ALERT: 7 Bahá’ís in Iran facing 20 years in prison
||The seven, known as the the "Yaran" – or "Friends" – were arrested in 2008, all members of a national-level group that helped to see to the minimum needs of Iran's 300,000-member Bahá’í community. Their trial consisted of six brief court appearances between 12 January and 14 June; during which time they were allowed only 1 hours access to their lawyer. Originally sentenced to 20 years in prison, it was reduced briefly to 10; as of 30 March 2011 it remains 20 years. Background, International support
- 15 May 2014 Human rights champions commemorate sixth anniversary of imprisoned Baha'i leaders
- 16 December 2013 Letter to President Rouhani from imprisoned Bahá’ís.
- 29 March 2012 Iran's seven Bahá’í leaders: 10,000 days in prison.
- 15 February 2011 Concern following a transfer to "more brutal sections of the prison complex".
- 9 March 2011 Human rights groups renew support for Iran's seven imprisoned Bahá’í leaders.
- 30 March 2011 Original 20-year sentences have been reinstated following a brief reduction to 10.
The Nineteen Day Feasts
are regular community gatherings, occurring on the first day of each month of the Bahá’í calendar
(and so most often nineteen days apart from each other). The Nineteen Day Feast serves to increase the unity of the community, and spiritually uplift the community members by having a devotional program, where readings and prayers from the Bahá’í holy writings are shared, and a social program where community members can socialize. The third part of a Feast is the administrative portion, which is a critical arena for democratic expression within a Bahá’í Community. Therefore, the administrative portion is limited to Bahá’ís. Bahá’ís from other communities may freely attend, though they may not vote on any recommendations that the community may put forward as recommendations to the Local Spiritual Assembly
. Attendance at the Nineteen Day Feast is not obligatory, but is considered and a duty and a privilege for Bahá’ís since it is where they can enter into consultation with the rest of the community.
Today's featured individual
(1844-1914) was a preeminent Iranian Bahá’í
scholar and author, who also contributed a great deal to the advance of the Bahá’í Faith in Turkmenistan
, and the United States
. Mirza Abu'l-Fadl was born in a village near Gulpaygan, central Iran between June-July in 1844. His given name was Muhammad and he chose for himself the epithet Abu'l-Fadl (progenitor of virtue), but ‘Abdu’l-Bahá
frequently addressed him as Abu'l-Fada'il (progenitor of virtues). While he was living in Tehran, he had several encounters with Bahá’ís, starting in about the beginning of 1876. On one occasion he was astonished at the perceptiveness of an illiterate farrier whom he was told was a Bahá’í, and after word soon spread of his conversion and he was dismissed from his post at the religious college.
True liberty consisteth in man's submission unto My commandments, little as ye know it. Were men to observe that which We have sent down unto them from the Heaven of Revelation, they would, of a certainty, attain unto perfect liberty.
, Gleanings from the Writings of Bahá’u’lláh
Stories told by ‘Abdu’l-Bahá
are an introduction to living a spiritual life pleasing to the Creator of all humankind. Gleaned from the written record of stories told over a period of many years by ‘Abdu’l-Bahá
, they provide life changing perceptions of spiritual realities that often escape the modern mind.