PUBLICATION OF THE Urantia BOOK
Publication of a new edition of 7he Urantia Book was completed in early June, and is now being shipped to all who placed pre-publication orders. Of the 15,000 books printed, approximately 6500 have been sold.
Publication was expected at an earlier date, but was delayed by a variety of technical matters connected with the printing process. As is often the case, things turned out to be a bit more complex than expected. The Fellowship apologizes for the delay in filling pre-publication orders, and thanks all for their patience and understanding.
This edition incorporates a variety of new features suggested by many readers. The text is formatted in two columns for easier reading. Paragraph numbers have been added to create a reference system based on the inherent structure of the book, and therefore independent of any particular printing or pagination. Cross-references to the pagination of the 1955 first printing are included to facilitate coordination with existing editions. A new cover has been applied which is designed to appeal to bookstore browsers.
The Fellowship has formed a new corporation named Uversa Press to manage all matters connected with publishing and distributing The Urantia Book. This was done to separate the technical issues of publishing and distribution from the social and fraternal activities associated with the Fellowship. Efforts to place the book with distributors and bookstores are underway. Uversa Press will be represented at the American Booksellers' Association meeting in Chicago in mid June. The mechanical matters of order fulfillment are being handled on a contract basis by Good Cheer Press of Boulder, Colorado. This arrangement will allow the Chicago office staff to give their full time attention to reader service activities.
ANNUAL GENERAL COUNCIL MEET
The annual meeting of the General Council will take place in Flagstaff, Arizona in conjunction with IC96. The General Council will meet in informal session on Thursday, August 8 from 10 AM to noon. Observers are welcome. The formal meeting of the General Council will begin on Friday, August 9 at 8:30 AM. The meeting will be closed to observers until about 10 AM to conduct elections. After that, members are welcome to observe the meeting.
The council will be considering a proposal to amend the Fellowship constitution to allow each society to directly elect a member to the General Council. If this amendment is adopted the size of the General Council could increase to a potential 54 members. Society representatives have been asked to attend this portion of the General Council meeting and present the views of their societies.
NEW FELLOWSHIP SOCIETY
Application to form a Fellowship Society has been received from a group of readers in Wisconsin. The proposed chartering date is Saturday, September 14, 1996. Visitors are encouraged to attend. Contact Bob or Vicki Arkens at 715/823-6674 for further information.
1997 TRIENNIAL DELEGATE ASSEMBLY (TDA)
Societies are considering a proposal to hold the 1997 TDA as a separate event in the Spring of 1997. In the past the TDA has been held in conjunction with the Summer Study Sessions and the Annual General Council meeting. Separating the TDA has several advantages. First, elections to the General Council will be complete 2-3 months before the General Council meeting. This will allow newly elected councilors to attend the meeting and to familiarize themselves with the business to be considered. Second, separating the TDA will allow the Summer Study Session and General Council meeting to take place over a 5 day period rather than the 7-9 days it has occupied in the past.
INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE 1996
Planning for IC96 is virtually complete. So far about 900 have registered, well ahead of the number registered at this time for IC93. Another 100 readers are expected to register over the next few weeks. If you are planning to attend, please register as soon as possible. If you need registration materials, call the Wrightwood office. Conference information can also be found on the Fellowship's new web page : www.ubfellowship.org.
IC96 will be a memorable event. A wide variety of activities touching body, mind and spirit have been planned for both adults and children. This is definitely a family conference. We hope you can attend.
FELLOWSHIP WEB PAGE As mentioned, the Fellowship now has a web page. The page is under continuous development, and those responsible for it would be happy to receive comments and suggestions. The address is www.ubfellowship.org.
Written arguments have been filed in appeal of the Maaherra-Foundation lawsuit. The next phase of the process involves short oral arguments by each side. The date for this has not been set, and could be many months away. Following oral arguments there will probably be another period of months before the appeals court gives its decision. In total, it could be 1-2 years before the appeal is decided.
If the Foundation loses their appeal they have indicated they will ask the Supreme Court to review the matter. If the Foundation wins, the whole matter will be sent back to the circuit court for jury trial. Unless and until a court determines otherwise, The Urantia Book remains in the public domain.
IC99 SITE SELECTION UNDERWAY Site selection activities for IC99 are focusing on the mid and southeast United States. Please let us know if you are aware of a suitable facility capable of housing and feeding 1000 readers at reasonable rates.