Community and administration

Entries about Baha'i community life, about Baha'i administration, and about how the two intersect.

Baha'i Vietnam community holds second congress

The Religious Spirit Council of the Baha’i Vietnam Community is set to mobilise its members to join hands with followers of other religions nationwide to consolidate the bloc of great national unity.

At its second congress in central Da Nang city on May 1-2, the council encourages its followers to follow the Party’s guidelines and policies, abide by laws and the sect’s charter, and enthusiastically take part in charitable activities to live up to the motto of “living both secular and religious lives well”.

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Baha'i Faith holds second convention in Da Nang

The second national convention of the spiritual council of the Baha’i community was held in the central city of Da Nang on May 1-2, drawing the participation of 200 delegates. 

In March 2007, the Government Committee for Religious Affairs granted an operation license to the Baha’i community in Vietnam. A year later, the committee decided to recognise the Baha’i as a religious sect in Vietnam. To date, the sect has 73 provisional representative boards at grassroots level.

{josquote}The convention set future tasks for the community in 2009-2010, including abiding by its charter, Party guidelines and State law...{/josquote}

The convention set future tasks for the community in 2009-2010, including abiding by its charter, Party guidelines and State law, leading a good evangelical life, actively taking part in charity activities and encouraging its followers to unite and live in harmony with other sects and the entire nation.

It elected a new spiritual council for the new term.

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NSA Elections in North America 2009

2009 National Spiritual Assembly of the Baha'is of the United States

Ridvan ushers in not just a great festival for the Baha’i world but also the annual National Conventions where we get a chance to reflect on the year past, accomplishments and future goals. As well as to elect the 9 members of our national governing bodies. Yes, it is springtime and incumbency is in the air.

With the retirement of Dorothy Nelson, the US NSA was given a rare opportunity to welcome a new member: Ms. Valerie Dana from Colorado. She is an attorney at law and until 2004 she was a director of the Mona Foundation.

Except for this new member, the same 8 incumbents were re-elected and not surprisingly, in almost the same order of votes: Jacqueline Left Hand Bull, David F. Young, Kenneth E. Bowers, Juana C. Conrad, William Roberts, Muin Afnani, Erica Toussaint, Robert C. Henderson

The national convention in Canada had similar results except that two previous members retired, allowing for two new members to be elected. Elizabeth Wright was elected to the NSA of Canada in January 2009 as a result of a by-election caused by the resignation of Fariborz Sahba. From 2004 onward, Mr. Sahba had been a member of the national governing body and acted as the Treasurer.

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Boqueen, the unwilling Baha'i

I find that one of the most enjoyable parts of the average week is a lazy, hung over Saturday afternoon spent at my girlfriend boqueen’s apartment.  While we have developed a regular routine, Saturday mornings are devoid of the tedium of monotony. After I caffeinate myself and suck down a few cigarettes, we shield our bleary eyes with dark sunglasses and pick up lunch.  When we are done with our meal, we clean up any stray beer cans from the prior evening, and spend a few hours at our laptops, usually writing for our respective blogs.

A few weeks ago, as we ventured out to pick up lunch, I noticed a large piece of mail at the entrance of her palace.  The hefty envelope was addressed to boqueen, and the return address indicated that it had been sent by the Chicago Baha’i Center.

The Baha’i faith is the youngest of the major religions and is spreading quite rapidly.  Baha’is can be found in countries and territories across the globe, second to only Christianity.  The Baha’i faith emphasizes the unity of humanity and all religions.

I have spoken with boqueen at great length about religion and spirituality, and the Baha’i faith had never come up, so the packet piqued my interest.  She said that several years ago, she met a friendly southern woman at O’Hare airport. The topic of conversation turned to religion, and the woman explained her Baha’i beliefs.

{josquote}I find it curious that a religion would involuntarily sign up members – it seems like a method for padding the number of faithful in order to appeal to those considering converting to Baha’i.{/josquote}

boqueen told the woman that she agreed with many tenets of the faith – few will take umbrage with concepts such as peace, unity and equality – but she said that she did not feel the need subscribe to a particular faith.

After a long conversation, boqueen exchanged contact information with the woman. They have not been in touch since the airport encounter, but boqueen began receiving mailings from the Baha’is. boqueen ignored and discarded each packet as soon as they arrived.

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The Art of Teaching Heart-to-Heart: A comment

{josquote}The Guardian's wife said, she would never sign that enrollment card that stated, "I will obey [the Baha'i] laws and institutions."{/josquote}

This edifying comment on the question of the need for those accepting the Faith to sign declaration cards was posted by our experienced teacher-friend Richard to the Yahoo! newsgroup "gnats into Eagles" on 19 March. Used with his kind permission.

Alex B

The writings state we should deliver the Message in a simple language addressed to the heart. The writings state we should teach in such a manner that "the seeker should SPONTANEOUSLY be IMPELLED to embrace the Faith."

Over the 48 years I have been a Baha'i I have worked at learning to put these factors into a spiritual context of presenting the Faith.

I have well educated people with good minds just sit and nod in agreement and allow me to enroll them without coments or questions. I felt their mind shut off and they were in a spiritual condition that felt so very right with them.I could see the body language as they leaned forward and some touched my hand. When asked if I could bring them into the Faith they said yes. They never saw the card and when it was present to them for a signature they put their name on it in what seemed such a natural thing to do. Now remember many asked many questions! It happened to different people in different ways.

Our society says, don't trust anyone, don't sign any thing till you ckeck it out with a lawyer.

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