planned for the organizational support-structure for dissemination to be experienced, battle-tested, and sufficiently organized for this anticipated explosion of potentials and achievements witnessed in the past 20 years.

We have met that challenge with a glorious and painful mix of success and failure, optimism and disappointment, faith and uncertainty—and the assurance that those who gave us this gift of The Urantia Book would help us succeed in our shared mission of epochal revelation.

Continued success by Urantia Association International requires more volunteers, more leaders, more money, and more members committed to the mission of global dissemination of the revelation and its teachings. Today, the Association’s Operational Budget is $5,000 per month—USD $60,000 per year. That amount pays for the Central Office and the operational expenses for all the systems, software, translations, gatherings, and services we provide to our constituent associations.

In addition to this operational and administrative budget, the Association has distributed well over $100,000 directly to its associations for global seeding and dissemination, conferences and event funding, event attendance sponsorships and financial aid, translations, videography live-streaming, training—and many other forms of direct cash aid and payments—in just the past two years. All this funding comes from the freewill donations of generous supporters like many of you.

Urantia Association has recently managed to stabilize its operational costs and project little growth in that budget beyond service and vendor inflationary increases over time; but the opportunities for mission project-spending only grows and grows. Our new Continental Coordinators in Europe and Latin America are finding and creating many new opportunities for growth and regional collaboration by the regional associations they serve. The Association is now seeking candidates for Continental Developers for Africa and India/Asia. We will support study groups and leaders developing there, and help formulate new regional associations.

Future planning priorities are to increase the number and frequency of continental, regional, national, and local events. We are prepared to support Urantia Book activities that are planned, sponsored, and organized locally/regionally. Due to the recognition of growth potentials and wise infrastructure planning, Urantia Association is ready to serve far more people around the world for even more universal distribution of resources, achieving greater impact for dissemination success and service with donor money.

We have barely begun this adventure in faith and service to disseminate this gift, which is to live and serve for many generations still to come! It is my prayer and hope that you will help us meet those challenges of loving service. Please join in and volunteer and donate money—we have embarked on the grand and noble adventure of the global Urantia Association International.

Bradly Tharp
Urantia Association International