Baha'i News -- Newsletter of the Bahá'í Community in Northern Ireland
CommuNIqué - Newsletter of the Bahá'í Community in Northern Ireland
Issue 73 - 12 Asmá 159 - 1 September 2002 CE
Youth Arts Day at the Dreen - Cullybackey - 30th July
What a wonderful day! About thirty gathered for mixed activities - music, singing, abstract art, juggling and Tai Chi.
The very special surroundings of the Dreen made the day extra special. The 'craic' was ninety and food exceptional. There
was a rumour that it might happen every three months. The juggling was, of course, led by John Twiname - keeping five balls
in the air! The art constructions were eagerly attended and everyone had a go at the Tai Chi. Arts seem to be firmly on
IT PAYS TO STAND UP FOR THE FAITH
Like many other groups the Bahá'í community in Londonderry has been bombarded with equality consultation
documents, requests for views on specific subjects and so on. The Derry City Council has been a regular sender and
helpfully it always includes a response form with sections the consultee can simply tick. The Spiritual Assembly has
responded to these but was not happy that in the standard section relating to the impact of equality legislation on
religious groups a number of faith communities were listed as examples, but not the Bahá'ís. The Assembly
decided to write to the City Council to point out that if equality is the issue then the Bahá'ís really
should be listed, especially as they included religions with fewer followers in the district. We are happy to say that the
Council has taken the point and the standard consultation documents (which go to many organisations in the city) now include
us in the list of examples of religions.
A Full Page in Derry
The Londonderry Sentinel of 7 August carried a photograph and interview with Dr Iain Palin that covered almost a
full page. It was one of a regular series called "Backchat" in which the paper asks local people of note or
interest about various things that concern them. Iain was able to mention the Faith as an inspiring force for him and to
convey something about it.
Waterford Summer School 2002 - A Great Success!
Nearly five hundred people from a wide variety of countries gathered at Waterford from 11th-18th August. A new School
Board had been appointed and a new-style intensive programme was introduced for the first time. There was something for
everyone and practically no one did not attend some kind of session. Parallel to the main programme, based on the
Kitáb-i-Iqán, was a week long session of the Association for Bahá'í Studies-called the
ABS-Scholarship Academy Programme. This new innovation had a number of International speakers including Moojan Momen,
Stephen Lambden, Todd Lawson from Canada and Sheila and Amin Banani. Mr Banani's father was Musa Banani-named the 'Conqueror
of Africa', Hand of the |Cause of God, who died in 1971. Both Amin and his wife had met the Beloved Guardian and gave moving
accounts of these meetings. The programme for Youth, Junior Youth and children was well executed and very hard work as there
were some 200 youth and children present at the school. The swimming pool is now covered over and the children enjoyed daily
plunges in the pool. Arts and activities were given a high priority and the entertainments in the evening brought out the
'aul Irish craic'!
There was a goal of raising 9000 for an International Collaboration Project set by the House of Justice. The majority
of this was achieved. The last session on Sunday morning was extremely moving and no one wanted to leave-a circle was formed
and songs sung. Mr. Banani reminded us that it was almost 150 years since Bahá'u'lláh was in the depths of the
Siyah Chal-and He would have been joyful to look into the future and see this gathering in Waterford, loving and united.
THE FEAST of ASMA'
Names of the Holy Ones,
Those who have suffered to be close to God
Those who have broadcast the name of Baha'u'llah
In cities and villages near and abroad
Asma' means 'Names'
Names of the saintly ones
Those who have stood strong against all odds
Those who endured insults and tortures,
Exile and prison have been their rewards
Names of these martyrs will live forever
Names of these followers are written in stone,
Baha'u'llah has welcomed them to His Kingdom
Their names in Heaven are forever known
MARTYRDOM of THE BÁB
He is the Báb
Mentor of Mulla Hussein,
He is The Gate
Who opened the way for all men.
He is The Báb
Who faced such hatred and scorn
He is the One
Who announced a New Age was born
He is The Báb
Whose life they could not end,
Ten thousand soldiers -
And still he would not bend
He is The Gate
And we remember Him today
Because of His sacrifice
Bahá'u'lláh leads the way.
©Copyright 2002, Regional Baha'i Council for Northern Ireland
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