Greetings to our URI members, May 2007
A few changes have occurred over the spring months - Jeanette has volunteered to take over for Peter during the
summer months. Jeanette is a professor at Lynn University and teaches web-design among other courses. She is
quite capable of filling in for Peter throughout the summer where time would permit. Patty DeCambra is also
managing the site while Peter takes a sabbatical until he decides to return.
THE GROWTH CONTINUES
The Foundation has sustained continuous growth over the years but has run into some difficulty with their Spanish
edition distributor in Mexico who are remiss in their financial obligations failing to pay for books already on order.
The problem, I am told, is currently being resolved.
The Foundation issued its 2006 annual report this month which, if we can get enough copies, we will mail them out
to all members without access to email.
SOME RELEVANT DEVELOPMENTS
The Declaration of Trust and the Foundations Bylaws were amended. All changes to the “Trust” had to be approved
by the Attorney General of Illinois. The modest changes included the option to increase the number of Trustees to
seven (effective immediately) and to nine after ten years. Since the departure of Dr. Sadler’s grand daughter Patty
Sadler as Trustee several years back Urantian women have demanded representation on the governing board as
Trustees. Since they were limited by a statute limiting the Trusteeship to five (life-long appointments) there was no
room for anyone - male or female. In an effort of placation a new category was established wherein they could serve
as associate Trustees. All are dedicated Urantian women who have contributed in varying capacities to the
movement over a number of years. So, shortly two of these Associate Trustees will become Actual Trustees
allowing for female contribution to the Board.
Another development was the expiration of the International English Copyright which expired in January of 2006.
Preliminary 2006 year-end financial results were encouraging. This last year showed a moderate surplus of
$150,000 which will be earmarked for book printing in 2007.
DISTRIBUTION AND SALES
2006 worldwide book sales totaled 13,380 copies compared to 17,738 in 2005 - a decrease of 25%. Contributing to
the decline was the total lack of sales to the Mexican distributor due to unpaid bills, as well as the soft sales in the U.
S. However, 2007 is expected to bring increased sales in the Latin countries. All other sales displayed an increase
of 35%, attributed in large to the Russian and German translations.
In 2006, after eight years of internet service the Foundation averaged 160,000 visit’s a month or nearly 2,000,000
visits a year. Our own site, less than a year old, is receiving about 32,000 visit’s a month - far more than we
anticipated when Peter first designed and began to manage the site (urantiari.org). The papers of greatest interest
in Chicago were on Adam and Eve, The Universal Father, and The Lucifer Rebellion. Last month Jay Peregrine at
the Foundation informed me that they were taking in 250,000 visit’s a month, a significant increase over 2006. There
is definite forward progress in the movement at large.
The annual barbeque has been postpone until sometime in June - we’ll keep you informed.
The URI is planning to have another booth this November at the Miami Book Fair and have to forward the payment
before the end of June. We are running short this year and are asking for the first time for volunteer donations to
sustain this operation. The governing board in past years has covered the expense of the Fair ($500.00) plus their
own personal expenses of around $500 each. In fact the hotels doubled their fares this year so one has to pay
around $250 per night, not counting food. All donations to the URI are tax deductible, and we could sure put the
donations to good use. The entire staff is performing volunteer service and all money is for the expense of the Book
Fair. Any amount is appreciated and should be sent to the Treasurer, and made out to URI or Urantia Readers
International. Please send your check to Baker Jordan, 722 Rome Ave. Tampa, FL 33606. We usually sell about 40
books each year (mostly Spanish) to the Cuban readers living in the greater Miami area. They are wonderful people
and with the help of Jeanette, Piadad, and Claudia we seem to get along quite well in presenting the book. Along
with the other Urantia booth who also sell about 40 books we are able to contact hundreds of people, many of which
end up buying a book the following year.
As many of you know, several years ago the Urantia Book was the number one best seller in Spain on Amazon .
com. This was entirely due to the effort of J.J. Benetiz who in his best selling novels finally disclosed the source of
his material as the UrantiaBook. A wave of curiosity ensued and readers soon sought out Amazon and purchased
the Urantia Book. J.J. appears, on occasion, at the Fair. He has the longest line of followers of any of the 300
booths. If I see him there this year I’ll give him a couple Urantia books to sell.
The Foundation is trying to get back on track. Since the partial amalgamation of the Fellowship and Foundation for
over ten years now, the Foundation has hired Fellowship affiliates to serve the Foundation’s interests in bringing the
two organizations together. This, of course, has created a strong backlash among the once loyal Foundation
members and has proceeded unabated for at least a decade, impeding the harmonious alliance of the two groups.
Great efforts at appeasement have failed to unite the two organizations, yet continuing efforts at placation are
yielding , at best, only moderate results.
The URI has gained independence from both groups and will continue to provide a service to the International
community through personalized letters and through our expanding website to keep all apprised of the positive
events that we are aware of. We again encourage our members to partake in the forum discussions if they are so
We recently had to remove two people from our group who chose to violate the tenets of our organization. One tenet
is not to violate the Trust document that prevents us from publishing abridged forms of the Urantia Book. One of the
members admitted to writing his own book of around 500 pages and left out the Jesus papers. His rationale was
that his book would be more of a unifying factor to other religions if references to Jesus were left out. This could only
appeal to Muslims since they have established that Muhammad exceeded Jesus in authority, and with the Urantia
book presenting Jesus (Michael) as a universe creator/ruler, this is simply irreconcilable to Muslims. This same
person went on to deny the reality of the super-human origin of the book, maintaining that the authors were all
human - just intelligent mortal/holy wise-men, which essentially places the book in a sham category if it were true.
To make this statement is to denounce the Divine Counselor as a con artist.
The other individual living in Saudi Arabia became agitated and exploded into a volatile barrage of disparaging vitriol
when I suggested Muhammad was delusional. He demanded my immediate resignation. According to him I
insulted 1.8 billion Muslims and himself all in the course of one paragraph. For Muhammad to have constantly
maintained that he was above Jesus in stature places him squarely in the delusional camp. But he also said that
Allah had already married him to Jesus’ mother Mary in the afterlife as well as Moses’ wife, and that Gabriel took
him on a horse-back ride through heaven returning through Palestine and the Arabian desert. Also Allah doesn’t like
dirty people so consequently will not listen to prayers if the praying individual has not performed his daily ablutions -
a self cleansing ritual. And, of course Allah has a copy of the Quran in his possession in Heaven. I guess it’s logical
so that he doesn’t forget what He told Muhammad, or maybe just to make sure that Gabriel gave him the right
One cannot objectively and in good conscience accept and defend Muhammad’s position when it so conflicts with
the teachings of Jesus, and then say that he still believes in the Urantia Book. To read the “Book” and not believe in
Jesus establishes a fraudulent person bent on picking parts of the book that coincide with his already established
philosophy of life, and ruling out messages, discourses, and divine wisdom that emanates from the highest
sources available in the universe. One can read the book and challenge it, but do not maintain that you believe the
revelation and then commence to defend every thing contrary to it, thereby proceeding to denigrate the teachings.
We left this exchange on the Forum section of the website so that one might discern for oneself the attitude of one
Muslim’s not so subtle commitment to Islam in essentially denouncing the book as a fraud. To recognize some
good areas of the book, put them in a different context and then establish that the rest of the book is not worthwhile
for one reason or another does not set well with this staff. No one will ever be booted form the URI for differences of
opinions that are not disruptive of the organization itself, or are so outrageous as to cause one to write his own book
by plagiarizing the Urantia book for publication for ones own benefit and discarding the rest as immaterial - as
mortal error. We are not in the business of unifying this revelation with other religions.
Have a good summer and look for the good in everything.
Dick Ziglar, URI Staff