Update to the Urantia Association Bylaws

Dear Urantia Association Members, Presidents, and Vice-Presidents, 

I trust that you’re aware of the revised version of the Bylaws of Urantia Association International, a document that has received an extensive update. These Bylaws represent the culmination of years of Urantia Association’s experiences, growth, and dedication to promoting The Urantia Book and its invaluable teachings worldwide.  Delving into a legal text might seem tedious; some may even question its relevance to our spiritual mission and work. 

However, it’s crucial to recognize that these Bylaws form the bedrock of our existence as a legal entity. They not only provide the framework for our service operations but are also indispensable for navigating the complexities of the diverse languages and cultures within our organization. Compliance with the laws of various countries necessitates having governing documents that regulate our affairs and define our societal role. These guidelines prevent confusion as to the duties and interactions of all our dedicated volunteers. Clarity on governance provides assurance that our elected leaders can focus on our mission to promote an epochal revelation. 

Having previously served as the Association’s president, I’ve encountered numerous challenging situations involving constituent associations. The application of our Bylaws has often been the linchpin in resolving issues that could have otherwise jeopardized the existence of these constituent associations. Beyond conflict resolution, the Bylaws offer a compass, guiding us on how to structure and effectively function as an association. They facilitate our focus on essential aspects, enabling us to pursue our collective mission in an organized and dynamic manner. 

Reflecting on my tenure as president of my local association in 1999, I initially lacked the knowledge needed to lead such an organization. A fortuitous encounter with a concise booklet entitled Charter and Bylaws1 became my guiding light. This document provided invaluable insights into how to fulfill my responsibilities effectively. It emphasized key directives, such as fostering study groups and promoting teachers, pivotal elements that shaped our association’s progress. 

In 2003, upon assuming the presidency of the Association, we were introduced to provisional Bylaws, allowing a three-year trial period before their official democratic ratification. Subsequent adjustments were made to these provisional Bylaws to align them with the Association’s evolving landscape. An issue we encountered post-adoption, was the interpretation of certain legal terms during translation. I urge you to review the new Bylaws; should any terms or directives seem unclear, please voice your concerns to prevent misunderstandings that might lead to confusion or conflicts. Urantia Association Amended Bylaws 

Let’s approach these new these Bylaws with diligence and a commitment to uphold our shared objectives. Together, we can ensure clarity and coherence in our governance, fostering a unified and purposeful path forward for Urantia Association International. 

Warm regards, 
Gaétan Charland 
Chair of Urantia Association Governance Committee  

1 The Charter has since been deemed unnecessary and is not incorporated in our updated governing documentation.