Updates from the January 2021 Trustee Meeting

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Judy Van Cleave
Urantia Foundation Twitter
Urantia Foundation Twitter

By Judy Van Cleave, secretary, Urantia Foundation, Idaho, United States

1. Standard Reports

As always, the board listened to and reviewed information from the president, executive director, and the following committees—Book, Finance, Fundraising, Education, Translation, Outreach, and Governance.

2. Books

Distribution: The Urantia Book and its translations (including physical, electronic, and downloadable books) totaled 132,210 books distributed. This is an increase of 12% from the previous year. What good news that so many discovered the revelation during such a difficult year!

Outreach: Requests for books were minimal in 2020, but the Foundation did send 165 gift books to individuals unable to purchase them. The Urantia Book Fellowship’s Pipeline of Light was given 110 Spanish books as well.

Book printing: 10,000 English books were printed. Next on the docket are Russian, French, and Portuguese books.

Multi-Language Urantia Book: This new study tool was published on the Foundation’s website in 20 languages. Now students of the book can read and compare the text, side by side, in 2 languages of their choice. The remaining translations will be added once they are coded for Paper:section.paragraph. You can find it here: https://www.urantia.org/MultiLanguageBook.

Urantia Press: The first printing of The Untold Story of Jesus—A Modern Biography from The Urantia Book has almost sold out. Five thousand new copies were printed, and this edition contains new paintings, improved maps, and color enhancements. The books will be available for purchase soon.

3. Translations

Revision of El libro de Urantia: After a decade of work by the Spanish revision team—Víctor García-Bory, Olga López, the late Carmelo Martínez, Anibal Pacheco, and Raúl Pujol—the revision is almost ready. The electronic text will be published online this summer, and the printed book will be available later this year.

Hebrew: The copyediting of the Hebrew translation was completed. Gabriel Rymberg, the chief translator, is in the final review process. The translation is published at urantia.org/he.

Indonesian: After many revisions, Nugroho Widi finished the Indonesian translation, and it was published online at urantia.org/id. The text was also entered into the online search engine.

Chinese: Vicki Yang, new associate trustee and Chinese translation team member, and her team held the first Urantia Book conference for Chinese-speaking people via Zoom. Foundation members presented to 102 people from Taiwan and 26 people from China. What an accomplishment!

Translations and revisions in progress: Translators moved forward the Arabic, Farsi, and Filipino translations. Revisors made progress on the Greek, Portuguese, and Romanian. We are so grateful for the dedication and service of all individuals working to bring the revelation to the peoples of these native tongues.

4. Outreach

Urantia.org: The website had strong growth in 2020. Users, new users, sessions, page views, and direct search were all up significantly. Social traffic is growing as well, which indicates our social media reach is attracting people to the site from around the world. The top five countries generating visits were the United States, Brazil, India, Mexico, and Colombia.

Social Media: Four additional Facebook pages were created. They are now in English, French, German, Indonesian, Portuguese, Russian, and Spanish. Followers are also growing through Instagram, LinkedIn, and Twitter. Our goal is to disseminate the teachings through the many outlets available.

5. Education

The Education Committee of Urantia Foundation co-hosted an online spiritual retreat with Urantia Association International, the Urantia Book Fellowship, and UrantiaUniversity Institute in July. This retreat paved the way for future online events, in which the importance of personal spiritual experience, the source of both healing and transformation, is affirmed.

Urantia Book Internet School (UBIS) finished 2020 with a total of 47 courses, offered in four languages: English (21), French (9), Portuguese (5), and Spanish (12). Throughout the year, over 730 students enrolled.

The January 2021 trimester began with a record number of 18 courses, enrolling 259 students in English, French, Portuguese, and Spanish languages. Urantia Foundation is grateful to the many volunteers who help prepare, edit, and present these courses to readers all over the globe!

6. Cultural Advisory Council

The revelation is spreading globally with worldwide study groups. Because of this reality, the board needs global advisors to help inform Urantia Foundation’s decision making. Therefore, the board is planning to establish a Cultural Advisory Council. Once the policy and procedures for the Council are established, individuals from various cultures will be invited as members. The board will engage in continued planning when it meets in April.

Enrique Traver
Enrique Traver

7. Enrique Traver

As part of our commitment to the cultivation of cultural awareness, the board enjoyed a Zoom conversation with Enrique Traver of Curitiba, Brazil, president of Urantia Association of Brazil and now president of Urantia Association International. Enrique participated in the Urantia Foundation Global Cultural Symposium in April of 2019. His insight into the activities of the Brazilian readership and the ways that Urantia Foundation can help the Association in supporting dissemination efforts in Brazil is an example of the importance of building relationships with associations worldwide.

8. Study Group Directory

The study group directory is a worldwide cooperative managed by Urantia Association International, the Urantia Book Fellowship, and Urantia Foundation. Foundation representative Tamara Strumfeld reported that there are 242 study groups in the United States, 229 international groups, and 197 virtual groups. In 2020, 70 new study groups were listed in the directory. There are now study groups in 61 countries, with the top five languages being English, Spanish, Portuguese, French, and Korean.

9. Finance and Fundraising

Donations: The Foundation received unrestricted and restricted gifts that exceeded the goals for the year. Estate gifts were beyond expectations as well. It is inspiring how generous the readership is with their monetary gifts that ensure that the Foundation’s mission-driven projects continue.

Planned Giving: A new and improved Planned Giving section of our website was launched. If you are interested in including Urantia Foundation in your will, please visit urantia.plannedgiving.org or call our office at 773-525-3319.

Revelation Bridge: The board moved recent estate donations into this fund, which was created to sustain Urantia Foundation for future generations. The fund has been endowed with $4,486,768.

Foundation Info

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