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from the chronology of Canada

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1912. 31 Aug (Saturday) His first act in the morning was to heal the sick child of a neighbouring family, the Birks. The nine year old had been an invalid all her life. Caressingly He laid His hands on her head and shoulders and then told the family that she must go out every day, in the middle of the day, on the ground, and that in time she would be entirely healed. Nine months later, she was perfectly healthy and strong. On leaving their home He went directly to their store and bought a number of watches and rings which He used as gifts on the rest of His trip. [ABC53]
  • In the morning the pastor of the Unitarian Church came with several others to visit 'Abdu'l-Bahá. The Master discussed the elimination of religious superstitions and prejudices which are contrary to science and commons sense and which are obstacles to the attainment of the foundation of truth of the divine religions. [MD227]
  • He granted an interview with a newspaper reporter. His questions were about His life and the history of the cause. [MD228]
  • In the afternoon, at the invitation of Mr. Maxwell, 'Abdu'l-Bahá went for a ride in the carriage. His comment, when He saw the college buildings was:
    "As only material education is imparted and only natural philosophy is taught, these universities do not produce highly talented scholars. When both the natural and divine philosophies are expounded, they will bring forth outstanding souls and evince great advancement. The reason for the success of the Greek schools was that they combined both natural and diving philosophies". [MD228]
  • They visited the Roman Catholic Cathedral of Notre Dame. He gazed at the vast cathedral, its ornamentation and numerous statues and spoke of its grandeur and embellishments. Standing in an open sped at the entrance, He said:
    "Behold what eleven disciples of Christ have accomplished, how they sacrificed themselves! I exhort you to walk in their footsteps. When a person is detached, he is capable of revolutionizing the whole world. The disciples of Christ met together in consultation on top of a mountain. They pledged themselves to undergo all manner of hardships, to accept every affliction as a bounty and to consider all difficulties easy to overcome. 'He who is tied to a family, let him arrange to leave it; he who is not should remain single. He should forgo his comfort and his life'. Consulting thus, they descended from the mountain and each on went a different way and never returned. It is for this reason that they were able to leave behind such achievements. After Christ, the disciples truly forgot themselves, and not merely in word." [MD228-229]
  • In the evening there was a well-attended meeting at 'Abdu'l-Bahá's residence and following the talk many requested private interviews. Among those was the president of the socialist organization who invited the Master to speak to his group. [MD230]
  • Among those who came was the Reverend F.J. Griffin, the minister of the Church of the Messiah, Unitarian, who was to introduce Him to his congregation on the following morning. 'Abdu'l-Bahá presented him with an armful of American Beauty roses. [ABC57]
  • The list of those attending this first reception included: Martha McBean, a cousin of Sutherland Maxwell, someone who shared with him the distinction of being one of the two first declared believers of Canadian birth, Mrs V S Pomeroy with her daughters, Mary and Elise and Elizabeth Cowles, Miss Anne Savage (librarian), Mrs George S Thompson, Percy Woodcock, Prof Armstrong (McGill University), Dr Carmichael, Dr Johnson, Mr Wright, Mr John Lewis (editor of the Montreal Daily Star) and Mr Archie Eddington and his wife. [Excerpts from the account of Amine De Mille from ABC55-57]
  • Attending as well were the two children of the Maxwell household Mary Maxwell and Eddie Elliot, the mother of a servant. He would later become a member of the Montreal Local Assembly and was the only member of his race to become a Bahá'í in Montreal in his lifetime. [Excerpts from the account of Amine De Mille from ABC55-57]
  • Montreal, QC Abdul-Baha, Second Western tour; Maxwell residence; Montreal Shrine; Reverend F.J. Griffin; Martha McBean; Eddie Elliot;
    1927 (In the year) The formation of a Bahá'í Youth Group in Montreal, perhaps the first in the Western World. [OBCC78, 85]
  • Some of the members were: Mary Maxwell, George Spendlove, Rowland Estall, Emeric Sala, Mary Gillis, (later Rosemary Sala), Teddy Edwards Alizade, Norman McGregor, Judie Russell Blakely, Dorothy and Glen Wade, Edward Dewing, Gerrard Sluter, David Hofman, Rena Gordon and Eddie Elliot.
  • The Bahá'í youth group was a social club organized by Ruhiyyih Khanum called the "Fratority Club." By this word, Ruhiyyih Khanum meant to put together the words "fraternity" and "sorority" and had invited to belong to it people, mostly young students at McGill, who would otherwise not have been able to find membership in the exclusive fraternities and sororities around the campus. [Black Roses in Canada's Mosaic: Four Decades of Black History by Will C. van den Hoonaard and Lynn Echevarria-Howe]
  • When advised of the formation of this group Shoghi Effendi replied, in part
      ...I urge them to study profoundly the revealed utterances of Bahá'u'lláh and the discourses of Àbdu'l-Bahá and not to rely unduly on the representations and interpretation of the Teaching given by the Bahá'í speakers and teachers. [MtC30-31]
  • A Bahá'í youth group had been started in California in 1912, but the Montreal group was the first in North America to systematically study the Teachings—an exercise that had a long—lasting influence on the development and growth of the Bahá'í community in Canada and elsewhere. Members of the group would later distinguish themselves as some of the best-known teachers, administrators, pioneers, and writers of the Bahá'í Faith. [BWM46]
  • Montreal, QC Youth Group; George Spendlove; Rowland Estall; Emeric Sala; Rosemary Sala; Teddy Edwards Alizade; Norman McGregor; Judie Blakely; Russell Blakely; Dorothy Wade; Glen Wade; Edward Dewing; Gerrard Sluter; David Hofman; Rena Gordon; Eddie Elliot
    1929. 25 Dec Willard and Doris McKay , then living in Geneva, NY, arrived in Montreal, the last stop on their first major teaching trip. They had visited Philadelphia, Washington, DC, Baltimore, Boston, Portsmouth, NH before arriving in Montreal by train.
  • They were guests of the Maxwells for a week and spoke seven times during their visit.
  • During their time there they were dinner guest of Ernest Harrison and his family. Years later Ernest, then separated from his wife, would be a pioneer to Prince Edward Island.
  • They met Mary's "Youth Group", the second formed in North America and the first to be dedicated to a deeper understanding of the Writings. Many were students at McGill where Mary was taking special classes and others were Eddie Elliot, an electrician who had been raised in the Maxwell house (son of the maid), Emeric Sala, Roland Estall, Rosemary Gillis (later Rosemary Sala).
  • During their time there they slept in the bed of 'Abdu'l-Bahá that May covered with "the Robe of Bounty". It was a gown that had belonged to the Greatest Holy Leaf and had been given to Lua Getsinger and Lua had given it to May. [FMH97-102]
  • Montreal, QC Willard McKay; Doris McKay; travel teaching; Gifts; Eddie Elliot; Emeric Sala; Roland Estall; Rosemary Sala; Youth Group
    1948 Ridván The following were elected to the Spiritual Assembly of the Bahá'ís of Montréal: Siegfried Schopflocher, Gwen Inwood, Arthur Irwin, Milli Tina Gordon, Eddie Elliot, Adline Lohse, Bert Rakovsky; Amine De Mille; and René Roy. [OBCC146, 153] Montreal, QC Local Spiritual Assembly, election; Siegfried Schopflocher; Gwen Inwood; Arthur Irwin; Milli Tina Gordon; Eddie Elliot; Adline Lohse; Bert Rakovsky; Amine De Mille; René Roy
    1953 29 Mar The funeral for Hand of the Cause Sutherland Maxwell was chaired by John Robarts, the then chairman of the National Spiritual Assembly.
  • Mr. Eddie Elliott, member of the Spiritual Assembly of Montreal and son of a former servant in the Maxwell household sang the spiritual "Steal Away".
  • Mr Rowland Estall, the vice-chairman of the National Spiritual Assembly read some Writings and then delivered the eulogy.
  • A cable that had just arrived from the Guardian announced that the southern door of the Tomb of the Báb would be named after him.
  • Mr. Estall read the Prayer for the Departed.
  • Mr Horace Holley, secretary of the National spiritual assembly of the Bahá'ís of the United states and Mr Fred Schopflocher, a member of the National Spiritual Assembly of the Bahá'ís of Canada, both distinguished Hands of the cause, had the honour to represent the Guardian at the service. Each of them read a prayer at the interment in Mount royal Cemetery. [CBN undated Memorial Issue]
  • Montreal, QC Sutherland Maxwell; John Robarts; Eddie Elliott; Rowland Estall; Horace Holley; Fred Schopflocher
    1953. 10 Jul The accidental death of Eddie Elliot, the first African-Canadian Bahá'í. He was a hydro-line worker and met his death while working on a high-voltage transformer. [CBN No 45 October, 1953 p4]
  • He had grown up in the same household as Mary Maxwell because his mother was employed as a maid and lived in the house.
  • He was a long-time member of the Local Spiritual Assembly and was often called upon to chair. He also maintained his membership in a Christian Church and came to the Faith through Rev Este's church, the Union United Church, the only African Canadian church in Montreal. [OBBC91-92]
  • Only a few months previous to his passing the Guardian had invited him to Haifa and then he continued on to attend the African Intercontinental Teaching Conference in Kampala in February, 1953 as a representative of the National Spiritual Assembly. [CBN No 43Aug 1953 p2; BN No 267 May 1953 p5-7; CBN No 45 October, 1953 p4]
  • Eddie Elliot is considered the first Black Canadian Bahá'í. [MC2p184]
  • Montreal, QC In Memoriam; Eddie Elliott
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