We draw your attention to the attached letter from our National Treasurer, Dr. William Roberts, dated February 17, 2011, requesting that each local treasurer make all believers aware of the urgency of closing the gap in the National Fund, so that we may reach our goal of $28 million by Ridvan. In addition, he asks each Local Spiritual Assembly and registered group to consider what part they can play in this instrumental endeavor. Please consult with your fellow Baha’is about this crucial need of the hour.
“…a readiness to listen, with heightened spiritual perception, will be invaluable in identifying obstacles that may prevent some of the friends from appreciating the imperative of unified action.” (The Universal House of Justice, December 28, 2010)
As we continue to deepen on the recent momentous December 28, 2010 Message from the Universal House of Justice, insights related to our relationship to the Funds of the Faith stand out more and more. The above quotation from that Message seems especially relevant, as we are continuously striving as Fund educators, to accompany the believers in appreciating the importance of unity in our contributions to the Fund. The following quotation highlights the confirmations that will accompany this unity:
“The unity of the believers, rich and poor alike, in their support of the Fund will be a source of spiritual confirmation far beyond our capacity to envisage.” (The Universal House of Justice, September 17, 1992)
We ask you to consult with your fellow believers at Feast about the beautiful topic of unity in all of its aspects, including how we relate to each other, ways we serve humanity together, including our united efforts in contributing directly to the various Funds of the Faith and accompanying each other in this service. Please join the conversation on the Treasurers Cafe and add your voice to other treasurers who are also sharing the outcome of various consultations in this online forum. We look forward to seeing you around the Cafe!
"A lady wrote: 'There are about twenty ways in which we could spend a given dollar these days without being convicted of extravagance. But, as my husband said last month, 'When we deprive ourselves, it is a small matter, even if it means serious personal discomfort; if we deprive the Mashriqu'l-Adhkar, the whole race will be deprived of the wonderful lessons it is going to teach.'" (From Stories About Baha'i Funds, page 13)
As we draw closer and closer to Ridvan, there are two crucial goals on our hearts and minds for this current Five Year Plan, still to be achieved. These are our National Fund Goal of $28 million and our International Pioneering Goal of 1,300 souls to be dispatched across the globe. Both of these sacred undertakings draw us closer to our Lord and to all of humanity. The following words of our Supreme Body highlight this love we feel so well:
“We are certain that, through the consultations about the Plan in which you participate, your understanding will deepen and, conscious of the spiritual forces that support you, you will resolve to make this global enterprise a personal concern and become as occupied with the well-being of the human family as you are with that of your dearest kin.” (The Universal House of Justice, January 1, 2011)
This amount of love is one that runs deep and inspires believers to make sacrifices they would have never dreamed possible. We hope you will listen to the audio file we have included below of Hand of the Cause of God, William Sears, telling the story of dear Ella Bailey, whom the beloved Guardian named as a martyr due to her incredible love and sacrifice for the Faith of Baha'u'llah. What a wonderful illustration of how this love we cherish for humanity can move us to great spiritual heights!
We ask you, as local treasurers, to share the talk about Ella Bailey (click here) with your fellow believers and then consult about both of these goals and how we can each contribute our share, so that every receptive soul may be given the opportunity to hear the name of Baha’u’llah and join us in walking this path of service, a service that ultimately belongs to Him. May we all be inspired to offer services, the likes of which we have never previously conceived of.
“If thou seekest eternal glory, let thyself be humble and meek in the presence of the beloved of God; make thyself the servant of all, and serve all alike. The service of the friends belongs to God, not to them. Strive to become a source of harmony, spirituality and joyfulness to the hearts of the friends and the maid-servants of the Merciful. This is a cause of great satisfaction to Abdu’l-Baha.” (Abdu'l-Baha, Tablets of Abdu'l-Baha v1, p. 61)
We are all still reeling from the stirring words of the December 28, 2010 message from the Universal House of Justice delineating the features of the next Five Year Plan, which begins at Ridvan 2011. Here, in the Office of the Treasurer, we are always thinking of the guidance and how it relates to the Funds of the Faith, which support all of our services to the Blessed Beauty. The following excerpt from the letter seemed particularly relevant to our work as stewards of the Funds:
“Faith in the capacity of every individual who shows a desire to serve will prove essential to the efforts of those who are to elicit from the believers wholehearted participation in the Plan.” (The Universal House of Justice, December 28, 2010)
As those in service to the Funds, one of our main objectives is to inspire wholehearted participation of the believers in their material contributions to the Cause of Bahá’u’lláh. This includes each Bahá’í having a direct relationship with all of the Funds of Faith and therefore contributing directly to them. In this month’s Treasurers Notes we have included the quote above for consultation at Feast. We hope you will collaborate with the friends on how we can all play our part in Fund inspiration and include the results on the Treasurers Cafe. We look forward to hearing about your dynamic interactions related to the sacred Institution of the Fund!