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Harry Randall, the brother of Loulie Mathews, was a man of wealth and affairs. He
had been a classmate of Harlan Ober at Harvard and so, when Harlan learned of the
Faith and became a Baha'i, he very soon gave the Message to Harry, only to discover
that, busy and occupied as he was with his manifold affairs, Harry Randall's interest went
no farther than a polite and courteous response, which was far from satisfactory
to Harlan. He persisted in trying to interest Harry further and when Abdu'l-Baha
was to come to Boston, Harlan grew more and more pressing: Harry must go to hear Abdu'l-Baha speak; Harry must meet Him; Harry really owed it to himself not to miss this wonderful opportunity. Finally, Harry still uninterested, but courteously anxious to please
this eager friend of his, agreed to go with Harlan to hear Abdu'l-Baha.
Ruth - Harry's wife would not be able to go with him since she was a semi invalid,
in and out of sanitariums for tuberculosis a great part of the time. Just then she
had come home from one of these hospitals but she was far too frail to do anything
but rest quietly at home.
Harlan and Harry Randall went to the meeting together and after it was over, Harlan
insisted upon taking Harry to meet Abdu'l-Baha. Harry. still uninterested but always
courteous, did as Harlan wished, and what was his astonishment when Abdu'l-Baha
warmly accepted an invitation to have tea the following afternoon at Harry's home! An invitation Harry had in no way extended. Appalled, Harry asked Harlan what on earth he should
do about it? Harlan said. "Give a tea for Him what else can you do?" "But how can I? Ruth is ill. I'm busy. How on earth - ?" Harlan laughed, "You don't know Abdu'l-Baha or you'd know there's some sort of reason for this, and it'll get done. You have a houseful of servants - let them brew a cup of tea for the Master and invite a few friends in to share it." So this is what Harry did and the next afternoon when Abdu'l-Baha arrived at the lovely suburban home he found quite a group of people assembled on a wide verandah to receive Him. Ruth Randall, delicate and lovely, was also there, seated in a far corner where she might be safe from any draft. And it was to her, ignoring all the others, that Abdu'l-Baha strode, His white aba billowing with the swiftness of His tread; His beautiful eyes filled with light and love. Reaching her He bent above her, murmuring "My daughter My dear daughter" and lovingly He rested His hands on her shoulders Then He turned and, smilingly, met all the other guests.
The following day, Ruth had an appointment with her doctor, who had examined her the
previous week and had said that it might be necessary for her to return to the sanitarium
for further treatment. He would be sure after he had seen her again. Ruth went to this appointment fearfully she was so longing to remain at home, so very reluctant
to be sent again to the hospital. The doctor examined her - and was amazed. What
had she been doing? What could have happened to her? She was healed. There was not
the least trace left of the tuberculosis. Of course, this was an experience that neither
Harry nor Ruth could ignore, so it was the beginning of their long and glorious
life-time of teaching and serving the Cause they came to love so well.
Told to me by Harlan Ober
at Green Acre Summer 1934
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