Continuing the Legacy
Wednesday, April 11, 2012 will mark the 100th anniversary of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá’s arrival to the American continent. The beloved Guardian had this to say about the Master’s journey:
“A most significant scene in a century-old drama had been enacted. A glorious chapter in the history of the first Bahá’í century had been written. Seeds of undreamt-of potentialities had, with the hand of the Center of the Covenant Himself, been sown in some of the fertile fields of the Western world.”
In addition to unifying the hearts of the believers during his trip, ‘Abdu’l-Bahá also laid the cornerstone for the Bahá’í House of Worship in Wilmette, Illinois. Now approximately a century later the restoration of the Bahá’í House of Worship nears completion and with the construction of the New Visitor’s Center on the horizon, let us remember that according to ‘Abdu’l-Bahá this is not where the process ends. Each Bahá’í House of Worship around the globe serves as the central edifice of the Mashriqu’l-Adhkárs, which in the fullness of time will not only serve as places of worship, but will also offer social services to the general public that will “afford relief to the suffering, sustenance to the poor, shelter to the wayfarer, solace to the bereaved, and education to the ignorant.” Such developments are admittedly several generations from coming to fruition, but it is important to keep in mind that your contributions to the National Fund do not constitute an investment in the status quo. Every dollar and every cent contributed constitutes the lifeblood fueling the many vital initiatives that the National Spiritual Assembly and the Regional Bahá’í Councils are bringing to bear on the spiritual life of the Bahá’í community.
If we raise our vision, we can see that the lifeblood of the Cause, the Fund, represents in the past, present, and future the material foundation needed to create a spiritual civilization “the like of which mortal eyes have never witnessed.” Our present contributions to the various Bahá’í Funds enhance our ability to influence the processes leading to world peace and bring attention to the plight of our sisters and brothers in the Cradle of the Faith. In addition, your contributions also help to support Regional Training Institutes, which play a central role in ensuring that hundreds of clusters around the country reach the level of “sustained large-scale expansion and consolidation”.
As we reflect on the spiritual significance of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá’s historic journey, may we also recall how He embodied the spirit of sacrifice which He says is “the realm of dying to the self, that the radiance of the living God may then shine forth.” During this important time in our Faith, let us reflect on the sacrifices we can make to support the “society-building power” latent in our beloved Cause and how the material resources provided by individuals and institutions will allow this latent power to manifest in all its splendor, bringing the light of a new day into a darkening world.
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