The National Spiritual Assembly of the Bahá'ís of the United States
Very Dear Bahá'í Friends,
I was so happy to note in the May 17, 1998 issue of "The American Bahá'í" the results and activities associated with the National Teaching Plan and the broadcasts of the video "The Power of Race Unity", which is being so widely shown across the country. I think that this is a landmark in the proclamation of the Bahá'í Faith on the American continent and am so happy that I can be a witness to such inspiring developments in the spread of our beloved Faith. After all, the American and Canadian (originally one national community) Bahá'í communities have been, ever since the lifetime of `Abdu'l-Bahá, not only outstanding promoters of the spread of the Faith but instrumental in the development of the Administrative Order, and it is only right and befitting that they should have such victories as are now taking place. When we remember how truly extraordinary have been the bounties of God bestowed upon the American continent since the early days of our Faith, we must surely thank God that old believers such as myself have lived to see with our own eyes such prestige and triumphs that our beloved Faith is increasingly winning all over the world.
I hope that the American Bahá'ís, particularly those who have recently enrolled under the Banner of Bahá'u'lláh, will be made aware of their spiritual heritage and that each and every one of them is privileged to arise, teach the Faith and increase the image of the Bahá'í community, wherever it may be, in the eyes of a public that, world-wide, is increasingly aware of what is going on in other countries and areas. To me it is very important that the National Body should shower a great deal of encouragement on the new Bahá'ís, and on the importance of enrolling new Bahá'ís in the Faith. As the Blessed Beauty says in the Hidden Words: "Seize thy chance, for it will come to thee no more." How much must these words be taken to heart and acted upon by such an outstanding and distinguished community as that of the believers in North America.
In my long privilege of being a Bahá'í I sometimes think we get too fussy about the concept of "entry by troops". After all, anybody that knows English should understand what that means. It is not a minute sifting process; it is a gigantic enrolment process. Bahá'u'lláh did not appear for the privileged few and their relatives; He appeared for the entire human race, who are truly all the children of God and have a right to hear about the Faith and to embrace and serve it.
The rapid development of the terraces on Mt. Carmel approaching and above the Shrine of the Báb becomes more impressive as the months go by. We do not have to publicize anything, so to speak; the "publicizing" is all there in front of the eyes of anybody that visits Haifa. Incidentally, I hope that the Bahá'ís profit by the video tapes and photographs showing the development on Mt. Carmel of the World Centre of the Bahá'í Faith by sharing them more with the general public through meetings, publications, etc.
The services of the American believers all over the world and the guidance and the stimulation provided by the National Spiritual Assembly are a source of great pride to me, and I hope that the National Assembly will continually encourage the Bahá'ís to bring into the Faith more followers of Bahá'u'lláh, and that what you might almost call "primacy in the mass spread of the Faith all over the world", which the American Bahá'ís have had for so long, may ever be maintained and their achievements and eminence in service ever increase.
With warmest Bahá'í love,