Celebrations have now encircled the globe

October 30, 2019

BAHA'I WORLD CENTRE — Activities and celebrations honoring the 200th anniversary of the birth of the Bab are multiplying rapidly since sunset in Kiribati on Monday. As sunset on the 28th occurred in place after place, moving westward across the entire globe, it initiated a period of celebrations in every land.

Reports from around the world reflect a diverse range of activities for the bicentenary, including profound conversations, prayer and meditation, visits to the homes of friends and family, artistic expressions, the distribution of booklets and special newsletters, service projects, large parades through city streets, celebrations in family homes and neighborhood centers, national commemorations with dignitaries and societal leaders, and devotional gatherings at Baha’i Houses of Worship.

At the grassroots especially, activities have flourished beyond any expectation. Numerous reports have come in about intimate celebrations in homes, where families share stories and pray together, recounting episodes from the life of the Bab. Similarly, larger community gatherings in neighborhoods and localities, open to all, have occurred across the planet. Many celebrations have screened the film Dawn of the Light, and attendees have studied the October 2019 message of the Universal House of Justice written for the occasion of the bicentenary.

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A celebration at a high school in Gwalior, India

In several instances, where communities faced natural disasters or acute social upheaval, Baha’i communities have responded by turning their energies toward alleviating in some way the suffering of their fellow inhabitants and drawing on the inspiring life of the Bab to bring hope.

The flourishing of activities witnessed over the past day reflects a growing capacity in recent years within the Baha’i community to build new patterns of community life, in which service, collective worship, collaboration, mutual respect and collective learning, have come to characterize interactions among families, neighbors, and friends.

During this bicentenary period, people throughout the world are finding a source of inspiration and hope in remembrance of the figure of the Bab, gentle and kind in His disposition yet courageous and indomitable in the face of oppression and injustice.

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A service project in Ebreichsdorf, Austria
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A celebration with devotions held at the Temple site in Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea