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Meredith Sprunger Memo to Executive Committee regarding
Grimsley War Messages

SUBJECT:  Comments on Crisis

November 14th, 1983

I thought it might be good to pass on to you some of the statements I have been hearing form various people and places throughout the country.  We should realize statements may be in error or at least taken out of context and distorted.  I am sharing them primarily to illustrate the depth and serious nature of the problem facing us.  The statements are in the main paraphrases of what was conveyed to me but quoted as accurately as my memory is able to relate them.

“Jim Mills is reconsidering his position.”  (Completely erroneous.)

”The Oklahoma Society supports Vern’s activities.”  (The reverse is true.)

“I called the Brotherhood president and found him straddling the fence.  It seems we have no real leadership.  This type of thing feeds on ambiguity.”

“If Christy were still living this would not have happened.”

“I have been expecting Vern to make his move ever since Christy died.”

“Even if Vern’s contacts are authentic, the way he is utilizing them is a power play using cultish tactics which is utterly wrong.”

“I am the Brotherhood.”  (This statement was reported by a person who went out for an interview when, they asked about the Brotherhood’s place in this campaign.  I have trouble accepting this at face value because, although it is highly probably that Vern’s messages are of subconscious or psychic origin, I believe they are entirely unconscious and I would think Vern is too intelligent and politically wise to make such a statement.  “If this is not the case, we are in greater danger than I had imagined.)

“I talked with  _____ _____ of the Executive Committee and this person only wanted to talk about nuclear war and the military situation.  He said, ‘Let’s let Vern out of this.’  Anyone who does not recognize that Vern’s grasp for power is the major threat to the future of Urantia Brotherhood should not be trusted with leadership responsibilities in the Brotherhood.”

“Even if nuclear war should come tomorrow, it would in no way justify what Vern is doing.”

“Anyone who does not take a stand I this time of crisis must be regarded as one of the true believers when we evaluate them for future responsibilities in the Brotherhood.”

“I heard that Vern had over 100 messages last February.  He does up on the roof of the Family of God Foundation and gets these messages.”  (This might throw light on some strange behavior we have observed.  The last evening we were in Berkeley in September we spent several hours visiting at the FOG headquarters.  Nancy came down and visited by not once did Vern show himself to say, “Hello, you’ll have to excuse me I have some work to do.”  Nor did he say goodbye.  To say the least this is rather strange behavior for an old friend.  It makes sense, however, if he was on the roof getting messages!)

“Even the example, which Vern cited to illustrate that the FOB people have a democratically run organization when challenged by Hoite was an absolutely dictatorial decision by Vern according to a person who attended that meeting.”

“History will justify my action”  (Illustrating Vern’s total commitment to his part of action.)

“The content of Vern’s message does not surprise me because he was talking about this last summer already.”

“The real issue is not nuclear war which virtually everyone recognizes as an imminent possibility, but Vern’s clever strategy in using this fear to shape the thinking of the Brotherhood and thereby wield power, if not subtle control of the Brotherhood.”

“Vern denied that he had suggested duplicate records be sent to them but he did say, “I think it’s a good idea.”

“Vern admits that he has been receiving messages by clairaudience and says they are coming by authority of a personality known by only Dr. Sadler, Christy, and himself.”  (What egotism and self-deception!  Many of us have known the name the name of this individual for years.  My guess is that for every hour, which Vern spent with Dr. Sadler, I have spent five.  But I have not exploited this relationship nor tried to use it to gain power and influence.)

“I can see the possibilities for good coming out of this.  I have long felt that the Brotherhood is run more on emotion than reason.”

“It is probably good that this happened when it did.  If Vern was going in this direction, which some of us could see for years, the sooner it gets out in the open the less damage it will do.”

“I am an optimist.  This whole event may prove the genesis of a small but much needed Reformation in our group-oriented activities in promulgating the teachings of The Urantia Book.

“As long as FOG is permitted its almost silent partner status wherein it appears to have assumed the Sethite priestly role of intermediary between the individual Brotherhood members and universe intelligence, we are looking ahead at a series of problems similar to what faces us now.”

“The Urantia Brotherhood must now clearly and firmly separate itself from psychic phenomena, contact person illusions, and cultism or we might as well go into hibernation for the next thirty years.”

“The personality cult so carefully avoided by Dr. Sadler has come to full flower in Vern Grimsley and we have all unwittingly contributed to the end result.”

“Vern’s Lincoln Continental with telephone, his imposing study at the new Institute with its gigantic desk, his new home, the coterie of people serving his every need and carrying out his directions remind one of the life style of many of the TV preachers and may reveal more about the real man than his brilliant oratory.  It is certainly a long way from the spirit of the humble Galilean who walked the dusty roads of Palestine.  One must keep these factors and the total situation in mind when evaluating the source of Vern’s messages.”

“It is obvious that FOG has been permitted to exercise a disproportionate influence upon all Brotherhood members through access to much information about the Brotherhood (and Vern’s charismatic eloquence).  FOG’s influence is pervasive through all levels of the Brotherhood and we see its effects in the present phenomena.  They are now attempting to misuse this influence to spread their own cultic propaganda.”

Let us assume all of these statements (and there are many more) are distorted, they are one-sided, and some may even be erroneous.  The point is that these beliefs are in the minds and emotions of people throughout the Brotherhood.  This demonstrates the seriousness of the crisis, which faces us.  If the Executive Committee and Foundation Trustees do not exert firm and wise leadership, there will be divisiveness in the Brotherhood for years to come – or there will be a split in the Brotherhood and Vern will take the Family of God and the true believers and form a separate cultish organization. We have our work cut out for us!