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Citadel of Faith

  • Author:
  • Shoghi Effendi

  • Source:
  • US Bahá’í Publishing Trust, 1980 third printing
  • Pages:
  • 171
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Pages 60-62


The present and remaining contracts, designed to consummate the magnificent enterprise, initiated almost fifty years ago, in the heart of the North American continent and complete an edifice consecrated for all time by the loving hands of the Center of Bahá’u’lláh’s Covenant, constituting the foremost symbol of the Faith, and incarnating the soul of the American Bahá’í Community in the Western Hemisphere, must be speedily and systematically carried out, however onerous the task may become, in consequence of the inevitable fluctuations to which the present economic conditions are subjected, in preparation for the jubilee that must mark the completion of that holy edifice. The recent broadening of the administrative basis of the Faith in a land that has served, and will long remain the base of the spiritual operations now being conducted in both hemispheres, in response to the ringing call of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá, sounded three decades ago in His historic Tablets, must, no matter how arduous and insistent the tasks to be performed in Latin America and Europe, be fully maintained, and the process continually 61 enlarged and steadily consolidated. The various agencies designed to carry the Message to the masses, and to present to them befittingly the teachings of its Author, must, likewise, be vigilantly preserved, supported and encouraged. The essential preliminaries, calculated to widen the basis of the forthcoming Latin American national Bahá’í assemblies, to familiarize the Latin American believers with the administrative duties and functions they will be called upon to discharge and to enrich and deepen their knowledge of the essentials of their Faith, its ideals, its history, its requirements and its problems, must be carried out with ever-increasing energy as the hour of the emergence of these Latin American communities into independent existence steadily and inexorably approaches. The necessary guidance, which can alone be properly insured through the maintenance of an uninterrupted extension of administrative assistance, through the settlement of pioneers and the visits of itinerant teachers to the daughter communities, must under no circumstances be completely withdrawn, after their independence has been achieved. Above all, the momentous enterprise initiated in the transatlantic field of service, so vast in conception, so timely, so arduous, so far-reaching in its potentialities, so infinitely meritorious, must in the face of obstacles, however insurmountable they may seem, be continually reinvigorated through undiminished financial support, through an ever-expanding supply of literature in each of the required languages, through frequent, and whenever possible prolonged, visits of itinerant teachers, through the continued settlement of pioneers, through the consolidation of the assemblies already established, through the early constitution of properly functioning assemblies in the few remaining goal countries as yet deprived of this inestimable blessing, and last but not least through the exertion of sustained and concentrated efforts designed to supplement these foci of Bahá’í national administrative activity with subsidiary centers whose formation will herald the inauguration of teaching enterprises throughout the provinces of each of these ten countries.
As the dynamic forces, sweeping forward the First Seven Year Plan, on the last stages of its execution, rose rapidly to a crescendo, culminating in the nationwide celebrations marking the centenary of the Faith of Bahá’u’lláh and synchronized with a further and still more precipitous decline in the fortunes of a war-torn bleeding society, so must 62 every aggravation in the state of a world still harassed by the ravages of a devastating conflict, and now hovering on the brink of a yet more crucial struggle, be accompanied by a still more ennobling manifestation of the spirit of this second crusade, whose consummation might well coincide with a period of distress far more acute than the one through which humanity is now passing.