`Abdu'l-Bahá's Visit to North America:
An Illustrated Story

By Hussain Ahdieh

First presented at the Irfan Colloquia Session #111
Centre for Bahá'í Studies: Acuto, Italy
June 30 – July 3, 2012
(see list of papers from #111)

    `Abdu'l-Bahá spent the majority of his stay while in North America in or near the city of New York, which he announced to be the City of the Covenant and where he proclaimed Lua Getsinger to be the Herald, and himself as the Center of the Covenant.

    He gave the majority of his lectures while there. News coverage of his time in New York was extensive and reported in papers around the country. A film was recorded of his meeting with friends and we have recordings of his melodious chanting of a Persian prayer. New York was the hub of his east coast stay.

    The purpose of the study is to cover the following points:

    • Gain a deeper understanding of the spiritual concepts and social principles of the Bahá'í Faith as explained by `Abdu'l-Bahá, Center of the Covenant. Use the Example of the Master in assisting us to transform our lives.
    • Understand the social context of the people of New York with whom the Master met. Understand their beliefs and concerns.
    • The lecture will cover the lives of the early Bahá'ís: their personal stories, beliefs and aspirations, the struggles and successes they had in community building and the development of their understanding of the Faith of Bahá'u'lláh.
    The class presenter will facilitate class discussion of questions such as the following:
    1. Why did `Abdu'l-Bahá come to America?
    2. What were His accomplishments?
    3. What role was played by the Covenant, the Peace Movement, the concept of Unity, Racism, Woman's Suffrage, and the Socialist Movement on the growth of the Bahá'í Community at the time of the Master's visit to America.

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