Re: 19 Day Feasts

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Posted by jb on November 13, 1999 at 19:39:53:

In Reply to: 19 Day Feasts posted by Carrie Fidance on November 09, 1999 at 19:58:44:

: I am trying to find a source for Shoghi Effendi when he wrote to the National
: Spiritual Assemblies regarding the correct order of holding 19 day Feasts.
: Or any writing of his where he states that the order should be:
: Spiritual portion, general consultation, then social portion. Any ideas???

*The following quotes are excerpts from the Compilation by Universal House of
Justice on Baha'i Meetings and the Nineteen Day Feast.

*The following paraphrase is the closest I could come to finding something from
the Guardian specifically giving the order of the three parts of the feast:

"In a general letter issued to Local Spiritual Assemblies several years
ago, it was pointed out that the Guardian instructs that the Nineteen Day Feast
be held according to the following program: the first part, entirely spiritual
in character, is devoted to readings from Baha'i Sacred Writings; the second
part consists of general consultation on the affairs of the Cause, at which time
the Local Spiritual Assembly reports its activities to the community, asks for
suggestions and consultation, and also delivers messages received from the
Guardian and the National Assembly. The third part is the material feast and
social meeting of all the friends."

(Statement of the N.S.A. of the U.S., Baha'i Procedure, Section One, Sheet 6.)
*If this Baha'i Procedure document is what you need, you might try writing to
the Research Department at: (Since this is quoted in the
compilation by the House of Justice, I'd say it's pretty authoritative.)

*Although this next quote does not specifically "number" the parts of the Feast,
one can imply the that the readings precede the refreshments:

"When they gather in this meeting, all those present must turn their faces
toward the Kingdom of Abha, and from their hearts supplicate, invoke and entreat
toward the lofty throne, beg of God's forgiveness for all shortcomings, read the
teachings and arise to His service.
"Then spread the feast and give refreshments."

('Abdul-Baha - quoted in Baha'i News, No. 33, July 1929, pp.1-2 , from a talk
given at a Nineteen Day Feast in London, England on December 29, 1912. )

*The following quote clearly defines the threefold purpose of the Feast:

"The significance of the Nineteen Day Feast is thus threefold. It is a
gathering of a devotional, social and administrative importance."

(From a letter dated 29 July 1935 written on behalf of Shoghi Effendi to the
N.S.A. of the U.S and Canada.)

*This quote clearly states that the devotional part of the Feast should come
before the administrative part:

"Ěthe devotional part of the FeastĚprecedes the administrative - or
consultative - aspect of the the 19 Day Feast."

(From a letter dated 11 Abril 1949 written on behalf of Shoghi Effendi to the
N.S.A. of the United States.)

*Hope this helps,
- jb

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