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Tidings – September 2016

Sunset 3

In This Issue

President’s Message – September 2016

Chris Wood

Chris-Wood-framedI have been thinking lately about the Nodites and the Amadonites. The Nodites descended from the rebellious group of Dalamatians, while the Amadonites descended from the loyal Dalamatians. Cousins really. But animosities between the two groups were passed from generation to generation long after the original split. We are told,

There existed a traditional enmity between the Nodites and the Amadonites. This feud was constantly coming to the surface whenever the offspring of these two groups would try to engage in some common enterprise. Even later, in the affairs of Eden, it was exceedingly difficult for them to work together in peace. [Paper 73:1.4, page 822.1]

That’s more than 160,000 years of conflict! Can you imagine that? I mean, I have five brothers, so I can imagine 60 years or 70 years of animosity easily, but 160,000 years?

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Call for Unity

In early October, representatives of Urantia Book Fellowship and Urantia Association International will meet to discuss ways our two organizations can better work together to serve the Urantia Community, including exploring the feasibility of uniting our two organizations. This group looks to continue the goodwill that has been building within local Societies and Associations, as well as joint projects like the San Antonio Conference, Parliament of World Religions, and numerous book fairs.

If you have any comments or ideas you wish to pass along, you can contact Association President Chris Wood askchriswood@gmail.com or Fellowship President Michael Challis mchallis@neodigita.com

San Antonio Conference Reflections

Jay Bird, Samantha Noir, Alex H

The following are reflections and impressions from three conference attendees: Jay Bird, USA, Samantha Noir, France and Alex H, Germany. They recently attended the 2016 joint conference of Urantia Association of the United States and Urantia Book Fellowship held June 9th to 12th at Trinity University, San Antonio, Texas.

From Jay Bird, USA:

As a young reader I was one of those guys who were helped along in my initial Urantia Book social experience by Berkeley Elliot. The Oklahoma Urantia Book reader’s community was vibrant due to her relentless efforts. It is difficult to express how disillusioning it was for me at that young age to see the leadership of Urantia Foundation and the Fellowship go through the many subsequent years of disagreement and legal action. The joy of my finding the answers to the questions I had been searching for became mixed with the confusion of witnessing the disruption of our community. My reaction was to withdraw from the social side of The Urantia Book reader’s experience. But always, in the back of my mind, I have been waiting for the day of our social reunification.

For me, the San Antonio joint meeting was the fulfilment of those dreams. It provided the setting for a launch into the rarified atmosphere of living truth. Carolyn Prentice’s morning presentation on Friday was the launching point. Her simple message was based on Jesus’ truths spoken from her heart in a brilliantly impactful way. This process of reunifying our split organizations is both positive and powerful. Gathering so many truth seekers together in one place and with one purpose allows us to refocus on our great challenge.

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Information Brochure

Cover screen shotUrantia Association’s Information brochure has been revised and can be found on the website under About Us/Governance & Policies, or you may follow this link to go directly to the downloadable PDF: http://urantia-association.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/06/AssocBroch_en.pdf.

This is a 3-panel, foldable, one page brochure that gives a brief overview of Urantia Association International. It is designed for students of The Urantia Book who may not be familiar with our Association and who may wish to become involved in our services and programs.

National and Local Associations are encouraged to use this brochure to inform readers about who we are and what we do. It can be downloaded and printed; there is space on the back to place a sticker with contact information of your National or Local Association. Central Office will also have a small supply on hand. Contact: http://urantia-association.org/about-uai/contact-us .

2015 Annual Report

Annual Report 2015The 2015 Annual Report for Urantia Association International is now available on the website.

The Annual Report is produced each year to give detailed information on the Association’s mission, purposes and goals, accomplishments for the year, financial income and expenditure, and plans for the immediate future.

You can find it on the website under About Us/Governance & Policies or you can follow this link to go directly to the PDF: http://urantia-association.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/08/UA_AR2015.pdf.

Comments or questions are always welcome. You can send them via the website at http://urantia-association.org/about-uai/contact-us.

The Association’s Social Media

If you are active on Social Media, Urantia Association International has been developing a presence on some of the various Social Media platforms. Would you please consider helping us in our dissemination work by following, liking or joining us on any or all of the following?:

Facebook Main Page: https://www.facebook.com/urantia.association
Facebook Public Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/UrantiaAssociationInternational
YouTube Channel: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC_a2gwYGKpctnii4_nx8_vA/playlists
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/urantia_associat_international
Twitter: https://twitter.com/UrantiaAssoc
The Forum Discussion Groups: http://urantia-association.org/forums

Your support will be greatly appreciated.

European Urantia Conference, Budapest

Budapest Conference ImageIt is with great pleasure that we announce the European Urantia Conference, to be held in Budapest, Hungary, 15 to 18 September 2016.

The Blue Club (European Urantia Book Readers) has been working hard to create this event in Eastern Europe. To unite the east with the west we chose this historical city for our next International Conference. Our last meeting was in Berlin 2014. Fifty-five Urantia Book readers participated in that event. The aim of this conference is to discuss questions about Jesus with the theme: Who is Jesus? Urantia Book readers from all around the world are welcome to join our Continental Conference.

15-18 September 2016

Novotel Budapest Centrum, Budapest, Hungary                                                                  

LIVE BROADCASTING of all presentations!  Use this link: http://www.ustream.tv/channel/88W3TR4mwVc

Click here

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Latin American Urantia Conference, Bogotá

Bogota conference logoThe Bogotá Urantia Association invites you to the First Latin American Urantia Conference, on October 14, 15, 16 and 17th, 2016 in Bogotá, Colombia, at the Lancaster House.

The name and subject of the Conference will be The Teacher and The Student. This theme will be developed from questions such as: What does it mean to be a teacher in our community? What does it mean to be a teacher at the local level, to advanced students, to new readers, to those who never heard of the book and don’t care to hear about it? How can we talk about the teachings in the book without ever mentioning the book? How did Jesus teach each of the different audiences he encountered? What can we learn from the teaching methods of all the various ‘schools’ described in the book – Melchizedek schools, Edentia schools, Dalamatia, Salem, Urmia? How were teachers trained in previous revelations?

14-17 October 2016

Lancaster House, Bogotá, Colombia

This conference is hosted by the Bogotá Urantia Association and sponsored by Urantia Association International, Urantia Foundation and Urantia Book Fellowship 

Latin American Leadership Scholarship

For this conference we created a special Latin American Leadership Scholarship thanks to help of the Urantia Foundation, Urantia Book Fellowship and Urantia Association International. This means we give preference to those leaders in Latin America who need financial assistance to represent their country at this International Conference, current or future Latin American Presidents, Vice Presidents and leaders who will take home the acquired teachings, to multiply and apply them in their Associations, and in their communities.

If we are able to bring enough Latin American leaders to this conference we will organize a special meeting for them at the end of the event. For more information about the Latin American Leadership Scholarship contact: latinamericanconference@urantia-association.org

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Meeting for Urantia Book Readers in Russia

Tamila Ragimova

Venue Picture Moscow Conference 2016Welcome to the first meeting for Russian speaking readers of The Urantia Book to be held 9 to 11 September, 2016 in Moscow, Russia.

All Russian speaking Urantia Book students are invited! 

9 to11 September, 2016
Hotel Novahoff, Moscow, Russia

Click here for information in Russian

Theme: Becoming Friends and Loving Each Other

While you cannot observe the divine spirit at work in your minds, there  is a practical method of discovering the degree to which you have yielded the control of your soul powers to the teaching and guidance of this indwelling spirit of the heavenly Father, and that is the degree of your  love for your fellow men. This spirit of the Father partakes of the love of the Father, and as it dominates man, it unfailingly leads in the directions of divine worship and loving regard for one’s fellows. [Paper 146:3.6, page 1642.2]

It is not so important to love all men today as it is that each day you learn to love one more human being.  [Paper 100:4.6, page 1098.3]

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Sharing The Urantia Book through Webinars

The Conference Committee

An Amazing Experience

It is with great joy and enthusiasm that we are here to tell you about the task that is being performed by Urantia Association International’s Conference Committee, in the organization of webinars for all of Latin America. The committee is chaired by Antonio Schefer, with the collaboration of Tamila Ragimova, Olga López Molina, Flor Robles, Mario Ferreyra, Cesar Paulo Zapelloy and Jeannie Vázquez.

This adventure of study and communion, in the spiritual brotherhood, began on July 12, 2015, with the presentation of Tamila Ragimova, from Colombia, on the theme “Human Races.” These webinars are held via an on-line room in Zoom, of our friends of the Urantia Association of Brazil. These user-friendly online rooms allow the attendees access to webinars from their computer, tablet or cell phone, and allows you to record the meetings in high-quality videos, which we are uploading on the Association’s YouTube channel.

We have had attendees from all the countries in the Americas, as well as from Europe, Japan and Russia. The on-line platform has proven to be a great means of contact, friendship and union between readers resident in different places around the world, providing an opportunity to know each other, to share life experiences, to learn more about the Urantia revelation, and above all things, to enhance our relationship as members of the spiritual brotherhood of our Heavenly Father’s kingdom.

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Italian-French-Swiss Urantia Conference

Danielle La Scala, Italy

Hotel Europa BuildingWe are pleased to announce the second conference in Italy for Italian, Swiss and French-speaking readers of The Urantia Book to be held 7 to 9 October, 2016 in Italy.

It will be an honor and a pleasure to welcome Spanish, German and English-speaking participants also. We intend this event to be a spiritually uplifting meeting as we come together in a friendly atmosphere to share our common ideals.

7-9 October 2016
Theme: “Survival of the Human Self?”

Hotel Europa, Desenzano del Garda, Italy

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The Bogotá International Book Fair

Bogotá Urantia Association

Bogota BF 2The Bogotá International Book Fair (FILBO) brings together exhibitors from the book industry worldwide but primarily from Latin America. It is held annually at the Corferias-Centro de Convenciones in Bogotá, Colombia.

Diversity characterized the 2016 fair, which took place from April 19 to May 2. More than 150,000 titles were available in twenty-three exhibition halls, and three hundred of the best-known domestic and foreign authors were present. A total of 1,240 events, representing twenty-one countries, attracted more than five hundred thousand people.

The Bogotá Urantia Association has been present at the fair for the last several years, but it was only in 2014 that the Association began participating with its own booth. This endeavour has meant both a financial investment and a human one of time and service.

More volunteers are participating in the booth as awareness of El libro de Urantia is growing. This project would not have been possible without the service and support of more than forty people, including direct volunteers at the booth and indirect partners providing support in various other ways. The Bogotá Urantia Association gives the volunteers a big thank-you for their work and service.

We are also thankful to Urantia Foundation for donating 150 hardcover books for the fair. One hundred and two books were sold at our booth, and proceeds were used to help offset costs of the booth.

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Meeting of Urantia Book Readers in Spain

Olga López, Spain

15th Spanish Meeting - Group PhotoThe 15th Meeting of Spanish Urantia Book readers was held 28th April to 1st May, 2016 in the Hotel Conde Duque in Bilbao (Basque Country, Northern Spain), close to the famous Guggenheim Museum. Until then, meetings of Urantia Book readers were never held in that part of the country, so it was time to compensate for this absence. And it was a good decision, indeed!

We were almost 40 people coming from almost every corner of the country. As in the last meeting, we had the pleasure to be with Antonio Schefer, who came from the Netherlands representing Urantia Association International. Thank you for coming, Antonio!

We repeated the same the 3 night/4 day formula as we did last meeting, since it’s really appreciated by the attendees (one more day means more enjoyment). The theme of this meeting was “The Way Home: the Ascension Career,” and its purpose was to talk about all the aspects of the ascending mortal career, as it is stated in The Urantia Book.

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My Experience with The Urantia Book

Neville Twist, New Zealand

… and helping to establish the Auckland Study Group

Neville TwistI first encountered The Urantia Book some time in 1985. It was through a work colleague who would bring this very large blue book to work and read it at lunchtimes. When I asked him what this big blue book was about, a hesitate answer would say something to the effect “It’s nothing and very hard to understand,” a reply repeated several times, before I picked the book up one day and perused the contents for myself. On seeing the Jesus papers, I knew instantly I had to read this book. Shortly afterwards I secured a copy and started reading and reading and reading!

Having been brought up in a conservative, fundamentalist, Christian home, I was given a good grounding in the teachings of the Bible and listened to many sermons by the likes of the evangelist Billy Graham. And although I hadn’t attended a church for some years, I’d always retained my faith in God. I had a desire to rediscover God and to learn his purpose for my life. This desire took me to exploring other churches and denominations, traveling to far-away countries, to living on a kibbutz in Israel. I was eager for higher truths and the deeper meanings of life.

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Upcoming Events

Check out Urantia Association International’s Events Calendar at http://urantia-association.org/events-list. Upcoming events can be viewed in a List or Calendar view.

Urantia Book reader events provide opportunities for students to gain a deeper understanding of the ideas and concepts presented in The Urantia Book and help to facilitate a personal commitment to the ideals of spiritual living. We hope you can make it to some of these events and experience the joys of meeting and studying with fellow readers.

If you’re planning a Urantia Book reader event in your region and would like help in promoting it, please send us your information and we’ll consider it for our Events Calendar.