Memorial Service for Clyde Bedell
January 26, 1985
Notes from the Memorial Service program, the cover of which contains the concentric circles symbol of the universe government of Christ Michael:
April 25, 1898 - January 22, 1985
At noon on January 22, 1985, Clyde Bedell began his transit to the Mansion Worlds. On that day, he joined a growing number of Urantian graduates who knew with certainty where they had been where they were going, and why they had been here. Like them, Clyde had discovered his inner power, his infinite guide; he unreservedly devoted his life's work to sharing the wealth he was and is.
His bold courage, his living faith, his untiring passion for sharing his light of truth, will stand forever as yet another profound example of what one man can do when he acts resolutely and without fear, proclaiming through the living of his life, "Father, not my will, but your will be done!"
His love remains with us.
The Memorial Service
Led by Rev. Meredith J. Sprunger
In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen. I am the resurrection and the life, saith the Lord; he who believes in me, though he die, yet shall he live; because:
I am the good shepherd.
I am the desire of all ages.
I am the way, the truth, and the life.
I am the way toInfinite perfection.
I am the reality of endless life.
I am the open door to eternal salvation.
I am the living link between time and eternity.
I am theInfinite Father of my finite children.
Therefore, let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.
We are gathered here to honor the memory of a departed friend, one whose life on earth is finished. We come, however, not to voice despair over the death of the physical body but to express our whole-hearted faith and rejoice that a human soul has embarked on the career of eternal life in the progressive service of the heavenly Father; not because life is over but because it has risen to more glorious possibilities; not because the darkness has closed in but because life has opened into the eternal morning. We come to share this common faith, this eternal verity. Amen.
Clyde Bedell was a dynamic personality who was the first and foremost advocate of outreach ministry among the early leaders of the Urantia movement. Clyde was both a mighty warrior for truth as he understood it and a loving and compassionate human being. When I think of Clyde's life three Biblical verses come to mind:
"Whatsoever your hand finds to do, do it with all your might." Ecc. 9:10 "
At that time Michael shall rise...and those who are wise shall shine like the brightness of the firmament; and those who turn many to righteousness, like the stars for ever and ever." Dan. 12:1-3
"I have fought the good fight; I have finished the race; I have kept the faith. There is laid up for me the crown of righteousness." II Tim. 4:7-8
Clyde was a pioneer and an elder statesman of the Urantia movement, one of the last of the Forum members living among us. He was a champion of outreach and totally dedicated to the dissemination of the teachings of The Urantia Book. Paradoxically, although he was professionally a national authority in the field of advertising and a public speaker of some stature, his greatest contribution to the Urantia movement came through years of somewhat lonely and laborious research in compiling the Concordex of The Urantia Book. The Concordex is a monumental labor of love which will continue serving students of The Urantia Book for years to come. It is the most important and useful study aid which is available to students of The Urantia Book. Clyde's creative activity is an inspiration to all who hunger for meaningful and significant service in the later years of their lives. Like Joshua who began the conquest of the promised land at the age of 80, Clyde also pulled up stakes when most people his age would have pulled up a rocking chair and began a new phase of his career here in Boulder. And even as he was summoned to the mansion worlds he was busy working on the third edition of the Concordex. Today we wish to give thanks for this courageous and dedicated service and to the forthright and warm man who gave it.
Years ago when I first met Clyde for some reason I was strongly reminded of Dr. Sadler. His physical appearance, his voice, and even some of his mannerisms reminded me of Dr. Sadler. I soon found that Clyde, like Dr. Sadler, did not play games. They were both honest and up front. I observed that both of them by nature were doers and expediters and recognized them as kindred spirits. Today I am happy to have the opportunity to express gratitude for the contributions which Clyde has made to all of our lives and to the future of the Urantia movement. (At this time there are others among us who should like to express appreciation for Clyde's life and service.)
Clyde Bedell was a man who believed in the overriding importance of outreach ministry. He was a person who looked to the future. One of the basic motivations for his work on the Concordex was his conviction that the Concordex was a basic tool for introducing The Urantia Book to the world. I should like to point out that Clyde started, nourished, and brought the Concordex to fruition not through the direction or supervision of Urantia Brotherhood or Urantia Foundation but as an independent creative vision and labor of love. Such creative individual action has been and will be the key to expansion and growth in the history of religion. It is a model of the future growth and spread of the teachings of The Urantia Book.
We are now in the early years of the public ministry of the fifth epochal revelation. Clyde Bedell contributed significantly to the beginning of this ministry. I believe that in the next decade new John the Baptists will come forth who will conduct a more effective outreach ministry than we have seen in the past or present. I believe some of these new heralds of enlarged spiritual truth are in this gathering and that Clyde played a part in launching their ministry.
From the mansion worlds Clyde and all of the founders of the Urantia movement will be cheering us on with great interest and devotion. In Clyde's own words we hear his challenge:
"In this hour, pondering again
the inexpressible wonders
of the Book--I felt time racing
thro the ageing calendar of my veins.
I faltered at my tick tack work
and saw as in mirage its wavering worth.
I must, I said, get my priorities in order."
With Clyde's words ringing in our ears, we too must get our priorities in order. With such urging and challenge and a future founded on the greatest revelation of truth available to mankind, assured by the sovereignty of God in Christ, our ministry and mission shall not fail!
Let us pray. Universal Father we give thanks for the life and enriching service of Clyde Bedell; and we are grateful that in your plan there is for every individual an eternal purpose of boundless opportunity, unlimited progress, and endless life. May each of us strive at each step to anticipate this goal of eternity and perfection ahead. Help us to understand that the door is open to all who live by faith, depending every step of the way on the leading of your spirit mediated to us so freely by our Lord, Jesus Christ.
We pray that you may comfort us in our sorrow and give us imagination of heart enough to rejoice that another of your children has entered the larger life on the mansion worlds of your kindgom. Amen.
Now, Father, prepare us who are here united in love in this memorial service to go forth united and supportive in the pluralism and diversity of service. In the coming test of the proclamation of truth, help us to learn to feast upon uncertainty, to fatten upon disappointment, to enthuse over apparent defeat, to invigorate in the presence of difficulties, to exhibit indomitable courage in the face of immensity, and to exercise unconquerable faith when confronted with the challenge of the inexplicable. May we in steadfast dedication know that in liaison with your will all things are possible. And now may the grace of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, the love of God the Father, and the fellowship and communion of the Holy Spirit be and abide with you, each one, now and forevermore.
A Service of
The Urantia Book Fellowship