One Common Faith, Community Building, and the Next Five Year Plan

Brian Wessel of Yap, Micronesia, found synergy between the Wilmette Institute course on One Common Faith and his efforts to build community and study the guidance of the Universal House of Justice:

Brian WesselStudying One Common Faith gave me a deeper understanding of where the Baha’i Faith fits into the scheme of the purpose of life and community-building, and gave me an indirect confidence to teach the Faith, especially with my co-workers at the high school.

I am going to re-read this document again and see if the friends here in Yap wouldn’t mind me giving a presentation on it one evening, sharing the most significant learnings that I encountered, thus making it personal but of interest to the community. . . .

When Baha’u’llah says that the “remedy the world needeth in its present day afflictions can never be the same as that which a subsequent age may require,” He does not mean any other remedy besides His Divine Remedy, as He is the All-Knowing Physician. . . . Materialistic solutions will not do justice to world problems without Baha’u’llah’s spiritual answers which deserve a central focus. “One universal Cause, one common Faith” takes on a deeper meaning because there is no other solution. Aid agencies around the globe provide band-aid solutions, infusing lots of money, but this contrasts starkly with grassroots “community-building” where spiritual progress combines with material progress, showing that the transformation has to come from within, and action creates learning, rather than money and outside doing-it-all.

I can apply learning gained from One Common Faith to my study of the current December 28, 2010, message from the Universal House of Justice. If I periodically look back at the questions posed for each group of paragraphs, I can keep concepts at-the-ready when engaged in meaningful and distinctive conversation.

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