The Universal House of Justice
To the Friends gathered at the Asian International Youth Conference, Karachi, Pakistan, 21–23 July 2000
We send our loving greetings to the friends gathered at the International Bahá’í Youth Conference held in Karachi at this central stage of the Twelve Month Plan.
Our confident hope is that the youth, both in Pakistan and throughout Asia, will increasingly be one of the strongest instruments in advancing the process of entry by troops. For this to happen, Bahá’í youth, like all Bahá’ís, need to fortify their faith by immersing themselves repeatedly and frequently in the study of the Creative Word of God. One of the major purposes of training institutes is to help make this enrichment possible. Our hope is that great numbers of youth will not only participate in the courses of the institutes, but will themselves assume the responsibilities of tutors and facilitators. Such a development will serve both Bahá’ís and the wider society in your countries.
Now that the knowledge of the name of the Faith has spread widely, and ever more people are becoming aware of its Teachings, the public in many places is watching the Bahá’í community to see how these life-giving principles of Bahá’u’lláh are affecting the daily lives of His followers. The verities of the Faith must become increasingly demonstrated in the way its adherents serve humanity, champion justice and promote unity. In a letter written to a National Spiritual Assembly on his behalf shortly before his passing the beloved Guardian explained:
The Bahá’ís are the leaven of God, which must leaven the lump of their nation. In direct ratio to their success will be the protection vouchsafed, not only to them but to their country. These are the immutable laws of God, from which there is no escape.…
The challenge facing you at this important gathering is to consider how you can become this leaven, an example to masses of people who are desperately seeking somewhere to turn for spiritual help.
As you are aware, the Twelve Month Plan emphasizes the importance of the Bahá’í education of children and junior youth. Youth, who are so often the role models of their younger siblings and friends, have a unique opportunity in this regard. In responding to this opportunity, you will be astonished how you yourselves will be enriched.
As you consult together over the next few days, drawing upon the wisdom and experience of Counselors Vicente Samaniego and Rosalie Tran, you may be sure that our prayers will be surrounding you.