Saturday, January 10, 2009

Post-conference summary by U.K. National Assembly

National Spiritual Assembly of the Bahá'ís of the United Kingdom

5 January 2009

Dearly loved Friends

Some 3,200 Bahá'ís and close friends of the Faith drawn from Denmark, Finland, Greenland, Iceland, the Republic of Ireland, Norway, Sweden and the United Kingdom and lands beyond came together to celebrate the achievements of the Plan thus far and to contemplate the immediate needs of the region.
Their understanding of the processes of growth and of the role that each and every one of them can play in advancing the work of the Cause at this time were incalculably enhanced by the wealth of guidance and penetrating insights shared by the representatives of the Universal House of Justice to the conference, members of the International Teaching Centre Ms Uransaikhan Baatar and Mr Stephen Birkland. In addition, six members of the European Board of Counsellors were also in attendance: Mrs Uta von Both, Mrs Vivien Craig, Dr Shirin Fozdar-Foroudi, Mrs Saba Khabirpour, Mrs Firouzeh Moghbel-Naderi and Mr Hannu Tapani Olkkonen.

Stirred by the call raised in the House of Justice's message to the conference to launch at least 6 intensive programmes of growth by Ridván 2009, the friends in attendance were assisted in planning how to achieve this goal by the lessons shared by representatives of some of the most advanced clusters in the region.

The fruit of the planning process, conducted in a spirit of joy and characterised by a striking unity of thought and purpose, was a keen determination by the friends in 6 clusters to launch intensive programmes of growth by Ridván 2009 and a further 8 by the Birth of Bahá'u'lláh this year. Of these, 10 are in the United Kingdom, and 1 each in Denmark, Finland, Norway and the Republic of Ireland. At the time of writing when not all the pledges from those in attendance have been counted, some 19 believers in the region offered to homefront pioneer and, in addition, some 126 friends from seedbed clusters have offered their services as mobile tutors and 144 as travel teachers so that the identified clusters may launch their intensive programmes of growth. Those who could not do even this said they would help by offering regular prayers and financial support.

The friends attending this unprecedented gathering have risen to new levels of understanding of their sacred mission and confidence in what they can achieve for the Cause. Countless participants expressed how humbled and deeply moved they felt for having been extended an invitation by the Head of their Faith to this extraordinary gathering. There was a spirit of inclusiveness and a very real sense of unity tangible throughout the sweet moments of this blessed event.

To the Universal House of Justice then goes our eternal gratitude for allowing us to be part of an experience that we shall never forget.

With loving Baha'i greetings


Kishan Manocha


(Posted to subscribers of the UK BAHA'I NEWS EMAIL SERVICE. Emphasis added.)

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