The Baha’i Community of London is planning to celebrate the “Twin Holy Birthdays.” All are welcome to join the community in these special Holy Day celebrations to commemorate the birth of Baha’u’llah, the Prophet-founder of the Baha’i Faith and of the Bab, His Forerunner on November 1, 2016. Details of the event are as follows:
On Thursday, October 13, 2016, the opening ceremonies for the new Baha’i House of Worship were held in Santiago, Chile. Some five thousand Baha’is from 110 countries along with numerous invited dignitaries marked the opening celebrations in a spirit of joy and radiance. Several members of the Baha’i Community of London attended the event. This ceremony marks the culmination of a fourteen year process carried out by Baha’is around the world who laboured tirelessly to bring to fruition the vision to have a House of Worship on every continent. Live coverage of the events was streamed over the Internet.
Saturday December 5, 2015 saw an insightful and energetic reflection meeting wherein the Baha’i community reflected on its collective activities over the last several months. We were happy to see roughly 30 people in attendance. Presentations were given by the Area Teaching Committee and each of the Institute Coordinators regarding the state of the community and some goals for the upcoming cycle (December 2015-March 2016).
After this presentation, everyone brainstormed some ideas for the expansion phase, a period of two weeks during which the members of the Baha’i community systematically expand their networks of community contacts, inviting them to participate in the core activities. We then divided into two groups to discuss some of these ideas in more detail: one discussed devotionals / firesides, while the other discussed the Institute process (books 1 and 5 and a dedicated teaching project).
Here is a summary of some community events that were decided upon:
- Devotionals will be held each night of the planning week somewhere in London (Dec 7th to 12th).
- A Book 3 intensive will be held on Sunday December 13th at the Glabush residence
- A Book 5 campaign will occur from December 28th to January 2nd as part of a junior youth campaign (Mountain Unmoved)
- A Book 1 intensive will be held on Dec 19th and 20th in preparation for the junior youth campaign
- A dedicated teaching project will occur from December 19th to December 22nd
- At least one Fireside will be held each Friday, Saturday and Sunday night somewhere in London during the expansion phase
- The planning week will occur from Dec 7th to Dec 12th The expansion phase will occur for the following two weeks (Dec 13th to Dec 27th).
- The consolidation phase will then begin on December 28th.
- The Area Teaching Committee will soon be announcing detailed plans regarding
locations for the upcoming devotionals and firesides.
A big thank you for all of those who attended the Reflection Meeting and offered their suggestions, critiques, and support. A final reminder that, although these are plans made for the community to participate in, individual initiatives are definitely welcome (and please let the Area Teaching Committee know about these, so that we can provide support and help integrate such initiatives with other activities. Kindly contact Rob Haworth – firstname.lastname@example.org).
On July 9, 1850, the Bab, Forerunner of the Baha’i Faith, was martyred at noon in the public square of Tabriz, Iran. The story of the Bab’s short ministry is filled with accounts of the moving steadfastness of the Bab’s follers and their valiant heroism in the face of oppression. Within a few years of announcing His mission, some twenty thousand of the Bab’s followers were killed while thousands more were threatened, harrassed and tortured. Every year at around July 9, Baha’is all around the world solemnly observe the anniversary of the Martyrdom of the Bab, recalling the severity of the punishment wrought upon Him, His patience and longsuffering and the spread of the Baha’i Faith subsequent to His ascension. A special sacred tablet is recited at the time of His martyrdom.
The Baha’i Friends in London have arranged five venues for the observance of the Martyrdom of the Bab which falls on July 10th this year. Please contact the Baha’is at email@example.com for further information.
The ‘Creating a New Mind’ series of interactive talks continues on Saturday June 27, 2015 at 10:00 am in the Stevenson Hunt room at the London Public Library downtown location. Dr. Paul Parsons will share his perspective and facilitate an interactive discussion on Science and God. All are welcome to attend. Admission is free.
One of the principles of the Bahá’í teachings is the harmony of science and religion. Religion must be in accord with science and reason. If it does not correspond with scientific principles and the processes of reason, it is superstition. The antithesis of knowledge is ignorance, andthe child of ignorance is superstition.God has endowed us with faculties by which we may comprehend the realities of things, contemplate reality itself. If religion is opposed to reason and science, faith is impossible; and when faith and confidence in the divine religion are not manifest in the heart, there can be no spiritual attainment.
Unquestionably there must be agreement between true religion and science. Religion must stand the analysis of reason. It must agree with scientific fact and proof so that science will sanction religion and religion fortify science. Both are indissolubly welded and joined in reality.
Paul Parsons is currently a research scientist at IBM Canada and a postdoctoral fellow at Western University. He received his Ph.D. from Western University in 2013. In August, Paul will join Purdue University as an Assistant Professor. His research focuses on design of interactive technology to support human cognition.
The Baha’i Community of London celebrated the Twelfth Day of Ridvan on Friday, May 1, 2015 at 7:30pm at the Thames Valley District School Board.
The Baha’i Community of London recently celebrated the First Day of Ridvan on Tuesday, April 21, 2015. The Ridvan Festival which begins on April 21 and corresponds with the declaration of Baha’u’llah as a Manifestation of God, is celebrated for a period of twelve days each year. The ninth and twelfth days of Ridvan are also observed as Holy Days in the Baha’i Community. On the Ninth Day of Ridvan, Baha’u’llah spent time with his family preparing for His exile to Constantinople. On the Twelfth Day, Baha’u’llah set out on His exile in the company of family and companions.