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Messages to America

  • Author:
  • Shoghi Effendi

  • Source:
  • US Bahá’í Publishing Trust, 1947 edition
  • Pages:
  • 110
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Pages 87-89


Message to 1946 Convention
Hail with joyous heart the delegates of the American Bahá’í Community assembled beneath the dome of the Mother Temple of the West in momentous Convention of the first year of peace. The souls are uplifted in thanksgiving for the protection vouchsafed by Providence to the preeminent community of the Bahá’í world enabling its members to consummate, despite the tribulations of a world-convulsing conflict, the first stage of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá’s Plan. The Campaign culminating the Centenary of the inauguration of the Bahá’í Era completed sixteen months ere the appointed time the exterior ornamentation of the Mashriqu’l-Adhkár, laid the basis of the administrative order in every virgin state and province of the North American Continent, almost doubled the Assemblies established since the inception of the Faith, established Assemblies in fourteen republics of Latin America, constituted active groups in remaining republics, swelled to sixty the sovereign states within the pale of the Faith.
The two-year respite, well-earned after the expenditure of such a colossal effort, covering such a tremendous range, during so dark a period, is now ended. The prosecutors of the Plan who in the course of six war-ridden years achieved such prodigies of service in the Western Hemisphere 88 from Alaska to Magallanes are now collectively summoned to assume in the course of the peaceful years ahead still weightier responsibilities for the opening decade of the Second Century. The time is ripe, events are pressing. Hosts on high are sounding the signal for inauguration of second Seven Year Plan designed to culminate first Centennial of the year Nine marking the mystic birth of Bahá’u’lláh’s prophetic mission in Síyáh-Chál at Ṭihrán.
A two-fold responsibility urgently calls the vanguard of the dawn-breakers of Bahá’u’lláh’s Order, torch-bearers of world civilization, executors of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá’s mandate, to arise and simultaneously bring to fruition the tasks already undertaken and launch fresh enterprises beyond the borders of the Western Hemisphere.
The first objective of the new Plan is consolidation of victories already won throughout the Americas, involving multiplication of Bahá’í centers, bolder proclamation of the Faith to the masses. The second objective is completion of the interior ornamentation of the holiest House of Worship in the Bahá’í world designed to coincide with the fiftieth anniversary of the inception of this historic enterprise. The third objective is the formation of three national Assemblies, pillars of the Universal House of Justice, in the Dominion of Canada, Central and South America. The fourth objective is the initiation of systematic teaching activity in war-torn, spiritually famished European continent, cradle of world-famed civilizations, twice-blest by ‘Abdu’l-Bahá’s visits, whose rulers Bahá’u’lláh specifically and collectively addressed, aiming at establishment of Assemblies in the Iberian Peninsula, the Low Countries, the Scandinavian states, and Italy. No effort is too great for community belonging to the continent whose rulers Bahá’u’lláh addressed in the Most Holy Book, whose members were invested with spiritual primacy by ‘Abdu’l-Bahá and named by Him apostles of His Father, whose country was the first western nation to respond to the Divine Message and deemed worthy to be first to build the Tabernacle of the Most Great Peace, whose administrators evolved the pattern of the embryonic world order, consummated the first stage of the Divine Plan, and whose elevation to the throne of everlasting dominion the Center of the Covenant confidently anticipated. As the resistless impulse propelling the Plan accelerates, the American Community must rise to new levels of potency in response to the divine mandate, scale loftier heights of heroism, insure fuller participation of the rank and file of members, and closer collaboration with the agencies designed to insure attainment of the fourfold objectives, and evince greater audacity in tearing down the barriers in its path.
Upon the success of the second Seven Year Plan depends the launching, after a brief respite of three brief years, of a yet more momentous third Seven Year Plan which, when consummated through the establishment of 89 the structure of the administrative order in the remaining sovereign states and chief dependencies of the entire globe, must culminate in and be befittingly commemorated through world-wide celebrations marking the Centennial of the formal assumption by Bahá’u’lláh of the Prophetic Office associated with Daniel’s prophecy and the world triumph of the Bahá’í revelation and signalizing the termination of the initial epoch in the evolution of the Plan whose mysterious, resistless processes must continue to shed ever-increasing lustre on successive generations of both the Formative and Golden Ages of the Faith of Bahá’u’lláh.
Pledging ten thousand dollars as my initial contribution for the furtherance of the manifold purposes of a glorious crusade surpassing every enterprise undertaken by the followers of the Faith of Bahá’u’lláh in the course of the first Bahá’í century.

April 25, 1946