The Bahá’ís of Roanoke and surrounding communities will mark the 200th Anniversary of the Birth of Bahá’u’lláh, Founder of the Bahá’í Faith, Thursday, through Sunday, Oct. 19-22. Area plans for “The Light of Unity Festival” include special showing of a film on Baha’u’llah’s life at the Salem Library at 2 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 21, and an (invitation only) celebration at Roanoke’s Jefferson Center on Sunday, Oct. 22.
Two other public meetings planned include one at the Rocky Mount Public Library from 6-8 p.m. October 19 and another at the Haymarket Theater at Virginia Tech on October 22 from 3-5 p.m.–for which an RSVP by Oct. 16 was requested by Baha’is of Blacksburg.
Bahá’u’lláh (1817-1892) was a spiritual teacher who announced in 1863 that he was the Bearer of a new revelation from God. His teachings have since spread around the world, forming the basis of a spiritual process of social transformation and community building which is unique in its global scope and the diversity of its adherents.
The Light of Unity Festival celebrates the transformative impact of Bahá’u’lláh’s teachings on the lives of families, neighborhoods, and communities around the country and the world! Baha’is believe that Bahá’u’lláh’s vision of the oneness of humanity is an antidote to the racial prejudice and materialism that continue to corrode American society.
“Now more than ever we need positive models of social change that bring people together rather than divide them,” said Jerry Craig, a member of the Salem Baha’i community. “As Baha’u’llah wrote, we are all ‘the fruits of one tree, and the leaves of one branch. . . So powerful is the light of unity that it can illuminate the whole earth!”
The upcoming events in the Roanoke area are just part of the worldwide Light of Unity Festival, a series of activities generated at the grassroots level to reinforce Bahá’u’lláh’s vision of–and continuous Divinely orchestrated Plan for the oneness of humanity!
Before and after these events, there remain opportunities to join interfaith devotional meetings and small study groups in each community.
At the national level, the Bahá’í House of Worship in Wilmette, IL is hosting a nine-week series of programs on themes applying the principle of the oneness of humanity to contemporary challenges, including environmental justice, race relations, indigenous peoples, human rights, and the harmony of science and religion.
To learn more and get involved visit http://www.roanokevabahaicluster.org/public-events.html