Sunday, April 20, 2008

Giving people a chance to say, "Yes, I believe"

The friends in St. Paul, MN (A), which has just launched its intensive program of growth, are seeing for themselves the openness to the Message among their neighbors and contacts. When the uncommon rejection occurs, they are finding it is not traumatic. The Bahá’ís there are exerting a truly united effort. The cluster development facilitator for St. Paul reports:

Dear friends,

After a wonderful reflection meeting last night, the second day of the first expansion phase of our cluster’s intensive program of growth met with tremendous confirmations and successes.

Community members are participating in many ways. More than 35 people have said that they will be praying for the teaching efforts during this period. A number of people have already started making an extra effort to present the Faith to friends and family in a systematic way that really gives people a chance to say, "Yes, I believe that Bahá’u’lláh is the Manifestation of God for this day". Today, 12 teams of two or three teachers visited a couple of neighborhoods in St. Paul. Some folks are helping to prepare food for the teaching teams, and others will be helping to make follow-up visits with new believers and others who requested a return visit to hear more about the Faith. All these ways of participating are blessed and needed.

In total we have 28 different people who either declared or requested a follow-up visit to learn more. This represents at least 10% of the people who answered the doors. Naturally there were some who were not interested; indeed many of us had a fear of doors being slammed and worse. But there was not a single unpleasant rejection from those we visited.

And the stories we heard! When the teaching teams came back together late in the afternoon, you can’t imagine the excitement when we heard that several people had declared their belief in Bahá’u’lláh and others who were interested in learning more about the Faith. Teachers saw faces filled with light and warmth, and encountered several people who specifically wanted them to come back when more members of their families would be home to hear this message.

Truly we saw today the meaning of 'Abdu'l-Bahá's words: "Whosoever arises for such a work, divine confirmations shall assist him and the power of the Kingdom shall be made manifest."

With warm Baha'i love,

Cluster Development Facilitator

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