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– 65 –

Interment Beloved Remains

26 December 1939

CHRISTMAS EVE BELOVED REMAINS PUREST BRANCH AND MASTER’S MOTHER LAID IN STATE BÁB’S HOLY TOMB. CHRISTMAS DAY ENTRUSTED CARMEL’S SACRED SOIL. CEREMONY PRESENCE REPRESENTATIVES NEAR EASTERN BELIEVERS PROFOUNDLY MOVING. IMPELLED ASSOCIATE AMERICA’S MOMENTOUS SEVEN-YEAR ENTERPRISE IMPERISHABLE MEMORY THESE TWO HOLY SOULS WHO NEXT TWIN FOUNDERS FAITH AND PERFECT EXEMPLAR TOWER TOGETHER WITH GREATEST HOLY LEAF ABOVE ENTIRE CONCOURSE FAITHFUL. REJOICE PRIVILEGE PLEDGE THOUSAND POUNDS MY CONTRIBUTION BAHÍYYIH KHÁNUM FUND DESIGNED INAUGURATION FINAL DRIVE ENSURE PLACING CONTRACT NEXT APRIL LAST REMAINING STAGE CONSTRUCTION MASHRIQU’L-ADHKÁR. TIME PRESSING OPPORTUNITY PRICELESS POTENT AID PROVIDENTIALLY PROMISED UNFAILING.

– 66 –

The Seal of Complete Triumph

30 December 1939

The association of the first Mashriqu’l-Adhkár of the West with the hallowed memories of the Purest Branch and of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá’s mother, recently reinterred under the shadow of the Báb’s holy Shrine, inaugurates a new, and at long last the final, phase of an enterprise which, thirty years ago, was providentially launched on the very day the remains of the Forerunner of our Faith were laid to rest by our beloved Master in the sepulcher specifically erected for that purpose on Mount Carmel.45 The birth of this holy enterprise, pregnant with such rich, such infinite possibilities, synchronized with, and was consecrated through, this historic event which, as ‘Abdu’l-Bahá Himself has affirmed, constitutes the most signal act of the triple mission He had been prompted to perform. The site of the Temple itself was honored by the presence of Him Who, ever since this enterprise was initiated, had, through His messages and Tablets, bestowed upon it His special attention and care, and surrounded it with the marks of His unfailing solicitude. Its foundation-stone was laid by His own loving hands, on an occasion so moving that it has come to be regarded as one of the most stirring episodes of His historic visit to the North American continent.46 Its superstructure was raised as a direct consequence of the pent-up energies which surged from the breasts of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá’s lovers at a time when His sudden removal from their midst had plunged them into consternation, bewilderment and sorrow. Its external ornamentation was initiated and accelerated through the energizing influences which the rising and continually consolidating institutions of a divinely established Administrative Order had released in the midst of a community that had identified its vital interests with that Temple’s destiny. The measures devised to hasten its completion were incorporated in a Plan which derives its inspiration from those destiny-shaping Tablets wherein, in bold relief, stands outlined the world mission entrusted by their Author to the American Bahá’í community. And finally, the Fund, designed to receive and dispose of the resources amassed for its prosecution, was linked with the memory, and bore the name, of her whose ebbing life was brightened and cheered by those tidings that unmistakably revealed to her the depth of devotion and the tenacity of purpose which animate the American believers in the cause of their beloved Temple. And now, while the Bahá’í world vibrates with emotion at the news of the transfer of the precious remains of both the Purest Branch and of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá’s mother to a spot which, watched over by the Twin holy Shrines and in the close neighborhood of the resting-place of the Greatest Holy Leaf, is to become the focus of the administrative institutions of the Faith at its world center, the mere act of linking the destiny of so far-reaching an undertaking with so significant an event in the Formative Period of our Faith will assuredly set the seal of complete triumph upon, and enhance the spiritual potentialities of, a work so significantly started and so magnificently executed by the followers of Bahá’u’lláh in the North American continent.

The Plan which your Assembly has suggested to raise the sum of fifty thousand dollars by next April, which will enable you to place the necessary contract for the final completion of the entire First Story of the Mashriqu’l-Adhkár, meets with my unqualified approval. It was specially in order to initiate and encourage the progress of such a plan that I felt impelled to pledge the sum of one thousand pounds in the memory of these two glorious souls who, apart from the Founders of our Faith and its Exemplar, tower, together with the Greatest Holy Leaf, above the rank and file of the faithful.

The interval separating us from that date is admittedly short. The explosive forces which lie dormant in the international field may, ere the expiry of these fleeting months, break out in an eruption that may prove the most fateful that mankind has experienced. It is within the power of the organized body of the American believers to further demonstrate the imperturbability of their faith, the serenity of their confidence and the unyielding tenacity of their resolve.

We stand at the threshold of the decade within which the centenary of the birth of our Faith is to be celebrated. Scarcely more than four years stand between us and that glorious consummation. No community, no individual, neither in the East nor in the West, however afflictive the circumstances that now prevail, can afford to hesitate or falter. The few years immediately ahead are endowed with potencies that we can but dimly appreciate. Ours is the duty and privilege to utilize to the full the opportunities which these fate-laden years offer us. The American Bahá’í community, already responsible, over such a long period, for such heroic acts, under such severe handicaps, cannot and will not hesitate or falter. The past is a witness of their splendid triumphs. The future will be no less a witness of their final victory.

– 67 –

Dual, Vitally Urgent Obligation

18 January 1940

URGE ASSEMBLY FOCUS ATTENTION FORTHCOMING MEETING DUAL VITALLY URGENT OBLIGATION CONSERVATION VIGOR SPIRITUAL HEALTH COMMUNITY AND INTENSIFICATION EFFORT AIMING REALIZATION RECENTLY APPROVED TEMPLE PLAN. SLEEPLESS VIGILANCE WARD OFF SUBTLE ATTACKS ENEMIES FIRST PREREQUISITE SOUND UNFOLDMENT PROCESSES ENTERPRISE ALREADY OPERATING. FATEFUL FORTIES PREGNANT WEAL WOE USHERED IN. AMERICAN BELIEVERS ENTER THEM FIRMLY ROOTED FERTILE SOIL ADMINISTRATIVE ORDER BOUNTIFULLY NOURISHED VITAL SAP ANIMATING ITS INSTITUTIONS SPREADING ITS SHELTERING SHADOW FARTHEST CORNERS WESTERN HEMISPHERE. CENTENARY BIRTH FAITH APPROACHING. VICTORIES UNSUSPECTED WITHIN REACH COMMUNITY. SOONER ACHIEVED SHARPER CONTRAST OFFERED DISTRACTING MISERIES AFFLICTING GENERATION FAITH ALONE CAN MUST EVENTUALLY REDEEM.

– 68 –

Dare Greatly, Toil Unremittingly

26 February 1940

CONGRATULATE ALIKE NATIONAL REPRESENTATIVES NEWLY FLEDGED ASSEMBLIES RECENTLY DISPATCHED PIONEERS FRESHLY ENROLLED BELIEVERS ALL CONCURRING COMMON MISSION ENERGIZE PROCESSES PROPELLING PLAN ALONG DESTINED COURSE. APPEAL ONCE AGAIN EVERY PARTICIPANT NOTWITHSTANDING THREATENING TEMPEST STEADILY MAINTAIN HIGH AIM DARE GREATLY TOIL UNREMITTINGLY SACRIFICE WORTHILY ENDURE RADIANTLY UNFLINCHINGLY TILL VERY END. HARVEST TO BE REAPED FOREORDAINED INCALCULABLY RICH EVERLASTINGLY GLORIOUS VISIBLY APPROACHING.

– 69 –

Beloved Handmaid

3 March 1940

‘ABDU’L-BAHÁ’S BELOVED HANDMAID DISTINGUISHED DISCIPLE MAY MAXWELL GATHERED GLORY ABHÁ KINGDOM. HER EARTHLY LIFE SO RICH EVENTFUL INCOMPARABLY BLESSED WORTHILY ENDED. TO SACRED TIE HER SIGNAL SERVICES HAD FORGED PRICELESS HONOR MARTYR’S DEATH. DOUBLE CROWN DESERVEDLY WON. SEVEN YEAR PLAN PARTICULARLY SOUTH AMERICAN CAMPAIGN DERIVE FRESH IMPETUS EXAMPLE HER GLORIOUS SACRIFICE. SOUTHERN OUTPOST FAITH GREATLY ENRICHED THROUGH ASSOCIATION HER HISTORIC RESTING-PLACE DESTINED REMAIN POIGNANT REMINDER RESISTLESS MARCH TRIUMPHANT ARMY BAHÁ’U’LLÁH. ADVISE BELIEVERS BOTH AMERICAS HOLD BEFITTING MEMORIAL GATHERINGS.

– 70 –

Their God-Given Task

15 April 1940

The fourth year of the Seven Year Plan enters upon its course in circumstances that are at once critical, challenging, and unprecedented in their significance. The year that has passed has, insofar as the rise and establishment of the Faith of Bahá’u’lláh in the Western Hemisphere is concerned, been one of the most eventful since the Plan began to operate and exercise its potent and beneficent influence. Both within and without the community of the Most Great Name, the events which the last twelvemonth has unfolded have in some mysterious way, whether directly or indirectly, communicated their force to the Plan’s progressive unfoldment, contributed to the orientation of its policy and assisted in the consolidation of the diversified undertakings, both primary and subsidiary, that fall within its orbit. Even the losses which the ranks of its stouthearted upholders have sustained will, when viewed in their proper perspective, be regarded as gains of incalculable value, affecting both its immediate fortunes as well as its ultimate destiny.

The successive international crises which agitated the opening months of the year that has elapsed, culminating in the outbreak of the war in Europe, far from drowning the enthusiasm or daunting the spirit of the prosecutors of God’s Plan, served, by deflecting their gaze from a storm-tossed continent, to focus their minds and resources on ministering to the urgent needs of that Hemisphere in which the first honors and the initial successes of the heroes of the Formative Age of the Faith of Bahá’u’lláh are to be scored and won. The sudden extinction of the earthly life of that star-servant of the Cause of Bahá’u’lláh, Martha Root, who, while on the last lap of her fourth journey round the world—journeys that carried her to the humblest homes as well as the palaces of royalty—was hurrying homeward to lend her promised aid to her fellow countrymen in their divinely appointed task—such a death, though it frustrated this cherished resolution of her indomitable spirit, steeled the hearts of her bereaved lovers and admirers to carry on, more energetically than ever, the work which she herself had initiated, as far back as the year 1919, in every important city in the South American continent.47 The subtle and contemptible machinations by which the puny adversaries of the Faith, jealous of its consolidating power and perturbed by the compelling evidences of its conspicuous victories, have sought to challenge the validity and misrepresent the character of the Administrative Order embedded in its teachings have galvanized the swelling army of its defenders to arise and arraign the usurpers of their sacred rights and to defend the long-standing strongholds of the institutions of their Faith in their home country. And now as this year, so memorable in the annals of the Faith, was drawing to a close, there befell the American Bahá’í community, through the dramatic and sudden death of May Maxwell, yet another loss, which viewed in retrospect will come to be regarded as a potent blessing conferred upon the campaign now being so diligently conducted by its members. Laden with the fruits garnered through well-nigh half a century of toilsome service to the Cause she so greatly loved, heedless of the warnings of age and ill health, and afire with the longing to worthily demonstrate her gratitude in her overwhelming awareness of the bounties of her Lord and Master, she set her face towards the southern outpost of the Faith in the New World, and laid down her life in such a spirit of consecration and self-sacrifice as has truly merited the crown of martyrdom. To Keith Ransom-Kehler, whose dust sleeps in far-off Iṣfahán; to Martha Root, fallen in her tracks on an island in the midmost heart of the ocean; and to May Maxwell, lying in solitary glory in the southern outpost of the Western Hemisphere—to these three heroines of the Formative Age of the Faith of Bahá’u’lláh they who now labor so assiduously for its expansion and establishment owe a debt of gratitude which future generations will not fail to adequately recognize.

I need not expatiate on other, though less prominent, events that have contributed their share to the furtherance of the Seven Year Plan, or marked its systematic development. The association of the Fund, specifically inaugurated for its prosecution, with the hallowed memories of both the Mother and Brother of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá; the establishment of at least one pioneer in each of the Republics of Central and South America; the ushering in of the last phase of the external ornamentation of the Temple; the conjunction of the institutions of the Ḥaẓíratu’l-Quds and the Mashriqu’l-Adhkár in the heart of the North American continent; the founding of yet another institution designed as a training school for Inter-America teaching work;48 the steady rise in the number of groups and Assemblies functioning within the Administrative Framework of the Faith of Bahá’u’lláh—these stand out as further evidences of the animating Force that propels the Plan towards its final consummation.

Varied and abundant as have been the past manifestations of this driving, resistless Force, they cannot but pale before the brilliant victories which its progressive and systematic development must achieve in the future.

The American believers, standing on the threshold of the fourth year of the Seven Year Plan, pursue their God-given task with a radiance that no earthly gloom can dim, and will continue to shoulder its ever-growing duties and responsibilities with a vigor and loyalty that no earthly power can either sap or diminish.

– 71 –

Bahá’u’lláh’s Spiritual Sovereignty

Message to 1940 Convention

24 April 1940

OVERJOYED ELATED DYNAMIC ENERGY INVINCIBLE VALOR AMERICAN BELIEVERS IMPELLED THEM FAR OUTSTRIP GOAL FIXED THIRD YEAR SEVEN YEAR PLAN. TEMPLE ORNAMENTATION UNINTERRUPTEDLY PURSUED. THEATER OPERATION TEACHING CAMPAIGN ALREADY EMBRACING ENTIRE CENTRAL AMERICA AND EVERY SOUTH AMERICAN REPUBLIC EXCEPTING PARAGUAY COLOMBIA. NUMBER COUNTRIES WITHIN ORBIT FAITH NOW EXCEEDING SIXTY. INTERCONTINENTAL CRUSADE THROUGH PATH BROKEN MARTHA ROOT AND SEAL SET MAY MAXWELL’S DEATH YIELDING DESTINED FRUIT, GALVANIZED PERMANENTLY SAFEGUARDED. TOGETHER WITH KEITH THEY FORGED THROUGH SACRIFICE TRIPLE CORD INDISSOLUBLY KNITTING COMMUNITY NORTH AMERICAN BELIEVERS TO CRADLE FAITH, EVERY CONTINENT OLD WORLD AND LATIN AMERICA. UNPERTURBED GATHERING GLOOM TOTTERING CIVILIZATION WITHOUT CONTEMPTUOUS ASSAULTS PERFIDIOUS ENEMIES WITHIN EXECUTORS ‘ABDU’L-BAHÁ’S MANDATE MUST WILL STRAIN EVERY NERVE COURSE ENSUING YEAR MULTIPLY NUMBER ENROLLED PIONEERS CONSOLIDATE WORK ACHIEVED NEWLY OPENED NORTH AMERICAN STATES PROVINCES ENSURE PROMPT SETTLEMENT REMAINING REPUBLICS PROSECUTE UNREMITTINGLY ORNAMENTATION LAST UNIT MASHRIQU’L-ADHKÁR EXPEDITE FORMATION IN ISOLATED CENTERS NUCLEI CAPABLE ESTABLISHMENT LOCAL ASSEMBLIES. URGENTLY PLEAD FERVENTLY PRAY ALL RANKS VALIANT FORERUNNERS BAHÁ’U’LLÁH’S COMMONWEALTH MAY ERE EXPIRY ALLOTTED TERM BRING FRUITION MISSION ENSURE ASCENDANCY BAHÁ’U’LLÁH’S SPIRITUAL SOVEREIGNTY OVER ENTIRE WESTERN HEMISPHERE.

– 72 –

Section of Ornamentation

27 April 1940

SECTION ORNAMENTATION PLACED PRECINCTS BÁB’S SHRINE MAGNIFICENT REMINDER AMERICAN BELIEVERS’ STUPENDOUS EFFORTS.49

– 73 –

Continuous Consecration

15 May 1940

To these words, written on my behalf, and in answer to your particular questions relating to the administrative issues that confront you in these days, I wish to add my own tribute to the magnificent manner in which you face the problems, both spiritual and administrative, which the expansion of the Faith is continually raising, and to the way in which you resolve them, explain their nature, and derive fresh strength from your experience of any one of them. The text of the annual reports demonstrates this fact, and establishes for all time the high standard according to which the administrative machinery of the Faith is functioning, developing and consolidating itself under your able and energetic direction. As the administrative processes expand, as their operation steadily improves, as their necessity is more fully and strikingly demonstrated, and their beneficent influence correspondingly grows more apparent and evident, so will the blessings, the strength, and guidance bestowed by Him Who animates and directs these processes be more abundantly vouchsafed to those who have been called upon to utilize them, in this age, for the execution of God’s Purpose and for the ultimate redemption of a sore-stricken, travailing humanity. Many will be the setbacks, the shocks and the disturbances, which the commotions of a convulsive age must produce; yet no force, however violent and worldwide in its range and catastrophic in its immediate consequences, can either halt these processes or deflect their appointed course. How great, then, the privilege, and how staggering the responsibility, of those who are destined to guard over them and to bring them eventually to full fruition. Nothing short of utter, of continuous, consecration to His Will and Purpose can enable them to fulfill their high destiny.

– 74 –

Emergence of Spiritual World Order

12 June 1940

STUPENDOUS STRUGGLE NOW CONVULSING MAJOR PART EUROPEAN CONTINENT PROGRESSIVELY REVEALING OMINOUS FEATURES INCREASINGLY ASSUMING PROPORTIONS TITANIC UPHEAVAL FORESHADOWED SEVENTY YEARS AGO PROPHETIC PEN BAHÁ’U’LLÁH. DISRUPTIVE FORCES ASSOCIATED HUMANITY’S WORLD-SHAKING ORDEAL CLOSELY INTERRELATED CONSTRUCTIVE POTENTIALITIES INHERENT AMERICAN BELIEVERS DIVINELY ORDAINED PLAN. BOTH DIRECTLY HASTENING EMERGENCE SPIRITUAL WORLD ORDER STIRRING WOMB TRAVAILING AGE. ENTREAT AMERICAN BAHÁ’Í COMMUNITY WHATEVER IMMEDIATE OR DISTANT REPERCUSSIONS PRESENT TURMOIL ON THEIR OWN CONTINENT HOWEVER VIOLENT ITS IMPACT WORLD CENTER THEIR FAITH PLEDGE THEMSELVES ANEW BEFORE THRONE BAHÁ’U’LLÁH DISCHARGE WITH UNSWERVING AIM UNFAILING COURAGE INVINCIBLE VIGOR EXEMPLARY FIDELITY EVER-DEEPENING CONSECRATION DUAL RESPONSIBILITY SOLEMNLY UNDERTAKEN UNDER SEVEN YEAR PLAN. IMPLORE THEM ACCELERATE EFFORTS INCREASE VIGILANCE DEEPEN UNITY MULTIPLY HEROIC FEATS MAINTAIN DISTANT OUTPOSTS TEACHING FIELD LATIN AMERICA EXPEDITE TERMINATION LAST STAGE ORNAMENTATION TEMPLE. PRAYING CONTINUALLY REDOUBLED FERVOR.

– 75 –

Supremely Challenging Hour

20 July 1940

LONG-PREDICTED WORLD-ENCIRCLING CONFLAGRATION ESSENTIAL PREREQUISITE WORLD UNIFICATION INEXORABLY MOVING APPOINTED CLIMAX. ITS FIRES FIRST LIT FAR EAST SUBSEQUENTLY RAVAGING EUROPE ENVELOPING AFRICA NOW THREATEN DEVASTATION BOTH NEAR EAST FAR WEST RESPECTIVELY ENSHRINING WORLD CENTER AND CHIEF REMAINING CITADEL FAITH BAHÁ’U’LLÁH. DIVINELY APPOINTED PLAN MUST WILL LIKEWISE PURSUE UNDEFLECTED PREDESTINED COURSE. TIME PRESSING. SETTLEMENT TWO REMAINING LATIN REPUBLICS SOUNDER CONSOLIDATION THROUGH FORMATION FIRMLY KNIT GROUPS IN NEWLY OPENED TERRITORIES PROVISION ADEQUATE MEANS ORNAMENTATION LAST SIX FACES FIRST STORY TEMPLE STAND OUT VITAL REQUIREMENTS APPROACHING SUPREMELY CHALLENGING HOUR. EYES HEART ANXIOUSLY LONGINGLY TURNED NEW WORLD WITNESS EVIDENCES NEW STILL MORE HEROIC PHASE ENTERPRISE CONFIDENTLY ENTRUSTED VIGILANT CARE AMERICAN BELIEVERS BY EVER-WATCHFUL POWERFULLY SUSTAINING MASTER. REFUSE BELIEVE COMMUNITY SO RICHLY ENDOWED GREATLY ENVIED REPEATEDLY HONORED WILL SUFFER SLIGHTEST RELAXATION ITS RESOLUTION JEOPARDIZE SPIRITUAL PRIZES PAINSTAKINGLY DESERVEDLY WON THROUGHOUT STATES PROVINCES REPUBLICS WESTERN HEMISPHERE.

– 76 –

Bear All, Dare All

14 October 1940

HEARTS UPLIFTED REALIZATION INCREASING TURMOIL GREAT TESTING HOUR IS STIFFENING RESOLUTION GIVING FRESH RESILIENCE SPLENDID SPIRIT ANIMATING AMERICAN BELIEVERS. PIONEERS EMBARKING HOLY TASK SOUTHERN REPUBLICS REINFORCING TEACHING WORK SOUTHERN STATES OBJECT SPECIAL PRAYERS. ASSURE EACH DEEPEST GRATITUDE LOVING ADMIRATION. RENEW PLEA BEAR ALL DARE ALL PATH SERVICE MATCHLESS CAUSE.

– 77 –

Chaos and Redemption

28 October 1940

PRESENT WORLD CHAOS EXHIBITING IMPETUOSITY FOLLIES VIOLENCE REBELLIOUSNESS CHARACTERISTIC HUMANITY’S ADOLESCENT STAGE DEVELOPMENT AND HARBINGER LONG-PROMISED GOLDEN AGE MATURITY HUMAN RACE RELENTLESSLY SPREADING DISTRESSINGLY INTENSIFIED. ALTERNATING VICTORIES REVERSES HERALDING PARALLEL TRANSITION PROSCRIBED CAUSE BAHÁ’U’LLÁH STRUGGLING TOWARDS EMANCIPATION WORLD RECOGNITION SPIRITUAL UNIVERSAL DOMINION SIMULTANEOUSLY MULTIPLYING. RECRUDESCENCE CHRONIC PERSECUTION AFFLICTING CRADLE FAITH, GRAVE DANGER THREATENING APPROPRIATED TEMPLE DISBANDED CENTERS TURKISTAN CAUCASUS, REPRESSIVE MEASURES SUCCESSIVELY CHOKING LIFE PARALYZING ACTION LONG-STANDING NEWLY FLEDGED COMMUNITIES CENTRAL WESTERN SOUTH EASTERN EUROPE, INTERMITTENT OUTBURSTS RELIGIOUS FANATICISM DIRECTED NORTH AFRICAN ASSEMBLIES, AGGRAVATION SITUATION WORLD SPIRITUAL ADMINISTRATIVE CENTER, CONTRAST WITH, OUTWEIGHED BY, SURGING SPIRIT, STARTLING EXPANSION, SWEEPING CONQUESTS, SUPERB CONSOLIDATION, SWIFTLY ACCUMULATING RESOURCES ONE REMAINING COMMUNITY SINGLED OUT PROCLAMATION ADMINISTRATIVE ORDER THROUGHOUT LENGTH BREADTH WESTERN HEMISPHERE. APPEAL NEW WORLD CHAMPIONS NEW WORLD ORDER BAHÁ’U’LLÁH STAND FAST THIS TRAGIC HOUR FORTUNES MANKIND CHALLENGING STAGE EVOLUTION FAITH. BEG THEM CLOSE RANKS JOINTLY SEVERALLY VOW THEMSELVES INCOMPARABLY SUBLIME TASK WHOSE OPERATION MUST HASTEN, WHOSE CONSUMMATION WILL SYNCHRONIZE, BOTH TRIUMPHANT ASCENDANCY BELOVED CAUSE SPIRITUAL REDEMPTION RECONSTRUCTED MANKIND.

– 78 –

Translation of Epistle to the Son of the Wolf

26 November 1940

GREATLY WELCOME NEWS STRIKING PROGRESS CONVEYED YOUR CABLE. ADVISE UTILIZE WINTER MONTHS INCREASED CONCENTRATION CONSOLIDATE TEACHING ACTIVITIES INITIATED LATIN AMERICA. TRANSLATION EPISTLE SON WOLF COMPLETED; MAILING REMAINDER MANUSCRIPT.50 DEVOUTLY HOPE ITS STUDY MAY CONTRIBUTE FURTHER ENLIGHTENMENT DEEPER UNDERSTANDING VERITIES ON WHICH EFFECTUAL PROSECUTION TEACHING ADMINISTRATIVE UNDERTAKINGS ULTIMATELY DEPENDS. DEEPEST LOVE.

– 79 –

Torchbearer of World Civilization

3 December 1940

My heart is thrilled with delight as I witness, in so many fields, and in such distant outposts, and despite such formidable difficulties, restrictions, obstacles and dangers, so many evidences of the solidarity, the valor, and the achievements of the American Bahá’í community. As the end of the First Century of the Bahá’í Era approaches, as the shadows descending upon and enveloping mankind steadily and remorselessly deepen, this community, which can almost be regarded as the solitary champion of the Faith in the Western World, is increasingly evincing and demonstrating its capacity, its worth, and ability as the torchbearer of the New, the World civilization which is destined to supplant in the fullness of time the present one. And more particularly in the virgin and far-flung territories of Latin America, it has, in recent months, abundantly given visible evidence of its merits and competence to shoulder the immense responsibilities which the carrying of the sacred fire to all the Republics of the Western Hemisphere must necessarily entail.

Through these initial steps which, in pursuance of the Plan conceived by ‘Abdu’l-Bahá, this community has taken, through the settlement in each of these sovereign states of the New World of American Bahá’í pioneers, through the formation of Bahá’í groups and the establishment of two Assemblies in Buenos Aires and Bahia, the American National Assembly, as well as its Inter-America Committee, and all subsidiary agencies, no less than the individual members of the North American Bahá’í community who have sacrificed and are still sacrificing so much in their support of this Divine and momentous Plan, have earned the unqualified admiration and the undying gratitude of sister Assemblies and fellow workers throughout the Bahá’í world.

Their work, however, is only beginning. The dispatch of pioneers, the provision of adequate means for their support, their settlement and initiation of Bahá’í activities in these far-off lands, however strenuous and meritorious, are insufficient if the Plan is to evolve harmoniously and yield promptly its destined fruit. The extension by the Parent Assembly—the immediate source from which this vast system with all its ramifications is now proceeding—of the necessary support, guidance, recognition, and material assistance to enable these newly fledged groups and Assemblies to function in strict accordance with both the spiritual and administrative principles of the Faith of Bahá’u’lláh would seem as essential and urgent as the preliminary task already achieved. To nurse these tender plants of the Vineyard of God, to foster their growth, to direct their development, to accord them the necessary recognition, to help resolve their problems, to familiarize them, with gentleness, patience and fidelity, with the processes of the Administrative Order and thus enable them to assume independently the conduct of future local and national Bahá’í activities, would bring the Plan to swift and full fruition and would add fresh laurels to the crown of immortal glory already won by a community that holds, in these days of dark and dire calamities, valiantly and almost alone, the Fort of the Faith of Bahá’u’lláh. Fortified by these reflections, let them gird up their loins for still mightier exertions and more brilliant victories.

– 80 –

Veteran Warrior

20 February 1941

SHARE SORROW LOSS PARTICIPATE REJOICINGS TRIUMPH BELOVED FATHER DUNN.51 MAGNIFICENT CAREER VETERAN WARRIOR FAITH BAHÁ’U’LLÁH REFLECTS PUREST LUSTER WORLD HISTORIC MISSION CONFERRED AMERICAN COMMUNITY BY ‘ABDU’L-BAHÁ. TO THREE HEROINES WHOSE DUST REPOSES HEART IRAN PACIFIC ISLANDS AND SOUTHERN EXTREMITY AMERICAN CONTINENT A FOURTH WITNESS IN FAR-OFF AUSTRALASIA NOW ADDED ATTESTING FIRST VITAL SPARKS FAR-FLUNG SPIRITUAL DOMINION AMERICAN BELIEVERS COMMISSIONED ESTABLISH. MOVED CONGRATULATE THEM RESPLENDENT SUCCESSES PLAN DESTINED ENCIRCLE ENTIRE GLOBE. ADVISE HOLD NATIONAL MEMORIAL GATHERING MASHRIQU’L-ADHKÁR.

– 81 –

Fifth Year of Plan

Message to 1941 Convention

22 April 1941

FIFTH YEAR SEVEN YEAR PLAN OPENING CIRCUMSTANCES UTMOST GRAVITY EASTERN WESTERN HEMISPHERES. FEVER OF THE TIMES STEADILY MOUNTING THROWING SHARPER RELIEF CONTRAST BETWEEN RISING GREATNESS FAITH BAHÁ’U’LLÁH FALLING FORTUNES MORIBUND CIVILIZATION. AMERICAN BAHÁ’Í COMMUNITY RAPIDLY PURSUING CAREER TRACED UNERRING FINGER ‘ABDU’L-BAHÁ CAN NEITHER HALT NOR WAVER. CANNOT FORBEAR ADDRESS MY PARTICULAR PLEA FOCUS OWING VIRTUAL TERMINATION TEMPLE ORNAMENTATION ATTENTION TEACHING REQUIREMENTS PLAN. APPEAL INCOMING NATIONAL ASSEMBLY ITS AUXILIARY TEACHING COMMITTEE AND SUBSIDIARY AGENCIES DELIBERATE DEVISE MEANS ENSURE PROMPT REINSTATEMENT ASSEMBLIES RECENTLY DISBANDED FORMATION ASSEMBLY EACH NEWLY OPENED STATE PROVINCE NORTH AMERICA AND CONTINUITY CONSOLIDATION PIONEER WORK INITIATED EVERY LATIN REPUBLIC. UNDISMAYED AGGRAVATION FURY WORLD TEMPEST THREATENING THEIR SHORES SCORNFUL AGITATION STIRRED UP ADVERSARIES BREAKERS COVENANT RESOLUTE UPHOLDERS DIVINE PLAN WILL INDEED CANNOT BUT PERSIST ORDAINED TASK PROPAGATE FLAME ENLARGE ADMINISTRATIVE LIMITS STRIKE DEEPER ROOTS WORLD-ENCIRCLING WORLD-REDEEMING FAITH BAHÁ’U’LLÁH.

– 82 –

The Anger of God and His Correction

25 May 1941

The internecine struggle, now engulfing the generality of mankind, is increasingly assuming, in its range and ferocity, the proportions of the titanic upheaval foreshadowed as far back as seventy years ago by Bahá’u’lláh. It can be viewed in no other light except as a direct interposition by Him Who is the Ordainer of the Universe, the Judge of all men, and the Deliverer of the nations. It is the rod of both the anger of God and of His correction. The fierceness of its devastating power chastens the children of men for their refusal to acclaim the century-old Message of their promised, their Heaven-sent Redeemer. The fury of its flames, on the other hand, purges away the dross, and welds the limbs of humanity into one single organism, indivisible, purified, God-conscious and Divinely directed. Its immediate cause can be traced to the forces engendered by the last war of which it may truly be regarded as the direct continuation.

Its first sparks were kindled on the eastern shores of the Asiatic continent, enveloping two sister races of the world in a conflagration which no force seems able to either quench or circumscribe. This cataclysmic process was accelerated by the outbreak of a fierce conflict in the heart of Europe, fanning into flame age-long animosities and unchaining a series of calamities as swift as they were appalling. As the turmoil gathered momentum it swept remorselessly into its vortex the most powerful nations of the European continent—the chief protagonists of that highly vaunted yet lamentably defective civilization. The mounting tide of its havoc and devastation soon overspread the northernmost regions of that afflicted continent, subsequently ravaged the shores of the Mediterranean, and invaded the African continent as far as Ethiopia and the surrounding territories. The Balkan countries, as predicted by ‘Abdu’l-Bahá, were soon to sustain the impact of this tragic ordeal, communicating in their turn the commotions to which they had been subjected to both the Near and Middle East, wherein are enshrined the Heart of the Faith itself, its Cradle, its chief Center of Pilgrimage, and its most sacred and historic sites.

Its menace is overleaping the limits of the Old World and is plunging into consternation the Great Republic of the West, as well as the peoples of Central and South America. The New World, as well as the Old, is experiencing the terrific impact of this disruptive force. Even the peoples of the Antipodes are trembling before the approaching tempest that threatens to burst on their heads.

The races of the world, Nordic, Slavonic, Mongolian, Arab and African are alike subjected to its consuming violence. The world’s religious systems are no less affected by the universal paralysis which is creeping over the minds and souls of men. The persecution of world Jewry, the rapid deterioration of Christian institutions, the intestine divisions and disorders of Islám, are but manifestations of the fear and trembling that has seized humanity in its hour of unprecedented turmoil and peril. On the high seas, in the air, on land, in the forefront of battle, in the palaces of kings and the cottages of peasants, in the most hallowed sanctuaries, whether secular or religious, the evidences of God’s retributive act and mysterious discipline are manifest. Its heavy toll is steadily mounting—a holocaust sparing neither prince nor peasant, neither man nor woman, neither young nor old.

The Faith of Bahá’u’lláh—that priceless gem of Divine Revelation, enshrining the Spirit of God and incarnating His Purpose for mankind in this age—can neither aspire nor expect to escape unhurt amid the hurricane of human disasters that blows around it. By most men unnoticed, scorned and ridiculed by some, feared and challenged by others, this world-redemptive Faith, for whose precious sake the world is undergoing such agony, finds its virgin strength assailed, and its infant institutions hemmed in by the dark forces which a godless civilization has unloosed over the face of the planet. In the Old World, whether in Europe, Asia or Africa, it is being buffeted about, ostracized, arraigned and repressed. In certain countries its community life is being extinguished, in others a ban is severely imposed on its propagation, in still others its members are denied all intercourse with its World Center. Dangers, grave and unsuspected, confront its Cradle and surround its very Heart.

Not so, however, with the countries of the Western Hemisphere. The call of Bahá’u’lláh summons, at this challenging hour, the peoples of the New World and its leaders to redress the balance of the Old. “O Rulers of America,” He thus addresses the Chief Magistrates of that continent, “and the Presidents of the Republics therein! … Adorn the temple of your dominion with the ornament of Justice and of the fear of God, and its head with the crown of the remembrance of your Lord, the Maker of the heavens.” The Great Republic of the West, an object of special solicitude throughout the ministry of the Center of the Covenant, whose soil has been hallowed by His footsteps, and the foundation of whose Edifice—the Mother Temple of the West—has been consecrated by His hand, has been singled out through the operation of His Will and been invested by His pen with a unique, an inescapable, a weighty and most sacred responsibility. The Mission entrusted to the community of the North American believers in the darkest days of the last war is, after a period of incubation of well-nigh twenty years, and through the instrumentality of the administrative agencies erected after ‘Abdu’l-Bahá’s passing, efflorescing under our very eyes. Already, since the inception of the Seven Year Plan, this community can well claim to have attained, through its deeds, a stature that dwarfs its sister communities, and can glory in a parentage that embraces every Republic of Latin America. The first Mashriqu’l-Adhkár of the West, its beauteous and noble handiwork, is virtually completed. A nucleus for a future flourishing local community is already formed in every state and province in North America. The administrative structure, following the pattern of its prototype in the U.S.A., is, through the agency of that same Plan, raising its triumphant head in the Central and South American Republics. The Plan itself, propelled by the energies released by those immortal Tablets which constitute its charter, bids fair, in the fifth year of its operation, to exceed the highest expectations of those who have so courageously launched it. Its consummation, coinciding with the termination of the first century of the Bahá’í Era, will mark the opening of yet another phase in a series of crusades which must carry, in the course of the succeeding century, the privileged recipients of those epoch-making Tablets beyond the Western Hemisphere to the uttermost ends of the earth, to implant the banner, and lay an unassailable basis for the administrative structure of the Faith of Bahá’u’lláh.

The quality and magnitude of the work already achieved by these stalwart champions of God’s New World Order are inexpressibly exhilarating and infinitely meritorious. The immensity of the tasks still to be performed staggers our fancy and inflames our imagination. The potentialities with which those tasks are endowed elude our shrewdest calculations. The promise they enshrine is too dazzling to contemplate. What else can we do but bow our heads in thanksgiving and reverence, steel our hearts in preparation for the strenuous days ahead, and intensify a hundredfold our resolution to carry on the task to which our hands are set at present?

– 83 –

Fate-Laden World Ordeal

30 June 1941

FATE-LADEN WORLD ORDEAL REMORSELESSLY MOVING IN STEADY PREORDAINED CRESCENDO. BLAZE SEEMINGLY UNCONTROLLABLE FIRE LEAPING RAVAGING LAST REMAINING GREAT POWER EUROPEAN CONTINENT. SHADOWS GOD’S RETRIBUTIVE ACT FAST GATHERING. AS ARENA WORLD-CONVULSING CONTEST BROADENS, AS WOUNDS IT INFLICTS DEEPEN, AS ISSUES IT RAISES AGGRAVATE MULTIPLY SO WILL OPERATION SPIRITUAL FORCES DESTINED CAST BURDEN TRAVAILING AGE BE ACCELERATED. AS OLD WORLD SINKS BENEATH WEIGHT CRUMBLING OLD ORDER SO MUST NEW WORLD EXPONENTS BAHÁ’U’LLÁH’S NASCENT INTEGRATING WORLD ORDER CLIMB LOFTIER SUMMITS THEIR SUBLIME CALLING. URGENTLY INSISTENTLY PLEAD ALL AMERICAN BELIEVERS PARTICULARLY NATIONAL TEACHING INTER-AMERICA COMMITTEES ABOVE ALL NATIONAL ELECTED REPRESENTATIVES ARM THEIR SOULS LABOR MORE RESOLUTELY COOPERATE MORE CLOSELY SCATTER MORE WIDELY SACRIFICE MORE ABUNDANTLY ENSURE DURING REMAINING YEARS SEVEN YEAR PLAN BRILLIANT DISCHARGE ONE REMAINING OBLIGATION THEIR DUAL TASK WHOSE CONSUMMATION MUST SIGNALIZE TERMINATION SEAL TRIUMPH FIRST BAHÁ’Í CENTURY.

– 84 –

Elizabeth Greenleaf

6 August 1941

SHARE DEEP GRIEF BEREAVED COMMUNITY PASSING ELIZABETH GREENLEAF BELOVED HANDMAID BAHÁ’U’LLÁH. HER RADIANT SPIRIT STAUNCH LOYALTY NOBLE CHARACTER EFFECTIVE TEACHING METHOD DISTINGUISHING FEATURES CONSECRATED LIFE. PRAYING ABUNDANT BLESSINGS LIFE BEYOND.

– 85 –

Unconquerable Power

12 August 1941

As I survey the activities and accomplishments of the American believers in recent months, and recall their reaction to the urgent call for service, embodied in the Seven Year Plan, I feel overwhelmed by a threefold sense of gratitude and admiration which I feel prompted to place on record, but which I cannot adequately express. Future generations can alone appraise correctly the value of their present services, and the Beloved, Whose mandate they are so valiantly obeying, can alone befittingly reward them for the manner in which they are discharging their duties.

The virtual completion of a thirty-year-old enterprise, which was initiated in His days and blessed by His hand, is the first and foremost accomplishment that must shed imperishable luster not only on the administrative annals of the Formative Age of the Faith, but on the entire record of the signal achievements performed in the course of the First Century of the Bahá’í Era.52 The steady expansion and consolidation of the world Mission, entrusted by that same Master to their hands, and set in operation after His passing, constitutes the second object of my undying gratitude to a community that has abundantly demonstrated its worthiness to shoulder the superhuman tasks with which it has been entrusted. The spirit with which that same community has faced and resisted the onslaught of the enemies of the Faith who, for various reasons, and with ever-increasing subtlety and malice, have persistently striven to disrupt the administrative machinery of an Order, foreshadowed by the Báb, enunciated by Bahá’u’lláh, and established by ‘Abdu’l-Bahá, is yet another testimony to the unrivaled merits and the eminent position attained by its privileged members since the ascension of the Center of the Covenant.

The extinction of the influence precariously exerted by some of these enemies, the decline that has set in in the fortunes of others, the sincere repentance expressed by still others and their subsequent reinstatement and effectual participation in the teaching and administrative activities of the Faith, constitute in themselves sufficient evidence of the unconquerable power and invincible spirit which animate those who stand identified with, and loyally carry out the provisions and injunctions of, the Will and Testament of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá.

And now more particularly concerning the prime mover of this latest agitation,53 which, whatever its immediate consequences, will sooner or later come to be regarded as merely one more of those ugly and abortive attempts designed to undermine the foundation, and obscure the purpose, of the Administrative Order of the Faith of Bahá’u’lláh: Obscure in his origin, ambitious of leadership, untaught by the lesson of such as have erred before him, odious in the hopes he nurses, contemptible in the methods he pursues, shameless in his deliberate distortions of truths he has long since ceased to believe in, ludicrous in his present isolation and helplessness, wounded and exasperated by the downfall which his own folly has precipitated, he, the latest protagonist of a spurious cause, cannot but in the end be subjected, as remorselessly as his infamous predecessors, to the fate which they invariably have suffered.

Generated by the propelling and purifying forces of a mysterious Faith, born of delusion or malice, winning a fleeting notoriety derived from the precarious advantages of wealth, fame, or fortune, these movements, sponsored by deluded, self-seeking adventurers, find themselves, sooner or later, enmeshed in the machinations of their authors, are buried in shame, and sink eventually into complete oblivion.

The schism which their foolish leaders had contrived so sedulously to produce within the Faith, will soon, to their utter amazement, come to be regarded as a process of purification, a cleansing agency, which, far from decimating the ranks of its followers, reinforces its indestructible unity, and proclaims anew to a world, skeptical or indifferent, the cohesive strength of the institutions of that Faith, the incorruptibility of its purposes and principles, and the recuperative powers inherent in its community life.

Were anyone to imagine or expect that a Cause, comprising within its orbit so vast a portion of the globe, so turbulent in its history, so challenging in its claims, so diversified in the elements it has assimilated into its administrative structure, should at all times be immune to any divergence of opinion, or any defection on the part of its multitudinous followers, would be sheer delusion, wholly unreasonable and unwarranted, even in the face of the unprecedented evidences of the miraculous power which its rise and progress have so powerfully exhibited. That such a secession, however, whether effected by those who apostatize their faith or preach heretical doctrines, should have failed, after the lapse of a century, to split in twain the entire body of the adherents of the Faith, or to create a grave, a permanent and irremediable breach in its organic structure, is a fact too eloquent for even a casual observer of the internal processes of its Administrative Order to either deny or ignore.

Therein every loyal and intelligent upholder of Bahá’u’lláh’s incomparable Covenant—a Covenant designed by Him as the sole refuge against schism, disruption, and anarchy—will readily recognize the hallmark of His Faith, and will acclaim it as the supreme gift conferred by Him Who is the Lord of Revelation upon the present and future generations who are destined, in this greatest of all Dispensations, to flock, from every creed and religion, to the banner, and espouse the Cause, of His Most Great Name.

Dear friends! Manifold, various, and at times extremely perilous, have been the tragic crises which the blind hatred, the unbounded presumption, the incredible folly, the abject perfidy, the vaulting ambition of the enemy have intermittently engendered within the pale of the Faith. From some of its most powerful and renowned votaries, at the hands of its once trusted and ablest propagators, champions, and administrators, from the ranks of its most revered and highly placed trustees, whether as companions, amanuenses, or appointed lieutenants of the Herald of the Faith, of its Author, and of the Center of His Covenant, from even those who were numbered among the kindred of the Manifestation, not excluding the brother, the sons and daughters of Bahá’u’lláh, and the nominee of the Báb Himself, a Faith, of such tender age, and enshrining so priceless a promise, has sustained blows as dire and treacherous as any recorded in the world’s religious history.

From the record of its tumultuous history, almost every page of which portrays a fresh crisis, is laden with the description of a new calamity, recounts the tale of a base betrayal, and is stained with the account of unspeakable atrocities, there emerges, clear and incontrovertible, the supreme truth that with every fresh outbreak of hostility to the Faith, whether from within or from without, a corresponding measure of outpouring grace, sustaining its defenders and confounding its adversaries, has been providentially released, communicating a fresh impulse to the onward march of the Faith, while this impetus, in its turn, would, through its manifestations, provoke fresh hostility in quarters heretofore unaware of its challenging implications—this increased hostility being accompanied by a still more arresting revelation of Divine Power and a more abundant effusion of celestial grace, which, by enabling the upholders of that Faith to register still more brilliant victories, would thereby generate issues of still more vital import and raise up still more formidable enemies against a Cause that cannot but in the end resolve those issues and crush the resistance of those enemies, through a still more glorious unfoldment of its inherent power.

The resistless march of the Faith of Bahá’u’lláh, viewed in this light, and propelled by the stimulating influences which the unwisdom of its enemies and the force latent within itself both engender, resolves itself into a series of rhythmic pulsations, precipitated, on the one hand, through the explosive outbursts of its foes, and the vibrations of Divine Power, on the other, which speed it, with ever-increasing momentum, along that predestined course traced for it by the Hand of the Almighty.

As opposition to the Faith, from whatever source it may spring, whatever form it may assume, however violent its outbursts, is admittedly the motive-power that galvanizes, on the one hand, the souls of its valiant defenders, and taps for them, on the other, fresh springs of that Divine and inexhaustible Energy, we, who are called upon to represent, defend, and promote its interests, should, far from regarding any manifestation of hostility as an evidence of the weakening of the pillars of the Faith, acclaim it as both a God-sent gift and a God-sent opportunity which, if we remain undaunted, we can utilize for the furtherance of His Faith and the routing and complete elimination of its adversaries.

The Heroic Age of the Faith, born in anguish, nursed in adversity, and terminating in trials as woeful as those that greeted its birth, has been succeeded by that Formative Period which is to witness the gradual crystallization of those creative energies which the Faith has released, and the consequent emergence of that World Order for which those forces were made to operate.

Fierce and relentless will be the opposition which this crystallization and emergence must provoke. The alarm it must and will awaken, the envy it will certainly arouse, the misrepresentations to which it will remorselessly be subjected, the setbacks it must, sooner or later, sustain, the commotions to which it must eventually give rise, the fruits it must in the end garner, the blessings it must inevitably bestow and the glorious, the Golden Age it must irresistibly usher in, are just beginning to be faintly perceived, and will, as the old Order crumbles beneath the weight of so stupendous a Revelation, become increasingly apparent and arresting.

Not ours, dear friends, to attempt to survey the distant scene; ours rather the duty to face the trials of the present hour, to ponder its meaning, to discharge its obligations, to meet its challenge, and utilize the opportunity it offers to the fullest extent of our ability and power.

– 86 –

Completion of Ornamentation of Temple’s Main Story

25 September 1941

HEARTILY JOYOUSLY CONGRATULATE ENTIRE BODY AMERICAN BAHÁ’Í COMMUNITY REMARKABLY RAPID COMPLETION ORNAMENTATION FIRST MAIN STORY TEMPLE UNIT. WHOLE BAHÁ’Í WORLD JOINS ME EXPRESSION UNDYING GRATITUDE. CONCLUSION EXTERNAL DECORATION SACRED HISTORIC EDIFICE MUST NEEDS SIGNALIZE INTENSIFICATION CONCENTRATION UNBOUNDED EFFORTS VICTORIOUS COMMUNITY EARLY FULFILLMENT TEACHING REQUIREMENTS SEVEN YEAR PLAN. PROMPTED CONSECRATE COURSE REMAINING YEARS PLAN NATIONAL ASSEMBLY’S LOVING CONTRIBUTION DESTINED INTERNATIONAL FUNDS FURTHERANCE INTERCONTINENTAL TEACHING CAMPAIGN. APPEAL NOBLER WIDER MORE SUSTAINED EFFORTS ENSURE ATTAINMENT ONE REMAINING SHINING GOAL.

– 87 –

The Process of Integration and Disintegration

20 November 1941

HEART THRILLED PRIDE MESSAGE ANNOUNCING APPROACHING COMPLETION ORNAMENTATION SEVEN FACES MASHRIQU’L-ADHKÁR PROCLAIMING INTENSIFICATION NORTH AMERICAN TEACHING CAMPAIGN REVEALING ADAMANTINE RESOLUTION TEMPLE BUILDERS STALWART CRUSADERS IN FACE PERFIDY INGRATITUDE OPPOSITION ENEMIES BOTH WITHIN WITHOUT HOLY FAITH. AS FURY DESTRUCTIVENESS TREMENDOUS WORLD ORDEAL ATTAINS MOST INTENSIVE PITCH SO MISSION CONFERRED TWENTY YEARS AGO BY ‘ABDU’L-BAHÁ’S SACRED WILL ON WORLDWIDE INDIVISIBLE INCORRUPTIBLE BODY HIS FOLLOWERS UNFOLDS ITS FULLEST POTENTIALITIES. SECURELY ABIDING CONFIDENTLY BATTLING WITHIN IMPREGNABLE STRUCTURE THAT WILL HAS DIVINELY ESTABLISHED DWELLERS ARK DIVINE COVENANT WORLD OVER WATCH WITH AWE PRIDE DELIGHT EVIDENCES MOUNTING MOMENTUM ETERNAL PROCESS INTEGRATION DISINTEGRATION HURRYING FAITH ALONG PREDESTINED COURSE. ROYAL ADVERSARY PERSONALLY RESPONSIBLE RECRUDESCENCE PERSECUTION CLOSING ALL BAHÁ’Í SCHOOLS BAHÁ’U’LLÁH’S NATIVE LAND HUMBLED DUST.54 SUFFERINGS ENDURED BY BUILDERS FIRST MASHRIQU’L-ADHKÁR BEING AVENGED.55 CORNERSTONE NATIONAL ADMINISTRATIVE HEADQUARTERS EGYPTIAN BAHÁ’Í COMMUNITY CEREMONIOUSLY LAID.56 FIRST OFFICIALLY RECOGNIZED BAHÁ’Í CEMETERY READY RECEIVE PRECIOUS REMAINS ILLUSTRIOUS ABU’L-FADL IMMORTAL LUA.57 ḤAZÍRATU’L-QUDS BAGHDÁD EXTENDED NEARING COMPLETION. PROPERTY DEDICATED FIRST ADMINISTRATIVE CENTER SYRIAN BAHÁ’ÍS PURCHASED. GROUP FAMILIES PERSIAN BELIEVERS MUSLIM JEWISH ZOROASTRIAN ORIGIN AFIRE EXAMPLE SET AMERICAN PIONEERS SETTLING ADJOINING TERRITORIES ḤIJÁZ YEMEN AFGHANISTAN BALUCHISTAN BAHRAIN ISLANDS. SPIRITUAL COMPETITION GALVANIZING ORGANIZED FOLLOWERS BAHÁ’U’LLÁH EAST WEST WAXES KEENER AS FIRST BAHÁ’Í CENTURY SPEEDS TO CLOSE. WITH BOWED HEAD EXULTANT SPIRIT THANKFUL HEART I ACCLAIM THESE RECURRENT INCREASINGLY COMPELLING MANIFESTATIONS SOLIDARITY LOYALTY UNQUENCHABLE SPIRIT ANIMATING THROUGHOUT FIVE CONTINENTS COMMUNITY FOLLOWERS MOST GREAT NAME.

– 88 –

The Crucible of World Conflagration

8 December 1941

MOST GREAT CONVULSION ENVISAGED BY PROPHETS FROM ISAIAH TO BAHÁ’U’LLÁH CATACLYSMIC IN VIOLENCE PLANETARY IN RANGE ASSAILING AT LONG LAST PREDOMINANT NATIONS ASIATIC AMERICAN CONTINENTS. LEADING POWER WESTERN HEMISPHERE WHICH TOGETHER WITH SISTER REPUBLICS BAHÁ’U’LLÁH’S RINGING CALL SIGNIFICANTLY SUMMONED IN HIS MOST HOLY BOOK, OBJECT ‘ABDU’L-BAHÁ’S TENDER SOLICITUDE ARDENT PRAYERS, CENTER HIS HOPES, RECIPIENT HIS PROMISES, BENEFICIARY HIS BLESSINGS, SUDDENLY THOUGH NOT UNEXPECTEDLY PLUNGED INTO CRUCIBLE WORLD CONFLAGRATION.58 PURGED TESTED GALVANIZED COALESCING WITH ITS SORELY TRIED FELLOW NATIONS THE WORLD OVER GREAT REPUBLIC NEW WORLD, ENVIABLE PARENT OF SYSTEM HERALDING WORLD ORDER BAHÁ’U’LLÁH MUST ASSUME THROUGH ADVERSITY ITS PREPONDERATING SHARE RESPONSIBILITY LAY DOWN ONCE FOR ALL BROAD WORLDWIDE UNASSAILABLE FOUNDATIONS THAT DISCREDITED YET IMMORTAL SYSTEM. THOUGH IMMEDIATE FUTURE BE DARK CRITICAL FRAUGHT ANGUISH FEEL IT MY BOUNDEN DUTY APPEAL THIS HOUR AS NEVER BEFORE TRUSTEES BAHÁ’U’LLÁH’S PRICELESS REVELATION, WHETHER TEACHERS OR ADMINISTRATORS INDIVIDUALS OR ASSEMBLIES NORTH SOUTH WHITE COLORED YOUNG OLD. REFUSE AT ALL COSTS SURRENDER SOLEMN SPIRITUAL RESPONSIBILITIES REFRAIN RELAXING TEACHING EFFORTS DETERMINE NEVER SLACKEN SACRED TASK BUILDING INSTITUTIONS WHOSE PROGRESS DESTINY INDISSOLUBLY LINKED FORTUNES MOST DISASTROUS MOST CHALLENGING MOST PREGNANT PERIOD HUMAN HISTORY.

– 89 –

True Upholders of the Covenant

6 January 1942

COMFORTED FORTIFIED FERVENT MESSAGES TESTIFYING SOLIDITY BONDS SPIRITUAL KINSHIP UNITING ME TRUE UPHOLDERS COVENANT. PRIZE THEIR LOYALTY, GLORY THEIR ACHIEVEMENTS, HAIL THEIR RESOLVE, INVOKE STILL GREATER BLESSINGS THEIR SUPERB EXERTIONS.

– 90 –

A Truly World-Embracing Crisis

15 January 1942

The entry of the United States of America into the war invests it with the character of a truly world-embracing crisis, designed to release world-shaking, world-shaping forces, which, as they operate, and mount in intensity, will throw down the barriers that hinder the emergence of that world community which the world Religion of Bahá’u’lláh has anticipated and can alone permanently establish. It marks a milestone on the road which must lead the peoples of the North American continent to the glorious destiny that awaits them. It confronts the American Bahá’í community, already so well advanced in the prosecution of their Seven Year Plan, with a challenge at once severe and inescapable. The exterior ornamentation of their consecrated Edifice has been providentially expedited to a point where its completion is now assured. The intercontinental and national teaching campaigns that constitute the second and even more vital aspect of that Plan, though progressing magnificently in the States, in Canada and throughout Latin America, are still far from having attained their consummation. The obstacles which the extension of the war to the Western Hemisphere has raised are, I am well aware, manifold and formidable. The heroic self-sacrifice exhibited by the North American Bahá’í community will, I am confident, surmount them. The Hand of Omnipotence, which has led so mighty a member of the human race to plunge into the turmoil of world disaster, that has provided thereby the means for the effective and decisive participation of so promising a nation in the immediate trials and the future reconstruction of human society, will not and cannot allow those who are directly, consciously and worthily promoting the highest interests of their nation and of the world to fall short of the accomplishment of their God-given task. He will, more than ever before in their history, pour out His blessings upon them, if they refuse to allow the present circumstances, grievous though they are, to interfere with the full and uninterrupted execution of this initial undertaking in pursuance of their world Mission. The coming two years must witness, fraught as they may well be with the greatest ordeal afflicting their countrymen, a manifestation of spiritual vitality and an output of heroic action, commensurate with the gravity and afflictions of the present hour, and worthy of the concluding years of the first Bahá’í century.

– 91 –

Ordeal Tests Spirit, Challenges Audacity

5 February 1942

IMMERSION MATERIALLY MOST POWERFUL SPIRITUALLY MOST ENDOWED NATION IN MANKIND’S MOST CRITICAL PREGNANT ORDEAL TESTS SPIRIT CHALLENGES AUDACITY PROMOTERS DIVINE PLAN. PRIVILEGES CONFERRED IMMEASURABLE. TIME THEIR DISPOSAL HOURLY SHORTENING. RESPONSIBILITIES COMMENSURATELY MOUNTING. FIRST FRUITS ALREADY GARNERED UNBELIEVABLY RICH. BAHÁ’Í WORLD’S ATTENTION FOCUSED WINNERS SUCH PRIZES MORE FIRMLY FIXED. SISTER COMMUNITIES EUROPEAN CONTINENT ENGULFED SEVERED WORLD CENTER FAITH. OTHER COMMUNITIES AUSTRALIA INDIA PERSIA EGYPT NOT EXCEPTING HOLY LAND FACING INCREASINGLY GRAVE SITUATION. ENVIABLE NORTH AMERICAN BAHÁ’Í COMMUNITY MUST, SUPPORTED BY DAUGHTER ASSEMBLIES WESTERN HEMISPHERE, HOLD FORT ALONE IF NECESSARY. PROMPTED DIRECT SPECIAL ATTENTION BÁB’S CLARION CALL ADDRESSED PEOPLE WEST ISSUE FORTH THEIR CITIES AID CAUSE, BAHÁ’U’LLÁH’S SUBSEQUENT SPECIFIC UNIQUE SUMMONS ALL PRESIDENTS REPUBLICS NEW WORLD, ‘ABDU’L-BAHÁ’S STILL MORE SPECIFIC FORMULATION PLAN ENTRUSTED NORTH AMERICAN CONTINENT. IMPELLED URGE ALL BELIEVERS GIVE HENCEFORTH URGENT SUSTAINED PRIMARY CONSIDERATION ALL ASSEMBLY MEETINGS SUMMER SCHOOL SESSIONS CONVENTION DELIBERATIONS NINETEEN DAY FEASTS REGIONAL CONFERENCES TEACHING GATHERINGS SPEEDY ACCOMPLISHMENT SPECIFIC TEACHING TASKS NORTH AMERICAN STATES PROVINCES CENTRAL SOUTHERN REPUBLICS. SEVENTH YEAR FIRST BAHÁ’Í CENTURY WITNESSED TERMINATION LAST OF THREE SUCCESSIVE UPHEAVALS INVOLVING SACRIFICE LIVES MAJORITY DAWN-BREAKERS HEROIC AGE. CAN SACRIFICE HOME POSSESSIONS COMFORT SECURITY BY THEIR DESCENDANTS CHAMPION BUILDERS FORMATIVE AGE BE DEEMED TOO GREAT FOR SAKE PLAN ASSOCIATED WITH LAST SEVEN YEARS SAME CENTURY AND WHOSE UNQUALIFIED SUCCESS CAN ALONE BEFITTINGLY CROWN IT?

– 92 –

The American Believers’ Supreme, Remaining Responsibility

12 March 1942

OVERBURDENED MIND RELIEVED SADDENED HEART COMFORTED AMERICAN BAHÁ’Í COMMUNITY’S HIGH RESOLVE NATIONAL ASSEMBLY’S DUAL DECISION CONSUMMATE EXTERIOR ORNAMENTATION AUTHORIZE CONSTRUCTION STEPS MASHRIQU’L-ADHKÁR. UNDISMAYED VASTNESS UNFINISHED TASKS UNDAUNTED PHYSICAL OBSTACLES RAISED WORLD ENCIRCLING CONFLICT FORTIFIED CONSCIOUSNESS PAST VICTORIES SPURRED ON URGENCY SOLEMNITY HOUR UNDEFLECTED MACHINATIONS FAITHLESSNESS BREAKERS BAHÁ’U’LLÁH’S ‘ABDU’L-BAHÁ’S COVENANTS AMERICAN BELIEVERS MUST UNANIMOUSLY PLEDGE THEMSELVES SUBORDINATE EVERY ACTIVITY CANALIZE EVERY RESOURCE EXERT EVERY OUNCE EFFORT ENSURE BEFITTING DISCHARGE SUPREME ONE REMAINING RESPONSIBILITY CARRY LIGHT FAITH CAST ANCHOR ADMINISTRATIVE ORDER EVERY CANADIAN PROVINCE EVERY NORTH AMERICAN STATE EVERY REPUBLIC LATIN AMERICA. CONCOURSE ON HIGH APPLAUD BLESS ENVY MISSION FALLEN LOT SUCH STALWART CHAMPIONS LABORING SO ABLY VALIANTLY FOR SO MIGHTY CAUSE UNDER SUCH TRAGIC CIRCUMSTANCES IN SO PROMISING FIELD AT SO SIGNIFICANT PERIOD BAHÁ’Í HISTORY.

– 93 –

Impelled to Deputize Five Members

Message to 1942 Convention

25 April 1942

LAST PHASE SEVEN YEAR PLAN SO AUSPICIOUSLY BEGUN SO VIGOROUSLY PROSECUTED OPENING. FIRST BAHÁ’Í CENTURY FAST RUNNING OUT. AGONIES TRAVAILING AGE INEXORABLY CULMINATING. BÁB’S STIRRING UNIQUE INJUNCTION DIRECTING PEOPLES WEST LEAVE THEIR CITIES ENSURE TRIUMPH DIVINE CAUSE RECORDED CENTURY AGO QAYYÚMU’L-ASMÁ’. BAHÁ’U’LLÁH’S SIGNIFICANT SUMMONS CALLING UPON ALL PRESIDENTS REPUBLICS WESTERN HEMISPHERE CHAMPION CAUSE JUSTICE ISSUED SEVENTY YEARS AGO HIS MOST HOLY BOOK. BROAD OUTLINES ‘ABDU’L-BAHÁ’S MATCHLESS DESIGN CONCEIVED TWENTY-FIVE YEARS AGO BENEFIT NORTH AMERICAN BELIEVERS TRANSMITTED POSTERITY TABLETS DIVINE PLAN. SEVEN-YEAR ENTERPRISE REGARDED INITIAL STAGE EXECUTION WORLD MISSION ALREADY LAUNCHED. GIGANTIC TEMPLE UNDERTAKING CONSTITUTING MAJOR OBLIGATION THIS ENTERPRISE VIRTUALLY CONSUMMATED. VAST INTERCONTINENTAL TEACHING CAMPAIGN VISIBLY YIELDING FIRST FRUITS EVERY REPUBLIC LATIN AMERICA. UPON CRUCIAL YEAR AHEAD HINGE FORTUNES HISTORIC CRUSADE. FROM ALASKA TO CHILE AMERICAS ASTIR LEAVENING INFLUENCES RISING ORDER NEWBORN REVELATION. GREAT REPUBLIC WEST INESCAPABLY SWEPT SWELLING TIDE WORLD TRIBULATIONS PRESAGING ASSUMPTION PREPONDERATING SHARE ESTABLISHMENT ANTICIPATED LESSER PEACE. INVISIBLE HOSTS MARSHALED EAGER RUSH FORTH CROWN EVERY EFFORT HOWEVER HUMBLE HOWEVER BELATED EXERTED SPEED UNFINISHED TASKS PLAN. AGAIN RENEW PLEA CLOSER COMMUNION SPIRIT BAHÁ’U’LLÁH MORE PASSIONATE RESOLVE MORE ABUNDANT FLOW MATERIAL RESOURCES WIDER DISPERSION INTENSER CONCENTRATION BY STILL GREATER NUMBER PIONEERS SETTLERS ITINERANT TEACHERS ENSURE FOR PLAN TERMINATION COMMENSURATE WONDROUS EXPLOITS MARKING OPENING DECADE FIRST BAHÁ’Í CENTURY. MYSELF DEPRIVED PERSONAL PARTICIPATION TASK ALLOTTED PROSECUTORS EPOCH-MAKING PLAN IMPELLED DEPUTIZE FIVE MEMBERS AMERICAN BAHÁ’Í COMMUNITY HELP FULFILL MY BEHALF WHATEVER PIONEER FIELD MOST VITAL ITS URGENT REQUIREMENTS. PLEDGING FIVE THOUSAND DOLLARS ACCOMPLISHMENT THIS PURPOSE.

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