By Mona Rahimpour
HAMILTON: The McQuesten neighbourhood in Hamilton recently had its first Ridván gathering.
Invitations were printed, and over a two week period the team made visits to invite the families of children, junior youth and youth who had been involved with the institute programs. While the group was unsure what kind of response they’d receive, many different conversations were had – some allowing for an opportunity to speak more about the Faith and Bahá’u’lláh.
The ninth day of Ridván was celebrated in a beautifully decorated room with a tent like structure pitched in the centre of the room, seats all around, rose petals covering the ground and flowers flowing from tent and the doorway.
The celebration centred on the life of Bahá’u’lláh and the program was prepared in the format of a story with various artistic elements incorporated into the story. The Persian tombak was played to introduce the sound of Persia, the birthplace of Bahá’u’lláh.
Prayers were read in various languages, and two youth from the neighbourhood performed a Congolese dance that they had especially choreographed for the celebration.
The sound of nightingales was heard as sixty friends gathered, over half of whom were from the neighbourhood. The atmosphere was full of love and all who were gathered were happy to be there and happy to come back again.