Missouri-Kansas Urantia Association

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Report by Cathy Jones

I am pleased to announce the inauguration of another local association of IUA for the USA the Missouri-Kansas Urantia Association. The licensing was held at the home of Mike and Cindy Wood in Kansas and Trustee President, Richard Keeler and I attended. Many new friends were made and a wonderful weekend was shared by all.

The weekend began on Saturday the 11th with being welcomed at the airport by Mike Wood and his son Chris. Actually, Chris was an important link in the development of the new association. He had visited the Foundation while I was working there in May. I was in process of developing the Missouri association, but in talking with Chris, and delving further, I discovered that his mother and father had been founding members of their society in Kansas City, and now were unaffiliated. Of course, this led to my getting his dad's telephone number and calling him that night. Mike was surprised but overjoyed at being asked to be a part of the IUA.

Jerry and Carrie Prentice, and Jerry's sister Lynn, had already stepped up as leaders in Missouri. In talking with Mike, I recognized the power potential by combining the two states, Missouri and Kansas. That led to the next step of putting the organization together. A licensing date was set and a membership invitational letter, an application letter, along with a copy of the IUA Charter and Bylaws and Declaration of Trust was sent out to people in the two states who had indicated some interest in the work of the Foundation. Responses came back. After conducting telephone interviews to explain the organization, answer questions relative to the two documents, and to discuss their experience in reading The Urantia Book, twenty two people were set for the chartering.

Trustee, Richard Keeler's arrival was just minutes after mine. It was interesting to Mike and Richard that they knew so many of the same people in the Urantia community since the 70's but their paths had not crossed. As in all Urantia meetings, the bonds of brotherhood were instantaneous. After checking in at the Holiday Inn, the three Prentices, Rhonda Sorter and Ellen Richardson from Missouri, and Seth Wood joined the four of us for the afternoon and into the late evening, just enjoying the “Urantia experience.” Being a nurse, Cindy, Mike's wife was pulling a night shift.

The scene for Sunday, the 12th, was set in a lovely one hundred-plus year old refurbished farm house, the home of Mike and Cindy and sons. At 11:00 a.m. brunch was laid out in the charming kitchen, the family gathering place. The replica of an old-fashioned wood stove (now gas), the master-crafted cabinets, and oak wood floors gave one the feeling of stepping back in history. I had no idea bagels, cheese, and sweet rolls came in so many varieties.

People trickled in, some driving long distances. Hoite Caston, former Trustee, drove in from Independence, Kansas, three hours away.

The licensing program started at 1:00 p.m. After Mike's welcome and a moment of quiet reflection, I extended greetings ftom the Coordinating Committee and congratulations and love from the IUAs world wide. With the flag-symbol hanging in the background, I explained the reason for the IUA. As partners with the Urantia Foundation, our mission is to disseminate the teachings of The Urantia Book. Our simple organization is just a scaffolding for this dissemination. We are messengers. We are accepting the responsibility of living the teachings and helping to make the book available in all languages, to all comers of the world.

Hoite Caston spoke inspiringly about his introduction to The Urantia Book and shared some of the experiences of his Trusteeship.

Trustee President, Richard Keeler, then gave a glowing account of the many completed translations and awesome number now in progress. He expressed gratitude to the people who have stood by the Foundation through the previous tumultuous years and gave assurance that the Foundation is on course as to fulfilling its obligations to the Declaration of Trust.

The legal documents were then signed by the Foundation President, the IUA Administrator, and the President and Secretary of Missouri-Kansas Urantia Association. This document gives the association permission to use the trademarks on its stationary and newsletters, plus a taxexempt affiliation with Urantia Foundation.

As each member present signed the charter, they introduced themselves and briefly related how the book came to them and the impact on their lives. Five Fellowship members were guests, also being invited to speak, if they desired, which they did. I extended an invitation for them to consider IUA membership, telling them that if, after reading the two documents, they were interested, I would be happy to meet with them privately and discuss their intent. Husband and wife, Alan and Lynn Borchert asked for membership and signed the charter, bringing the total to twenty four new members.

A beautiful buffet lunch was served, and the getting-to-know-you and “let's-get-together” sessions continued.

The day was spiritually fulfilling. One of the most impressive moments for me was when Mike and Cindy Wood and their two oldest sons signed the charter. In relating their experience with the book, Seth and Chris said the book was never forced on them. Their mom and dad manifested the values taught in The Urantia Book. There was always a book around and a study group every week. When the boys were old enough they just drifted into the group. As we were leaving, Matthew, the seven year old was curled up on the couch reading about what Jesus was doing when he was seven. My salute to this family and all those who are giving the world the next generation of leaders.

President: Mike Wood, Vice-President: Jerry Prentice, Secretary/Treasurer: Cindy Wood.

Foundation Info

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