Further to the letter to you dated 30 June 1999 concerning English translations of Bahá’í Writings and their publication, we have been asked to convey to you the following related policies concerning the publication and translation of historical documents. For your ease of reference, Appendix II enclosed summarizes the policies concerning the translation of Bahá’í Sacred Writings into English, which were covered in our earlier letter.
The Universal House of Justice has noted two processes developing in recent years: an increase in the number of Bahá’ís who are individually translating portions of the Sacred Writings into English, and a growing number of Bahá’ís who wish to arrange for the publication of historical documents, accompanied by translations into English. Wishing to facilitate this process, while, at the same time, upholding the standard of approved translations and safeguarding the integrity of the Faith, the House of Justice has formulated two policy statements governing these matters (see Appendices II and III enclosed).
To give you some background to these developments, we have been asked to send to you extracts from a letter which was written on 4 May 1999 to an individual believer who enquired about the provision of primary source material to students of the Faith (see Appendix I). As you will see, these passages cover such matters as the various sources of such material, the duties incumbent upon the Universal House of Justice, the limited resources available to carry out the necessary work at this time, the priority of certain steps, and the defense of the Faith against the machinations of its enemies and the naïveté of some of its faithful followers.