Over the past few decades, ANZURA has created a ‘well oiled’ routine, spread out over 12 months, following our statement of purpose in the Bylaws:
ANZURA is designed to encourage the study of The Urantia Book and to assist in the dissemination of its teachings by non-invasive, moderate, evolutionary growth.
This we aim at when encouraging and promoting regional Study Days, conferences, and the in-person and online weekly or monthly study groups. The Arena newsletter is both an information tool for these activities as well as an historical archive.
Other activities that Urantia Book readers in Australia and New Zealand can participate in are a wide range of choices offered from other constituent associations of Urantia Association International from all over the world. The internet is making it all possible.
I would like to announce the results of the election for ANZURA’s governing board that were held in the AGM at last year’s conference. (We somehow missed this when reporting on the AGM in the last Arena.) The complete Board is now:
President: Rita Schaad (newly elected)
Vice President: Ian Campbell
Secretary: Merindi Belarski (newly elected)
New Zealand Representative: Marion Steward (newly elected)
I would like to congratulate and welcome the new board members and thank outgoing members, Susan Hemmingsen, Graeme Chapman and Phillip Marriott for giving of their time and good will over the past years to fill these positions.
The National Study Day in May saw a couple of groups come together. The ones who can manage to get to these regional day-gatherings always enjoy it tremendously. Both the social aspect of it and the immersion into a paper from the book together is so valuable.
Regina in Melbourne had four people at her home, and at Trevor and Kathleen Swadling’s home in Sydney nine people gathered to share a pot-luck lunch and studying Paper 192 – Appearances in Galilee. Our Friends in New Zealand were not able to join us in this event this year, having had such a difficult time with floods and storms impacting the normal running things. I remember feeling so helpless when looking at the radar images showing blue and dark-red weather systems over the Islands of New Zealand and fearing that people we know may be affected by it.
Paper 192 was chosen because of the detailed personal advice Jesus gave to his Apostles, after his resurrection, to prepare them for the rough times ahead when he would no longer be amongst them. As always, Jesus had wonderful insight into each of his friends’ peculiarities and characters and could address particular needs that they needed to be mindful of when dealing with others. When sharing what we learn from The Urantia Book, we need to know both ourselves and others and endeavour to balance our intense zeal to broadcast ‘important’ facts with the receptivity and desire to learn something new in others. This is something we will be focusing on at this year’s conference in Sydney in August 25-28 at a lovely location in Pymble. A dedicated team is at work now to bring the theme alive for when we’re “Talking’ Bout a Revelation”. (See details in this Arena for more information and registration. We hope to meet you there.)
To whet your appetite for the kind of things that are in stall for participants on such conferences, we include in this Arena some other presentations given last year in Tasmania. You can find the entire conference archives and talks given for 2022 – and before – on our website at: https://anzura.urantia-association.org/tag/2022-conference-tasmania/
Another place to look up secondary works from our own ANZURA members and various other Urantia Book students in Australia and New Zealand is by clicking on https://anzura.urantia-association.org/topical-index-study-aids/
These articles come about through long and deep thinking over issues that are very close to the hearts of the writers – mostly our ANZURA siblings – and we would do well to at least have a look at them and perhaps comment and have dialogue with their authors by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org
The latest works uploaded to the site are from Neil Francey – On the Revelatory Status Past, Present and Future , which we introduce in this Arena. Another is from Julian McGarry; The Unfinished Business of the Fourth Epochal Revelation, https://anzura.urantia-association.org/2023/05/19/the-unfinished-business-of-the-fourth-epochal-revelation/ where Julian tackles the question that many readers ask themselves: Are we, as Urantia Book readers and organisations on the right track with what we are supposed to be doing while holding, or safe-keeping, such a treasured revelation in our hands? Some of us feel the need to become more active and engaged with such conundrums, while others choose to think and pray about what they can do in their personal lives ‘behind the scene’ as such. It’s a good topic that we can at least talk about together; to discuss and uplift one other.
At this year’s conference a detailed catalogue will be available of the secondary works we purchased last year. Some of these publications are artistically beautiful, while others are intellectually stimulating and spiritually uplifting, making some of the harder concepts in The Urantia Book a bit clearer in our minds. The latest book that is a good example of this is The God Experience written by Mark Bonair from Canada.
Also, a reminder that becoming a member of ANZURA is like saying – “I belong to this Urantia Book readers family in Australia and New Zealand.” We would warmly welcome you! ☺. (Contact us about how to become a member or go to the website at https://anzura.urantia-association.org/membership/.)
Regards and keep warm this winter