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Tidings – December 2020

Image by Alex Prykhodko

In This Issue

President’s Message – December 2020

Chris Wood, USA

This year has provided a lot of time at home with my family. And not just that quality time that everyone likes to talk about, but big solid chunks of quantity time. I have watched my ten and eight year old sons adjust to this year of isolation with good cheer and acceptance, but at the same time I recognize that they are becoming wound up like a coil and when this pandemic lifts they will spring out into the world with untold energy. 

There’s a question the kids often ask my wife and me in a variety of ways which ultimately boils down to, “Why does God let people die? Why doesn’t he let everyone live forever?” And we try to answer it the best we can. We try answers like, "People don’t really die, just their bodies do," but that doesn’t really answer their questions. We then try to get them to see things from God’s perspective by using an analogy like, “Each morning we make them change their clothes, and although it can be a challenge at times, we don’t feel bad for the set of discarded clothes. Well, God thinks of our bodies in a similar way.” He cares about us, but he doesn’t mind when we need to change our bodies. I don’t know if that really helps the kids or not, but it sure gets me thinking about what mortality looks like from God’s perspective. How does God view this year of Covid? How do our seraphic guardians view this challenge?

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11th Urantia Association International Conference 2021 – A Virtual Experience

International Conference Committee

April 24 to 25, 2021

Image by Carlos Chirinos
For many, the CV-19 pandemic has caused havoc, and for those of us in Urantia Peru who have been organizing the planned 2021 Urantia Association International conference in Cusco (Peru) for a long time, it has clearly presented a great challenge. However, it has also presented us with a great opportunity. This crisis has allowed us to analyze the important reasons why we should not cancel this international conference that has been in the planning stages since 2017.

Just as the Father guides us in different ways along our spiritual journey, with his help we have been able to find another way to produce this conference by adapting to the changed circumstances.  

We saw that the theme chosen for this international conference—Towards Cosmic Citizenship, Your Time Has Come—could be just as successfully addressed in a virtual format. By doing this, it means a larger number of readers and friends of The Urantia Book from every part of the world can attend and be connected with one another. In addition, we can now call on new speakers and workshop facilitators from distant countries—people who may not have be able to attend a face-to-face event.

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Urantia Belgian Group Celebrates Jesus’ Birthday

Jean Annet, Belgium

On September 27th, a little more than a month after our Creator Son’s birthday on August 21st (COVID obliges) we met in a small group to celebrate our Master Jesus. The hygiene situation did not allow the meeting of large groups, so we took the opportunity to strengthen our fraternal ties.

The meeting began with a convivial meal where we shared the dishes that each one had brought. It was also an opportunity to see the new generation grow and develop. The young Marion (12 years old) has participated almost every year in the group of the Belgian association and Anouchka and Eugene’s little daughters, Solène and Nola, are growing up with parents who are fervent readers of The Urantia Book.

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Urantia University Institute News

Are you looking for an easy, supportive way to start learning about The Urantia Book? 

Then check out UrantiaUniversity Institute’s new program of Self-Directed Study of the individual papers of The Urantia Book. These classes are designed for busy people in any time zone around the world who want to start learning right now!

Selections from Parts I, II, III, and IV will be available by the end of December, with more to come in 2021! Preview the available courses here.

Discover the world's most advanced and revelatory teachings of the nature of God, the structure and organization of the universe, the different forms and levels of cosmic reality, the myriad orders of divine personalities, and your personal relationship with God.

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Focus on the Father—Going to God’s Place

James Woodward, USA

Hey, let’s go to God’s place! That may be a figure of speech but it’s for real—there is a place (outside of time and space) we can go without traveling, without planning, and without any tickets or travel documents. It’s a place both within us and without us. Our sincere desire to go there is the precious personal passport that ensures our reservation and assures our destination.

When we sit quietly and go within, our friendly travel guide welcomes us and opens the boarding gate to the friendly universe. We don’t know how this works because it’s like spiritual magic; the unparalleled experience of personal communion with God does not depend on knowing the mystery of how it works. This is a very good thing for us tadpoles! We are indwelt with a fragment of God—like a divine fractal—so when we peer deeply into that unified particle of Fatherly LOVE we discover God’s infinite cosmic realities and his personal presence is revealed to us according to our capacity, intimately known by our inner soul-mate. When you exercise the spiritual courage to pray for even a tiny sliver of divine bandwidth, to enter the holy temple of true worship, be prepared to be revelated! 

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Farewell Ed Owen

Ed Owen, long time Urantia Book reader, beloved friend to many and husband of Susan Owen, recently passed away on the 23rd of November. Susan wrote, “Ed began his journey across the universes and the cosmos yesterday. He was ready to leave this earthly plane on his eternal adventure. He had 86 good years on this planet full of an amazing variety of friendships and experiences—he had so many wonderful stories to tell. He held his friends close and was able to say goodbye to many. He loved to tell people “I am a son of God and you are my brother/sister.”

Susan served on the International Service Board as Secretary for ten years and both she and Ed have been a much loved and respected dynamic duo in the Urantia Book reader community. Ed will be greatly missed, and our hearts and prayers go out to Susan at this time of her loss.

As word of Ed’s passing circulated on social media, many loving replies from friends were received. Here are some excerpts:

Gaetan Charland:
Ed Owen, a good friend of mine and a husband to a very dear friend has passed away this week. Ed was one of those human beings who left a very good impression on you. Always joyful and passionate about the many things in life that interested him, painting, golf, teaching and many other interests. His wife Susan Owen survived him and will keep the memory of Ed alive till her meeting with him again in the afterlife. Good and safe travel my friend to the other world.

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Farewell to Carolyn Kendall

Carolyn Kendall, long time Urantia Book reader, Forum member, faithful and loyal servant to the revelation, a pillar of strength, and beloved friend to many in the Urantia community, recently passed away at the age of 88 on the 7th of November after years of poor health.  

Carolyn was the youngest Forum member, joining in 1951 after graduating from high school (her father was also a Forum member having joined at the beginning of the Forum days). A few months after joining, Carolyn began working for Dr. William Sadler as a receptionist for his psychiatric practice and, from him, she heard firsthand about the origins and ongoing project of the Urantia revelation which began in the 1920s and ended in the ‘30s. She continued working for Sadler until 1954 when she left to begin a family. Carolyn’s husband was Tom Kendall who served as a Trustee for twenty years. For ten of those years, he served as the Foundation’s President.

Over the years, Carolyn served in numerous positions of the former Urantia Brotherhood. She was a founding member of the First Society (1956), elected to the General Council (1967) and served two terms, chaired the Fraternal Relations Committee (1975), and elected Vice President (1982). She also served as an Associate Trustee of Urantia Foundation (2003 – 2006).   

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Dialogues with Sofia: A Novel to Introduce The Urantia Book Teachings

Olga Lopez, Spain

I always had the idea of writing in my head, and as a child I wrote a few short stories, but I also had the impression that I needed years of reading and experience to even consider writing a novel. Having read great authors gave me great respect for the writing process, and I felt that they all set the bar very high.

So I continued to read and learn, from books and from life, unconsciously waiting for the time to write something worthy. In my search for Truth (with capital letters), I found The Urantia Book, which was for me the answer to all the important questions that every human being should ask at some point in his life. I felt that I had reached the end of my search; I could read many other books, but they were hardly going to transform my life in the same way as this one.

But it still took many years before I realized that I had to write about what I believed in. I thank my good friend Eduardo Altuzarra, who suggested that a novel should be written so that it would present the teachings of The Urantia Book in such an enjoyable way that whoever reads it would feel impelled to search for the source. Yes, I know that Benitez's novels (especially the Trojan Horse saga) have already taken care of that in the Spanish speaking world, but I thought that The Urantia Book teachings needed to be expressed in another way, and I felt that I could take care of that task.

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The Gardens of Eden—A Story to Read

Alain Cyr, Canada

When Richard E. Warren sent me this book last spring, I read it and enjoyed every page. This romantic narration from him, as he mentions, was inspired from facts about Adam and Eve that we can read in The Urantia Book. Upon reading, I truly felt I was walking in their shoes for a while and this procured me a new and uplifting concept about their mission on Urantia.

My intention in presenting this book to you is not founded on any mercantile aspect but rather to have it known so all can enjoy reading the story. It is now available on Amazon in English, Spanish and French.




About Tidings Newsletter

The Tidings newsletter is a quarterly on-line publication that serves as Urantia Association International’s primary communication tool for reaching out to the Association’s membership, supporters, donors, volunteers, and general readership friends. It provides news and information on the many activities and events of the National or Affiliate Urantia Associations around the globe as well as information and announcements from Central Office, the International Service Board (ISB), and the Representative Council (RC). It serves to keep members in touch with one another and gives readers a sense of belonging—of being an integral part of a truly international movement that is designed to promote the Urantia revelation to all corners of the world.

Note: Tidings also occasionally provides news of other Urantia-related activities and events that may be of interest to our supporters and friends. Please note that any interpretations, opinions, conclusions, or artistic representations, whether stated or implied, are those of the authors and do not necessarily represent the views and opinions of Urantia Association International, the National or Affiliate Urantia Associations, or the editorial team of the Association’s Tidings.

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Ways to Donate to Urantia Association International

Artist: Carlos Rubinsky
The world is changing fast and Urantia Association International is in a unique position to foster the Urantia revelation in so many ways. With localized teams in the form of associations springing up across the globe, we are ready to help anyone, anywhere, to study and spread the teachings that we all hold so dear.  

The Association has only one paid staff member to manage and coordinate our worldwide activities. All other services are rendered by devoted students who donate their time (and often their treasure) to the projects that help bring us closer to our heavenly Father. Thank you to our faithful volunteers and donors!  

Here is a selection of ways to donate to Urantia Association: 

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International Service Board

Members of the International Service Board (ISB) are elected by a vote of the Representative Council (RC). The officers and committees of the ISB and the Executive Administrator plan, coordinate, and carry out the activities of Urantia Association that are international in scope and have been authorized by the Representative Council. They also serve as an information resource for the constituent associations by compiling and sharing information and experiences of other associations. Read on for the list and functions of the current ISB personnel.

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