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 the map.
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'
Asma' means 'Names'
Names of these martyrs will live forever
MARTYRDOM of THE BÁB
He is the Báb
He is The Báb
He is The Báb
He is The Gate
©Copyright 2002, Regional Baha'i Council for Northern Ireland