Baha'i News -- Sunfest founder Caxaj receives Baha'i honour Wednesday, March 20, 2002

Sunfest founder Caxaj receives Baha'i honour

By JOE MATYAS, London Free Press

A cultural group begun by a political refugee from Guatemala will be honoured tonight for contributing to racial unity in London.

Sunfest, the world music festival started eight years ago by Alfredo Caxaj, will receive the award at the Baha'i spiritual assembly's new year celebration at Centennial Hall.

"The unity of humanity is one of the three central principles of the Baha'i faith and Sunfest's contribution to that ideal stands out in London," said Bob Andrighetti, the assembly's spokesperson.

Caxaj will receive the award on behalf of Sunfest, then perform with his Latin dance band.

Caxaj came to London in the 1980s as a political refugee after two of his brothers, both teachers, were murdered because of their human rights activities in their homeland.

Naw-Ruz, the new year, is the most important social event of the year for Baha'is and about 300 people are expected for the festive occasion, following 19 days of fasting.

About five million people in 188 countries around the world subscribe to the Baha'i faith, which was started as a reformist movement in Islamic Iran in the 1840s.

Bahais believe in the unity of God, humanity and religion.

©Copyright 2002, The London Free Press

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