Thursday, December 31, 2009

December 31st in Baha'i History

12/31/1843 - The passing of Shaykh Kazim-i-Rashti, the chosen successor of Shaykh Ahmad in Karbala.

12/31/1912 - Abdul-Baha visits Oxford and address a crowd at Manchester College.

Excerpt from The Christian Commonwealth, January 22, 1913: "'Abdu'l-Bahá at Oxford"

'Abdu'l-Bahá addressed a large and deeply interested audience at Manchester College, Oxford, on December 3 I. The Persian leader spoke in his native tongue, Mirza Ahmad Sohrab interpreting. Principal Estlin Carpenter presided, and introduced the speaker by saying that they owed the honor and pleasure of meeting 'Abdu'lBaha to their revered friend, Dr. Cheyne, who was deeply interested in Bahá'í teaching. The movement sprung up during the middle of the last century in Persia, with the advent of a young Muhammadan who took to himself the title of the Báb (meaning door or gate, through which men could arrive at the knowledge or truth of God), and who commenced teaching in Persia in the year I 844. The purity of his character, the nobility of his words, aroused great enthusiasm. He was, however, subjected to great hostility by the authorities, who secured his arrest and imprisonment, and he was finally executed in 1850. But the movement went on, and the writings of the Báb, which had been copious, were widely read. The movement has been brought into India, Europe, and the United States. It does not seek to create a new sect, but to inspire all sects with a deep fundamental love. The late Dr. Jowett once said to him that he had been so deeply impressed with the teachings and character of the Báb that he though Bábíism, as the present movement was then known, might become the greatest religious movement since the birth of Christ. (Misc Baha'i, Appreciations of the Baha'i Faith, p. 32)

12/31/1936 - Khusraw Biman, the first Zooastrian to accept the Faith in India passes away in Bombay at the age of 103 or 104.

12/31/1939 - Lady Bloomfield, surnamed Sitarih Khanum, dies in London.

12/31/1947 - Suzette Hipp becomes the first to accept the Faith in Luxembourg.

12/31/1962 - The first indigenous LSA in Venezuela is formed among Yaruro Indians, Apure State, Village of Aqua Linda

12/31/1991 - NSA of Niger is given permission to engage in Bahai activities by the Ministry of the Interior

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

December 30th in Baha'i History

12/30/1845 -Tahirih and her family are expelled from Karbala for wearing bright clothing to celebrate the Birth of the Bab (Lunar Calendar) during the mourning observance of the martyrdom of Mulla Husayn.

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

December 29th in Baha'i History

12/29/1850 - Hujjat dies of his wounds

Another famous advocate of the Cause of the Báb, even fiercer in zeal than Vahid, and almost as eminent in rank, was Mulla Muhammad-'Aliy-i-Zanjani, surnamed Hujjat. An Akhbari, a vehement controversialist, of a bold and independent temper of mind, impatient of restraint, a man who had dared condemn the whole ecclesiastical hierarchy from the Abvab-i-Arba'ih down to the humblest mulla, he had more than once, through his superior talents and fervid eloquence, publicly confounded his orthodox Shí'ah adversaries. Such a person could not remain indifferent to a Cause that was producing so grave a cleavage among his countrymen. The disciple he sent to Shiraz to investigate the matter fell immediately under the spell of the Báb. The perusal of but a page of the Qayyúmu'l-Asmá', brought by that messenger to Hujjat, sufficed to effect such a transformation within him that he declared, before the assembled ulamas of his native city, that should the Author of that work pronounce day to be night and the sun to be a shadow he would unhesitatingly uphold his verdict.

(Shoghi Effendi, God Passes By, p. 12)


29 Dec 1921 Shoghi Effendi arrives in Haifa, accompanied by Lady Blomfeld and his sister Rouhangeze. He was delayed by passport difficulties.

12/29/1969 to 1/2/1970 - First Pacific Area Bahai Youth Conference takes place in Apia, Samoa

12/29/1988 - The UHJ issues a letter to the American Bahai Community entitled, Individual Rights and Freedoms in the World Order of Baha’u’llah.

Monday, December 28, 2009

December 28th in Baha'i History

12/28 -12/30/1978 - The West African Bahai Women’s Conference is held in Monrovia, Liberia

12/28/1984 - First National Youth Conference held in Athens, Greece

12/28/1988 - Sean Hinton, 22 yr old British Bahai arrives in Ulaan Baator, Mongolia working as an ethno musicologist. First Bahai to reside in Mongolia. The UHJ named him a Knight of Baha’u’llah.

12/28/1995 - The first Teaching Conference of Lithuania is held in Vilnius, attended by Baha’i’s from 5 countries

28 Dec 1999 The Universal House of Justice reviews the Kitáb-i-Aqdas and announces that the laws of fasting, obligatory prayers, ablutions and chanting the Greatest Name 95 times per day are now binding on all Bahá'ís.

Sunday, December 27, 2009

December 27th in Baha'i History

12/27/1940 - Elizabeth Cheney, Spiritual Mother of Paraguay, arrives in Paraguay.

12/27/1953 - Gilbert & Daisy Robert become first to enroll in Madagascar

12/27/1976 - The first LSA in Dominica is formed in St. George

12/27 – 12/30/1977 - The first Bahai Summer School of Sierra Leone is held in Magburaka.

12/27/1981 - 8 of the 9 Members of the NSA of Iran are executed.

12/27/1991 - First Winter School of Hungary is held in Miskolc

2000 - Israel Postal Authority to issue commemorative stamp for the opening of the Terraces of the Shrine of the Bab - BIC

Saturday, December 26, 2009

December 26th in Baha'i History

12/26/1901 - Agnes Alexander arrives in Hawaii, first Bahai to set foot on the Islands.

12/26/1926 - Howard MacNutt Disciple of Abdul-Baha dies in a road accident in Florida

12/26/1992 - First National Winter Bahai School held in Lovech, Bulgaria – attended by 130 Bahai’s

Friday, December 25, 2009

December 25th in Baha'i History

12/25/1869 - A mob attacks and kills 2 in Faran, Khurasan, Iran.

25 Dec 1939 Remains of 'Abdu'l-Bahá's Mother (Navváb - The Most Exalted Leaf) and Brother (The Purest Branch) interred together on Mt. Carmel.

12/25/1970 - First International Bahai Youth winter school held in Salzburg, Austria – 600 attend

12/25/1989 - First International Baha’I School of Bophuthatswana is held at the Pilanesberg National Game Reserve – attended by 263 people from 12 countries

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

December 24th in Baha'i History

12/24/1924 -The first Bahai News Letter forerunner of the Bahai News was published by the NSA of the US & Canada, Horace Holley, Editor.

12/24/1951 - The Guardian appoints 12 Hands of the Cause.
Between the first and second messages Shoghi Effendi sent informing the Bahá'í world of the formation and membership of the International Bahá'í Council, he took another fundamental step in the historic development of the World Centre of the Faith through the official announcement of the appointment, on 24 December 1951, of the first contingent of the Hands of the Cause of God, twelve in number, and equally allocated between the Holy Land, the Asiatic, American and European continents.
(Ruhiyyih Khanum, The Priceless Pearl, p. 253)

12/24/1951 -Roy C. Wilhelm
Heart filled with sorrow for loss of greatly prized, much loved, highly admired herald of Bahá'u'lláh's Covenant, Roy Wilhelm. Distinguished career enriched the annals of concluding years of Heroic and opening years of Formative Age of Faith. Sterling qualities endeared him to his beloved Master, 'Abdu'l-Bahá. His saintliness, indomitable faith, outstanding services local, national, international, his exemplary devotion, qualify him to join ranks of Hands of Cause, insure him everlasting reward in Abha Kingdom. Advise hold memorial gathering in Temple befitting his unforgettable services and lofty rank.
[December 24, 1951] (Shoghi Effendi, Citadel of Faith, p. 170)

24 Dec 1986 Dedication of the House of Worship of the Indian Subcontinent in New Delhi, India.

12/24/1988 - First National Youth Conference of Cote de Ivoire is held.

12/24/1993 - First Summer School is held in Angola in Luanda - Attended by 20 Bahai’s

December 23rd in Baha'i History

12/23/1922 -True, the Cause as every other movement has its own obstacles, complications and unforeseen difficulties, but unlike any other human organization it inspires a spirit of Faith and Devotion which can never fail to induce us to make sincere and renewed efforts to face these difficulties and smooth any differences that may and must arise.
(From a letter dated 23 December 1922 written by Shoghi Effendi to the National Spiritual Assembly of the United States and Canada, published in "Bahá'í Administration: Selected Messages 1922-1932", p. 28) (Compilations, The Compilation of Compilations vol II, p. 105)

December 23, 1954 -Gertrude Struven
Grieve at news. Praying for progress of her soul in the Kingdom.
(Shoghi Effendi, Citadel of Faith, p. 169)

12/23/1978 - Helmut Winkelbach, a German Bahai arrives in Bobrusjk, Belarus and is named a Knight of Baha’u’llah

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

December 22nd in Baha'i History

12/22/1912 - Abdul-Baha attends the theater in London, Alice Buckton’s, Eager Heart

22 December 1966 - Incorporation of the National Spiritual Assembly of Italy

JOYFULLY ANNOUNCE INCORPORATION ITALIAN NATIONAL ASSEMBLY SIGNIFICANT MILESTONE PROCESS RECOGNITION FAITH HEART CHRISTENDOM. THE UNIVERSAL HOUSE OF JUSTICE

12/22/1990 -First European Bahai Youth Encounter is held in the Canary Islands, 150 attendees from 8 countries

Sunday, December 20, 2009

December 21st in Baha'i History

12/21/1848 - The Babi’s led by Quddus at Shaykh Tabarsi attack the army of Abdullah Khan killing all the army’s officers and Abdullah Khan himself, 430 of the army die, no Babi’s die, only 1 Babi wounded.

12/21/1898 - Birth of Hand of the Cause Dorothy Baker

21 December 1972 – Passing of Matthew Bullock
Grieve passing Knight Bahá'u'lláh Matthew Bullock distinguished promoter Faith convey family assurance prayers Holy Threshold progress his soul advise hold memorial gathering Mashriqu'l-Adhkar.
UNIVERSAL HOUSE OF JUSTICE
(The Universal House of Justice, Messages from the Universal House of Justice 1968-1973, p. 128)

December 20th in Baha'i History

12/20/1844 -The Bab offers 19 lambs as a sacrifice in the prescribed manner and gives the meat to the needy.

20 Dec 1844 The Báb stands at the Ka'bih (holiest shrine of Islam) and declared three times in the presence of 100,000 pilgrims that He was the Qa'im (the Promised One) awaited by Shi'ih Muslims.

20 Dec 1920 Construction begins on the House of Worship in Wilmette, Illinois.

12/20/1928 - Hippolyte Dreyfus-Barney, Disciple of Abdul-Baha dies in Paris

12/20/1991 Bahai Monument for Peace is inaugurated in a ceremony in Florianoplis, Brazil

Saturday, December 19, 2009

December 19th in Baha'i History

12/19/1848 - The siege of the Shrine of Shaykh Tabarsi begins with the arrival of Abdullah Khan’s forces.

12/19/1953 - Yan Kee Leong becomes the first to enroll in Malaya

19 Dec 1971 Erection of Obelisk on Mt. Carmel to mark site of future Mashriqu'l-Adhkár.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

December 18th in Baha'i History

12/18/1912 - Edward Granville Browne visits Abdul-Baha in London

12/18/1988 - H. Borah Kavelin UHJ Member passes away in Albuquerque, NM.

12/18/1989 – 1/2/1990 - West German Bahais joined by 26 Bahais from 6 European countries engage in Teaching & Proclamation activities in East Germany. 50000 pieces of literature including a shortened version of the Peace statement are handed out at 4 border check points and the Brandenburg Gate

December 17th in Baha'i History

12/17/1919 - Abdul-Baha sends his Tablet to the Hague -, '

Abdu'l-Bahá declared: -- At present Universal Peace is a matter of great importance, but unity of conscience is essential, so that the foundation of this matter may become secure, its establishment firm and its edifice strong. ... Although the League of Nations has been brought into existence, yet it is incapable of establishing Universal Peace. But the Supreme Tribunal which His Holiness Bahá'u'lláh has described will fulfill this sacred task with the utmost might and power. (Dr. J.E. Esslemont, Baha'u'llah and the New Era, p. 167)

1943 - Ultimately all the battle of life is within the individual. No amount of organization can solve the inner problems or produce or prevent, as the case may be, victory or failure at a crucial moment. In such times as these particularly, individuals are torn by great forces at large in the world, and we see some weak ones suddenly become miraculously strong, and strong ones fail -- we can only try, through loving advice, as your Committee has done, to bring about the act on the part of the believer which will be for the highest good of the Cause. Because obviously something bad for the Cause cannot be the highest good of the individual Bahá'í.
(From a letter dated 17 December 1943 written on behalf of Shoghi Effendi to an individual believer)
(Compilations, The Compilation of Compilations vol II, p. 11)

1985 - Adoption of Resolution in Support of Iranian Bahá'ís by the United Nations General Assembly -- Affirmation of Emergence from Obscurity

WITH JOYFUL GRATEFUL HEARTS WE ACCLAIM UNPRECEDENTED RECOGNITION BAHÁ'Í COMMUNITY THROUGH ADOPTION BY UNITED NATIONS GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF RESOLUTION MAKING SPECIFIC REFERENCE PERSECUTED FRIENDS IRAN. FOR FIRST TIME NAME PRECIOUS FAITH BAHÁ'U'LLÁH MENTIONED HIGHEST MOST WIDELY REPRESENTATIVE INTERNATIONAL FORUM YET ESTABLISHED THUS FULFILLING LONG-CHERISHED WISH BELOVED GUARDIAN. SIGNIFICANCE THIS MOMENTOUS DEVELOPMENT ALSO UNDERSCORED BY FACT THAT ONLY IN THREE INSTANCES BEFORE HAS GENERAL ASSEMBLY ITSELF ADOPTED RESOLUTIONS 702 CENSURING PARTICULAR COUNTRIES FOR BAD HUMAN RIGHTS RECORDS. PROCESS WHICH RESULTED SUCH A REMARKABLE OUTCOME BEGAN TWO YEARS AGO WITH DECISION UNITED NATIONS COMMISSION ON HUMAN RIGHTS TO SEND REPRESENTATIVE IRAN INVESTIGATE VIOLATIONS HUMAN RIGHTS INCLUDING THOSE DIRECTLY AFFECTING BAHÁ'Í COMMUNITY. THE COMMISSION DETERRED IN ITS INTENTION BY IRANIAN AUTHORITIES REFERRED ISSUE TO GENERAL ASSEMBLY WHERE MATTER WAS DISCUSSED FIRST IN THIRD COMMITTEE WHEN INTERESTS FAITH WERE VIGOROUSLY UPHELD BY REPRESENTATIVES VARIOUS COUNTRIES AND RESOLUTION WAS PROPOSED AND THEN IN PLENARY SESSION WHICH RATIFIED RESOLUTION ON 13 DECEMBER. NOTABLE CONSEQUENCE IS RETENTION ISSUE AGENDA GENERAL ASSEMBLY THUS PERMITTING INTENSIFICATION EFFORTS RELIEVE SITUATION SUFFERING BELIEVERS IRAN IN ANTICIPATION DAY COMPLETE EMANCIPATION FAITH GOD THAT LAND. WARMLY COMMEND ACKNOWLEDGE UNTIRING EFFORTS UNITED NATIONS REPRESENTATIVES BAHÁ'Í INTERNATIONAL COMMUNITY RESOLUTELY SUPPORTED BY NATIONAL SPIRITUAL ASSEMBLIES ALL CONTINENTS.
OCCURRING IN CONJUNCTION WITH PRESENTATION PEACE STATEMENT BY AMATU'L-BAHA RUHIYYIH KHANUM TO SECRETARY-GENERAL UNITED NATIONS ONLY FEW WEEKS BEFORE,+F791 WITH ONGOING DELIVERY SAME STATEMENT TO HEADS STATE THROUGHOUT WORLD AND WITH UNEQUIVOCAL PUBLIC DEFENCE IRANIAN BAHÁ'ÍS BY PRESIDENT UNITED STATES AT HUMAN RIGHTS DAY CEREMONY, THIS INESTIMABLE ACHIEVEMENT DEFINITELY AFFIRMS EMERGENCE FAITH OBSCURITY HERALDS NEW PHASE IRREPRESSIBLE UNFOLDMENT DIVINELY APPOINTED WORLD ORDER BAHÁ'U'LLÁH.

THE UNIVERSAL HOUSE OF JUSTICE (The Universal House of Justice, Messages 1963 to 1986, p. 701)

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

December 16th in Baha'i History

12/16/1912 Abdul-Baha leaves Liverpool for London

12/16/1950 The Guardian secures a lease for Mazra’ih after a prolonged struggle.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

December 15th in Baha'i History

15 Dec 1922 Shoghi Effendi returns to Holy Land to resume duties as Guardian

15 Dec 1946 Completion of plans for erection of arcade of the Shrine of the Báb.

15 December 1978 - The Grave Peril Facing Bahá'ís and Holy Places in Iran

FRIENDS IRAN AND MOST HOLY PLACES IN SHIRAZ AND TIHRAN IN GRAVE PERIL. BAHÁ'ÍS HAVE BEEN THREATENED OVER SEVERAL WEEKS MOST PARTS IRAN WITH IMMINENT DANGERS. THIS THREAT IS NOW MATERIALIZING IN FORMS OF LOOTING, BURNING BAHÁ'Í HOUSES AND FURTHER THREATS OF ASSASSINATION. IN NAYRIZ 25 BAHÁ'Í HOMES BURNED, IN SHIRAZ 60 HOMES LOOTED. SIMILAR ATTACKS REPORTED IN OTHER PROVINCES. IN SARVISTAN BAHÁ'ÍS TAKEN TO MOSQUES AND FORCIBLY REQUIRED TO RECANT THEIR FAITH. ... URGE FRIENDS JOIN US PRAYERS PROTECTION FRIENDS HOLY PLACES CRADLE FAITH.
UNIVERSAL HOUSE OF JUSTICE

12/15/1989 - A World Forestry Charter gathering is organized by the Office of Public Information in London & New York is held in London.
This commemorates the centenary of the birth of Richard St. Barbe Baker, Bahai environmentalist who founded The Gatherings in 1945.

Monday, December 14, 2009

December 14th in Baha'i History

December 14, 1949 - Fanny Knobloch
Grieve at passing of beloved, distinguished, exemplary pioneer of Faith, Fanny Knobloch. Memory of her notable services imperishable, her reward in Abha Kingdom bountiful, assured, everlasting.
(Shoghi Effendi, Citadel of Faith, p. 166)

14 December 1981 - Arrest of Eight Members of the Iranian National Spiritual Assembly

HAVE JUST RECEIVED DISTRESSING REPORT EIGHT MEMBERS NATIONAL ASSEMBLY IRAN WHILE IN SESSION ARRESTED TOGETHER WITH TWO OTHER BELIEVERS IN HOME WHERE MEETING WAS HELD. TWO WOMEN AMONG TEN DETAINEES. AUTHORITY RESPONSIBLE FOR ARRESTS AND LOCATION PRISON STILL UNIDENTIFIED. ...
UNIVERSAL HOUSE OF JUSTICE

12/14/1995 -A Chair for Baha’I Studies inaugurated at the University of Lucknow

Sunday, December 13, 2009

December 13th in Baha'i History

12/13/1912- Abdul-Baha arrives in Liverpool from the US

12/13/1925 - The keys to Baha’u’llah’s House in Baghdad are given to the Shiah’s

12/13/1953 - A Separate Department for the Bahai Faith is established by the Israeli Ministry of Religious Affairs.

13 Dec 1963 - Bahá'í prisoners in Morocco were released under order of the Supreme Court after having been imprisoned under threat of death

12/13/1985 - First Time UN General Assembly adopts a resolution on human rights in Iran mentioning the Bahais.

December 12th in Baha'i History

12/12/1844 - The Bab arrives in Mecca along with 100,000 others to perform the rites of Pilgrimage.

12/12/1863 - Baha’u’llah and His companions arrive in Adrianople

12/12/1939 - Bahais of Caracas, Venezuela hold their first Feast

12/12/1947 -First Pioneer to Portugal, Valeria Lamb Nicols arrives from Denmark.

Friday, December 11, 2009

December 11th in Baha'i History

1888-Nabil interviews Baha'u'llah

He lived in 'Akká then, and when he had brought his narrative down to the point where the story of the Seven Martyrs was ended, he submitted the finished portions to Bahá'u'lláh, Who sent for him on December 11, 1888, a date Nabil records as one he will never forget. On that occasion, his Lord gave him an account of various historical episodes, including the gathering at Badasht.

Nabil was very exact, always citing references, cautious in his appraisals, frank as to the degree of his information, hunting for eye-witnesses and survivors, eagerly questioning: 'Many, I confess, are the gaps in this narrative, for which I beg the indulgence of my readers. It is my earnest hope that these gaps may be filled by those who will, after me, arise to compile an exhaustive and befitting account of these stirring events, the significance of which we can as yet but dimly discern.'[3] He was not omniscient, rhetorical, boastful, as contemporary Eastern historians were; and he offers precise detail rather than the rhyming generalizations so often preferred by them.
[3. Nabil-i-A'zam, The Dawn-Breakers, Nabil's Narrative of the Early Days of the Bahá'í Revelation (Bahá'í Publishing Trust, Wilmette, 1953), p. 581]

(Marzieh Gail, Dawn Over Mount Hira, p. 100)

Thursday, December 10, 2009

December 10th in Baha'i History

1898 - First Western Pilgrims Arrive in Akka

1981- UHJ announces that the House of Baha’u’llah in Takur, Nur, Iran confiscated by the Revolutionary Guard in 1979 has been totally demolished and the site offered for auction.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

December 9th in Baha'i History

1917 - General Allenby enters Jerusalem. Major Wellesley Tudor Pole risks court martial to alert the British Cabinet to the danger of 'Abdu'l-Bahá.

1999 - LARGEST RELIGION WITHOUT RITES – Guiness Book of Records

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

December 8th in Baha'i History

1939-Margaret Lentz a German Bahai arrives in the Dominican Republic – the first Bahai to settle there.

1953-Loretta & Carl Scherer from Milwaukee, WI arrive in Macau, named Knights of Baha’u’llah

1954-Bahais in Adharbayjan are dismissed from their jobs in the Ministries of Health and Public Highways

1988-Plenary Session of the UN adopts a resolution concerning Human Rights in Iran specifically mentioning the suffering of the Bahais

1990-The first All-Union Bahai Consultative Conference is held in Moscow.

1993-In Iran, death sentences were pronounced against 2 Bahai’s on the grounds of their membership in the Bahai Community

Monday, December 7, 2009

December 7th in Baha'i History

1953 - Jalal Khazeh appointed Hand of the Cause

1986 - Radio Bahai Liberia, first Bahai radio station in Africa makes its first test broadcast.

1994 - The first World Press exhibition is held by the Information and Public Relations Committee’s of the NSA of El Salvador to mark the International Day of Peace

Sunday, December 6, 2009

December 6th in Baha'i History

1934 - The Tarbiyat Baha’I Schools in Tihran are closed by the government due to their failure to open on a Bahai Holy Day.

1939 - O Subduer of Winds', An Invocation for Moments of Danger
"Regarding the invocation 'Ya Musakin el Ariah'; it literally means 'O Subduer of Winds'. The believers are not required to recite it, but may do so in moments of personal danger."
(From a letter written on behalf of Shoghi Effendi to an individual believer, December 6, 1939) (Compilations, Lights of Guidance, p. 463)

1939- Cosmic Religion
"Regarding the question you have asked in connection with a passage in Dr. Einstein's 'Cosmic Religion'; according to the Bahá'í conception there is and can be no incompatibility between the idea of causal law and that of an Omnipotent and Omniscient God, Who, if He deems it fit, may at times interfere with the normal sequence of events in the world, and thus retard or altogether stop the operation of certain laws, whether in the physical universe, or in any other worlds of nature and man.
"The other statement reported to have been made by Dr. Einstein to the effect that the ethical behavior of man 'requires no support from religion' is incompatible with the Bahá'í viewpoint which emphatically stresses the fact that no sound ethics can exist and become effective unless based on revealed religion. To dissociate ethics from religion is to render the former not only void of any firm foundation but without the necessary driving power."
(From a letter written on behalf of Shoghi Effendi to an individual believer, December 6, 1939) (Compilations, Lights of Guidance, p. 505)

1981 – Regarding door to door distribution of literature
"The quotation which you ask for is as follows: 'He feels that to distribute Bahá'í pamphlets from door-to-door ... is undignified and might create a bad impression of the Faith. No doubt, it is the eagerness and devotion of the friends that led them to make this proposal, but he does not think that the best interests of the Cause are served by such a method ...'"
(A letter written on behalf of the Universal House of Justice to the National Spiritual Assembly of Iceland, December 6, 1981) (Compilations, Lights of Guidance, p. 591)

1982 - DISTRESSED FURTHER ARRESTS SHIRAZ INCREASING NUMBER IMPRISONED FRIENDS TO MORE THAN 80 LAST WEEK. ...
UNIVERSAL HOUSE OF JUSTICE (The Universal House of Justice, Messages 1963 to 1986, p. 568)

2000- UN General Assembly expresses concern over treatment of Baha'is in Iran – BWNS

Saturday, December 5, 2009

December 5th in Baha'i History

1912 – Abdul-Baha gave a Talk on Day of Departure On Board Steamship Celtic

1912 - Abdul-Baha sails on the SS Celtic from NY to Liverpool

A great number of believers from New York and other cities came to the S. S. Celtic to bid farewell to their beloved. The tears in their eyes bespoke of their great sorrow. The sobs and lamentations of both the young and the old could be heard from afar. Although the first class lounge was quite large, it could not contain the crowd of believers. Some were sitting and others standing outside the lounge. As He moved among the friends, the Master spoke to them with words of exhortation and admonition, consoling their hearts as He bade them farewell. He guided the sorrowing ones onto the path of everlasting happiness and reminding them of the glad tidings of the Abhá Kingdom until the time came for the friends to depart.
One by one the friends came to `Abdu'l-Bahá to shake His hand, to take hold of the mantle of His grace and favor and to supplicate His assistance and confirmation. Then, in great sorrow, they left the ship. They stood on the wharf, weeping and overcome by emotion, their heads bowed with grief and their hands lifted towards the heavens in prayer as they gazed their last at the Center of the Covenant. As the steamer moved out to sea, their grief and sadness and the fire of their devotion knew no bounds. The throng of believers, stretching as far as the eye could see, waved farewell to the Master, now far in the distance. And He said:
Observe how the power of the Cause of God has created a tumult in the hearts and what a revolution it has produced. See how the aid and assistance of the Abhá Beauty have reached us constantly and invariably the lights of victory have shone from the supreme horizon. These have been from the promised confirmations of the Kingdom of God and the assistance of the invisible sovereignty of the Abhá Beauty, which He has promised clearly in the verse, `Verily, We behold you from Our realm of Glory, and shall aid whosoever will arise for the triumph of Our Cause with the hosts of the Concourse on high and a company of Our favored angels.'
(Mahmud’s Diary)

1913 'Abdu'l-Bahá returns to Haifa.

12/5 to 12/6/1921
2nd Convention for Amity between the White and Colored Races is held in Springfield, MA. Over 1000 attend.

1939 - IMPART HEART STIRRING NEWS TRANSFER SACRED REMAINS PUREST BRANCH AND 'ABDU'L-BAHÁ'S MOTHER SPOT CONSECRATED RESTING PLACE GREATEST HOLY LEAF AND DESIGNED FUTURE CENTRE INTERNATIONAL INSTITUTIONS BELOVED FAITH.
SHOGHI (Shoghi Effendi, Messages to the Indian Subcontinent, p. 184)

1962 – the passing of EDWARD THEODORE HALL

First heard of the Faith in 1910 in the Salford, Lancashire area and with his wife Rebecca, her brother John Charles and his wife Hester Ann Craven, made contact with Sarah Ann Ridgway, one of the earliest British Bahá'ís, and later established the second Bahá'í Group in the British Isles. In 1912 Mr. Hall and Mr. Craven went to Liverpool and met 'Abdu'l-Bahá at the boat. Five Tablets from the Master were received. In 1922 the first Spiritual Assembly was formed in Manchester with E. T. Hall as Secretary. He also "represented" Manchester on the first National Spiritual Council in 1922, and was a member of the National Assembly until 1928. He was entrusted by Shoghi Effendi with part of his early diaries and later maintained a close correspondence with the Guardian for many years. His book, "The Bahá'í Dawn; Manchester" paints a vivid picture of the early days of the Faith in Lancashire. Through Mr. Hall's correspondence with the Editor of the 'John O'Groats Journal' (Mr. R. J. G. Millar) frequent reviews and letters were published for nineteen years until the Editor's retirement. He passed away on 5 December 1962 aged 82. (Shoghi Effendi, The Unfolding Destiny of the British Baha'i Community, p. 467)

Friday, December 4, 2009

December 4th in Baha'i History

1912 – Abdul-Baha gave a Talk to Theosophical Society
1912 - Abdul-Baha addresses his last meeting in North America
1912 – Abdul-Baha was in New York
Among the new seekers who met the Master today was a rabbi to whom the Master spoke extensively about the Torah, saying:
The verse `God created heaven and earth in six days' has reference to the Day of God and the spiritual creation, for there was no day or night before the creation of this heaven and earth. And the meaning of `the water' in the verse of the Torah `The spirit of God moved upon the face of the water like a bird' is the water of knowledge which is the source of heavenly life. It is written that God said, `Let us make man in our image'; this means in the image of divine names and attributes, for God is holy above all physical images and is pure and sanctified above all forms or likenesses.
Elucidating further the nature of biblical language and the mysteries of the holy books, He explained the signs and prophecies regarding the promised Manifestation. The rabbi was impressed and acknowledged the Master's insight.
At the Kinney's home in the afternoon, a number of Mr Kinney's students met the Master. Some came during the meeting and others after it. The Master spoke to them about understanding the holy Book:
The object of reading and reciting is to understand the inner significance of the verses and mysteries of the Book. Had reading sufficed, all the Jewish people should have acknowledged Christ but as they lacked understanding of the mysteries and the inner meanings, they were deprived of the bounty of believing in Him. They interpreted the book in a literal or outward manner and did not find the appearance of Christ to conform to their traditions, imitations and the prevailing customs of their people, so they denied and rejected Him. Hence, they remained heedless and ignorant of divine realities and mysteries.
(Mahmud’s Diary)
1954- Teach Child to Say Greatest Name in Moments of Crisis
"He thinks you are wise in not separating yourself from your child; and he will pray that he may grow out of this condition, and gain in physical and spiritual strength. It would be a great advantage to him if you could teach him to say the Greatest Name, when he is himself going through a moment of crisis and suffering."
(From a letter written on behalf of Shoghi Effendi to a Bahá'í couple, December 4, 1954) (Compilations, Lights of Guidance, p. 156)
1954 - There is no teaching in the Bahá'í Faith that "soul mates" exist. What is meant is that marriage should lead to a profound friendship of spirit, which will endure in the next world, where there is no sex, and no giving and taking in marriage; just the way we should establish with our parents, our children, our brothers and sisters and friends a deep spiritual bond which will be everlasting, and not merely physical bonds of human relationship.
(4 December 1954) (Compilations, The Compilation of Compilations vol II, p. 452)

1956 – Death of Juliet Thompson
Abdu'l-Bahá likened Juliet to Mary Magdalene because she loved, and saw, so much. She had that same storied love that Mary had -- that love which after all is the only thing that holds the Bahá'ís together, or for that matter holds the Lord to His creatures, or keeps the stars in their courses.
She says here that one early morning (on that breathless, ecstatic, tear-drenched pilgrimage) she gave up her will, made over her desires and her life to the Will of God, and saw how, when we are able to do that, "the design takes perfect shape." Then peace comes, she says, and "beauty undreamed of blossoms upon our days."
Again she tells how the Master once gathered the American pilgrims together -- they being symbols of all -- and said He hoped that a great and ever-growing love would be established among them. He knew that their one main desire was to live in His presence, and He told them how this could be done.
"The more," He said, "you love one another, the nearer you get to me. I go away from this world, but Love stays always."
……….You can say for Helen that she was a true friend to Juliet, and faithful. One mid-day, years after all this, as Juliet lay in her bed, it seems that she looked up at Helen and asked, "Do you want to come with me, and be with 'Abdu'l-Bahá?"
"No," Helen told her, "I am not ready yet."
And then, as she watched, she saw Juliet die. It was 4 December 1956. They had moved by then, the Times said, to 129 East Tenth. (Diary of Juliet Thompson p.53)
Juliet Thompson
Deplore loss of much-loved, greatly admired Juliet Thompson, outstanding, exemplary handmaid of 'Abdu'l-Bahá. Over half-century record of manifold, meritorious services, embracing the concluding years of Heroic and opening decades of Formative Ages of Bahá'í Dispensation, won her enviable position in the glorious company of triumphant disciples of the beloved Master in the Abha Kingdom. Advise hold memorial gathering in Mashriqu'l-Adhkar to pay befitting tribute to the imperishable memory of one so wholly consecrated to the Faith of Bahá'u'lláh, and fired with such consuming devotion to the Center of His Covenant.
[December 6, 1956] (Shoghi Effendi, Citadel of Faith, p. 170)

2000 - U.N. General Assembly Raps Iran on Rights Abuses - Reuters

Thursday, December 3, 2009

December 3rd in Baha'i History




1842 – Birth of Phoebe Hearst

Phoebe Hearst was 'an Empress', Khan said.
Born Phoebe Elizabeth Apperson in Franklin County, Missouri, December 3, 1842, in her young days she was called Puss. By the time she was seventeen, Phoebe was teaching school in St. James, Missouri. She could play the piano and speak some French, and, avid to learn, used to hold a book in her left hand and churn the butter with her right. She made her own clothes, and rode about on horseback. (Srches of the Years p.49)

1912 – Abdul-Baha gave a Talk at Home of Dr. and Mrs. Florian Krug

1912 – Abdul-Baha gave a Talk to Mr. Kinney’s Bible Class


1982 - Hand of the Cause Paul Haney dies in a car accident in Haifa

WITH STRICKEN HEARTS ANNOUNCE SUDDEN IRREPARABLE LOSS THROUGH AUTO-MOBILE ACCIDENT 3 DECEMBER HIGHLY DISTINGUISHED GREATLY PRIZED HAND CAUSE GOD STAUNCH DEFENDER COVENANT PAUL HANEY.
THIS DISTINGUISHED SERVANT BAHÁ'U'LLÁH WAS BLESSED CHILDHOOD THROUGH ATTAINMENT PRESENCE 'ABDU'L-BAHÁ. HIS NATURAL GENTLENESS, GENUINE HUMILITY, UNAFFECTED UNBOUNDED LOVE, HIS UPRIGHTNESS, INTEGRITY 568 HIS SINGLE-MINDED DEVOTION CAUSE SINCE YOUTHFUL YEARS, HIS UNFAILING RELIABILITY, METICULOUS ATTENTION DETAIL, CHARACTERIZED HIS HISTORIC SERVICES BOTH NATIONAL AND INTERNATIONAL LEVELS. SPANNING MORE THAN HALF CENTURY HIS TIRELESS LABOURS INCLUDED LONG-TIME MEMBERSHIP AMERICAN NATIONAL ASSEMBLY. SINCE 1954 HE CONSECRATED HIS ENERGIES AS MEMBER UNIQUE COMPANY CHIEF STEWARDS FAITH AND LATER AS MEMBER BODY HANDS CAUSE RESIDING HOLY LAND AT ONE OF MOST CRITICAL PERIODS BAHÁ'Í HISTORY. LAST DECADE HIS EARTHLY LIFE WAS FULLY DEDICATED DEVELOPMENT NEWLY FORMED INTERNATIONAL TEACHING CENTRE. GENERATIONS YET UNBORN WILL GLORY IN HIS IMPERISHABLE ACHIEVEMENTS AND BE INSPIRED BY HIS UNIQUE FORTITUDE.
ARDENTLY SUPPLICATING HOLY THRESHOLD PROGRESS HIS NOBLE SOUL ABHA KINGDOM. ADVISE HOLD THROUGHOUT BAHÁ'Í WORLD INCLUDING ALL MASHRIQU'L- ADHKARS MEMORIAL GATHERINGS BEFITTING HIS HIGH RANK AND HIS MERITORIOUS SERVICES.
UNIVERSAL HOUSE OF JUSTICE (Messages 1963 to 1986, p.567)

Paul Haney’s tombstone – Baha’i Cemetery Haifa
http://www.flickr.com/photos/franco_patria/267248542/

Wednesday, December 2, 2009


1911 - Abdul-Baha returns to Egypt


1912 – Abdul-Baha gave a second Talk at Home of Mr. and Mrs. Edward B. Kinney

1912- Abdul-Baha was in New York
After the Master had finished His morning prayers, the friends began to come to visit Him such that by midday the Master's residence was filled with people. He went downstairs and spoke to them:
I have stayed a long time with you in New York. My stay in other towns has not been a tenth as long. I have met with you day and night, individually and collectively; conveyed to you the admonitions of Bahá'u'lláh; delivered to you the heavenly glad tidings; and explained the means of human progress. I have elucidated the harmful effects of prejudices and imitations and the impurity of selfish desires, expounded the teachings of Bahá'u'lláh and clarified the meanings of the divine proofs and questions.
The time for my departure is near and I am making arrangements for the voyage. Therefore I shall not be able to attend every meeting, so I shall bid you farewell. I am pleased with you and grateful for your services. Truly, you have shown great kindness and extended to me the utmost hospitality. I supplicate to the Kingdom of Bahá'u'lláh to shower upon you His assistance and confirmations so that day by day you may be more assisted to defend the rights of Bahá'u'lláh, that your hearts may become more enlightened, your morals heavenly, your souls transported with joy and your conduct proof of your faith and certitude. May you be in the utmost sanctity, be completely attracted and turned to the Abhá Kingdom and become like brilliant lights. May you become evident signs of the Blessed Beauty and proofs of the reality of Bahá'u'lláh so that you may illuminate the world. And when people look at your deeds and conduct they will see the traces of holiness and severance and will behold heavenly brightness in you and all will testify that `these people are truly proofs of the reality of Bahá'u'lláh', and that `Bahá'u'lláh is undoubtedly the Sun of Truth who has educated these people through His power'. May they see divine lights in your behavior, find the signs of the love of God, observe praiseworthy conduct in you and seek the virtues of the world of man within you. You must each become the proclaimer of truth and shine from the horizon of the world of humanity like brilliant stars. This is what is meant by defending the rights of Bahá'u'lláh; this is the purpose of the Blessed Beauty in suffering afflictions and accepting confinement in the Most Great Prison. He bore all afflictions and difficulties and ascended to the Kingdom of God a prisoner so that we would act according to His teachings and arise and carry out that which is consistent with faithfulness; that we may act upon His exhortation and raise the call of the Abhá Kingdom and proclaim the light of the bounties of truth, so that the waves of the Most Great Ocean may surge high, this world may become the mirror of the world above, this bed of thorns may turn into a flower garden and this region of dust may reflect the All-Glorious Paradise.
In the afternoon He said:
We have sown some seeds and hope that the sun of favor will shine upon them, the rain of mercy will pour down, and the breezes of generosity will waft over them, because America has receptivity.
In the evening, He spoke to a gathering of the friends and said:
I supplicate and implore that the clouds of mercy may shower upon you and the Sun of Truth may shine upon you so that you may attain to the purpose of the holy Manifestations of God. This is my supplication because you are the beloved ones of the Blessed Beauty and the servants of the Greatest Name. I undertook this voyage in order to see you and, God willing, you will come to the Holy Land and we shall meet there in that land which was trodden by the sacred feet of the Prophets of God. (Mahmud’s Diary)
1935 – Gleanings
A true and adequate knowledge of the Cause is, indeed, indispensable to every one who wishes to successfully teach the Message. The book of "Gleanings" gives the friends a splendid opportunity to acquire this necessary knowledge and understanding. It gives them, in addition, that inspiration and spiritual fervour which the reading of the Holy Words can alone impart.
(From a letter dated 2 December 1935 written on behalf of Shoghi Effendi to an individual believer)
(Compilations, The Compilation of Compilations vol II, p. 308)

1957 – Deeds for Bahji signed over to the Baha’i’s
The historic day of the final transfer of properties was two days short of one month after the Guardian's passing, Monday, December 2, 1957. The Deeds for Bahji -- the Shrine, the Mansion, the house of the Covenant-breakers, and all small pieces of land which they held in 'Akká, were signed over to the Faith at 10:25 a.m. (It should be noted that until this date the Shrine itself was held by Covenant-breakers as part of their small percentage of property.) Leroy (Ioas)was signatory for the Bahá'ís with Ugo Giachery and Sylvia as witnesses. The property was put in the name of the Israel Branch of the National Spiritual Assembly of the Bahá'ís of the United States. After Leroy's death, Sylvia found the pen with which he had signed the documents, left in the page of his diary at the date of December 2, 1957. On leaving Haifa, she gave it to the International Archives. (Adib Taherzadeh, The Child of the Covenant, p. 344)

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

December 1st in Baha'i History

Fort Tabarsi

Painting of the Battle of Tabarsi was located here in a great Bahai History page – heavily illustrated
http://tinyurl.com/yf73klp

1844 – Bab maintains traditional garb in spite of the heat during Pilgrimage
Although the month of Dhi'l-Hijjih,[1] the month of pilgrimage to Mecca and Medina, coincided in that year with the first month of the winter season, yet so intense was the heat in that region that the pilgrims who made the circuit of the sacred shrine were unable to perform that rite in their usual garments. Draped in a light, loose-fitting tunic, they joined in the celebration of the festival. The Báb, however, refused, as a mark of deference, to discard either His turban or cloak. Dressed in His usual attire, He, with the utmost dignity and calm, and with extreme simplicity and reverence, compassed the Ka'bih and performed all the prescribed rites of worship.
[1 December, 1844 A.D.] (Shoghi Effendi, The Dawn-Breakers, p. 132)

1848 – Rain & Snow assist the Babi’s at Shaykh Tabarsi
That very night, the army of Abdu'llah Khan was surprised by a torrential rain which overwhelmed that section which lay close to the fort. Much of the ammunition was irretrievably ruined. There gathered within the walls of the fort an amount of water which, for a long period, was sufficient for the consumption of the besieged. In the course of the following night, a snowfall such as the people of the neighbourhood even in the depth of winter had never experienced, added considerably to the annoyance which the rain had caused. The next night, which was the evening preceding the fifth of Muharram, in the year 1265 A.H.,[1] Quddus determined to leave the gate of the fort. "Praise be to God," he remarked to Rasul-i-Bahnimiri as he paced with calm and serenity the approaches to the gate, "who has graciously answered our prayer and caused both rain and snow to fall upon our enemies; a fall that has brought desolation into their camp and refreshment into our fort."
[1 December 1, 1848 A.D.] (Shoghi Effendi, The Dawn-Breakers, p. 361)

LINK to Farsi Account of the episode of Shaykh Tabarsi http://tinyurl.com/yhezmtn

1863 - Baha’u’llah and His companions leave Istanbul for Adrianople .

1866 - Birth of Marion Jack. Travel teacher and pioneer from St. John New Brunswick, Canada

1904- Sidney Sprague arrives in India, the first American Travel Teacher in Asia

1912 – Abdul-Baha was in New YorkThe Master's talk concerned the capacity of the Americans to bring about universal peace. He said:
As Americans are removed from most political difficulties they live at ease in isolation and, compared to most other regions, are more desirous of peace and harmony, so they can succeed in bringing about universal peace provided they arise as they should and the nation and government put forth strenuous efforts and, through spiritual power, carry out the divine teachings and principles. The matter of peace, in the religion of Bahá'u'lláh, is a firm command and a religious obligation. It is not the resolution of a congress or the edict of a committee of some nation or country influenced by selfish desires and subject to amendments. Because it is a fundamental principle, it will inevitably come to pass. As the denial of Christ and opposition to Him are considered infidelity in religious terminology, the rejection of peace has the same status in the religion of Bahá'u'lláh.
No affair in the world succeeds without sacrifice. Up to now twenty thousand persons have been sacrificed for this Cause. The Bahá'ís have accepted every affliction and persecution. For forty years I was in a prison for promulgating universal peace and the oneness of humanity. Because these teachings were contrary to the interests and the despotism of the Sháh of Persia and the Sultán of Turkey, they arose in opposition and oppression. With all their power they girded their loins to uproot and efface the Cause of God. But the Cause of Bahá'u'lláh was victorious and the fame of His Revelation spread worldwide. Every opponent was overthrown and humiliated because this Cause was supported by the All-Powerful and because His teachings answer the need of the age to promote human happiness and provide supreme guidance.

In the afternoon `Abdu'l-Bahá spoke to a group of Christian ministers, saying:
The teachings of Christ are forgotten. Consider that Christ commanded Peter to sheathe his sword. He also said, `Whosoever shall smite thee on thy right cheek, turn to him the other also' [Matt. 5:39]. But now, contrary to these teachings, see how Christians are killing one another. Christian leaders considered the shedding of the blood of each other a lawful act. What blood has been shed over the conflict between Protestants and Catholics! (Mahmud's Diary)
1920- Lillian Kappes dies of typhus in Tihran. She had served 9 years with the Tarbiyat School for Girls in Tihran.

1977 – Laughter at the expense of others
The Universal House of Justice has requested us to acknowledge your letter of November 6, 1977 and to say that while laughter should not be suppressed or frowned upon, it should not be indulged in at the expense of the feelings of others. What one says or does in a humorous vein should not give rise to prejudice of any kind. You may recall 'Abdu'l-Bahá's caution "Beware lest ye offend the feelings of anyone, or sadden the heart of any person..." (From Tablets of 'Abdu'l-Bahá, vol. I, p. 45)
(1 December 1977 to an individual believer) (The Universal House of Justice, 1997 Jan 12, The Humourist, p. 2)

2000 - New Approach to Development Combines Science and Religion...BWNS