The Universal House of Justice

25 November 1963

To all National Spiritual Assemblies

Beloved Friends,

The Hands of the Cause at their London Conclave last May decided that Auxiliary Board members should be free of administrative responsibilities in order to devote their full energies to their work as Board members. Those Board members serving on National Assemblies were therefore requested to decide, before Riḍván 1964, in which capacity they could best serve the Cause.

In view of this request made by the Hands of the Cause to their Auxiliary Board members, the Universal House of Justice has reached the following decisions:

  1. 1 National Assemblies in whose areas of jurisdiction Board members reside, should point out to the delegates at Convention that whilst teaching and administrative duties are not mutually exclusive, it is desirable that Auxiliary Board members, whether for teaching or protection, be left free to concentrate on the work allotted to them by the Hands of the Cause in each Continent. The following extract from the Guardian’s letter, written through his secretary, could be shared with the delegates for their guidance when casting their votes:

    “The teachers of the Cause can surely become members of any Assembly or committee. There should be no incapacity attached to them. But Shoghi Effendi would just prefer to see them devote all their time to teaching and leave the administrative functions for those who cannot serve as teachers.” (Bahá’í News, October 1932).

  2. 2 Should Board members still be elected on National Assemblies after the above explanation, it should rest with each Board member to decide which of the two functions he feels best suited to perform. The Universal House of Justice, therefore, approves the request made by the Hands of the Cause to their Board members that they choose between the two functions.

  3. 3 In the event of the resignation of Auxiliary Board members from National Assemblies, this should be considered as good reason for resignation. If, however, the National Assembly, in view of special conditions, should consider such resignations to be detrimental to the interests of the Faith of that National Community, and the Board member should insist upon resigning on the grounds of his membership on the Board, the matter should be at once referred to the Universal House of Justice by the National Spiritual Assembly for examination and final decision. Pending such a decision, the Board member should continue his membership on the National Assembly, and explain his position to the Hands of the Cause in his continent.

  4. 4 Measures will have to be taken by National Assemblies according to normal procedure to fill any vacancies created in this way. If the vacancy is recognized while Convention is still in session, a by-election could be arranged before Convention disbands.

With loving Bahá’í greetings,

[signed: The Universal House of Justice]