In just a few weeks, six truly historic events will be taking place in the United States. In its message dated October 20, 2008, the Universal House of Justice called for a series of 41 regional conferences around the world to celebrate the progress of the series of Five Year Plans, as well as for the friends to consult on the next steps to advance the teaching work in their communities, and what they can do to contribute.
As of November 20, six of the 41 conferences have taken place so far, and another four are scheduled to take place this coming weekend. (The six in the United States will be taking place on December 6-7 and December 13-14.)
The stories from the conferences that have already concluded are truly inspiring. The friends have come together in unity and joy, celebrated, reflected, consulted, and have been galvanized into action. Here are some examples of the types of commitments made by individuals who attended these events:
“Yes, we have financial crises, yes, our societies are morally degrading by the day, and yes, we are constantly in search of answers to so many questions. Yet by being part of this event, I realized that all that all the planning we ever do for children’s classes, for teaching efforts and other activities is preparation for the real thing—the action.” Youth from Zambia
“We know exactly what to do to help the surrounding clusters achieve their aims.” Woman from Kenya
“I’m going to work on the junior youth program that is already established in a nearby village, strengthen it and make sure that it grows.” Participant from Botswana
“The vision is clearer, and I am enthusiastic to go home and teach. I have more confidence.” Participant from Mauritius
“I’ve very much inspired by this conference, and now the believers from my cluster have taken the firm resolution not only to bring it to the A stage by Ridvan 2009, but also to help the neighboring clusters in their efforts to grow.” Woman from India
“I am now planning to start a core activity that will be a help for the whole of humanity.” Man from the Democratic Republic of the Congo
“The conference played a big role in recharging my batteries and saying to me, ‘There’s work that needs to be done’. And I’ll do it happily.” 13-year old from South Africa
“Everyone got to rethink their role in the Plan. The number of volunteers who offered to help was very encouraging. We start on Sunday!” Participant from the Central African Republic
The National Spiritual Assembly encourages all of us who attend the upcoming conferences in the United States to share our personal stories.
To read more about the conferences around the world, you can visit the following news site: http://news.bahai.org/community-news/regional-conferences/