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Directives from the Guardian

  • Author:
  • Shoghi Effendi

  • Source:
  • India/Hawaii, 1973 edition
  • Pages:
  • 87
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Pages 85-86

222: YOUTH (Regarding the Age of Fifteen)

“Regarding the age of fifteen fixed by Bahá’u’lláh: This relates only to purely spiritual functions and obligations and is not related to the degree of administrative capacity and fitness which is a totally different thing, and is, for the present, fixed at twenty-one.”
“Bahá’í youth under twenty-one may serve on Committees.
“The question of young Bahá’ís being permitted to serve on committees other than the Youth Committee has been raised in a number of letters recently, and in considering the matter he felt that Bahá’í young people under twenty-one should not be denied the privilege of committee work. Though they cannot be voting members of Bahá’í communities (or exercise the electoral vote at all until they reach that age), and though they cannot, likewise, be elected to Assemblies, there is no reason why they should not serve the Cause on various committees as all committees, national or local, are subordinate to Assemblies and their members not elected but appointed, and appointed by Assemblies. We have many devoted and talented young believers who can be of great assistance to the Cause even though not yet legally of age.”
“This Cause, although it embraces with equal esteem people of all ages, has a special message and mission for the youth of your generation. It is their charter for their future, their hope, their guarantee of better days to come. Therefore the Guardian is especially happy that the young Bahá’ís are active in the pioneer work.”
“The importance of young Bahá’ís to become thoroughly steeped in every branch of the teachings can not be over-emphasized, as they have great teaching tasks ahead of them to accomplish.” 86