The Community Outreach team in the Fund Development office has been seeking ways to serve the Bahá'í community of the United States with flexibility and vigilance as we enter the last year of this Five Year Plan. In light of the current state of the entire world - and more acutely here in the United States, where we are battling multiple pandemics - individuals, families, and communities are striving to protect the health of those whom they hold close to their hearts as well as members of their greater community. With these efforts, coupled with a world-wide awakening and awareness of the vast injustices affecting black, indigenous, and other communities of color, individuals and groups are uniting to ensure that their voices are heard and their basic human rights established. In addition to this, families and businesses are grappling with the onset of immense financial uncertainty. The Fund Development Community Outreach team is aware of these tests and trials that we are all facing.
We have turned to the Ridvan Message of 2020 in which the Universal House of Justice writes:
"You draw from stores of hope, faith, and magnanimity, putting the needs of others before your own, enabling those who are deprived to be spiritually nourished, those who increasingly thirst for answers to be satisfied, and those who long to work for the betterment of the world to be offered the means. From the devoted followers of the Blessed Perfection, how could we expect less?"
As the work of the Cause continues, so does the work of our Community Outreach team to ensure that we are connected to each of the friends and assisting them to reflect on these words of Shoghi Effendi, written in a letter from August 8, 1957:
"The institution of the National Fund, so vital and essential for the uninterrupted progress of these activities must, in particular, be assured of the wholehearted, the ever-increasing and universal support of the mass of believers, for whose welfare and in whose name these beneficent activities have been initiated and have been conducted. All, no matter how modest their resources, must participate."
The Funds of the Faith are the Lifeblood of the Cause. Now at this time, it is even more vital to the sustainability and continued work of our Faith that we come together and do our part.
We are happy to announce that we can now connect with the friends and communities virtually! The following deepening themes are available as virtual workshops: Lifeblood, focused on deepening our understanding of our spiritual obligation and distinction of being the Bearers of the Name of God and the only ones who can contribute to this sacred Institution, and that our material contributions are part of our devotional life (also offered in Persian); Young, Broke, and Spiritual, which seeks to explore what it means to live a coherent life, with our spiritual and material goals united to build a new civilization.
During this unprecedented time, we are acutely aware of the challenges and opportunities that lie before us. We hope that engaging with the friends in this new manner will allow the work to continue uninterrupted. Be on the lookout for an email invitation to join! If you are interested in bringing a group together to participate as a community, please don’t hesitate to contact our office at BahaiTreasurersOffice@usbnc.org.