Uncompiled Published Letters

Shoghi Effendi


1922-02-06 To Un-named Persian, “I wish to be known as”

The Priceless Pearl, Rúḥíyyih Khánum, p76

I wish to be known, to realize myself however far I may proceed in future, as one and only one of the many workers in His Vineyards… Whatever may betide I trust in His [‘Abdu’l-Bahá’s] wondrous love for me. May I in no wise by my deeds, thoughts or words, impede the stream of His sustaining Spirit which I sorely need in facing the responsibilities He has placed on my youthful shoulders…


1922-03-19 To Un-named Professor, Position in Faith

Priceless Pearl— Rúḥíyyih Khánum, p49

Replying to your question as to whether I have been officially designated to represent the Bahá’í Community: ‘Abdu’l-Bahá in his testament has appointed me to be the head of the universal council which is to be duly elected by national councils representative of the followers of Bahá’u’lláh in different countries…


1922-04-05 To Col Symes as Govenor of Phoenicia, Leaving Haifa for Rest

The Priceless Pearl, Rúḥíyyih Khánum, p275-6

As I am compelled to leave Haifa for reasons of health, I have named as my representative during my absence, the sister of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá, Bahíyyih Khánum … To assist her to conduct the affairs of the Bahá’í Movement in this country and elsewhere, I have also appointed a committee of the following Bahá’ís [eight men of the local community, three of them the sons-in-law of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá]… The Chairman of this Committee, to be soon elected by its members, with the signature of Bahíyyih Khánum has my authority to transact any affairs that may need to be considered and decided during my absence. I regret exceedingly to be unable to see you before my departure, that I may express more adequately the satisfaction that I feel to know that your sense of justice will safeguard the interests of the Cause of Bahá’u’lláh whenever called upon to act.


1922-12-16 Letter on Return to Haifa

SOTW Volume 13 No. 11, February, 1923, p299

To the loved ones of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá throughout the continent of America,
Dear fellow-workers in the Holy Vineyard of Bahá

Now that my tong hours of rest and meditation are happily at an end I turn my face with renewed hope and vigour to that vast continent the soil of which is pregnant with those seeds that our beloved Master has so tenderly and so profusely scattered in the past. Prolonged though this period has been, yet I have strongly felt ever since the New Day has dawned upon me that such a needed retirement, despite the temporary dislocations it might entail, would far outweigh in its results any immediate service I could have humbly tendered at the Threshold of Bahá’u’lláh.

I am now confident that the energies of my beloved brethren and sisters across the seas, far from being damped by my sudden disappearance from the field of service, will henceforth be fully maintained, nay redoubled in their intensity, that we may all together carry triumphantly to the uttermost corners of the world the glorious Standard of Bahá.

Bereft of all news whatsoever during my hours of restful seclusion, I now feel the more the thrill of the various tidings, few but indeed promising, that have been awaiting my return to the Holy Land. The work of the noble Edifice that the mighty hands of the All-Wise Master has reared in this world can suffer no delay, nor can its foundations be made to totter, whatever the apparent obstacles its enemies in their impotent wrath and despair may throw in its way. We need not wait too long, for already from various quarters there comes the news that the awful promises of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá regarding the Covenant-breakers have been strikingly fulfilled.

But it behooves us not to dwell for a moment on these doomed and darkened efforts for the shining light of the Master’s unfailing guidance is beckoning us to more constructive service, to nobler and worthier achievements.

We have, not a long time ago, with tearful eyes commemorated the world over the passing hour of our beloved Master. Would to God it has marked in our lives which we all have consecrated to his service a fresh, solemn and unswerving re solution of devotion and fidelity to his Cause.

Haifa, Palestine,
December 16th, 1922.
Your brother and co-worker,


1922-12-16 Cable on Return to Haifa

SOTW Vol 13#10 p265





1922-12-16 To Colonel Symes Governor of Phoenicia, Return to Haifa

The Priceless Pearl, Rúḥíyyih Khánum, p276-7

It is my pleasant duty to inform you of my return to the Holy Land after a prolonged period of rest and meditation and of my assumption of my official functions… I had felt after the passing of my beloved Grandfather too exhausted, overwhelmed and sorrowful to be able to conduct efficiently the affairs of the Bahá’í Movement. Now that I feel again restored and refreshed and in a position to resume my arduous duties, I wish to express to you on this occasion my heartfelt gratitude and appreciation for the sympathetic consideration you have shown towards the Movement during my absence…

It is a great pleasure and privilege for me to be enabled to renew my acquaintance with you and Mrs. Symes which I am confident will in the course of time grow into warm and abiding friendship.

Kind regards and best wishes, Shoghi


1922-12-16 To the Bahá’ís of France on Returning to Holy Land

The Priceless Pearl, Rúḥíyyih Khánum, p65



1922-12-16 To Bahá’ís of Germany on Returning to Holy Land

The Priceless Pearl, Rúḥíyyih Khánum, p64



1922-12-16 To Bahá’ís of Great Britain on Returning to Holy Land

The Priceless Pearl, Rúḥíyyih Khánum, p64



1922-12-16 To Bahá’ís of India on Returning to Holy Land

The Priceless Pearl, Rúḥíyyih Khánum, p64



1922-12-16 To Bahá’ís of Mesopotamia on Returning to Holy Land

The Priceless Pearl, Rúḥíyyih Khánum, p65



1922-12-16 To Bahá’ís of Switzerland on Returning to Holy Land

The Priceless Pearl, Rúḥíyyih Khánum, p65



1922-12-16 To Bahá’ís of Turkey on Returning to Holy Land

The Priceless Pearl, Rúḥíyyih Khánum, p65



1922-12-16 To Persian Bahá’ís on Returning to Holy Land

The Priceless Pearl, Rúḥíyyih Khánum, p64



1922-12-16 To Unknown on Returning to Holy Land

The Priceless Pearl, Rúḥíyyih Khánum, p65-6

…I shall now eagerly await the joyful tidings of the progress of the Cause and the extension of your activities and will spare no effort in sharing with the faithful, here and in other lands, the welcome news of the progressive march of the Cause.


1922-12-18 To Bahá’ís of Italy on Returning to Holy Land

The Priceless Pearl, Rúḥíyyih Khánum, p65



1922-12-19 To Palestine High Commissioner on Return to Holy Land

The Priceless Pearl, Rúḥíyyih Khánum, p70



1922-12-29 To Chicago Bahá’ís

SOTW Volume 13#12, p330

To the beloved of the Lord and the handmaids of the Merciful in Chicago, Ill., U. S. A.
Care of the members of the Spiritual Assembly.
Beloved brethren and sisters in the Cause of God:

May I assure you in this short message of mine of my sincere admiration for and firm attachment to those old and tried believers who have been engaged ever since the earliest days of the Cause in that land in the noble pursuit of spreading far and wide the Universal Teachings of Bahá’u’lláh. Your city so far-famed for its intimate association with the history of the rise of the Mashriqu’l-Adhkár will, I trust, witness in the not distant future while this majestic Structure is being raised a swift regeneration in the spiritual lives of its inhabitants, that it may become truly the throbbing centre of Bahá’í activities throughout the land.

We all look forward with eager hearts to the time when this noble Edifice, with all its various accessories completed, will become the focal centre of spiritual, humanitarian and intellectual achievements to which the friends of that city, the pioneers of such a glorious work, will have a distinct share to contribute. May my prayers together with yours hasten the advent of such a crowning period in the history of the Cause in that land!

Your brother and co-worker,
Haifa, Palestine,
December 29th, 1922.


1922-12-xx To Paris Bahá’ís, Hoping for Election of LSA

The Priceless Pearl, Rúḥíyyih Khánum, p344

it would give me genuine satisfaction and pleasure to learn of the establishment of a local Spiritual Assembly, properly constituted, efficiently functioning, and officially recognized by the members of the great Bahá’í family. I would strongly urge you if such an assembly has not yet been founded to establish such a definite and fixed centre for the Cause which, though at first may appear a mere matter of form, will not only fill a gap in the uniform administration of the Movement throughout the world but would, I am certain, prove a nucleus around which would gather many a soul in future…


1923-01-05 To Cleveland Bahá’ís

SOTW Volume 13#12, p330

The beloved of the Lord and the handmaids of the Merciful in Cleveland, Ohio, U. S. A.
Care of the members of the Spiritual Assembly.
My beloved friends:

I trust now that I have returned refreshed and strengthened from my needed retirement, I shall very soon hear from you such news as shall encourage and strengthen me in my labours for His Holy Cause.

I look forward with eager anticipation to the welcome news of increased unity among the loved ones of God, of renewed ardour in their ceaseless service to the Cause and of crowning achievements in their field of service throughout that country.

True, in this day the Light of the Covenant is hidden from mortal eyes, yet the unfading Splendour of His Spirit, freed from earthy limitations, shines more brilliantly than ever before and is sure to guide our steps if we but seek His Guidance and walk steadfastly in His Way.

May the radiance of His Inspiration illumine our hearts and the hope of Eternal Reunion be our stay and solace in these days of bereavement and service to His Cause.

Supplicating the Divine Favours on your behalf,
I am your brother in His Service,

Haifa, Palestine,
January 5, 1923.
(Signed) Shoghi


1923-01-06 To a U.S. LSA, Hopes for America

The Priceless Pearl, Rúḥíyyih Khánum, p340

Whenever I recall the messages of love, of confidence and of hope our Beloved has expressed in such glowing terms in His innumerable Tablets to the loved ones in America, I feel that sooner or later the secret of this unbounded love must appear and that great continent so near and dear to His heart, must soon unfold itself entirely to the glory of His Revelation.


1923-01-07 To Berkeley Bahá’ís

Cited in Youth in the Vanguard, Marion Yazdí, pp46-47, USBNC archives

The beloved of the Lord and the handmaids of the Merciful in Berkeley, Calif., U.S.A.
Care of the members of the Spiritual Assembly.

Dear Friends!

I need not tell you how pleased I feel at this moment when I enter into correspondence with the loved ones of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá in that city, who I am sure, fired with the spirit of service and teaching which His passing has kindled in every heart, are striving to proclaim His Word and promote His Teachings in that great country.

The services you have rendered and are still rendering in the Path of God, the accounts of which have been reaching the Holy Land, have served to renew my unshaken confidence in those faithful children of ‘Abdu’1-Bahá to whom He has shown abundant favors in the past and from whom He expects an undying devotion to the service of His Cause.

No need for me to remind you of the assurance He has so repeatedly given in His tablets to His friends in America as to the glorious triumphs that await every believer, who with determination, selflessness and ardor, arises for the diffusion of the Light of this Divine Revelation throughout the world. And we, who witness from every quarter the crying need of humanity, what nobler service can we render, than to raise the call of Yá Bahá’u’1-Abhá— a call which amid the rising tumult of so many conflicting sects and creeds can alone assure to distracted mankind the reign of true felicity and lasting peace.

Remembering you in my prayers at the Holy Shrines,

I am your brother and co-worker,

(signed) Shoghi

Haifa, Palestine,
January 7th, 1923


1923-01-08 To Various Bahá’í Communities

SOTW Vol 14,#2, p48
USBN No. 72, April 1933, page 5

The beloved of the Lord and the handmaids of the Merciful in Asbury Pork, N. J.; Augusta, Ga.; Beverly-Salem, Mass.; Bisbee, Ariz.; Buffalo, N. Y.; Eliot, Maine; Cambridge Springs, Penn.; Fernandina, Fla.; Fruitport, Mich.; Grand Rapids, Mich.; Geyserrville, Cal.; Grand Haven, Mich.; Haverhill, Mass.; Ithaca, N. Y.; Johnstown, N. Y.; Miami, Fla.; Milwaukee, Wis:.; Ncw Haven, Conn.; Omaha, Neb.; Okanagan, Wash.; Peoria, Ill.; San Diego, Cal.; Santa Barbara, Cal.; Santa Paula, Cal.; Santa Rosa, Cal.; Springfield, Ill.; St. John, N. B.; St. Louis, Mo.; St. Paul, Minn.; Trenton, N.J., Worcester, Mass.

Care of the members of the National Spiritual Assembly.

“Dearest Fellow-workers in the Vineyard of God:

“Though your number in each of these cities be small and limited, yet by virtue of that Celestial Potency bequeathed to every one of you by our departed Master, you are assured that ere long your small company shall expand and wield such power and influence as no earthly power can ever hope for or attain. Who can doubt that He is ever watching from His Station on high over His scattered fold and is guiding and strengthening His faithful lovers who toil and labor for the fulfilment of His word and the realization of His purpose for mankind?

“As we observe the sad conditions of the world and the complexity of the problems that are besetting humanity, we may at times lose heart and grow forgetful of the promised dawn of the New Day, so repeatedly and emphatically foretold in the Sacred Writings. But we need only refer to some of the earliest writings of our beloved Master to regain that confidence which the vicissitudes of the world, however distressing, can never shake. Are not these words wherein He assures us of the onward march of the Cause— a march which no one can resist and which is sure to lead humanity to its glorious destiny?

“‘Now in the world of being, the Hand of Divine Power hath firmly laid the foundations of the all-highest bounty and this wondrous gift. Whatsoever is latent in the innermost of this Holy Cycle shall gradually appear and be made manifest, for now is but the beginning of its growth and the dayspring of the revelation of its signs. Ere the close of this century and of this age it shall be made clear and evident how wondrous was that springtide and how heavenly was that gift!’

“And as the outlook grows darker and despondency overtakes the hearts, it is incumbent upon us to arise with greater confidence than ever before, endeavoring to clear the mists of hate and prejudice that have dimmed the vision of mankind and, relying upon these assuring words of His, point out to a weary world the way of true Salvation.

“I very eagerly await the news of the progress of the Movement in your cities and shall be grateful and delighted to hear that you have reinforced your numbers, extended your activities, established a center and founded a Spiritual Assembly that shall direct and coordinate your efforts for the promotion of the Cause.

“Awaiting your joyful news and beseeching the blessings of the Almighty on your efforts, I am

Your brother and co-worker,


Haifa Palestine,
January 8, 1923.”


1923-01-11 Future of Russia

Eastern Europe and the Soviet Union A Compilation From the Bahá’í Writings,#31
Compiled by the Research Department of the Universal House of Justice

There is no doubt that the day will come when the very people who are now engaged in destroying the foundations of faith in God and promoting this baseless doctrine of materialism will arise and, by their own hand, snuff out the flame of this commotion. They will sweep away the entire structure of their unrestrained godlessness and will arise with heart and soul, and with hitherto unmatched vigour, to atone for their past failures. They will join the ranks of the followers of Bahá’u’lláh and arise to promote His Cause… If the friends remain steadfast, and discharge their duties with loyalty and prudence, the veils of God’s inscrutable wisdom will be lifted and extraordinary events will be witnessed. The hosts of divine confirmation, fortified by the power of the Spirit, will, in unimaginable ways and from unexpected quarters, provide the means for the triumph of the Cause of our Self-Subsisting Lord, and in so doing will brighten the eyes of the faithful throughout the world.

(11 January 1923 to the Bahá’ís of Kirmánsháh— translated from the Persian)


1923-01-23 Awaken and Quicken Land of China

Compilation of China compiled by the Bahá’í Committee for China (Macau) p2#2

Let the friends in the East and the West both enter the field. Let them awaken and quicken the land of China— a land which has its own world and civilization, whose people constitute one-fourth of the population of the globe, which ranks foremost among all nations in material, cultural and spiritual resources and potentialities, and whose future is assuredly bright. Let them draw that vast and mighty land under the shadow of the Word of God, cause its people to associate with the other nations of the world, and demonstrate the true oneness of mankind, which can alone be established through the power of Bahá’u’lláh.

(23 January 1923 letter from the Guardian to the Bahá’ís of the East)(2)


1923-01-xx To Ḥusayn Afnán— I stand for absolute sincerity

The Priceless Pearl, Rúḥíyyih Khánum, p70

I presume you have gathered from past experience that I stand for absolute sincerity, scrupulous justice in all matters pertaining to the Cause, and an uncompromising attitude with regard to the enemies of the Movement, the Nakezeens, whose vile and unceasing efforts God alone shall frustrate.

With a pure heart, I eagerly look forward to those signs that will unmistakably reveal your desire and resolve to stand by the Will of the Master and avoid in every way the breakers of the Covenant.

Soon after this letter, Ḥusayn Afnán, a grand-son of Bahá’u’lláh, become an open supporter of his uncle’s (Muḥammad-‘Alí’s) claim to the Bahá’í properties over Shoghi Effendi. He was later involved in Iraqi government and politics.


1923-01-xx To London Bahá’ís, Competent Assistant in my Translation Work

The Priceless Pearl, Rúḥíyyih Khánum, p91

The presence of a competent assistant in my translation work at present in Haifa would be most welcome, and highly desirable and I submit this matter to the members of the Council that they may consider the matter of sending for a time one of the English friends who would attend with me to this all-important work.


1923-01-xx To a U.S. local Assembly, Whirlwind may Destroy Civilization

The Priceless Pearl, Rúḥíyyih Khánum, p353

Individuals and nations are being swept by a whirlwind of insincerity and selfishness, which if not resisted may imperil, nay destroy civilization itself. It is our task and privilege to capture gradually and persistently the attention of the world by the sincerity of our motives, by the breadth of our outlook and the devotion and tenacity with which we pursue our work of service to mankind.


1923-02-03 To NYC Bahá’ís

SOTW Vol 14#4, p122

To the beloved of the Lord and the handmaids of the Merciful, throughout the City of New York, U. S. A. Care of the members of the Spiritual Assembly.

Dear and faithful friends of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá

The welcome letter which the members of your Spiritual Assembly have sent me is indeed a fresh and remarkable testimony of your wise, patient and persistent efforts to promote the Cause of God and deepen its foundations in the heart of that great city.

All throughout the various vicissitudes which the Movement has encountered during this past year of bereavement and uncertainty, the faithful lovers of the Master in New York have, by their wisdom in teaching, the range and character of their activities, their perseverance in their labors and their unity in service, proved themselves worthy of the blessings which our beloved ‘Abdu’I-Bahá showered upon them during his repeated visits to their city. It is my earnest hope and prayer that now at this decisive hour of the Cause of God the friends may with clear vision and redoubled energy endeavor to deepen still further the essential truths of the Cause in their own lives, and then extend the sphere of their activity, endeavoring at all times to infuse the regenerating Spirit of Bahá’u’lláh into the divers communities, creeds and classes that arc represented in that most cosmopolitan city of the American continent.

From the leaflets, the circular letter and the pamphlet enclosed in the letter of your Spiritual Assembly, I can see clearly how well you have undertaken the task of acquainting the intellectual and religious circles of your city with the Divine Teachings, how admirably you have co-ordinated your efforts for service and how beautifully you have immortalized the memory of the Be· loved’s sojourn in your midst.

As I have already intimated in my first letter to the National Spiritual Assembly, I shall be most pleased to receive from every Bahá’í center throughout America regular and comprehensive reports on the position of the Cause and the activity of the friends. These I shall gladly transmit to the friends throughout the East, who in their present hour of restlessness and turmoil will, I am sure, be cheered to hear of the steady and peaceful growth of the Cause in your land. I have already shared the news you have conveyed to me with the resident friends in the Holy Land, and shall soon, by the aid of the Spiritual Assembly of Haifa, send them to the believers throughout the East.

Our departed Master, whose Call first awakened that city, who later visited it and with his own hands watered its soil, and who to last hour bestowed his tenderest care upon it, is now, as ever before, watching ‘from his Station on High the progress of the work which he entrusted to you, his beloved children, ready to bless, guide and strengthen you in your efforts to achieve success for his Cause.

Awaiting your joyful news, and wishing you from alt my heart the highest success in all your endeavors,

I am your devoted brother,

Haifa, Palestine,
February 3, 1923.


1923-02-03 To Editors and Manager of SOTW

SOTW Vol 14#1, April 1923

To the Editors and Manager of the STAR OF THE WEST:

Mr. Albert Vail
Miss Edna True
Dr. Zia M. Baghdádí
Mírzá Aḥmad Sohrab

Care of the members of the National Spiritual Assembly.

Dear Co-workers in the Holy Vineyard:

I have read with deep interest the recent numbers of the STAR OF THE WEST, and note with intense delight and gratitude the rapid advance it has made toward the fulfillment of that noble aim which the Master has clearly set before it. I have had its contents carefully translated and circulated among the resident friends in the Holy Land and the surrounding regions, and they, one and all, feel gratified and hopeful of the pre-eminent role it is destined to play in future.

I have requested every Spiritual Assembly throughout Persia, Turkestan, Caucasus, India, Egypt, ‘Iráq, Turkey, Syria and Palestine to contribute periodically carefully written articles to your Magazine, and submit regularly for publication a special report on their spiritual activities and the progress of the Cause in their own province. I trust that thereby you may be enabled to revive and enrich the Persian Section, and add considerably to the size and importance of the STAR as a whole.

True, the rays it now sheds are as yet faint and insignificant, yet our hopes and reliance are in the Master’s Words, that by your ceaseless efforts, reinforced in time by the assistance of friends and Assemblies the world over, this STAR OF THE WEST shall grow to become so powerful a propounder of the Holy Writ of God and may so mirror forth the beauty of the Abhá Revelation as to become itself the Day— Star of the world.

Broad in its outlook, forceful in its appeal, universal and comprehensive in the range of its articles, wise and tactful in its selection of materials for publication, at once elevated and simple in its style, correct and reliable in the translations it publishes, the interpretations it makes, the information it gives— in a word, illuminating and convincing in all its aspects-such is the standard of excellence which every reader of the STAR and every contributor to its columns wishes it to attain.

May it achieve its glorious purpose!

Your brother and co-worker


Haifa, Palestine,
February 3rd. 1923.


1923-02-07 To Colonel Symes, Charity Ball for the Poor of Haifa

The Priceless Pearl, Rúḥíyyih Khánum, p294-5

I have just heard of the Charity Ball which Mrs. Symes is organizing to aid the poor of Haifa. Realizing how their cause was consistently upheld by my beloved Grandfather, and it being my earnest endeavour to follow in his footsteps, I beg to enclose the sum of 20 [pounds]— as a contribution to the fund… I trust you have had a very enjoyable time in Egypt, and hoping to meet you and Mrs. Symes in the near future…


1923-02-27 To the Friends in Persia, Participation in Elections

Spiritual Institutions: The Foundation for Oneness
compiled by US NSA, 2000

On the election day the friends must whole-heartedly participate in the elections, in unity and amity, turning their hearts to God.


1923-02-xx To Washington D.C. Bahá’ís

SOTW Vol 14#5, p155

The beloved of the Lord and the handmaids of the Merciful in Washington, D.C., U.S.A.
Care of the members of the Spiritual Assembly.

Dearest Friends:

I welcome gladly and heartily this first opportunity of expressing to you in writing what I have always felt in the depths of my heart of my confident hopes for your whole-hearted assistance in the great task that is before me.

I know too well of the spirit of ardent devotion and steadfast love that animates you in your labors for the Cause, and it is primarily upon this that I confidently rely in facing the great responsibilities of the future.

The world is sadly stricken and in a state of continuous turmoil and signs of weariness and despondency are apparent everywhere. But we, fired with the hope of the Abhá Kingdom and ever mindful of the unfailing promises of the dawn of a new and better day, must weather every storm and endeavor to impart to every earnest seeker that firm faith and inner peace which the world cannot give.

It is our vital and most urgent duty to at whatever cost the safety and the unity of the Cause of God, and with harmony and concord firmly established amongst us, to arise with confidence and courage for the enlightenment of the world and the salvation of mankind.

With my best wishes and earnest prayers for your success in these noble endeavors,

I am your brother and co-worker,



1923-02-xx To Swiss Bahá’ís, Haifa News Letter

The Priceless Pearl, Rúḥíyyih Khánum, p348

The Spiritual Assembly which has been established in Haifa will from now on send you regularly the news of the Holy Land…


1923-02-xx To US NSA, Register all mail

The Priceless Pearl, Rúḥíyyih Khánum, p70


He had become concerned that not all mail was reaching him.


1923-02-xx To editor of Indian Bahá’í News, Following its Progress

The Priceless Pearl, Rúḥíyyih Khánum, p348

I have recently requested the friends of throughout Persia, Turkistan, Caucasus, ‘Iráq, Egypt, Turkey, America, Great Britain, Germany, Syria and Palestine to contribute regularly to the Bahá’í News of India reports of their activities and carefully written articles on spiritual matters, hoping thereby to widen its sphere and enhance its value as one the leading organs of the Bahá’í community throughout the world… I shall follow every stage of its progress with hopeful interest and shall not fail to contribute by share of assistance in the noble task it has purposed to achieve.


1923-03-11 Note On Review

Reviewing: Practice and Functions of Literature Review#2
Compiled by Universal House of Justice Research Department. 1990-05

In case you are thinking to publish this explanation of yours, Shoghi Effendi would like you to present it to the National Spiritual Assembly and ask their approval before you do so. The Cause is still in its stage of infancy, it has to be reared with motherly care. Such precautionary measures, therefore, are to hasten its development and safeguard the consistency of its publications.

(11 March 1923 to an individual believer)


1923-03-18 To Pasadena CA Bahá’ís

SOTW Vol 14#5, p156

The Beloved Children of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá,(Pasadena, California)
Marjorie McGee, Harry McGee, Whilhelm Madsen, Anne Vollmer, Richard Alderson, William Alderson, Winston Alderson, Hope Willis Baily.

Care of Mrs. Collins.

My dearly beloved brethren and sisters in ‘Abdu’l-Bahá;

Your sweet messages of love and greeting transmitted through the kindness of our beloved Bahá’í sister, Mrs. Collins, have deeply touched my heart and have strengthened my hope and confidence in the great service which the Bahá’í youth will render in future to the Cause of Bahá’u’lláh.

I have read your individual letters with the deepest interest and enclose for you all in this short answer of mine flowers planted in the close vicinity of the Holy Shrine and placed upon the Sacred Thresholds of the Báb and ‘Abdu’l-Bahá. And as I placed them on those hallowed spots I remembered you most tenderly, and prayed on your behalf, beseeching the Almighty to guide and protect you in your earnest endeavours to learn and to teach the Cause of God.

I very strongly urge you to devote your time to a very serious and profound study of the history of the Cause and of the various Writings of Bahá’u’lIah and ‘Abdu’l-Bahá. The study of the Cause and its Teachings and the daily endeavour to exemplify its Spirit in our dealings with our fellow men are the most essential obligations of all Bahá’ís, whether young or old, who aspire to see this Divine Message spread throughout the world.

As to a name for your Club, “Bahá’í Fellowship” seems to be the best reminder of the spirit that must animate continually its members in their work of service to mankind. I cherish the hope that you will all show forth in all your activities the spirit of true Bahá’í fellowship, and grow to become efficient workers in His Divine Vineyard.

Wishing you success from all my heart,
I am your devoted brother,

Haifa, Palestine March 18, 1923.


1923-03-xx To Brooklyn N.Y. Bahá’ís

SOTW Vol 14#5, p156

The beloved of the Lord and the handmaids of the All Merciful in Brooklyn, N.Y., U.S.A.
Care of the members of the Spiritual Assembly

Dear brethren and sisters in ‘Abdu’l-Bahá:

In these days of world unrest, of political upheavals, of social disruption and spiritual ferment, the one Power that can bind effectively together the scattered and conflicting elements of human society and breathe into them the vivifying and eternal Spirit of Life is indeed the power of the Call of Yá Bahá’u’l-Abhá!

We, of this noble Faith, the chosen ones of God, who carry with us this wholesome Medicine for the ills and sicknesses of this world, must now bestir ourselves to further activity and relentless efforts in the great and urgent mission entrusted to us by Bahá’u’lláh, that we may minister freely and effectively to the needs of mankind.

Our primary duty is to create by our words and deeds, our conduct and ex· ample, the atmosphere in which the seeds of the words of Bahá’u’lláh and ‘Abdu’l-Bahá, cast so profusely during well-nigh eighty years, may germinate and give forth those fruits that alone can assure peace and prosperity to this distracted world.

Clear in our vision, broad in our out look, tireless in our energies and steadfast in our hopes, let us promote one and all this great work of Reconciliation of which the world stands in such groat need at present.

May the Light of His Divine Guidance illumine our path and lead us to our glorious destiny.

Your brother,


1923-04-21 To Delegates and Friends at U.S. Convention

SOTW Vol 14, no 3, p74

Haifa, April 21, 1923. “Delegates and Friends at Convention,

Care A. Lunt, Boston.


(Signed) SHOGHI.


1923-04-21 To High Commissioner, Measures for Stable Organization of the Faith

The Priceless Pearl, Rúḥíyyih Khánum, p282

As you had expressed in your last letter to me the desire to learn of the measures that have been taken to provide for the stable organization of the Bahá’í Movement… I shall be only too glad to throw further light on any point which Your Excellency might desire to raise in connection with the enclosed letter, or regarding any other matter bearing upon the interests of the Movement in general.

The “enclosed letter” was probably the letter of Letter of March 12, 1923 in Bahá’í Administration.


1923-04-21 To US NSA, Elect LSAs Every Riḍván

The Priceless Pearl, Rúḥíyyih Khánum, p344



1923-04-xx To Editors of The Dawn [Burma], May it Advance Towards Destiny

The Priceless Pearl, Rúḥíyyih Khánum, p347

Universal in its outlook, progressive and practical in the measures it advocates, faithful to its sacred traditions and principles of the Cause, thorough in its methods, impartial in its views, and elevated and impressive in style, may it advance resolute and unhindered, towards the fulfillment of its destiny.


1923-05-xx To Haifa Governor, Haifa Assembly to Direct Affairs in Region

The Priceless Pearl, Rúḥíyyih Khánum, p282

Haifa Bahá’í Spiritual Assembly officially reconstituted and will, in conjunction with me, direct all local affairs in this region. I have lately informed H.E. the High Commissioner of this matter…


1923-12-xx To an American Assembly, Inscrutable Wisdom of God

The Priceless Pearl, Rúḥíyyih Khánum, p74-5

The inscrutable wisdom of God has so decreed that we, who are the chosen bearers of the world’s greatest Message to suffering humanity, should toil and promote our work under the most trying conditions of life, amidst unhelpful surroundings, and in the face of unprecedented trials, and without means, influence or support, achieve, steadily and surely, the conquest and regeneration of human hearts.


1923-12-xx To Unknown, The Progress of our Work

The Priceless Pearl, Rúḥíyyih Khánum, p75

True, the progress of our work, when compared to the sensational rise and development of an earthly cause, has been painful and slow, yet we firmly believe and shall never doubt that the great spiritual Revolution which the Almighty is causing to be accomplished, through us, in the hearts of men is destined to achieve, steadily and surely, the complete regeneration of all mankind.


1923-xx-xx re Specifying Purpose of Donations

The Priceless Pearl, Rúḥíyyih Khánum, p333-4



1923-xx-xx To High Commissioner in Baghdád, House of Bahá’u’lláh

The Priceless Pearl, Rúḥíyyih Khánum, p96



1923-xx-xx To NYC LSA, Turning Hopeful Eyes Towards America

The Priceless Pearl, Rúḥíyyih Khánum, p338

Conscious of the clear and emphatic predictions of our beloved Master as to the predominant part of the West is destined to play during the early stages in the universal triumph of the Movement, I have, ever since His departure, turned my eyes in hopeful expectation to the distant shores of that continent…


1923-xx-xx To a local Assembly, Foundation of Constructive Work

The Priceless Pearl, Rúḥíyyih Khánum, p300

Full harmony and understanding among the friends, outside and within the Spiritual Assembly; implicit confidence on the part of the non-members in every decision passed by their elected representatives; and the determination of these to disregard their likes and dislikes and seek naught but the general interests of the Movement— these constitute the only and sure foundation upon which any constructive work can be built in future and prove serviceable to the interests of the Cause.


1924-01-xx Bear our Burden with Steadfastness and Fortitude

The Priceless Pearl, Rúḥíyyih Khánum, p75

However great our tribulation may be, however unexpected the miseries of life, let us bear in mind the life He [the Master] has led before us, and, inspired and grateful, let us bear our burden with steadfastness and fortitude, that in the world to come, in the divine Presence of our loving Comforter, we may receive His true consolation and reward of our labours.


1924-01-xx However Dark the Future may Appear

The Priceless Pearl, Rúḥíyyih Khánum, p75

Whatever may befall us, and however dark the prospect of the future may appear, if we but play our part we may rest confident that the Hand of the Unseen is at work, shaping and moulding the events and circumstances of the world and paving the way for the ultimate realization of our aims and hopes for mankind.


1924-01-xx Let us Arise to Teach His Cause

The Priceless Pearl, Rúḥíyyih Khánum, p75

let us arise to teach His Cause with righteousness, conviction, understanding and vigour…let us make it the dominating passion of our life. Let us scatter to the uttermost corners of the earth, sacrifice our personal interests, comforts, tastes and pleasures, mingle with the divers kindreds and peoples of the world; familiarize ourselves with their manners, traditions, thoughts and customs.


1924-01-xx Our Primary Duty

The Priceless Pearl, Rúḥíyyih Khánum, p75

Our primary duty is to create by our words and deeds, our conduct and example, the atmosphere in which the seeds of the words of Bahá’u’lláh and ‘Abdu’l-Bahá, cast so profusely during well-nigh eighty years, may germinate and give forth those fruits that alone can assure peace and prosperity to this distracted world.


1924-02-13 One of First Letters to Martha Root

Martha Root: Lioness at the Threshold, M. R. Garis, p205

My dearest Bahá’í sister:

Your letters laden with the perfume of love& service revive& invigorate our souls& cheer our spirits. We thirst for more. You are always guided, inspired& sustained by the spirit of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá. Go forth therefore confident& unafraid proclaiming far& wide the Divine Message of Bahá’u’lláh. You have my prayers& you may ever rely upon my boundless affection, my high esteem, my wholehearted& undiminished support.


1924-02-23 Various Assemblies as Bedrock of the Universal House of Justice

USBN No. 7— September 1925— page 3

The various Assemblies, local and national, constitute today the bedrock upon which the strength of the Universal House is in future to be firmly established and raised. Not until these function vigorously and harmoniously can the hope for the termination of this period of transition be realized.


1924-02-xx To NYC LSA, Info from U.S. Assemblies Being Distributed to the East

The Priceless Pearl, Rúḥíyyih Khánum, p346

As I have already intimated in my first letter to the National Spiritual Assembly, I shall be most please to receive from every Bahá’í Centre throughout America regular comprehensive reports on the position of the Cause and the activity of the friends. These I shall gladly transmit to the friends throughout the East who in their present hour of restlessness and turmoil will, I am sure, be cheered to hear of the steady and peaceful growth of the Faith in your land… awaiting your joyful news…


1924-11-27 To US NSA

USBN January 1925 insert

To my dear friends and fellow-workers, the members of the American National Spiritual Assembly
c/o the Secretary, Mr. Horace Holley, New York City, U.S.A.

My Friends and Fellow-Workers:

The letters which our able and devoted friend, Mr. Horace Holley, has addressed in your behalf to the Greatest Holy Leaf and myself have all been received, and, together with their enclosures, read with the closest attention. It is indeed highly gratifying to observe that notwithstanding the strain and stress of the critical period through which our beloved Cause is passing, the elected representatives of the friends in America have, with unflinching faith, undaunted courage, and conspicuous ability, perse[r]vered in their task and fulfilled their arduous duties.

The splendid contribution you have made to the efforts of your fellow-workers in England in connection with the Conference on the Living Religions within the British Empire, we all heartily appreciate and regard as a fresh evidence of the growing power and solidarity of the Cause of God. Both in the admirable paper which you arranged to be drafted and prepared, and in the person of your devout, trusted and talented President, who performed his duty with absolute fidelity and high distinction, you have rendered the Cause of Bahá’u’lláh a fresh and distinguished service. May the results achieved lend a fresh impetus to the onward march of the Cause in the West.

The recent measures you have adopted in view of the necessity of promoting fuller confidence and a greater measure of understanding and cooperation between the body of the believers and the local and National Assemblies, will, I am confident, be of the greatest value, and indicate clearly that you are fully aware of the true position, the privileges and responsibilities of every Bahá’í Assembly.

We all long to hasten by wise and effective measures the completion of the Mashriqu’l-Adhkár, and we fervently supplicate the All-Bountiful to bless richly our Teaching work that our numbers may be reinforced in time by men who with sufficient means at their disposal may voluntarily and abundantly support this vast and noble endeavor. I trust that you will encounter no further obstacles in receiving the necessary support to meet the immediate needs of this Universal House of Worship as decided at your recent general gathering in Chicago. The Star of the West, the latest issues of which I have read with genuine satisfaction, has admittedly made a notable advance towards the ideal which the Master has set before it. Articles on broad humanitarian lines, well-conceived, adequately treated, and powerfully presented, should have their proper place in every issue together with such accounts of the History and the teachings of the Cause as will portray to the Bahá’í and non-Bahá’í alike the unique beauty as well as the compelling power of the Bahá’í spirit. Matters political and partisan in character should be carefully avoided as they would eventually lead to entanglements that would be not only futile but positively harmful. As regards the Persian Section: I feel that in view of the severe restrictions imposed on the friends in Persia its temporary suspension would be well-advised, particularly as it makes such a disproportionate demand on the meagre resources of the friends in America.

The increasing efforts displayed by my beloved brothers and sisters in America, both individually and collectively, and the action taken by you in constituting regional Teaching Committees are of vital importance to the spread of the Cause in the present stage of our work. I feel that we should all collaborate in widening its scope, intensifying its influence, assuring its continuity, and endeavoring to subordinate every other activity to this most urgent and vital task. It is our bounden duty to do all in our power to give the Cause from day to day a fuller publicity, to maintain and stimulate the interest aroused, and to concentrate at the same time our attention on a chosen few, endeavoring tactfully and persistently to make of them earnest and unreserved supporters of the Bahá’í Faith.

I am deeply conscious of the manifold and unavoidable difficulties that confront you in your labors for the administration of the affairs of the Cause. Vast distances; personal professional pre-occupations; insufficient number of capable and experienced teachers, unhampered by the necessity of earning their means of livelihood; the inadequacy of the means at your disposal, financial and otherwise; the prevailing tendencies in the general thought, sentiment, and manners of the people in whose midst you work— all these, though insuperable obstacles at present, will, if we stand steadfast and faithful, be one by one removed, and pave the way for the ultimate ascendency of the Cause and the fruition and triumph of our labors.

As to the projected prayer-book, I feel the need for a specially prepared compilation of the prayers of Bahá’u’lláh and ‘Abdu’l-Bahá designed for the general public which would both prove of value for devotional purposes and act as a fresh incentive to eager and inquiring minds. I am enclosing copies of prayers which you may have not yet received and trust to send you more in future. I should be glad to receive any particulars you might wish me to consider in this connection.

Our untiring and devoted sister, Dr. Moody,(the handmaid of the Most High), has had to her profound regret to discontinue for a time the invaluable and unique services she has been rendering to the Cause in Persia. She is proceeding to America, and will familiarize you with the deplorable state of affairs in that unhappy country. You will get first-hand information from her regarding the present condition and activities of our long-suffering friends in Persia, and she will take counsel with you as to the best way to meet the needs and serve the Cause of Education in Ṭihrán. I hope and pray that as soon as circumstances permit, the friends in America may enable Dr. Moody to take back with her to Persia suitable, capable and ardent collaborators who will contribute their distinct share towards the uplift and the advancement of their brethren and sisters in that land.

Concerning the magazine “Reality,” I feel we must make it unmistakeably plain to those in charge of it that the Bahá’ís would gladly and gratefully respond to the invitation to cooperate with those that are responsible for it immediately they are fully satisfied that nothing is or will be published by them, whether in the magazine or elsewhere, that would, however indirectly, prejudice or reflect upon their conception of what the Bahá’í Movement is or stands for. Should this be refused, and unfriendly and harmful matters be published against them, the attitude of all of us should be a definite refusal to help and absolute non— interference, as well as the absence of any form of retaliation which will instead of achieving our end defeat our purpose. We should leave him in the hands of God.

As to the suggestion of the Annual Convention being held next summer at Green Acre, I believe it to be both wise and helpful, and trust that it will forge another link between the Bahá’ís as a body and its founders and trustees, and will serve to draw them closer and closer to the outward form as well as to the spirit of the activities of the friends in America.

The financial help extended recently by the friends in America to their fellow-workers of the Faith in Qadiyan, Punjab, has given us all intense satisfaction and made us deeply grateful. Their contribution has immediately been forwarded to them through the National Spiritual Assembly of India and Burma, and will, I am certain, enhance the prestige and the influence of the Cause. I feel that the conditions are now favorable for the circulation of the Will and Testament of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá only in manuscript form and among recognized believers in America. Every such believer should be trusted with a single copy with the express understanding that no duplicate copies or extracts of it be made or published anywhere.

The suggestion made by my dear and able friend, Mr. Horace Holley, as to the compilation of an annual “Bahá’í Year Book” is extremely valuable and timely. I am much impressed by it, and feel that an immediate start should be made. I believe it can best be now undertaken under the direction and supervision of your Assembly until the time should come for the friends in the East and particularly Persia to participate effectually in its development. I trust you will send me a copy of the skeleton of the material you propose to include, and I shall here attempt to fill up any gap and render any assistance I can to make it as comprehensive, as attractive, and as authoritative as possible.

I am sending through my dear brother, Mr. M. Mills, various relics and Tablets of our beloved ‘Abdu’l-Bahá, the only and priceless treasures of the devoted gardener of Bahá’u’lláh’s Shrine, Ustad Abú’l-Qásim Khurasáni, who has offered them to be preserved on his behalf in the Archives of the friends in America. I am hoping to be able to send you in future precious additions to what the Archives Committee has already collected, and may I in this connection express to those who have conceived so admirable a plan my profound admiration and heartfelt gratitude.

I wish to assure you in conclusion of my readiness and genuine desire to help you and serve you to the utmost of my ability. I fully realize the enormous burden that weighs on your shoulders, and am constantly mindful of the distinct and eminent share you are contributing to the advancement of the Cause. I wish you from the depths of my heart entire satisfaction in your glorious work. Our beloved Master is surely watching from the Realm Beyond over His children whom He nurtured and loved so well, and will certainly guide you in every step you take, and crown your patient efforts with signal success.

Your brother and fellow-worker.

(signed) SHOGHI

Haifa, Palestine,
November 27, 1924.


1924-11-11 To Kathryn Frankland, The Chester Rasmussen Memorial Library in Berkeley

Cited in Youth in the Vanguard, Marion Yazdí, pp48-9, USBNC archives

My dear Bahá’í sister.

It gave our dear Shoghi Effendi much joy to read your interesting and encouraging letter and he is looking forward with great hopes to see the spread of the Cause in the Western States as never before. Indeed whenever we remember how much our dear Master spoke of that country and what a great deal He expected from every pioneer worker there, we feel assured that the glorious days He foretold are not far distant. Our Guardian wishes you all to realize what a stirring pleasure it is for him to cooperate with you in the promulgation of the Cause we all adore and it gives him great joy to help you and give you his advice in the task you have so gladly chosen.

In respect to the little library for the Juniors in memory of Mrs. Rasmussen’s dear son, Chester, he wishes me to write you of his deep pleasure in its establishment; and he feels that her son who now dwells in realms more holy, will have his name remembered forever by all the children who will use that little library. The fact that Mrs. Rasmussen has had to save that sum from her little earnings will certainly add a touch of true self-sacrifice to that library.

It might interest you to know that we already have a very large group of Western friends here in Haifa and how we would wish everybody could come over.

The members of the family all join me in sending you our very best wishes and heartfelt regards.

I am yours in His service

(signed) Soheil

My spiritual sister:

I assure of my deep affection and ardent prayers for the s ucc your spiritual activities. Convey to Mrs. Rasmussen my highest appreciation of her noble, self-sacrificing efforts. I remember her most tenderly at the Three Holy Shrines. Your true brother,

(signed) Shoghi


1925-01-01 To Martha, Whose Travels Make it Difficult to Keep Track of

Martha Root: Lioness at the Threshold, M. R. Garis, p206

“Your restless activities in the service of the Cause have carried you so far and wide that it has already become quite a difficult matter to locate your whereabouts on any map.”

My dearest most precious sister:

I am always anxious to hear from you as I deeply realize the signal service you are rendering to the Cause as well as the unsatisfactory state of your health. I pray for you from the bottom of my heart& I assure you that you are never never forgotten…. You are under His wings. He will surely guide you and lead you to success. I indeed have nothing to add, for your work is perfect, your efforts magnificent, your achievements glorious. I pray you may achieve your heart’s desire.


1925-02-06 Nayríz Flood Cable

USBN#3— March 1925— page 2


Flood destroyed 500 Bahá’í homes in Nayríz. Grave disaster. May America contribute her share.


1925-02-14 To Visalia California

14th Feb.1925

Mrs. Grace B. Holley,
Secy. Bahá’í Spiritual Assembly
Visalia, California, U.S.A.

Dear Bahá’í Sister,

Shoghi Effendi was very pleased to receive your letter of 14th Jan. and has asked me to reply to it. We are glad to hear that some of the seed Mr. Hyde Dunn patiently sowed there years ago has now taken root. Shoghi Effendi has been greatly cheered by reports of the fine work Mr. and Mrs. Hyde Dunn have been doing in Australasia. By this time I think they will have established Spiritual Assemblies in all of the Capitals of Australia except Brisbane and also in Auckland, New Zealand. Within two years they hope to have a National Spiritual Assembly in Australia. Both Mr. and Mrs. Dunn appear to be very devoted souls and their work is being greatly blessed.

We hope that Mrs. Brittingham’s prophetic intuition will be fulfilled and that your assembly will “sound the trumpet which will arouse the great San Joaquin Valley.” Limited financial means and the care of children will not prove insuperable obstacles. Christ and his disciples had but little of this world’s goods, and Bahá’u’lláh and the Master were prisoners for many years and unable to travel, but that did not prevent them from raising the Call of the Kingdom very effectually. As for the children, they will, it is to be hoped, soon become Heralds of the Cause themselves, and carry the Glad Tidings wherever they go. The great thing is to “live the life”— to have our lives so saturated with the Divine teachings and the Bahá’í Spirit that people cannot fail to see a joy, a power, a love, a purity, a radiance, an efficiency in our character and work that will distinguish us from worldly-minded people and make people wonder what is the secret of this new life in us. We must become entirely selfless and devoted to God so that every day and every moment we seek to do only what God would have us do and in the way He would have us do it. If we do this sincerely then we shall have perfect unity and harmony with each other. Where there is want of harmony, there is lack of the true Bahá’í spirit. Unless we can show this transformation in our lives, this new power, this mutual love and harmony, then the Bahá’í teachings are but a name to us.

There is no need to fear opposition from without if the life within be sound and vigorous. Our Heavenly Father will always give us the strength to meet and overcome tests if we turn with all our hearts to Him, and difficulties if they are met in the right spirit only make us rely on God more firmly and completely.

We hope and pray that you will find many souls in your neighbourhood who are ready to receive the teachings and who will soon themselves become devoted Bahá’ís, heralds and teachers of our beloved Cause.

Shoghi Effendi, the members of the Holy Family and all the friends here join in sending most cordial Abhá greetings, and we pray that the confirmations of the Spirit may descend upon you in torrents.

Your brother in His service

(Signed) J. E. Esslemont.

My dearest spiritual brothers& sisters:

Your most welcome letter has rejoiced my heart. I cannot but express personally to you all my loving greetings and profound admiration for your perseverance, devotion and determination to labour unceasingly for our Beloved Cause. I wish to assure you of my ardent prayers for your Assembly. May it raise the Call and attract in times to come a vast concourse of capable, sincere and devoted souls. Persevere in your work and victory will surely be yours in the end. I am eager to hear of the progress and expansion of your activities and wish you to keep always cheerful, radiant and active.

Your true brother,


[Photocopy from Research Department, Bahá’í World Center. A portion of this letter, from ‘The great thing…’ to ‘…but a name to us.’ is cited in ‘Lights of Guidance, second edition,#376’ (with incorrect date and attribution to an individual) and in the Compilation ‘Living the Life’ found in Compilation of Compilations Vol II,#1271,(with incorrect attribution to an individual)]


1925-02-xx To Colonel Symes, Haifa Charitable Fund

The Priceless Pearl, Rúḥíyyih Khánum, p295

The perusal of your circular letter of February 16th, 1925 with reference to the establishment of the Haifa Charitable Fund has served to remind me of the keen interest ‘Abdu’l-Bahá took in charitable institutions. Animated by the same sentiment and desirous to walk in the footsteps of my beloved Grandfather, I hasten to enclose herewith the sum of 20 [pounds]— towards the relief of the sufferings of the poor in Haifa.


1925-03-03 Persecutions in Írán

Published in The Bahá’í News Letter, March 1925

To the beloved of the Lord and the handmaids of the Merciful throughout the West.

My dear friends:

From various reliable reports, recently received from Persia, it is becoming increasingly evident that this most unhappy country is passing through yet another crisis of extreme violence and far-reaching results. The growing instability of its affairs, the unceasing turmoil caused by conflicting personalities and factions, the economic stagnation of the country, are all signs that are highly disquieting to every well-wisher of Persia. These evidences of discontent may conceivably lead to an upheaval that might react most unfavorably on the fortunes of the Movement in Persia.

Already the exigencies of the present political life of the country have brought about a gradual recrudescence of religious fanaticism which, in its stubbornness and ferocity, can hardly find a parallel even in the semi-civilized countries of the world. I have just received a communication addressed by the secretary of the Qaghan Spiritual Assembly to the National Assembly of Persia, dated January 7th, and recording the following facts:

“In the village of Qamṣar, not very far from Ṭihrán, a Persian, Áqá Riḍá by name, embraces the Bahá’í faith. His friends and relatives are indignant and furious. They determine to persecute him. He is several times beaten severely and injured. They secure the sanction of the local Mullá to enable his wife, without obtaining a divorce, to marry another man. This unhappy person hastens desperately to Qashan and appealing to local authorities seeks and obtains temporary and partial relief. A few days ago, the son of a Mullá, Áqá Aḥmad by name, visited Qamṣar. Mischief-makers instantly incite him to humiliate, torment, and even murder the miserable convert. He immediately orders his arrest. His agents without notice and in a barbaric manner break into the house of a believer called Naṣru’lláh, accuse him of having sheltered his co-religionist, and command him to deliver the refugee immediately. Unsatisfied by his protestations and emphatic assurances, they start to search his house, violate the privacy of his home, enter the chamber of his wife, find her lying in bed having given birth to a child the night before, approach her, violently expose her, and shamelessly injure her to the point of almost ending her life. They then turn to her wretched husband and, with the aid of clubs, sticks, and chains, pitilessly mutilate his body. Fallen unconscious, they leave him, thinking him dead, and continue their search. Having fully investigated the matter they find that the husband was right after all and that Áqá Riḍá had fled to Mazkan. Reinforced by two Siyyids they immediately resolve to pursue him, and arriving in the village suddenly make their appearance at a meeting where the Bahá’ís were gathered and there instantly recognize their victim. They mercilessly drag him out, bind his hands behind his back, thrust him to the front, and with their whips, chains, and the butt end of their rifles drive him on to Qamṣar. The Bahá’í women in the vicinity, alarmed and grief-stricken, run after these heartless villains, and with loud lamentations vainly implore their mercy. Annoyed by their wailing they fire at them and disperse them. They drag him to Qamṣar till at last he is brought before the Mullá’s son who orders him to recant. But this ardent devotee, though young in faith, refuses to yield and with remarkable fortitude and sublime composure disdains the threats and insults of his enemies. The Mullá’s son, angry and exasperated, gives order first to throw him into the river, then to tie him to the trunk of a tree and inflict on him the most severe corporal punishment. The people, however, with unutterable cruelty drag him through the streets into the main throughfare and start to force handfuls of straw into his mouth and with blows and kicks strive to compell him to swallow. They then befoul his face with filth. Finally they so disgrace and dishonor him and resort to such vile methods that the pen would shrink from recording the further unspeakable indignities to which this unfortunate man was subjected…”

A previous communication addressed to me by the same National Spiritual Assembly and dated October 22nd, reveals a parallel incident:

“In Farahán, province of ‘Iráq-i-Ajám, an old believer, Riḍá-Qulí Khán, who for years past had at the instigation of the fanatical clergy suffered humiliations and heavy losses at the hands of the mob, proceeded a few days ago to Sulṭán-Abád in order to renew his complaints to the provincial authorities. Profiting by his absence, a band of ruffians break into his house at night in order to carry away any valuable property. His wife, an expectant mother, is awakened and offers resistance. Armed with poignards they rush on her and inflict on her in a most brutal fashion several mortal wounds. They even proceed to murder her son and are only prevented from doing so by the cry of the neighbors who rush forth to intervene.”

In the province of Fárs, Yazd, and Khurasán similar cases of atrocities and outrageous conduct have been witnessed. Houses have been sacked, property confiscated, homes destroyed. In addition to the murder of the American Consul in Ṭihrán, we know of three Bahá’ís who in the course of the past year have suffered martyrdom. A considerable number have deserted their homes and belongings, and, panic-stricken, have either migrated to another province or sought refuge in neighboring mountains.

To this sad tale of unbridled cruelty must be added the devastation caused by the recent floods which have destroyed nearly half of Nayríz including five hundred houses which belonged to the Bahá’ís of that town.

Mindful as we are of the repeated and emphatic injunctions of our beloved ‘Abdu’l-Bahá to scrupulously avoid meddling by word or deed with the political affairs of Persia, we cannot but feel gravely concerned at the plight and the perilous position of a vast number of our brothers and sisters in that beloved yet most backward of countries. Whilst we disassociate ourselves with the confused political aspirations of the contending factions in Persia, we should, if we be faithful to our trust, watch carefully every development in the situation, and by every lawful and legitimate means strive to alleviate the sufferings of our patient friends and ensure the protection of our Sacred Cause.

Free from every desire to be offensive or provocative, without seeking in the least to accuse or denounce any nation or individual, we should as much as it lies in our power broadcast the true facts of the situation. We should intelligently endeavor to enlighten the public opinion of the world on these ugly incidents and incredible happenings that will stain for ever the memory of this twentieth century civilization.

Conscious as all Bahá’ís are, of the absolute necessity and wisdom of non-resistance and abiding loyalty to the sovereign authority in the land they live in, we can have but one recourse and can appeal for redress only to the recognized authority in whose jurisdiction such glaring offences are being committed. You will gather from the above-mentioned reports how grievous and perplexing the situation is at present. You will realize with horror the shameless brutality of the ignorant masses as well as the insatiable hostility and unrestrained power of the clerical element. You will admire the tenacity of faith and the Spirit of magnificent heroism displayed with undiminished splendor by those who only recently have adhered to the Cause.

Should the friends on the spot fail to obtain redress and this calamitous condition continue unchecked, I will then inform you by cable, and request your National Spiritual Assemblies to communicate both by cable and letter with the recognized authority in Persia. You will in the name of all the Bahá’ís in your respective countries demand that prompt and effective action be taken for the protection and well-being of your fellow-workers in Persia. Any grievance that is submitted should be supported by evidence based on the actual facts of the situation. It should be expressed and presented in a sober yet firm language, should be conciliatory in tone, and moving in its appeal. We must make it abundantly clear that in giving publicity to these disgraceful and atrocious acts, the Bahá’ís the world over are in no wise animated by a hostile and revengeful spirit, that their purpose is not to retaliate nor to accuse or offend any soul, but only to ensure the safety and tranquility of law-abiding, devoted and patriotic citizens.

And having resorted to very practical and legitimate means for that end, and done our best, through prayer and supplication, to mitigate the endless sufferings of our dear ones in Persia, let us rest assured of the high destiny of their sorely-tried fatherland. Let us also remember that having done our duty towards them whatever else befalls Persia is truly ordained from on high and is but the means for the working out of His purpose for ‘that chosen country. Let us finally recall His promise that in the fullness of time the Government of Bahá’u’Hah’s native land will he universally recognized as the most honored of all earthly governments, that its sons will be so raised in the esteem of mankind as to become the envy and the admiration of all the world.

I feel confident that my dearly-beloved friends throughout the West, desirous to maintain the growing solidarity of the Cause, and fully alive to the critical conditions in Persia, will arise to do their utmost for the immediate relief as well as the ultimate deliverance of their long-suffering expectant fellow-workers in Persia,

May Bahá’u’lláh bless richly your efforts.

Your brother and fellow-worker,

(signed) Shoghi.

Haifa, Palestine;
March 3, 1925.

P.S. Copies of this circular should be distributed only among declared believers, and extracts from it may be published in the Press.



1925-03-06 To May Maxwell, Congratulations of Activities

The Maxwells of Montreal Vol II, Violette Nakhjavani, p25

Your marvellous magnificent efforts in the days of my absence from the Holy Land are indelibly engraved upon my grateful heart. Every step you took with your characteristic determination& passionate fervour has been guided by our beloved Master to Whom in His hour of need you have rendered memorable service. I congratulate you on your splendid achievements, on your undaunted courage, on your exemplary devotion& self-sacrifice. I am so glad to know you are so actively engaged in the all-important work of the National Spiritual Assembly…


1925-04-01 Representation at National Convention

USBN No. 5— May-June 1925, page 3
Cablegram sent to the National Spiritual Assembly on April first, 1925:

Less than nine no representation. Proxy question left decision National Assembly. Praying guidance.

No Bahá’í group of less than nine recognized believers will he entitled to send a delegate to National Convention this year.


1925-04-01 To Zionist Executive in Jerusalem, Unable to Attend an Event

The Priceless Pearl, Rúḥíyyih Khánum, p272



1925-04-25 To Martha Root, Appreciation for Services

Martha Root: Lioness at the Threshold, M.R. Garis, p217

My dearest& most precious Martha

The fragrance of your visit has overpowered us all& as the days go by we feel more& more the penetrating power of your sublime love for& devotion to this mighty Cause. On behalf of the Family who love you dearly,& myself whose heart has drawn of late so close to you I wish to assure you again of our deepest gratitude for your stupendous efforts, our heartfelt appreciation of your magnificent achievements& our increasing prayers for your good health, happiness, prosperity& spiritual success. You are always with us wherever you go.


1925-05-03 To Marion Carpenter, College Teaching

Cited in Youth in the Vanguard, Marion Yazdí, pp148-50, USBNC archives

c/o Shoghi Effendi,
Persian Colony,
Haifa, Palestine,
3rd May, 1925

To Miss Marion Carpenter
1209 Stanford University


Dear Bahá’í Sister,

Shoghi Effendi was greatly interested and pleased by your letter of March 31st— so much so that he had it translated into Persian and read at a meeting of the friends. We are delighted to hear that you have managed to establish a regular weekly Bahá’í meeting in the Club House in the campus and we pray that it may become permanent and grow in numbers and influence, and that soon you may have a Local Spiritual Assembly in the University.

I was greatly interested lately in reading a book called “The Life Changers”, by Harold Bigbie, describing a movement among University Students for a consecrated Christian life, initiated by a man called Frank Buckmann [Buchman], which has already become international and seems to have achieved really remarkable results in many cases. Mr. Buckmann [sic] and a party of his friends called on Shoghi Effendi a few months ago. I hope this start you have made at Leland Stanford University may be the beginning of a work among University undergraduates that will spread to other Universities and become something much bigger even than that of Mr. Buckmann [sic] and his group of “Life-changers.” If, as we believe, Bahá’u’lláh is the prophet of the new age in which we live, then in the light of His teachings and in the strength of the new spiritual outpouring through Him, we ought to achieve even greater things than are possible to those who walk in the light of the “old dispensation” and have not yet become fully aware of the value of the New Revelation.

We hope that soon you may find opportunities of carrying the message to the undergraduates of other universities, or of linking up with Bahá’í students at other Universities and encouraging them to start Bahá’í meetings also. Then inter-university meetings of Bahá’í groups could be arranged, exchange of speakers and so on, and from this germ you have started an organization might grow that would have very powerful and far-reaching effects. A “summer school” or Bahá’í Camp for undergraduates in Vacation time might prove very valuable.

We are very glad to hear that the lectures given by Mr. Remy [Remey], Mrs. Cooper, Jináb-i-Fádil and others were so successful and that your friend… has already become a devoted and active Bahá’í.

Entire and selfless devotion is what is most needful. The brighter our torch bums, the more light will it give and the more readily will it impart its blaze to others. It is fine too that you have the cooperation of your brother Howard, and of friends on the staff of the college paper.

The blessings of Bahá’u’lláh and the Beloved Master will assuredly be with you in this work and Shoghi Effendi and the friends here will offer heartfelt prayers that you may be richly confirmed in your service to the Kingdom.

Shoghi Effendi does not think it necessary for you to come to Haifa at present. His correspondence and other duties leave him very little time for translation work, and the Girls School on Mt. Carmel cannot be started until there is a good deal more money in hand for it. Conditions in Persia are at present too unsettled to make it advisable for you to go there. So it seems as if, for the near future, it would be better for you to work in America, where there is certainly ample opportunity. We pray that you will be clearly guided to whatever God would have you do, and we hope you will keep us informed of your activities, from time to time, so that we may keep in as close touch as possible with you and your group of coworkers. Shoghi Effendi was very pleased to see the articles by your brother, Barbara Probasco and yourself in the March Star and hopes that you will all three be enabled to do great service to the Cause both by tongue and pen.

With kindest regards and best wishes in which Shoghi Effendi and all the friends here join.

Your brother in the service of the Beloved,

J. E. Esslemont

My precious fellow-worker:

Your letter with its refreshing news rejoiced my heart. Surely the seeds which our Beloved has so abundantly sown in the fertile soil of that great University are germinating under your loving care and I trust great results will be speedily achieved. I would be delighted to learn of the formation of a regular, elected, Spiritual Assembly in the heart of that far-famed seat of learning and assure you of my keen desire to help it grow in power and influence in any way I can. As to your future career, I feel that for the present, until the conditions in Persia are stabilized you should concentrate your energies and efforts on publicity work, through the spoken as well as the written word. I will not fail to pray for you from the bottom of my heart and assure you of my deep appreciation of your much-valued efforts.


[Frank Buchman was the head of the evangelical Christian “Oxford Group,” later to be organized as Moral Re-armament.]

[The articles by Barbara Probasco, Howard and Marion were in the March 1925 SOTW Vol 15,#12, pp369-372 under the section titled, The Larger Vision: How Three University Students See The Needs.]


1925-05-17 To Colonel Stewart Symes, Decline to Attend Various Public Functions

The Priceless Pearl, Rúḥíyyih Khánum, p275-6

In view of various considerations arising out of the still undefined status of the Bahá’í Community I find it, to my regret and sorrow impossible to participate in person in the various public functions arranged in your honour. I thus find myself denied the great pleasure and privilege of raising my voice not only in the name of the local community but also on behalf of the Bahá’ís throughout the world in appreciation and gratitude for the good will and high sense of justice which have characterized your attitude towards the various problems arising out of the sudden passing of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá. I am sure you will realize that my enforced absence from these public gatherings implies in no way a want of cordiality and friendship towards the representative of an administration which the Bahá’ís have every reason to regard with high esteem and deep confidence.

He did invite Symes and his wife to tea


1925-06-03 Activities Revolve Around National Assembly

USBN No. 7— September 1925— page 3

It would be impossible at this stage to ignore the indispensability or to overestimate the unique significance of the institution of the National Spiritual Assembly— the pivot round which revolve the activities of the believers throughout the American continent. Supreme is their position, grave their responsibilities, manifold and arduous their duties.


1925-06-08 To the NSA of Persia, Translated from Persian, Promotion of Learning

Science and Technology#1
Compiled by Research Department of the Universal House of Justice.

Among the sacred obligations devolving upon the Spiritual Assemblies is the promotion of learning, the establishing of schools and creation of the necessary academic equipment and facilities for every boy and girl.

Every child, without exception, must from his earliest years make a thorough study of the art of reading and writing, and according to his own tastes and inclinations and the degree of his capacity and powers, devote extreme diligence to the acquisition of learning beneficial arts and skills, various languages, speech, and contemporary technology.


1925-06-15 To Sir Herbert Samuel Near the End of his Term

The Priceless Pearl, Rúḥíyyih Khánum, p283

kind and noble attitude which Your Excellency has taken towards the various problems that have beset them since the passing of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá… The Bahá’ís… remembering the acts of sympathy and good will which the Palestine Administration under your guidance has shown them in the past, will confidently endeavour to contribute their full share to the material prosperity as well as the spiritual advancement of a land so sacred and precious to them all.


1925-06-xx Youness Khán in U.S.

USBN No. 6— July-August 1925— page 7

Doctor Youness Khán, distinguished member Persia’s Assembly, visiting American Bahá’ís. Expecting far-reaching results from consultation with him.

Praying for successful Convention.

1925 National Conv held July 6, 7, 8.


1925-07-01 To Lady Blomfield, Work in Geneva

Lady Blomfield: Her Life and Times, Robert Weinberg, p169



1925-07-25 Temple Building Operations

USBN No. 6— July-August 1925— page 7
Cable from Shoghi Effendi sent through Bahíyyih Khánum, 25 July 1925:

Guardian wires following: Heartily endorse Convention’s choice. May America’s National representatives fulfill our fondest expectations. Resumption Temple building operations conditioned upon raising full sum of four hundred thousand dollars. Abundant blessings shall crown your self-sacrifice.— SHOGHI.

(signed) BAHÍYYIH.

The Guardian’s answer to the following cablegram sent by the Convention delegates: “Convention contributed sufficient pay all remaining Temple obligations including bank loans, Lovingly request your instructions next step Temple building plan.”


1925-07-xx Bahá’í Archives, Commendable Undertaking

Published in Bahá’í Studies Review, 11, pages 100-102

Another necessary and highly commendable undertaking is the founding of a Bahá’í Archives in each of the Bahá’í provincial administrative centres… Anyone who, spontaneously and of his own free will, donates material to the Archives of his National Spiritual Assembly— whether this be Tablets, books, pictures, objects or the like— and especially if his inheritors are not accounted of the people of Bahá, or are not considered by him as trustworthy or reliable, will have performed a highly meritorious act in the sight of God, and his name will be perpetuated in the records of the Spiritual Assemblies and his memory enshrined in the Archives for ever.

An Archives has also recently been established in the Holy Land, and whatever Sacred Writings and precious relics the individual believers and the Spiritual Assemblies donate voluntarily to this Archives— in particular those items that are more suitably and profitably collected together in one place, and whose dispersal would be a source of loss and detriment— will remain guarded and preserved in their name in a place set aside for the purpose. With the passage of days, visitors to the Holy Land from all quarters of the globe will have the privilege of viewing these items, and, remembering those faithful servants of the Threshold of Grandeur, will commemorate their mention and offer up prayers on their behalf.

July 1925 to the Bahá’ís of the East— translated from the Persian Writings, Bahá’í: “Importance of collecting and safeguarding” compiled by Bahá’í International Archives.


1925-10-28 Collecting Copies of Tablets

Writings, Bahá’í: Importance of collecting and safeguarding, compiled by Bahá’í International Archives. Published in Bahá’í Studies Review, 11, pages 100-102

Last year… the matter of collecting the originals or photographic copies of the Tablets addressed to the… friends (with translations) was mentioned. The meeting was entirely favourable to the suggestion and ___ offered to see that all Tablets or copies of Tablets or other interesting Bahá’í relics or treasures sent to him would be properly stored in safe-deposit.

Such a matter requires someone who is keenly interested and sufficiently energetic, tactful and persistent to overcome the apathy or dilatoriness of friends who are in possession of the materials, to see the thing through.

28 October 1925 to an individual believer on behalf of Shoghi Effendi


1925-10-28 Collection by NSA Copies of Tablets

31 October 1925 to a National Spiritual Assembly on behalf of Shoghi Effendi Writings, Bahá’í: Importance of collecting and safeguarding, compiled by Bahá’í International Archives. Published in Bahá’í Studies Review, 11, pages 100-102

Shoghi Effendi received… a few days ago a letter dealing chiefly with two matters which he has very much at heart:

1) the collection by the National Spiritual Assembly of the originals or photographic copies of all available Tablets sent to friends in ___, with translations, with a view to their safe preservation and the publication of the translations.

2) the preparation for the press… of the talks given to ___ by the Master in Palestine, with full notes regarding the circumstances under which these talks were given.

Shoghi Effendi warmly approves of both these suggestions and hopes the friends will co-operate in carrying them out as speedily and thoroughly as is practicable.

If the Tablets (originals) were presented to the National Archives, then the donors might receive one or more photographic copies, while if the owners did not wish to part with the originals the committee could have photographic copies prepared for the Archives and return the original to the owner.


1925-11-04 Verdict Against Baghdád House

“‘Iráq’s highest tribunal unexpectedly pronounced verdict against us regarding Baghdád Houses. Situation of unprecedented gravity. Effective prompt action urgently required. Strongly urge National Spiritual Assembly and every local Assembly and group immediately communicate by cable and letter ‘Iráq High Commissioner through British Consular authorities if feasible, protesting vigorously against courts glaring injustice, appealing for redress to British sense of fairness, asserting spiritual claims of Bahá’ís to this sanctified abode and declaring their unfailing resolve to do their utmost to vindicate their legitimate and sacred rights. Similar appropriate communications to King of ‘Iráq and British central authorities. Highly desirable cable any suggestions. America’s action in present circumstances of unique significance and value. Messages should not be identical in wording.

(Signed) “SHOGHI.”

[cablegram recieved 4 Nov 1925, published in Bahá’í News Dec 1925/Jan 1926]


1925-11-20 Cable on Election of 1st Berkeley LSA

Cited in Youth in the Vanguard, Marion Yazdí, p74, USBNC archives

Received at
2104 Allston Way
Tel. Berkeley 5794
Berkeley, California
SF26BR (RCJX) 11
Halifax Nov 201925
1199 Spruce St Berkeley— California


11:07 AM Nov 21 1925


1925-11-24 Election of 1st Berkeley CA LSA

Cited in Youth in the Vanguard, Marion Yazdí, p74-5, USBNC archives

Nov. 24— [19]25
Mrs. K. Frankland
1199 Spruce Street
Berkeley, Calif.

My dear Bahá’í sister,

Your letter of Oct. 25th written to our beloved Guardian Shoghi Effendi has arrived and rejoiced his dear heart with its good news.

He has instructed me to write this acknowledging the receipt of your letter and conveying to you his loving greeting together with his appreciation for your devoted services in Berkeley and San Francisco.

As to whether your assembly in Berkeley is recognized by our Guardian or not, he wishes that you all should remember his instruction that in every locality where the number of adult and declared believers is nine or exceeds nine, they have the right to stablish a Spiritual Assembly, and as this is the case in Berkeley, surely your Spiritual Assembly is recognized by him.

The members of the Holy Household join him in sending you love and greeting and assure you of their prayers for you and the other friends in Berkeley.

Your humble brother,

(signed) ‘Azíz’u’lláh S. Bahádur

My dear fellow-worker:

Your magnificent services, your patient endeavors, your great devotion to the Cause of God will ever be remembered with gratitude and joy. May our Beloved reinforce your efforts and fulfill your fondest hopes.

Your brother and well-wisher,

(signed) Shoghi


1925-12-25 To Keith-Roach District Commissioner, Christmas greetings

The Priceless Pearl, Rúḥíyyih Khánum, p278

Haifa, 25-12-25

My dear Mr. Keith-Roach:

I am touched by your welcome message of good-will and greeting and I hasten to assure you that I fully reciprocate the sentiments expressed in your letter. With best wishes for a happy Christmas, I am yours very sincerely, Shoghi Rabbání.


1925-xx-xx To Montford Mills re Customs and Traditions of the Past”

The Priceless Pearl, Rúḥíyyih Khánum, p76

It is difficult to break with some of the customs and traditions of the past, and familiarize the vast number of Bahá’ís, so diverse in their outlook and conception, with the necessary changes and requirements of this new phase in the history of the Cause.

Possible dating and recipient from “Fires in Many Hearts,” by Doris McKay, p33


1925-xx-xx To a National Assembly, Cornerstone of Edifice of Divine Administration

The Priceless Pearl, Rúḥíyyih Khánum, p300-1

An active, united, and harmonious National Spiritual Assembly, properly and conscientiously elected, vigorously functioning, alert and conscious of its many and pressing responsibilities, in close and continuous contact with the international centre in the Holy Land, and keenly watchful of every development throughout the length and breadth of its ever-expanding field of work— is surely in this day of urgent necessity and paramount importance, for it is the cornerstone on which the edifice of Divine Administration must ultimately rest.


1925-xx-xx To a National Assembly, Prime Requisite of Every Undertaking

The Priceless Pearl, Rúḥíyyih Khánum, p300

The prime requisite, however, of every undertaking in which the friends may engage is the maintenance of a spirit of unsullied fellowship and whole-hearted and loyal co-operation… the spirit of true Bahá’í fellowship— the only remover of our many perplexities in life, the one solvent of those inevitable problems that we shall encounter in the course of our labours for our beloved Cause.


1926-01-26 Ideals of Spiritual Assemblies

Agriculture and Rural Life
Compiled by Research Department of the Universal House of Justice.

Its high ideals are “to improve the characters of men; to extend the scope of knowledge; to abolish ignorance and prejudice; to strengthen the foundations of true religion in all hearts; to encourage self-reliance, and discourage false imitation;… to uphold truthfulness, audacity, frankness, and courage; to promote craftsmanship and agriculture;… to educate, on a compulsory basis, children of both sexes; to insist on integrity in business transactions; to lay stress on the observance of honesty and piety;… to acquire mastery and skill in the modern sciences and arts, to promote the interests of the public;… to obey outwardly and inwardly and with true loyalty the regulations enacted by state and government;… to honour, to extol and to follow the example of those who have distinguished themselves in science and learning.”

…to help the needy from every creed or sect, and to collaborate with the people of the country in all welfare services.

(30 January 1926, to the Local Spiritual Assemblies of Írán, Translated from the Persian)


1926-01-30 Responsibilities of the Members of the Spiritual Assemblies

Agriculture and Rural Life
Compiled by Research Department of the Universal House of Justice.

The responsibilities of the members of the Spiritual Assemblies that are engaged in teaching the Cause of God in Eastern lands have been clearly laid down in the holy Texts.

These bid them to work towards the improvement of morals and the spread of learning; to strive to eradicate ignorance and unenlightenment, eliminate prejudice, and reinforce the foundation of true faith in people’s hearts and minds; to seek to develop self-reliance and avoidance of blind imitation; to aim to enhance the efficient management of their affairs, and observe purity and refinement in all circumstances; to show their commitment to truthfulness and honesty, and their ability to conduct themselves with frankness, courage and resolution.

They similarly enjoin them to lend their support to agricultural and industrial development, to consolidate the foundations of mutual assistance and co-operation, to promote the emancipation and advancement of women and support the compulsory education of both sexes, to encourage application of the principles of consultation among all classes, and to adhere in all dealings to a standard of scrupulous integrity.

(30 January 1926, to the Local Spiritual Assemblies of Írán, translated from the Persian)


1926-01-xx re Plan of Unified Action

USBN#10 February 1926

Congratulate National Assembly on plan. Noble in conception, sound in method, forceful in its appeal. Fully endorse it. Commend it to every declared believer, joyously pledging ninety-five dollars per month as my humble share. Beseeching Divine assistance.

Signed. Shoghi:


1926-02-07 To Lady Blomfield re Support for Geneva Bureau

Lady Blomfield: Her Life and Times, Robert Weinberg, p169

I specially request you dear Sitárih Khánum to lend your invaluable support to the Bureau which has been established in Geneva and the firm foundations of which you have so diligently laid in the past… I would particularly urge you to utilize it as often as you can as an instrument for a direct reference to the Cause and Bahá’u’lláh.


1926-02-07 To Lady Bromfield, Program Supporting League of Nations

Lady Blomfield: Her Life and Times, Robert Weinberg, p271-2

He approves fully the programme you set out in the leaflet and hopes that you will advance the cause of peace that way. The spirit underlying it is surely Bahá’í and therefore is bound to obtain cordial reception from many open-minded seekers. It is just as you say, there are some persons who are ready to accept social teachings and work for them if they do not bear a special religious stamp, nor have the taint of some creed. This movement of yours, therefore, serves the purpose admirably and can appeal to such tastes.

There was one point, however, which Shoghi Effendi particularly wanted Sitárih to bear in mind,

namely that all these are means followed in the pursuit of another still nobler aim, which is the progress of the Cause. Such movements help the cause of peace, but real peace cannot be established until and unless the whole Bahá’í programme is adopted. While working for this new movement, therefore, you should remember that the real aim in view is to teach them the Cause and make them active supporters of the only lasting movement…

My dearest Ladee!

It was a real joy, the more so because it was unexpected, to receive a letter direct from you. If I have not been corresponding with you of late it has been not because of indifference and forgetfulness on my part, but simply due to the fact that I am assured that you are continually, devotedly and effectively engaged in spreading the Cause no matter how often you receive messages of encouragement from Haifa or elsewhere


1926-02-19 To Corinne True, Contributions to the Fund

Collected Passages On Business, Development And The Bahá’í Funds, 2nd Edition p39
USNSA Dept of the Treasurer, 1993

“Both orally and in his letters Shoghi Effendi has tried to encourage the friends to contribute to the Central Fund and has made an effort to explain the advantages that we would have in having a large Central Fund and in giving regular appropriations to each of the different activities of the Cause. And yet in spite of that, Shoghi Effendi has expressly stated that the friends are not in the least required to send their contributions unlabelled but are absolutely free to state whether they wish it to go to the Central Fund or to some specific fund such as the Temple. And moreover the friends must be assured that funds that are labeled will never be used except for the specified purpose. Mrs.…’s aim in that letter is to encourage them to send unlabelled contributions which as long as they do not at all require the funds is quite in conformity with Shoghi Effendi’s desire.”

With regard to the National Fund, it must not be felt that the believers are required to send unlabelled contributions to the Fund but that it is only extremely desirable to do so. Individuals are free to specify the purpose of their donations.


1926-02-19 to Corinne True, Earmarking Contributions

Corinne True: Faithful Handmaid of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá, Nathan Rutstein, p195

With regard to the National Fund, it must not be felt that the believers are required to send unlabelled contributions to the Fund but that it is only extremely desirable to do so. Individuals are free to specify the purpose of their donations


1926-04-11 To Shíráz Bahá’ís, Notice of Jahrum Martydoms

The Priceless Pearl, Rúḥíyyih Khánum, p98


Telegram he had received: Twelve friends in Jahrom martyred agitation may extend elsewhere


1926-04-11 To Ṭihrán, Jahrum Martyrdoms

The Priceless Pearl, Rúḥíyyih Khánum, p98



1926-04-12 To Ṭihrán Bahá’ís, Further Reactions to Jahrum Martydoms

The Priceless Pearl, Rúḥíyyih Khánum, p98


On recieving more detailed wire from Shíráz advising that the chief instigator of the agitation there had been arrested


1926-04-24 Queen Marie’s Work in Eastern Europe

Her Eternal Crown: Queen Marie of Romania and the Bahá’í Faith by Della L. Marcus, p56

Shoghi Effendi wishes me to acknowledge the receipt of your letters dated January 10, March 29 and 8, April 12 and 6, a letter which was not dated, and a postcard. I consider this a great pleasure because I thereby obtain a chance of reading your letters and informing myself of the splendid work you are doing in Eastern Europe.

As Europe, especially the Eastern section, has suffered a great deal from the last war the people are quite ready and anxious to hear about peace…

Shoghi Effendi’s handwritten addition to this letter reads:

I have read your glowing reports with thankfulness and pride and I continue— nay redouble— my prayers for you that your heart’s desire may ere long be fulfilled. I will also remember those with whom you have recently come in contact and trust that Europe may in the not distant future turn ablaze as a result of your unique, memorable and unprecedented services. You have truly endeared yourself to all the Bahá’í world and your name whether in the East or in the West evokes the deepest sentiments of admiration, praise and gratitude…

I am thrilled by your account about the Queen!!!


1926-04-24 Effect of Jahrum Martydoms

The Priceless Pearl, Rúḥíyyih Khánum, p98-9

my unfortunate illness, amounting almost to a break-down, combined with the receipt of the most distressing news from Persia reporting the martyrdom of twelve of our friends in the town of Jahrum, south of Shíráz. I have wired for full particulars and will communicate them to the various Bahá’í centres immediately I receive detailed information. Political considerations and personal rivalries appear to have played no small part… I have transmitted a message to the Sháh through the Persian National Spiritual Assembly... I have also requested foreign Assemblies to give in an unoffensive language full publicity to these reports in their respective newspapers, but have thought it premature for them to get into direct relation with the Sháh… It is sad and annoying to reflect that the Bahá’ís, pressed as they are by so many afflicting and humiliating circumstances, seem at the present time quite impotent and helpless in their efforts to secure the needed assistance from recognized authorities. There must surely be some wisdom underlying this apparent futility of their strenuous efforts.


1926-04-xx To Commissioneer of the Northern District, Suffering of Recent Disturbances

The Priceless Pearl, Rúḥíyyih Khánum, p295

Fully aware of the intense suffering caused by recent disturbances, and mindful of the loving care bestowed by ‘Abdu’l— Bahá on the suffering and needy, I take great pleasure in enclosing the sum of 30 [pounds]— as my contribution towards the relief of the poor and shelterless…I shall be grateful if you will let me know from time to time if any such need arises, in whatever place and on behalf of whatever denomination.


1926-05-08 Methods of Improvement


May 8, 1926, Haifa.

“…As to the methods of improvement, it is only to try and reflect more and more the true spirit of the Cause and to make them more prepared and finally win their sincere interest in the Cause.”

Your true brother,



1926-05-15 To Victoria Bedekian

USBN No. 13— September 1926— page 3

“As I have already urged you, concentrate for the present all your splendid resources and priceless efforts on the ‘Plan for Unified Action’ that the work of the Temple may be no more neglected. Arouse the Assemblies of the East by the aid of your admirable letters to fresh consciousness of their grave responsibility concerning this mighty and noble structure. Such efforts as you may now exert will, I am confident, be richly blessed by our Beloved. Be happy and hopeful.”

Your true brother,



1926-05-17 To May Maxwell, Pilgrimage of Mary

The Maxwells of Montreal Vol II, Violette Nakhjavani, p69

The visit of your dear daughter, Mary, has reminded me of your sojourn in the Holy Land, the memory of which will ever linger in my mind. I am glad and grateful to learn from her of your good health for as I have already said I greatly value and prize your welfare and happiness realizing that every ounce’ of your energy and every minute of your time is consecrated to the service of our beloved Cause. Let not the difficulties and disappointments overpower you. Remember my prayers and love for you. My earnest hope is that Mary may follow in your footsteps and render memorable services to the Cause you love so well.


1926-05-18 Glad to Know you Hoping to Enter Harvard

Bahá’í Youth: A Compilation
Prepared By: National Spiritual Assembly Of The Bahá’ís Of The United States (1973)

“He was very glad to know that you are well and happy and that you are hoping to enter Harvard. He earnestly hopes that you will have a prosperous and successful career at Harvard and will graduate with brilliance. I am sure then you would want to devote much of your efforts to the service of a Cause so near and dear to the hearts of your parents. It is a great privilege to be able to prepare one’s self for life with such a noble aim in view and it will prove a constant source of inspiration to the aspiring mind.”

(From letter dated May 18, 1926, written on behalf of Shoghi Effendi to an individual believer)


1926-05-28 Marion Carpenter Engagement to ‘Alí Yazdí

Cited in Youth in the Vanguard, Marion Yazdí, p160
USBNC archives

My dear fellow-worker:

May this projected union prove happy, enduring and fruitful. I will supplicate on your behalf at the holy Shrines that your heart’s desire may erelong be fulfilled, that your life in future may stand as a living testimony to the harmony and fellowship which the Faith of Bahá’u’lláh has established between the East and the West.


1926-05-28 to May Maxwell, “Champney House” in NYC

The Maxwells of Montreal Vol II, Violette Nakhjavani, p24-5

I have urged the National Spiritual Assembly to give their earnest consideration to the choice of the Masters house in New York as a national executive centre. I heartily endorse the idea if it be found feasible and practicable. Its destiny is assured and nothing can mar its unique significance.

This is the house of Mrs. Champney@ 309 West 78th St.. that was rented for ‘Abdu’l-Bahá


1926-05-28 To May Maxwell, Mary's training& education

The Maxwells of Montreal Vol II, Violette Nakhjavani, p307

In my conversations with Mary I have strongly urged her to take up seriously her studies on her return to Canada& thus lay a broad& secure foundation for her future services to the Cause. A sound education is absolutely essential for her. I trust that her health will so improve as to enable her to deepen& extend her knowledge of those things that are essential for a successful career of service to the Cause. I cherish great hopes for her. Your affectionate brother



1926-05-29 To Martha Root, Queen Marie’s Statement

Her Eternal Crown: Queen Marie of Romania and the Bahá’í Faith, Della L Marcus, p59

The copy of the Queen’s appreciation which I enclose is a well— deserved and memorable testimony of your remarkable and exemplary endeavours for the spread of our beloved Cause. It has thrilled me and greatly reinforced my spirit and strength. Yours is a memorable triumph, hardly surpassed in its significance in the annals of the Cause. I have received the paper from Canada, sent to me by Helen Grand whom Lady Blomfield and Mrs Coles know well. I have immediately cabled you care Mr Simpson: “‘Toronto Daily Star” of May 4 published magnificent statement by Rumanian Queen on Cause. Your high endeavours gloriously successful. Consult promptly Mountfort Mills care Banktrust Paris on advisability to approach her regarding Jahrum martyrdom. Exert utmost endeavour. Praying fervently for your success. Mailing copy. Boundless gratitude.’

Dearest Martha: I am also enclosing copies of my circulars on the recent vile atrocities in Persia. I feel strongly the necessity for some vigorous action on their behalf. I wish you to consider carefully and prayerfully the advisability of approaching the Queen. I leave all details, if you so decide, to your discretion and your reliance upon Divine Guidance. Do not press the issue if you do not find it feasible. I advise you to consult Mr Mills, Lady Blomfield and others who might help in their advice and assistance. I have, last night, being Ascension night, specially and tenderly remembered you at Bahá’u’lláh’s Shrine and supplicated for you from the bottom of my heart Divine Guidance and Strength. I would greatly appreciate any particulars you can give me about the Queen’s ‘Book of Love,’ any references to it in newspapers, reviews, and periodicals and, if it can be secured, a copy of the book itself. I hold myself in readiness to do all I possibly can to assist in this vital and far-reaching task. Your perseverance, your indomitable faith, your heroic courage, your sweet and gentle nature are yielding the promised fruit! Persevere, nay redouble in your efforts and be always assured that my earnest and continued prayers follow you wherever you go.


1926-05-29 To Mountford Mills, Queen Marie

Her Eternal Crown: Queen Marie of Romania and the Bahá’í Faith, Della L Marcus, p60

I trust you have received by now my cable to you regarding Queen Marie’s glowing appreciation of the Teachings of the Cause. I felt when I read it a strong impulse to communicate with you and request you to consult Martha on the advisability of approaching her about the persecutions in Persia. I realize the delicacy and the peculiar difficulties of such a work as this. I do not wish you to feel constrained in any way to press the matter unduly. I would also request you to endeavour in every possible way to secure detailed information and the fullest particulars regarding this most astonishing and highly significant event in the progress of the Cause. I wonder whether the whole book treats of the Cause, and what measure of publicity it has had so far in the European press, and particularly in English periodicals.

I feel that with patience, tact, courage and resource we can utilize this development to further the interests, and extend the influence of the Cause. I shall be only too glad to give any assistance I possibly can.


1926-06-30 To Hyppolyte Dreyfus-Barney, Need for Secretary to Replace Esslemont

The Priceless Pearl, Rúḥíyyih Khánum, p92

I stand in need of a capable, trustworthy, hard-working, methodical, experienced secretary who will combine the gift of literary expression with a recognized standing in the Bahá’í world. Dr. Esslemont was a most suitable companion, unhampered, painstaking, devoted, lowly and capable. I mourn his loss… A capable, painstaking secretary, wholeheartedly devoted to his work, and two chief advisers who would represent the Movement on specific occasions, with dignity and devotion, together with two Eastern associates, mentally awake and expert in knowledge, would I feel set me on my feet and release the forces that will carry the Cause to its destined liberation and triumph… I cannot express myself more adequately than I have for my memory has greatly suffered.


1926-07-10 To Dr. John Herman Randall

USBN#16— March 1927— page 3/4

We are privileged to quote from a letter written by Shoghi Effendi in his own hand to Dr. John Herman Randall of the Community Church of New York, dated July 10th, 1926.

“I desire to take the present opportunity to assure you in person of my deep admiration for those unique gifts which have characterized your able presentation of the Bahá’í Principles as well as my unshaken confidence in the part you are destined to play for their universal recognition and triumph. Your clear vision, your high courage, your grasp of the needs of present-day society, your eminent position and penetrating eloquence qualify you in a remarkable manner to champion the Cause of Bahá’u’lláh and establish its truth in the West. “We are gradually and imperceptibly entering upon a new stage of our progressive life and the qualities which are needed to supplement the essential characteristics that are common to the followers of the Faith are just the ones you are in a position to contribute and increase. That is why every well-wisher of the Cause looks upon you as the chief instrument and factor that can provide and contribute those necessary elements which a gradually unfolding movement imperatively demands at present. I would therefore earnestly request you to pursue your labors, untrammeled and unhampered by the existing conditions, striving in your own admirable manner to add to the number of those capable, enlightened and devoted servants of the Cause, who will eventually by the force of their numbers and the brilliancy of their powers, revitalize the Cause, widen its scope, establish its Principles and vindicate its truth.

“It would undoubtedly grieve me to learn that any imperfections and failings on the part of the friends whether individually or collectively have tended to damp the zeal, or lessen the enthusiasm with which you are upholding and expounding the Bahá’í Principles, for I cherish the greatest hopes for your eventual triumph in such a glorious field of service.”

[see Dr. John Herman Randall folder]


1926-07-10 To Martha Root, Queen Marie

Her Eternal Crown: Queen Marie of Romania and the Bahá’í Faith, Della L Marcus, pp64

Your letters dated June 1, 6, 15th have given me strength, joy and encouragement at a time when I felt depressed, tired and disheartened. I am so gratified to learn that you have directly communicated with the Queen and I am impatiently waiting to hear the result. Do let me know immediately you hear from her, whether directly or indirectly. I have disseminated the glad— tiding of your highly successful interviews with her, and Her Majesty’s gracious response, throughout the East, that the oriental believers may be more fully acquainted with the heroic efforts and high courage of one who is destined to contribute so distinct a share to their ultimate deliverance. You have surely achieved a historic mission which will illuminate the annals of our Cause. Do write to me, if you are informed, of the circumstances and manner in which the Queen was moved to write her appeal and broadcast it throughout the world. Is it addressed exclusively to American women, to the American nation or to the world at large? Has she written a book on this subject? Any information you can glean and send to me will be most valuable in the influence it will exert throughout the East.


1926-07-17 To Martha Root

Her Eternal Crown: Queen Marie of Romania and the Bahá’í Faith, Della L Marcus, pp64-5

Your unique services will ever be remembered with pride and gratitude and generations yet unborn will exult in the memory of one who has so energetically, so swiftly and beautifully paved the way for the universal recognition of the Faith of Bahá’u’lláh. Do write me every particular and detail of your activities, particularly about your relations with the Queen, your correspondence with her, your plans to win her even more effectively to the Cause. I am hoping to write soon a letter to Her Majesty and will send you a copy immediately it is written

The card sent you by the Queen I shall preserve as a precious reminder of your invincible faith, your high courage, your glorious victory.

Keep in constant touch with dear Mountfort and acquaint him with all the facts of the situation and with all future developments.


1926-07-28 To Queen Marie

Her Eternal Crown: Queen Marie of Romania and the Bahá’í Faith, Della L Marcus, pp65-6

To her Majesty Queen Marie of Rumania:

Your gracious Majesty:

As one of the humble followers of the Faith of Bahá’u’lláh, upon whose youthful shoulders have fallen the responsibilities of His mighty Cause, may I venture to approach your Majesty and express in the name of the Bahá’ís of both the East and the West our feelings of joyous admiration and boundless gratitude for the queenly tribute which your Majesty has paid to the beauty and nobility of the Bahá’í teachings.

To my dear fellow-workers in Persia, particularly— the downtrodden victims of relentless religious fanaticism— your Majesty’s eloquent testimony to the potency of the message they bear has been of immense significance and will certainly prove a great relief. Broadcast at the very time when they were just emerging from one of those severe trials which periodically afflict them, your soul-stirring message has been to them a most welcome consolation as well as an abiding assurance of ultimate deliverance and victory. They rejoice to observe that the sufferings borne so long and so heroically by the Báb, by Bahá’u’lláh and ‘Abdu’l-Bahá, and the unspeakable atrocities which unnumbered martyrs of the Faith have silently and patiently endured, are but beginning to yield their promised fruit. They cannot but wonder and feel truly grateful at the thought that the call to Universal Peace and Brotherhood so clearly voiced by Bahá’u’lláh, yet so cruelly ignored, nay stifled, for over eighty years by their own fellow-countrymen, has at last found in the heart of an honoured and beloved Queen a warm and ready response.

My dearly-beloved brethren of the East and the West, whose one object in life is to promote and in some measure to establish the sublime Principles proclaimed by Bahá’u’lláh, are convinced that the moving appeal penned by your Majesty will prove of incalculable benefit to the Cause so dear to their hearts. They recall with profound emotion the explicit promise of Bahá’u’lláh to every Sovereign that rises to summon the multitude to the Message He has given to the world, and they feel confident that the unfailing grace of the Almighty will be abundantly showered upon the eminent advocate of so noble a Cause.

And in conclusion, may I convey to your Majesty on behalf of the family of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá and myself the expression of our profound and heartfelt sympathy in the sorrows that have recently weighed so heavily upon you. Your beautiful and spontaneous appreciation of our beloved Cause, the memory of which we shall preserve and cherish, has forged a link of abiding affection and fellowship that will unite our hearts. We earnestly pray that this darkening cloud may soon pass away and yield to the sunshine of a joyous reunion.

With deepest and truest love,

My address:
Shoghi Effendi
Haifa, Palestine


1926-08-10 To May Maxwell, Take Care of your Health

The Maxwells of Montreal Vol II, Violette Nakhjavani, p54-5

My dear and most precious May,

Though resting in the calm and invigorating atmosphere of the Swiss mountains I can always find time to correspond with you, which I assure you is a great pleasure to me. I have read your letter and am deeply grateful to learn of the services which you are continuing to render to our beloved Cause. All I ask you is to consider your health for it is the prerequisite of lasting and efficient service. I have great hopes in your collaboration with that radiant and beautiful soul Mrs. Greenleaf and shall expect to hear of the progress of your joint efforts in that promising country


1926-08-23 To Martha Root, Queen Marie’s Letter

Her Eternal Crown: Queen Marie of Romania and the Bahá’í Faith, Della L Marcus, pp73

I am glad to share with you the contents of the Queen of Rumania’s answer to my letter. I think it is a remarkable letter, beyond our highest expectations. The change that has been effected in her, her outspoken manner, her penetrating testimony and courageous stand are indeed eloquent and convincing proof of the all-conquering Spirit of God’s living Faith and of the magnificent services you are rendering to His Cause.

I shall not publish this letter, but will share one or two passages in it with the friends in my next general letter wherein I shall make mention in befitting terms of your noble, inestimable, unforgettable contribution to such an astonishing success. Do not show the letter to any one but to the most reliable and intimate associates that you have among the believers.


1926-08-30 To Jean Stannard, German not be Omitted from any Official Report

Germany, France, Italy, and Switzerland
Compiled by Research Department of the Universal House of Justice.
Published in Bahá’í Studies Review 4:1

I trust you have received my cable to you concerning the need for publishing any future Bahá’í Bulletin in Geneva in the 3 dominant languages in Europe, i.e. English, French and German. I strongly feel and it is my firm and personal conviction, influenced by no one whomsoever, that the German language should not under any circumstances be omitted from any officially recognized report on world Bahá’í activity issued from the International Bahá’í Bureau at Geneva. I even feel that we should exert the utmost effort to include the German language in our report on the progress of local Bahá’í work in Geneva. The growing number of German Bahá’í centres and adherents, the glorious words spoken by our Beloved regarding their destined and dominant part in the future spiritual awakening of Europe, and the qualities of hard work, earnestness and thoroughness which they invariably display in their labours, make it imperative that we recognize officially their language….

(30 August 1926)

[To Jean Stannard, Bahá’í International Bureau]


1926-08-30 Possible Formation of Secretariat in Haifa

The Priceless Pearl, Rúḥíyyih Khánum, p248

I am anxiously considering ways and means for the formation of some sort of efficient, competent Secretariat in Haifa… I have thought of it a great deal and I am still exploring and searching for a competent, reliable, methodical, and trained associate who, untrammeled and unhampered, can devote… continuous months to such a delicate and responsible task. When this is achieved I cherished the brightest hopes for the strengthening of the vital bonds that bind the Centre in Haifa with all the Assemblies in the Bahá’í world.


1926-08-xx To Jean Stannard, Functioning of Geneva Bureau

The Priceless Pearl, Rúḥíyyih Khánum, p249

Bahá’í Bulletin Geneva Bureau publishes to be in the three dominant languages in Europe i.e. English, French and German… I have expressed in my cable to you my readiness to extend regular and financial assistance to you in order to ensure that the proposed circular will be published in the three recognized official languages of the western section of the Bahá’í world… Your Centre in Switzerland and the Bahá’í Esperanto Magazine published at Hamburg are both destined to shoulder some of the functions and responsibilities which will in future be undertaken by the International Bahá’í Assembly when formed.


1926-09-10 Green Acre Fellowship

No. 14— November 1926— page 7

“Guardian wires following— ‘May newly confirmed union achieve its purpose by increasingly demonstrate universality of Bahá’í Cause. Affectionately, Shoghi.’

(Signed) Bahíyyih.”

Following the action of the annual meeting of Green Acre Fellowship in August, which voted to confirm the resolution passed by the same body in 1925 placing the control of Green Acre in the hands of the Bahá’ís of the United States and Canada through their National Spiritual Assembly


1926-09-20 Recent Report From Ṭihrán

USBN#14 p2, Nov 1926

“Guardian wires following: ‘Recent report from Ṭihrán states criminals unpunished. Officials indifferent. Your powerful eminently suitable appeal to Sháh shared with Eastern Assemblies, will rejoice and console oppressed hearts, Affectionately, Shoghi.’ (Signed), Bahíyyih.”


1926-09-25 Should Queen Marie visit the U.S

USBN#14 p2, Nov 1926

“Guardian wires: ‘Should Roumanian Queen visit States, friends refrain communicating with her unless National Assembly Sanction. Excuse restrain.(Signed’) Bahíyyih.”

(Note. The meaning of the last phrase is not quite dear, and the message seems to have been slightly confused in transmission.)


1926-09-xx Fountain that is Continually Emptying Itself

USBN#13— Sept 1926— page 1
Cited in Directives of the Guardian,#83

“We must be like the fountain or spring that is continually emptying itself of all that it has and is continually being refilled from an invisible source. To be continually giving out for the good of our fellows undeterred by fear of poverty and reliant on the unfailing bounty of the Source of all wealth and all good— this is the secret of right living.”



1926-09-xx To Star of the West Editors

USBN No. 13— September 1926— page 3

The editors of the Star have recently received the following message from Shoghi Effendi:

“I was delighted to see the various appreciations testifying to your able management of the affairs of the Star. I myself have noted with increasing satisfaction and delight its marked progress, its widening scope, its improved style, its faithful, convincing and worthy presentation of the divers phases of our Glorious Cause. I pray that your efforts may be richly blessed and reinforced by our Beloved who I feel certain is well pleased with your notable achievements.

“Lovingly and gratefully.



1926-09-xx Transcribing Collecting& Despatching Sacred Writings

September 1926 to the Bahá’ís of the East— translated from the Persian Writings
Bahá’í: Importance of collecting and safeguarding, compiled by Bahá’í International Archives.
Published in Bahá’í Studies Review, 11, pages 100-102

Another essential requirement is the expediting of the tasks of transcribing, collecting and despatching the Sacred Writings to the Holy Land, and recording the general history of the Cause of God. The Western believers in the far-flung reaches of the free world, who have set about prosecuting important plans, are anxious and expectant that these two tasks be speedily completed and the necessary preparations for their forthcoming projects be made without delay, thus enabling them to give concrete expression to their hopes and plans for the future, and to impart a great momentum to the spread of the Holy Cause.


1926-10-16 To Treasurer, Plan of Unified Action

USBN#21— January 1928— page 2

Oct. 16, 1926.

My dear co-worker:

I am glad to hear from a recent letter of the increasing interest and support of the friends to the Plan. We must continually repeat, appeal and urge them to realize afresh the vital urgency of the task before them. I am herewith enclosing the sum of$95 as my October contribution towards the Plan for Unified Action. Please assure the friends of my continued prayers for the success of their persistent efforts and devoted labors for the spread of the Cause.

Your true brother,



1926-10-16 Baghdád Case

USBN#14 p2, Nov 1926

“Baghdád case progressing most favorably, Inform friends.(Signed) Shoghi.”


1926-11-01 To Treasurer, Plan of Unified Action

USBN#21— January 1928— page 2

Nov. 1, 1926.

My dear co-worker:

I am anxious to learn of the response of the friends to the Plan for Unified Action since June 30th: I attach extreme importance to it and I wish you to concentrate your splendid efforts on this so as to insure its success. So much that is vital depends upon this Plan. We must at all costs make it a success, for its failure would be a reflection on the Cause and would delay indefinitely and lamentably the construction of the Temple. Exert every effort along this line and rest assured of my constant prayers for the success of your efforts.

Your true brother,



1926-11-16 To Mr. Furútan, Teaching Possible under all Circumstances

Lights of Fortitude, pp. 211-22, by Barron Harper

Your letter was received by the Guardian of the Cause of God… and brought much joy to his heart. He spoke of you and praised God that you… are assisted by divine confirmations in your education, that you intend to complete it and wish to diffuse the heavenly fragrances, to serve the Faith, and to teach the Cause of God. This intention attracts the confirmations of the One true God and the favours of the Kingdom of eternity. Therefore, he cherishes the hope that you will eventually attain the goal of your desire…

Teaching the Cause of God is possible under all circumstances, even through trade and commerce and through proper conduct, as it is said that goodly deeds and a praiseworthy character are in themselves the teachers of the Cause. Therefore, any individual, in whatever profession he may be engaged if he conduct himself in a praiseworthy manner and exemplify the human perfections, he will himself become the sign of the propagation of the Word of God and will hoist the banner of the glory of the Cause of God.

Concerning the determination of your duty the Guardian stated that you should in no way be disturbed and distressed. If in all circumstances you resort and cling to the cord of consultation you will be confirmed in all your efforts. In all cases, you should refer to the Spiritual Assembly and act according to the wishes and approval of its respected and elected members.

Whatever the result of the consultation of the Spiritual Assembly may be, that is the correct course of action and will meet with the good pleasure of the Lord…

The beloved Guardian also remembered your parents and prayed for them.

Shoghi Effendi wrote in his own hand in the margin of this letter:

O spiritual Friend:

This servant in this illumined spot prays at the Sacred Threshold from the depths of his heart for your peace of mind, prosperity and success, so that you may excel in divine knowledge and material learning..


1926-11-24 Activities with Sanction of National Assembly

Reviewing: Practice and Functions of Literature Review#3
Compiled by Universal House of Justice Research Department. 1990-05

To keep the unity of action in the Cause it is absolutely essential that all activities be with the approval and sanction of the National Assembly of that locality. Shoghi Effendi, therefore, would like you to obtain the sanction of the National Assembly before you undertake the publication of any matter.

(24 November 1926 to an individual believer)


1926-11-28 Youth Need Firm Foundation of Scientific and Literary Training

Science and Technology#2
Compiled by Research Department of the Universal House of Justice.

We had heard through various channels the wonderful way your children had grown to speak about the Cause in public. Shoghi Effendi’s hope is that they will, the three of them, become able and devoted speakers on the Cause and subjects akin to it. To do this properly they will need a firm foundation of scientific and literary training which fortunately they are obtaining. It is just as important for the Bahá’í young boys and girls to become properly educated in colleges of high standing as it is to be spiritually developed. The mental as well as the spiritual side of the youth has to be developed before he can serve the Cause efficiently.

1926-11-28 On Behalf of Shoghi Effendi to an Individual


1926-12-02 To May Maxwell, Circumstances of Mr. and Mrs. Randall

Quoted in William Henry Randall, Bahíyyih Randall-Winkler, p239

Shoghi Effendi is very glad to see that some of the friends are appreciating the difficult and depressing circumstances Mr. and Mrs. Randall are living through, and sympathizing with them, are arising to give them that Bahá’í love and affection which should characterize our relations. In many instances we cannot extend to a friend any material help which would relieve him of the very cause of worry. But that does not prevent us from showing sympathy, assuring him of our love and readiness to do our best. It is a great relief for a suffering person to see around him some loving friends who, though unable to extend an appreciable amount of help, share in his sorrows. Mr. and Mrs. Randall were and are devoted servants of the Master. Everything you do for them we do for the Master.


1926-12-02 To Mary Maxwell, Encourage Study& art of Public Speaking

The Maxwells of Montreal Vol II, Violette Nakhjavani, p135

Dear Mary:

Shoghi Effendi has given me the pleasure of acknowledging the receipt of your first letter to him dated November 1st, 1926. He was very glad to see that you have made the service to this beloved Cause the primary aim of your life& will pray that you should succeed in it. This is the goal for which every Bahá’í youth should mobilise his forces

My spiritual sister:

Your first written message has touched me deeply& has served to reinforce the bonds that unite me with your dear family in the service of the Cause. I cherish great hopes for you,& I will continue to pray for you that you may grow to become a shining example of virtue, of zeal,& of capacity to every worker in the Divine Vineyard. Study profoundly the Teachings, deepen your knowledge of social subjects& practice the art of public speaking that you may mirror forth the glory& beauty of this wondrous Revelation.

Your true brother,



1926-xx-xx Correspondence with the Guardian

USBN#15, p1, Jan 1927

“Shoghi Effendi wishes me to inform the beloved friends that if, at any time, any of the friends feels that it is necessary, in the interest of the Cause, to correspond with him about any matter, he should do so without the slightest hesitation, and his letters will be gladly and promptly considered.”


The following commentary was attached to the above--

A circular letter issued by the Spiritual Assembly of Haifa, through Badi Bushrui, secretary, contains the following reference to the subject of correspondence with Shoghi Effendi.

“The Cause is fast advancing, new centers are being established. Introduction of more system and organization is indispensable, events of great consequence transpire, all calling for the concentrated attention of the beloved Guardian. Under such circumstances it is evident that we should strain every nerve to lighten the burden of correspondence which is increasingly pouring in from different parts of the world. The idea seems, however, to be taking root with some of the friends that individual correspondence with Shoghi Effendi should be discontinued under all circumstances; which is quite a wrong interpretation of the case.”

This announcement was undoubtedly the result of the resolution passed by the last National Convention of the Bahá’ís of the United States and Canada, which however did not express the delegates as desiring to advise individuals not to write the Guardian, but rather aimed to bring home to all American believers the thought that we should refrain from giving utterance to personal complains which ought to be removed through local or national consuItation.


1926-xx-xx To a U.S. non-Bahá’í Youth Leader, Spirit of the Cause

The Priceless Pearl, Rúḥíyyih Khánum, p362

We believe that the spirit of the Cause is gradually directing peoples and nations, and that all Bahá’ís are called upon to do is to persevere in their advocacy of the sublime principles revealed by Bahá’u’lláh. They will never hold aloof from the great humanitarian endeavours of the true leaders of public thought and always welcome every opportunity of raising their voice, in conjunction with other movements, on behalf of peace, truth and justice.


1927-01-08 To Treasurer, the Plan of Unified Action

USBN#21— January 1928— page 2/3

My dear and valued co-worker:

It is my earnest hope and prayer that the friends will more universally, substantially and regularly contribute to this Plan. They should be strenuously and continuously urged to do so. The National Assembly must be on their guard and watch carefully the developments of the activities of the friends lest any new issue should arise that would tend to obscure the most vital issue which is of paramount importance, lest it should dissipate the energies of the friends and cause this Plan to fall into the background. I will continue to supplicate the blessings of Bahá’u’lláh upon your highly valued efforts.

Your true brother,



1927-02-02 To Corinne True, Community Membership

Corinne True: Faithful Handmaid of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá, Nathan Rutstein, p195

I strongly feel that this matter is within the province of the National Assembly. I have laid down the principle in a general way; it is for the local assemblies in collaboration with their national Representatives to apply the principles to the difficult and complex circumstances and situation in their own sphere of activity…

A response to True when she asked to be able to remain a member of the Chicago community tho’ no longer residing in it.


1927-02-04 To Martha Root, Gift From Khurasán

Her Eternal Crown: Queen Marie of Romania and the Bahá’í Faith, Della L Marcus, pp86-7

It gives me the greatest pleasure to enclose herewith a most precious relic, presented to you, in recognition of your unrivalled services to the Bahá’í Faith, by the Bahá’ís of Khurasán, one of the most important eastern provinces of Persia. On this illuminated sheet is inscribed a prayer of Bahá’u’lláh revealed to one of the handmaids of God. It is adorned and blessed in the centre by a ring of Bahá’u’lláh’s own sacred hair. This has been forwarded to me through the Spiritual Assembly of Mashhad, the chief town of the province. Will you kindly send me the receipt that I may forward it to the Mashhad Assembly

You see, dearest Martha, what you have achieved, what you have deserved, and what a turmoil of enthusiasm your self-sacrificing devotion has caused in the hearts of the faithful in Bahá’u’lláh’s native land! You are the truest and best example to every labourer in the Divine Vineyard.


1927-02-20 Encourage Individuals and Groups

USBN#77— September 1933— page 3

“It is the duty and privilege of the National and Local Assemblies if they find that the pressing requirements of their local and national budgets have been adequately met, to encourage individuals and groups to initiate and conduct, with their knowledge and consent, any undertaking that would serve to enhance the work which they have set themselves to achieve. Not content with appeals addressed to each and every believer to offer any constructive suggestions or plan that would remedy an existing grievance, they should, by every means in their power, stimulate the spirit of enterprise among the believers in order to further the teachings as well as the administrative work of the Cause. They should endeavor by personal contact and written appeals, to imbue the body of the faithful with a deep sense of personal responsibility, and urge every believer, whether high or low, poor or wealthy, to conceive, formulate and execute such measures and projects as would redound, in the eyes of their representatives, to the power and the fair name of this sacred Cause.”


1927-02-24 Mountfort Mills to States

USBN#16— March 1927— page 6

“Mountfort (Mills), America’s distinguished representative rendering most valuable services in London (and) Holy Land (is) proceeding temporarily (to the United) States to deliberate with National Assembly issues affecting international status of Cause. His statements fully authorized.” (signed) Shoghi.


1927-02-26 Passing of Afnán Mírzá Mohsen

USBN#16— March 1927— page 6

“Afnán Mírzá Mohsen, Beloved’s son in law and distinguished servant of His Cause, ascended (to the) Abhá Kingdom. Hearts grief stricken. Inform American believers.” (signed) Shoghi.

[Husband of Rúḥá Khánum and father of Rúḥí Afnán.]


1927-02-xx To Colonel Symes, Egypt Situation

The Priceless Pearl, Rúḥíyyih Khánum, p277

I take the liberty of enclosing for your information a copy of latest communication addressed to Bahá’ís in Western lands regarding the Egyptian situation… We are greatly heartened by the thought that at a time when we are faced with delicate and perplexing issues, Palestine is under an Administration which is actuated by the highest motives of fairness and justice, and for which we Bahá’ís have every reason to be appreciative and thankful. I am glad the Bahá’í Year Book has interested you…

Likely refers to letter in Bahá’í Administration dated 12 February 1927


1927-03-23 To Treasurer, Plan of Unified Action

USBN#21— January 1928— page 3

March 23, 1927.

My dear and valued co-worker:

I am enclosing my April contribution to the National Fund. It is a matter of deep concern to me that the response of the believers to the call embodied in the Plan of Unified Action has been so feeble and uncertain. The National Assembly, while not justified to oppose specific contributions for newly originated activities, should by every means in its power impress upon the friends the paramount necessity of unlabelled contributions to the National Fund. The Mashriqu’l-Adhkár undoubtedly constitutes the most important item in the activities provided by the Plan, but these must not be unduly restricted or neglected in order to further the interests of the Temple. I would be grieved to learn that any believer would ever attempt to support an activity that lies outside the province of the Plan and would neglect thereby his sacred obligation towards the Budget. May the believers, one and all, arise to support the Plan as they have never done before and with all the resources at their disposal secure its triumph.



1927-03-24 To Martha Root, Queen Marie

Her Eternal Crown: Queen Marie of Romania and the Bahá’í Faith, Della L Marcus, pp88

I am eagerly awaiting to hear of the response of the Queen to your letter. Will you please send me a copy of her answer whenever you receive it? We all expect her to continue her services to the Faith through the medium of the Press and otherwise and thus prove to the many who have read her appreciations that her interest is genuine, profound, and determined. May the Beloved’s guidance and grace and your own continued efforts yield the most abundant fruit in such a glorious field of service.


1927-03-xx Assuring Martha of Prayers Wherever She Goes — Scandinavia, Central Europe, etc.

The Priceless Pearl, Rúḥíyyih Khánum, p105

I assure you, dearest Martha that wherever you be, in Scandinavia, Central Europe, Russia, Turkey or Persia, my fervent and continued prayers will accompany you and I trust that you may be protected, strengthened and guided to fulfil your unique and unprecedented mission as the exemplary advocate of the Bahá’í Faith.


1927-04-17 To Martha Root, Contacts with Queen Marie

Her Eternal Crown: Queen Marie of Romania and the Bahá’í Faith, Della L Marcus, pp88-9

I urge you not to miss any chance that presents itself to impress Queen Marie with our love and best wishes and prayers for her and of our earnest hope that she will find it possible to render her share of service to the Cause of Bahá’u’lláh. The Bahá’ís in every land, inspired and thankful in connection with her splendid appreciations of their beloved Cause, look forward with intense hope and expectation to still greater and more glorious evidences of her praise and admiration of the Bahá’í Faith. Do you think that in the event of the death of the King, whose condition seems critical, a telegram of condolence on behalf of the Family, the Bahá’ís and myself addressed to her would be well-advised? I wonder whether she would expect it.


1927-04-27 To Dr Forel, Persecutions

Bahá’í World, Vol. 18 (1979-1983), page 973

My dear Dr. Forel,

I am taking the liberty of sending you enclosed a copy of Shoghi Effendi’s letter to the Assemblies in the West, in connection with the martyrdom of still another brother of the Faith in Persia.

The horrible news of this evil happening has just broken upon us and Shoghi Effendi would be very grateful if you could communicate the news to some papers in Switzerland and Germany for publication. With all our grief and feelings we can extend no helping hand to our fellowBahá’ís in that distracted country. All that we can do is to help through publicity, and acquaint humanity in the civilized world with such terrible tales of horror.

In the event of publication of the news contained in the enclosed letter, Shoghi Effendi would deeply appreciate it if you could send him a copy of it.

My dear and valued co-worker:

Your letter dated March 24 and the copy of ‘Der Freidenker’ have safely reached me and I thank you warmly for your continued efforts for the spread of the Bahá’í Faith. I trust that the journals with which you are in touch will publish the account given in my letter, and I shall be pleased to receive copies of such publications. Their sufferings, so heroically borne, surely deserve the most strenuous efforts on our part to give them the widest possible publicity.

Your true and grateful co-worker, Shoghi


1927-04-xx Interracial Amity

USBN#18— June 1927— page 5

Dr. Baghdádí read his letter from Shoghi Effendi, just received:

“My dear and precious Co-worker:

I desire you to redouble your efforts in connection with the promotion of inter-racial amity and understanding. “Urge the believers to show more affection, confidence, fellowship and loving kindness to the colored believers. No trace of mistrust, no sense of superiority, no mark of discord and aloofness should characterize the relations of the white and colored believers. They should openly, bravely and sincerely follow the example of our Beloved and banish prejudice from their hearts. May He reinforce and bless your efforts in such an important field of work.”

(Signed) SHOGHI.


1927-04-xx To National Convention

USBN#18— June 1927— page 3

“Affectionate remembrance Riḍván Festival. Ardently praying America’s national representatives and delegates to 19th convention may by fervor of their love and the soundness of their deliberations inaugurate new cycle of unprecedented achievement.”


1927-05-05 To Newly Elected NSA

USBN#18 p1, June 1927

“Heartily welcome delegates’ choice. May your exalted ministry be crowned with enduring success.”

(Signed) Shoghi. Haifa, May 5. 1927

Allen B. McDaniel, chairman; Roy C. Wilhelm, vice-chairman; Horace Holley, secretary; Carl Scheffler, treasurer: Mesdames Florence R. Moron, May Maxwell and Amelia Collins, Messrs. Alfred E. Lunt and Louis G. Gregory


1927-05-09 To Mr. Allen B. McDaniel, Banish Racial Prejudice

USBN#18— June 1927— page 8

My dear valued co-worker:

I have emphatically appealed through a recent letter to the American believers to banish from their hearts and minds every trace of racial prejudice— as an essential pre-requisite of an effectual campaign conducted by them on behalf of racial amity. There is much to be accomplished by them as fellow-believers before they face the outside world and claim the attention of their fellow-men, as the exponents of these sublime Teachings of Bahá’u’lláh. I trust they will realize their responsibilities and resolve to wage eternal battle with their natural instincts if they desire to ensure the efficacy of their concerted efforts in this field.

Your true brother,


May 9, 1927.

Possibly a reference to the letter read by Dr. Baghdádí at Convention


1927-05-25 Concentrate on Plan of Unified Action

USBN#19— August 1927— page 3

“I trust and pray that the efforts of the newly elected National Assembly will be concentrated this year on the Plan of Unified Action, and that the believers in every locality will whole-heartedly and unitedly arise to insure its success by every means at their disposal. What we require is unity of purpose, singleness of mind and concerted and sustained effort. Every endeavor to achieve this purpose will surely be assisted from on high and will receive the full measure of the Beloved’s blessings.”

SHOGHI EFFENDI, May 25, 1927.


1927-06-28 To Treasurer, Plan of Unified Action

USBN#21— January 1928— page 3

June 28, 1927

My dear Bahá’í brother:

I am instructed by my beloved Guardian Shoghi Effendi, to forward to you the enclosed checque of$95 as his contribution to the Budget for the month of June. He earnestly hopes that the friends have by now realized the supreme necessity of contributing regularly and unlabelled towards the Plan of Unified Action which is the corner stone of Bahá’í administration for this coming year.

Wishing you success in your unsparing efforts to promote the Plan, I am,

Yours sincerely,

R. Rabbání.


1927-06-29 To Martha Root Hoping Will Meet Marie’s Relatives

Her Eternal Crown: Queen Marie of Romania and the Bahá’í Faith, Della L Marcus, pp89-90

I hope you will succeed in meeting not only the Rumanian Queen but her daughter, the Queen of Serbia and King Boris of Bulgaria as well and I trust you will not hesitate to send all particulars and details regarding your work in such important field.


1927-07-22 Queen Marie, Death of King Ferdinand

Her Eternal Crown: Queen Marie of Romania and the Bahá’í Faith, Della L Marcus, pp94





1927-08-16 To Treasurer, Plan of Unified Action

USBN#21— January 1928— page 3

August 16, 1927.

Dear and valued co-worker:

I know full well how exacting your task is and I fully appreciate your difficult position. Perseverance will alone ensure the success of the work to which we are so closely attached and I trust that you will continue to acquaint the friends with every development of your work that confidence may grow deeper and result in a wider and more substantial response. Do not lose heart and remember always the eventual success of God’s Divine Plan.

Your true brother,


1927-08-19 To Martha Root, Marie’s Response to Condolences

Her Eternal Crown: Queen Marie of Romania and the Bahá’í Faith, Della L Marcus, pp95-6

He has with your approval sent a cable of condolence to Queen Marie— the following answer has been received: ‘Grateful thanks to you and all yours with whom I feel spiritually so closely in touch.’

He trusts that your next visit to her will serve to stimulate her to further action in a manner that will fulfil the hopes that the Bahá’ís cherish for her future work in the Cause. You will, he feels sure, assure her of our Guardian’s deep sympathy and love as well as his earnest prayers for her welfare and success in facing the responsibilities of her high position...

I trust you will do all you can to stimulate the ardour and faith of the Queen and infuse in her a desire to lend a helping hand to the sufferers in Persia. Only last week a fresh case of persecution in the town of Kirmán has been reported to me, and the same indifference, neglect has been shown by the authorities. The hope of our downtrodden brethren in Persia lies in the action that the free and devoted servants of the Cause in the West can take on their behalf and I pray that you will continue in your unique mission of drawing the attention of those who are in authority to the incredible atrocities so frequently perpetrated in Persia.


1927-08-25 Aqdas& Temple Interior

USBN#20— November 1927— page 7

“The Kitáb-i-Aqdas should not be published as the existing translation is most inadequate. As the Laws in the Aqdas are not all of them designed for immediate application, our Guardian hopes to make extracts of the more immediate and essential provisions of it for the guidance of the friends, who should be urged to adopt and enforce them within the limits imposed by the civil law in their respective countries.

“Regarding the Mashriqu’l-Adhkár, our Guardian feels that the National Assembly should take no step whatsoever concerning the interior design or constructions of the Temple if that step involves, however indirectly, any financial obligation on the part of the National Fund, as the Temple Fund is solely for building purposes. As to the character of the design, our Guardian feels that this is a matter to be decided by the architect and those friends who have a special knowledge of such matters.”


1927-09-11 To Martha, Possibility of War is Remote

Martha Root: Lioness at the Threshold, M. R. Garis, p217

Dearest Martha,

The prospect is very remote, the danger for the near future is non-existent. Should complications arise, and travelling become perilous in Europe, you must rest assured that the Beloved Family will receive you in their midst with open arms, and the haven of Mount Carmel will be your Shelter and refuge in case a storm breaks out in Europe. Do not feel disturbed at present, however, and with an assured heart and mind, concentrate all your powers and splendid gifts upon the pursuit of your noble and arduous task. Bahá’u’lláh watches over you and the Supreme Concourse overshadows you, as their heroic and exemplary herald on this earthly plane.


1927-09-29 To Treasurer, Plan of Unified Action

USBN#21— January 1928— page 3

September 29, 1927.

My dear co-worker:

It is my earnest hope that the Cause will not incur further liabilities this year and I want you to urge the National Assembly to be exceedingly careful in voting appropriations that are not strictly urgent and necessary at present. We must concentrate on what is specified and stressed in the Budget for the coming year.

With best wishes,



1927-09-xx Magnitude of the Work

The Priceless Pearl, Rúḥíyyih Khánum, p93

I look forward to the work this winter with concern as I realize the magnitude of the work and my single-handedness in the face of my stupendous task. As I have already observed, conferences won’t do, what I need is close, continuous collaboration, in order to initiate and execute the measures that are necessary for the spread and consolidation of the Cause. Meanwhile I will have to pursue my present line of work which I feel is secondary in importance and could easily be undertaken by a secretariat…


1927-10-18 Petty Details of Bahá’í Administration

USBN#42 July 1930 p2
October 18, 1927.

“…The absorption of the petty details of Bahá’í administration by the personnel of the National Spiritual Assembly is manifestly injurious to efficiency and an expert discharge of Bahá’í duties, whilst the granting of undue discretion to bodies that should be regarded in no other light than that of expert advisers and executive assistants would jeopardize the very vital and pervading powers that are the sacred prerogatives of bodies that in time will evolve into Bahá’í National Houses of Justice.”


1927-10-27 Martha, Stones for Marie

Her Eternal Crown: Queen Marie of Romania and the Bahá’í Faith, Della L Marcus, pp95-6

I am in receipt of your most welcome letters dated August 30, 18, September 15, and October 14 and I am thrilled by the news they contained, particularly your remarkable and historic interview with the Queen and Princess. I am sending you a number of Bahá’í stones under separate cover to be presented or sent by you on my behalf to the Queen, the Princess and any other member of the Royal Family who you think would appreciate and prize them. You have been surely inspired in all that you have said and done, and the power and guidance of Bahá’u’lláh have been clearly manifested all throughout your visit to Bucharest…

Please assure the Queen and the Princess of our great love for them, our prayers for their happiness and success and of out warm and cordial invitation to visit the Holy Land and be received at the Beloved’s home. The Princess would be most welcome to write to me and I would welcome any message from her.


1927-10-28 Economic Problems

Extracts from Shoghi Effendi’s Letters to Ruth and Robert Moffett

October 28, 1927, Haifa.

“…He was much interested in your ideas over the solution of the economic problem in the West. A question that must have meant a good deal of thought among enlightened people, and he is delighted to see in your thoughts, much that runs along the same general lines as in principles laid out by the Movement.

Of course, conditions in the East differ where the countries are rarely industrial and mostly agricultural. We should have to apply different laws from the West, and that is why the principles of the Movement strike at the root, which is common to them both. ‘Abdu’l-Bahá has developed in various of His talks, which you will find in different compilations, the principles upon which the Bahá’í economic system would be based. A system that prevents, among others, the gradual control of wealth in the hands of a few and the resulting state of both extremes, wealth and poverty.

I strongly advise you to make a thorough research and study of the economic teachings of the Cause, as you seem to have the necessary background for a complete understanding of their significance and value. I will pray that you may diffuse by your words and deeds the spirit that animates the Faith and thus render distinguished and memorable service to our Beloved Cause.”

Your true brother,


1927-11-xx Condition of Mansion at Bahjí

The Priceless Pearl, Rúḥíyyih Khánum, p231

The Qasr is still occupied by Muḥammad-‘Alí and Majdiddin [his cousin] has sent a message requesting us to repair the roof which may collapse at any time. He has been told emphatically that we shall not proceed with any repair unless and until they evacuate the entire building.


1927-12-01 To May Maxwell, Hopes for Daughter Mary.

The Maxwells of Montreal Vol II, Violette Nakhjavani, p114

Your notable achievements in the teaching field are graven upon my heart, and I cherish the brightest hopes for the extension and consolidation of your present activities. Kindly assure your dear husband and daughter of my best wishes and prayers for them, that they may in the days to come effectively reinforce your heroic endeavours for the spread and consolidation of the Bahá’í Faith.


1927-12-14 To Mary Maxwell Emphasize Social Studies Over Sciences

The Maxwells of Montreal Vol II, Violette Nakhjavani, p135-6

Of course he quite well understands your interest in science and hopes that it will mature into a sound& enlightened outlook, and your study of social sciences will prepare you, he hopes, to [have] a better understanding of some of the greatest problems of the world to-day and the illuminating light that the teachings of the Cause throws upon their ultimate and justifiable solution. I am sure you will find both fields equally interesting and absorbing.

My dear Bahá’í Sister:

I feel that while acquiring the fundamental facts of science, you should concentrate your energy on social studies, that you may teach in future with knowledge& understanding,& thus be enabled to attract people of standing, of influence& learning. I will pray for you at the holy Shrines, that you may mirror forth in your life& activities the glory& power of this Divine Revelation.

Your well-wisher,


1927-12-30 To Martha, Ileana& Ringstones

Her Eternal Crown: Queen Marie of Romania and the Bahá’í Faith, Della L Marcus, pp127

The letters addressed to you by Princess Ileana are most gratifying indeed. They have brought tears of joy to the eyes of the Greatest Holy Leaf, who has learned to love you, to admire you, and to appreciate to the full the significance of your work for the Cause. I trust you will convey to her and to her mother our sincerest appreciation of their sustained interest in the Cause as well as of our continued prayers for their welfare and happiness…

I am enclosing for you six Bahá’í ringstones to be disposed by you as you think best. I am sure you do not realize what you are doing for the Cause of God. Only future generations can adequately appreciate the extent and significance of your present services, the circumstances under which you labour, and the stimulating influence you are exerting throughout the Bahá’í world.

1927-12-30 to Martha re Ileana& ringstones


1927-xx-xx Plan of Unified Action

USBN#18— June 1927— page 3

“I am anxious to learn of the response of the friends to the plan for unified action since June 30th. I attach extreme importance to it and I wish you to concentrate your efforts on this so as to insure its success. So much that is vital depends upon this plan. We must at all cost make it a success, for its failure would be a reflection upon the Cause and would delay indefinitely the construction of the Temple. Exert every effort along this line and rest assured of my constant prayers for the success of your efforts.”

[Quoted by Mr. Carl Scheffler, Treasurer, from a letter written by Rúḥí Afnán and signed by Shoghi Effendi at 1927 Convention]


1927-xx-xx Publicity Bureau

USBN#16, p3 March 1927
No. 16— March 1927— page 3
[USBN#17, April 1937]

Shoghi Effendi has referred to the Bureau [Bahá’í Publicity Bureau] in a recent letter to one of the American friends:

“It is my earnest prayer that this newly conceived Publicity Bureau will draw many a spiritually minded capable soul to this Cause, and prove a real dynamic force that will carry the Cause forward with greater vigor and increased vitality.”

This was started in about Jan 1936---

During December a number of believers voluntarily offered to meet the expenses of a Publicity Bureau in order that the activities of the Cause might be more extensively and officially made known to the general public. The Bureau has been functioning for a period of three months, during which time they have received clippings of their publicity to the extent of about thirty-three newspaper columns. The subjects presented so far have been the Year Book, the World Unity Conferences and the Green Acre Institute of World Unity, in addition to which special articles have been prepared and issued by the Bureau. It would be well for the Assemblies to give this subject very careful attention in order that we may all learn how to cooperate with these new facilities for publicity. Meanwhile, we should feel distinct gratitude to those whose generosity has made this important service possible.


1927-xx-xx Clean Break With Past Required.

The Priceless Pearl, Rúḥíyyih Khánum, p377

A clear break with the past is required… Otherwise those whose faith is still unripe may thereby remain indefinitely along the circumference and continue in their attitude of half-hearted allegiance to the teachings of the Cause in their entirety.


1927-xx-xx Sustaining the Budget

Reported at 1927 National Convention
USBN#18 p4

Mr. Vail: Shoghi Effendi writes: “Will you please impress upon the believer the vital spiritual obligation of sustaining the budget, as this is the only feasible way of fulfilling the Master’s dearest wish, the gradual building of the Mashriq’ul Adhkar?”


1927-xx-xx To United Esperantist Association Introducing Bahá’í Representatives

The Priceless Pearl, Rúḥíyyih Khánum, p272

…trusts that official Bahá’í representatives will serve to strengthen the ties of fellowship that bind the Esperantists and the followers of Bahá’u’lláh, one of whose cardinal principles… is the adoption of an international auxiliary language for all humanity.

The representatives are Martha Root and Julia Goldman


1927-xx-xx To Delegates to 19th Universal Congress of Esperantists

The Priceless Pearl, Rúḥíyyih Khánum, p272

My dear fellow workers in the service of humanity

I take great pleasure in addressing you and wishing you… from all my heart the fullest success in the work you are doing for the promotion of the good of humanity.

It will interest you, I am sure, to learn that as the result of the repeated and emphatic admonitions of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá His many followers even in the most distant villages and hamlets of Persia, where the light of Western civilization has hardly penetrated as yet, as well as in other lands throughout the East, are strenuously and enthusiastically engaged in the study and teaching of Esperanto, for whose future they cherish the highest hopes…


1928-01-15 To Treasurer, Plan of Unified Action

USBN#22— March 1928— page 1

The following letter received recently by Mr. Scheffler, Treasurer of the National Assembly, contains a message for us all. “My dear Bahá’í brother:— I am instructed by our beloved Guardian to thank you for your welcome letter of December 18th with enclosures, all of which he was very glad to receive.

He has always thought it a great pity and one that should certainly be remedied, that the friends should cease or refuse to support the Plan of Unified Action on such ill-founded and illegitimate excuse as the extravagance of the members, especially when they have all the figures they want given them. He does hope that it really is not an indirect expression of their lack of confidence in their duly elected National Assembly or their unwillingness to cooperate. At any rate, one thing should be made clear, that when it has the full and wholehearted support of our Guardian, it simply means that they must contribute to it if they really have the interest of the Cause at heart. It is to be lamented if the best interests of the Cause are made to suffer only due to lack of cooperation and perhaps personal sentiment.

However, our Guardian thinks that it is very urgent and necessary that the National Assembly make a special effort to explain and remove all difficulties and encourage all the various Assemblies to save the Plan even at the eleventh hour, especially as our Guardian has such high hopes in that.

With all Bahá’í hopes and greetings,
Sincerely in His service,

My dear and valued co-worker:

I grieve to learn of the inadequate response on the part of the friends to the National Fund. I have talked the matter over with Mr. Schopflocher and urged him to transmit my earnest plea to all the believers to make a supreme and self-sacrificing effort to raise the necessary sum before the end of this year, as otherwise the prestige of the Cause will be gravely affected. Not only those who have ample means at their disposal should display a greater effort, but those who are of humbler position must also make a self-sacrificing effort, that the Temple may become the embodiment of the self-sacrifice of all the believers.

Praying for your success,

Haifa, Palestine,
January 15th, 1928.


1928-01-27 To Persian NSA, Bahá’ís Charged in Turkey

The Priceless Pearl, Rúḥíyyih Khánum, p317-8



1928-01-28 To Ismat Páshá re Imprisonment of Stamboul& Adana Bahá’ís

The Priceless Pearl, Rúḥíyyih Khánum, p318




1928-02-29 Tablet of Aḥmad

February 29, 1928, Haifa.

“…He appreciates especially the assurance of your devotion to and loving services for the Cause. As a member of the National Teaching Committee, you carry great responsibility in arranging ways and means to make the Cause more felt and better known throughout the length and breadth of your mighty continent. We have indeed hardly as yet scratched the surface; there still remain endless strata underneath to whom the Cause is as yet absolutely unknown, if not unknowable.

It is gratifying to our dear Guardian to receive such good news about New York and Chicago. He does wish that this timely outburst of enthusiasm and unity may become universal in America and the friends may learn to realize more and more the urgency, the indispensable need of a thorough understanding, of noble enthusiasm and of unity of purpose and action…

In connection with the two versions of the Tablet of Aḥmad, our Guardian feels that the more correct one is the last one done by Dr. Esselmont and corrected by Shoghi Effendi. You might make that known to the friends.”

Your true brother,


1928-03-07 To Emeric Sala on his Declaration

Tending the Garden: A Biography of Emeric and Rosemry Sala, p27
March 7,1928

My dear co-worker:

I wish you from all my heart the fullest success in your efforts to teach and spread our beloved Cause, and trust that you may some day undertake the pilgrimage to the Holy Land and visit the Bahá’i sacred Shrines and there obtain a clearer vision of the mission and significance of the Faith.

Your true brother, Shoghi


1928-04-06 Vienna Must Become a Great Bahá’í Centre

Eastern Europe and the Soviet Union A Compilation From the Bahá’í Writings,#5
Compiled by the Research Department of the Universal House of Justice

It is such a joy to him that the friends in Vienna are holding the unity feasts and that will surely help Eastern Europe and the Soviet Union to keep the friends together and encourage them to greater action. Through your efforts as pioneer workers, Vienna must become a great Bahá’í centre in Central Europe. This is what Shoghi Effendi awaits and eagerly hopes.

(6 April 1928 to an individual believer on behalf of the Guardian)


1928-04-11 To Sir Ronald Storrs for Queen Marie

Her Eternal Crown: Queen Marie of Romania and the Bahá’í Faith, Della L Marcus, pp146




1928-04-24 to National Convention

USBN#24— June 1928— page 1
Communications from Shoghi Effendi

“National Spiritual Assembly: Pray convey friends assembled at inauguration ceremony Foundation Hall my earnest and pressing plea for heroic, sustained and self-sacrificing effort to pledge necessary requirements for early resumption Temple building operations. May delegates’ solemn resolution, reinforced by entire body of believers and effectively carried out by incoming National Assembly, immortalize memory of this year’s Riḍván Festival as a most notable landmark in history of our beloved Faith.”

(signed) SHOGHI,

Haifa, Palestine,
April 24, 1928.


1928-04-30 to Convention delegates

USBN#24— June 1928— page 1

“McDaniel, care National Assembly: Kindly assure assembled delegates on behalf family (and) myself our love, appreciation, prayers, gratitude.”

(signed) SHOGHI,
Haifa, Palestine,
April 30, 1928.


1928-05-02 re Delegates Response

USBN#24— June 1928— page 1

“National Spiritual Assembly: Overjoyed delegates’ spontaneous, most generous response. Praying for sustained effort by entire body (of) believers. Wish newly formed Assembly speedy, unqualified success. Congratulate Rúḥí.”

(signed) SHOGHI.
Haifa, Palestine,
May 2, 1928.

[I assume this is a ref to the fact that cash and pledges to the Temple building project totalled$40,000, 10% of the estimate need of$400,000.]


1928-05-05 to Martha re His Activities re Marie

Her Eternal Crown: Queen Marie of Romania and the Bahá’í Faith, Della L Marcus, pp147

Your marvelous and historic interviews with the members of the Rumanian and Serbian Royal families have inspired and thrilled us all, and their memory will illuminate the path of many a pioneer worker in future. The Rumanian Queen and her daughter Ileana were lately in Cyprus and were the guests of General Storrs, the Governor of the island. I cabled through him on behalf of the family and friends of the Master our deep and ‘heartfelt appreciation of the noble tribute paid by them both to the ideals that animate the Bahá’í Faith’. They transmitted their appreciative reply through General Storrs, who wrote me on their behalf. The papers here published the news of their intended visit to Haifa but nothing official or direct was received from them in this connection. The news, however, which has been widely circulated, has created a deep impression in all circles, and has greatly stimulated interest and inquiry among all classes both far and near. I wonder whether they had in mind such a visit and whether these premature disclosures deterred them from accomplishing their intended pilgrimage.


1928-05-07 National Teaching Committee

May 7, 1928, Haifa.

“…He was so pleased to learn of your work as an active member of the National Teaching Committee and of the progress you report in the various centers and cities you had visited. The members of the Teaching Committee shoulder one of the most difficult and delicate duties that devolves upon any Bahá’í, and our Guardian prays that both individually and collectively they may fulfil the high trust placed in them.

Your true brother,


1928-05-09 to Scheffler re NSA& Convention

USBN#24— June 1928— page 1

“To Mr. McDaniel: My very dear and precious co-worker: I rejoice to learn of the result of the National elections. Such a splendid and united group with such a splendid start made at the Convention, should be able to contribute a notable share to the success of the Plan. I will pray for them all, that through their wise, sustained and concerted efforts, and reinforced by the generous, spontaneous and continued support of the body of the believers, they may in the course of a year or two bring to a successful conclusion the first stage in the construction of the Mashriqu’l-Adhkár.”

(signed) SHOGHI.
Haifa, Palestine,
May 9, 1928.

[NSA members:
Allen McDaniel, Chairman,
Alfred E. Lunt, Vice Chairman,
Horace Holley, Secretary,
Carl Scheffler, Treasurer,
Roy C. Wilhelm,
May Maxwell,
Louis G. Gregory,
Amelia Collins,
Nellie S. French]


1928-05-31 Sufferings Serve to Invigorate Spiritual Life

“Fire and Gold: Benefiting from Life’s Tests,” p207 as compiled by Brian Kurzius

The Guardian is fully aware of the trials and tests through which you have passed. But he is confident that these sufferings, though sad and even unbearable in their immediate effects, will ultimately serve to invigorate and enrich your spiritual life.

[from a letter written on behalf of Shoghi Effendi to an individual, 31 May 1928]


1928-06-02 Reaction to Convention to Wilhelm

USBN#25 July 1928 p1

“I am filled with joy and hope at the marvelous manifestation of heroic self sacrifice displayed by the friends assembled at the sessions of the Convention. This is a magnificent beginning and I will pray from the depths of my heart that the entire body of believers may by their sustained, generous and determined support insure, ere the year comes to a close, the successful conclusion of the Plan of Unified Action.”


1928-06-07 Justice and Mercy both Attributes of God

“Fire and Gold: Benefiting from Life’s Tests”, p172
as compiled by Brian Kurzius

Your letter raises a highly abstruse and philosophical issue which it is impossible for our finite minds to grasp and fully comprehend. Justice and mercy are both attributes of God and it is not for us to attempt to analyse why and how the Almighty in His infinite wisdom exercises and manifests these attributes to the righteous and sinner in the world to come. We must do our share in this world and place our trust in Him.

[Shoghi Effendi to an individual, 7 June 1928]


1928-06-22 To ‘Ishqábád LSA, Nationalization of Temple

The Priceless Pearl, Rúḥíyyih Khánum, p313



1928-06-22 To Moscow LSA re Nationalization of ‘Ishqábád Temple

The Priceless Pearl, Rúḥíyyih Khánum, p313



1928-08-30 Role of House of Justice on International Auxiliary Language

Compiled by the Research Dept at the direction of the House of Justice, 1 Nov 79(?)

What Bahá’u’lláh says is that the Supreme House of Justice will appoint a committee that will study the whole matter and then either choose one of the existing languages or create a new one, to function as an international language. The Master never went beyond that, i.e. He never tried to solve the problem Himself and choose that language. He still leaves it to the Supreme House of Justice. But He says that Esperanto will spread and even went so far as to encourage all the friends who possibly can to study it. In fact the knowledge of Esperanto has proven very useful for one who tries to teach in different countries of the world. But whether Esperanto will become the international language which is to be a part of our religious and social duties to study, no one knows, and we have no evidence that the Master made any definite statement along that line. The Master has scarcely ever assumed the solution of a problem that Bahá’u’lláh has referred to the Supreme House of Justice. Esperanto may become an international language, but it depends upon the House of Justice to choose it as the international language. And no one is in a position to foretell.

(30 August 1928 to an individual believer)


1928-09-xx To Martha Root re Situation in Russia

The Priceless Pearl, Rúḥíyyih Khánum, p314

It has been a very depressing summer this year for me as the condition of the Cause in Russia is going from bad to worse. The Mashriqu’l-Adhkár has been appropriated by the State, closed and sealed. A very large sum is required from the friends if rented to them, otherwise they threaten to sell it to others in parts. The situation is very critical and many families have migrated to Persia. Meetings are suspended, Assemblies dissolved, heavy restrictions and penalties imposed… This and other happenings have made me feel very down-hearted and sad.


1928-10-12 Vienna a Very Important Centre

Eastern Europe and the Soviet Union A Compilation From the Bahá’í Writings,#6
Compiled by the Research Department of the Universal House of Justice

He is always very glad to hear of the good news of the progress of the Cause, especially in Vienna. That is a very important centre from which the Cause could spread to Eastern Europe and the Balkans. Those regions, being occupied by people of diverse nationality and religious belief, are always a hotbed of dissension and strife. They need the teachings of the Cause to pacify them and create among them the spirit of love and comradeship…

(12 October 1928 to an individual believer)


1928-10-14 To Mary Maxwell, Friend’s Suicide

The Maxwells of Montreal Vol II, Violette Nakhjavani, p136-7

Dear Mary:

Shoghi Effendi wishes me to acknowledge the receipt of your letter dated September 6th. He was very sorry to hear of this act that your friend did in a moment of despair. Life is a divine gift with, undoubtedly, a purpose in it. It is not for us to check the working out of that purpose by putting an end to it. But at the same time we cannot blame such an individual. We do not know of his sufferings, nor of the reasons that led him to such an act.

Shoghi Effendi will, however, pray that God may treat him with His mercy& shower upon him His divine Blessings. Undoubtedly such prayers will help him, for the Master assures us that prayers for departed souls is the greatest help we can render them.

Shoghi Effendi will also remember you in his prayers& ask for you divine blessings, so that you may succeed to render inestimable services to our beloved Cause.

Dear Bahá’í Sister:

Rest assured that my fervent prayers will be offered at the holy Shrines for your friend as well as yourself, that you may both be graciously assisted, guided& blessed by Him. I trust that you may be enabled by His grace& power to render inestimable services to His Cause in the days to come& thus fulfil your dear mothers dearest wish.

Wishing you success& happiness from all my heart,

Your true brother,


1928-10-31 Admiration& Gratitude for the Heroic Constancy of Louis Gregory

“To Move the World”, Morrison, p177

My very dear& precious co-worker:

Your letter has infused strength& joy in my heart.… I have nothing but admiration& gratitude for the heroic constancy, mature wisdom, tireless energy, and shining love with which you are conducting your ever-expanding work of service to the Cause of Bahá’u’lláh. You hardly realize what a help you are to me in my arduous work. Your grateful brother,


[letter to Louis Gregory 31 Oct 128, USBNC Archives]


1928-12-11 To ‘Azíz’u’lláh Khán Azizi

Crown of Glory, Memoirs of Jinab-i-‘Azíz’u’lláh Azizi, p23-4


Mr. Mírzá ‘Azíz’u’lláh Khán Azizi,

Upon him rest the Glory of the All-Glorious!

May my soul be a sacrifice for your devotion! Your letter arrived this very moment, and was given special attention by the dearly beloved Guardian of the Faith— may my soul be a sacrifice to his friends!

The glad-tidings of your arrival home— safe and sound with your respected family— brought joy and assurance. What likewise imparted joy and happiness was the spiritual glad-tidings of meetings with the friends of God in various cities and countries along the way. The spiritual attraction and enkindlement of these divine friends, inspiring them to each arise and teach, in fulfilment of their sacred obligation— all this added to that joy and happiness.

Especially welcome was news of spiritual activities in Ṭihrán, which is in effect like a heart throbbing and pulsing spirit in the sacred body of Írán, imparting life-giving power through the veins and arteries of the Bahá’í community in that glorious land. This news is worthy of the praise and recognition of the Concourse on High, and was the cause of joy and happiness for the Guardian.

I pray that God might increase your honour and power, that you might attain an apparent victory. Regarding the matter between Khajeb Ibrahim Shalim and Jinab-i-Qassabchi in Baghdád — a telegram was sent to Ibrahim Shalim. The response came from him that he has changed his mind altogether and will not mention the matter further. Moreover, a very knowledgeable teacher was sent to ‘Iráq, rest assured.

Written in accordance with the blessed order, Núri’d-Dín Zayn
11 December 1928

O spiritual friend!

This servant has, with utmost supplication, turned towards the sacred Threshold and sought continuous divine confirmation and invisible bestowals for that mighty pillar of the Cause of God in that land.

The wonderful endeavours and continuous efforts of that active, compassionate and self-sacrificing servant of His Holiness, the Unique One, is most praiseworthy, deserving of acclaim from the Concourse on High. Its traces are engraved as well on the heart of this servant.

I pray that God might increase your honour, power, victory and success. You are not, nor ever shall be forgotten in this place. Rest assured.

Servant at His Threshold, Shoghi

(unauthorized translation)


1928-12-21 Death of Hippolyte Dreyfus Barney

Telegram to Dreyfus-Barney Paris 15 [rue] Greuze
Haifa December 21, 1928


From article by Thomas Linnard


1928-12-21 Passing of Hippolyte Dreyfus-Barney

USBN#29 January 1929 p2

On December 21, 1928, the National Assembly received the following cablegram from Shoghi Effendi:

“Bahá’u’lláh’s distinguished, beloved servant Hippolyte Dreyfus-Barney passed away. Hearts greatly afflicted. Urge holding befitting memorial.

(Signed) Shoghi.”


1928-12-21 Second Telegram on Death of Hippolyte Dreyfus Barney

Telegram to Dreyfus-Barney 15 [rue] Greuze Paris
Haifa December 21, 1928


From article by Thomas Linnard


1928-12-21 To Laura Dreyfus Barney, Condolences on Death of Hippolyte

Haifa, Palestine
Dec. 21, 1928

My dear Laura Khánum:

We were all profoundly moved when we received the news of the passing of our dear Hippolyte, and I assure you that since the ascension of our Beloved, the family, and myself included, never felt the sense of loss& the pain of overwhelming sorrow as acutely as we did the night we received your wire, announcing the passing of one who was close& dear to us all.

Needless to say how overpowering is the sense of his loss to me, in particular, who received from him such comfort and support in perhaps the darkest days of my life,& cherished the fondest hopes for his future contribution to the advancement of the international work of the Cause.

None, I can confidently assert, among the Bahá’ís of the East& the West, combined to the extent that he did the qualities of genial& enlivening fellowship, of intimate acquaintance with the manifold aspects of the Cause, of sound judgement& distinctive ability, of close familiarity with the problems& condition of the world— all of which made him such a lovable, esteemed& useful collaborator& friend.

I have, impelled by my love& admiration for him, addressed the enclosed message to my co-workers throughout the West, that those who knew him not may recognise his standing& appreciate his achievements. I am certain that the National Spiritual Assemblies of America& Persia, responding to my cabled request, will take the necessary measures for the holding of memorial gatherings as a tribute to one who advanced so effectively the international interest of the Cause.

I will for ever regret that, not realizing the gravity& the hopelessness of the illness which afflicted him, I failed to demonstrate in a fuller manner, the sentiments of profound& abiding affection that I have always cherished for him in my heart.

My mother wishes me to express to you her deep sense of affectionate sympathy in the loss of one who proved such a sustaining& sympathetic friend in her gloomiest hours of anxiety& sorrow.

Rest assured, dear Laura Khánum, that in my hours of prayer& meditation at the holy Shrines, I will frequently& tenderly remember my dearly-beloved friend& fellow-worker who has served so well our beloved Cause& is now receiving from the hands of our Master the reward of his notable achievements.

With kind regards& deepest sympathy,
Yours affectionately,


From article by Thomas Linnard


1928-12-22 Pioneer Work in Central Europe is Difficult

Eastern Europe and the Soviet Union A Compilation From the Bahá’í Writings,#7

Compiled by the Research Department of the Universal House of Justice

I am sure you would be glad to know that Shoghi Effendi hears frequently from your wife, who is engaged in pioneer work in central Europe— a work that is difficult and needs much patience…

(22 December 1928 to an individual believer)


1928-12-xx To Martha Root, Ring She Had Sent

The Priceless Pearl, Rúḥíyyih Khánum, p102

I have received the gold ring which you sent me… And have offered it, after wearing it myself, to the Greatest Holy Leaf… You cannot realize what a moral assistance, what comfort and inspiration you are bestowing upon our harassed and sorely— stricken brethren in Persia. Great indeed will be your reward in the world to come! More power to your elbow!


1928-xx-xx Literature Presented to Emperor and Empress of Japan

USBN#28— November 1928— page 2

“May the perusal of Bahá’í literature enable Your Imperial Majesty to appreciate the sublimity and penetrative power of Bahá’u’lláh’s Revelation and inspire you on this auspicious occasion to arise for its world wide recognition and triumph.”

(Signed) Shoghi.


At the time of His Majesty the Emperor of Japan’s coronation in the fall of 1928, through the suggestion of Dr. R. Masujima, seven especially bound volumes of Bahá’í books were sent from American Bahá’ís as a gift to him. When the books reached Tokyo, the coronation ceremonies had already taken place in Kyoto, and the presentation of the books was delayed. On May twenty-second, Dr. Masujima received a letter from the Minister of the Imperial Household, stating that the seven books, which were named, had been presented to His Imperial Majesty on that day. Accompanying the books were these words from Shoghi Effendi.

[“History of the Bahá’í Faith in Japan 1914-1938” by Agnes Baldwin Alexander, p77]


1928-xx-xx The Matter of Teachers’ Expenses

USBN#22— March 1928— page 8

“He would personally much prefer, if any of the friends think of helping… to do so not personally but through either the local or National Assembly.”

Certain sincere believers, for the sake of what they have felt to be a distinctive and fundamental principle: of the Cause, have consistently held the opinion that living and traveling expenses of Bahá’í teachers should not be defrayed from the Bahá’í Fund, The well known passage in the Tablets of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá granting permission to individuals to make it possible for others to serve as teachers does not, it was felt, apply to Local or National Spiritual Assemblies administering a Bahá’í Fund. The National Assembly recently referred to the Guardian the question whether, in one particular instance brought to its attention for consultation, the donations made by a believer should be transmitted through the National Fund or to the teacher direct. The following reply, which we understand represents the Guardian’s views, was received through his secretary “He would personally much prefer, if any of the friends think of helping to do so not personally but through either the local or National Assembly.” This statement makes it clear that a Spiritual Assembly is perfectly justified in voting an appropriation of this character during the present transitional era of the Cause.


1929-01-24 To Laura Dreyfus-Barney Requesting Photo of Hippolyte

Jan. 24, 1929

Dear Laura style="font-family: GentiumPlus, Georgia, serif;">Khánum,

I thank you for the beautiful& touching poem you sent me as well as for the two previous letters you wrote me in connexion with the passing of our dear Hippolyte.

I have shared their contents with the family who deeply sympathize with you in your sorrow& loneliness.

I very much desire to have a good portrait of my departed friend to keep in my study wherein we have spent delightful hours conversing& collaborating with regard to the affairs of the Cause. With your consent I should very much like to forward a copy to America for publication in the next issue of the Bahá’í World. I am sending to your address a copy of the one recently published& would welcome any comment you wish to make.

Wishing you the best of health,& success in your work.

Believe me, dear Laura Khánum,

Yours affectionately


1929-01-24 To Mme Paul Meyer-May, Passing of Hippolyte

Madame Paul Meyer-May
21 Boulevard Beausejour,
Jan. 24, 1929

Dear Madam:

I am deeply touched& grateful to you for your beautiful translation of my circular letter in connexion with the passing of our dear Hippolyte. What I have written& attempted to express is indeed only an inadequate tribute to the many& unforgettable services he has rendered to the Cause& humanity in the course of his rich& fruitful life.

I deeply sympathize with you in the severe loss you sustain, and will supplicate the almighty comforter to cheer& sustain you in your sorrow.

Hoping to meet you some day in Haifa,& welcome you in our home,

I am yours very sincerely,

From article by Thomas Linnard

Hippolyte’s sister Mrs. Yvonne Meyer-May


1929-01-xx To Believers in the East, Translated from Persian, Elements of Education

Science and Technology#3

Compiled by Research Department of the Universal House of Justice.

In philanthropic enterprises and acts of charity, in promotion of the general welfare and furtherance of the public good including that of every group without any exceptions whatever, let the beloved of God attract the favourable attention of all, and lead all the rest.

Let them, freely and without charge, open the doors of their schools and their higher institutions for the study of sciences and the liberal arts, to non-Bahá’í children and youth who are poor and in need.

…and next is the propagation of learning and the promulgation of Bahá’í rules of conduct, practices and laws. At this time, when the nation has awakened out of its sleep of negligence, and the Government has begun to consider the promotion and expansion of its educational establishment, let the Bahá’í representatives in that country arise in such a manner that as a result of their high endeavours in every hamlet, village and town, of every province and district, preliminary measures will be taken for the setting up of institutions for the study of sciences, the liberal arts and religion. Let Bahá’í children without any exceptions learn the fundamentals of reading and writing and familiarize themselves with the rules of conduct, the customs, practices and laws as set forth in the Book of God; and let them, in the new branches of knowledge, in the arts and technology of the day, in pure and praiseworthy characteristics— Bahá’í conduct, the Bahá’í way of life— become so distinguished above the rest that all other communities, whether Islámic, Zoroastrian, Christian, Judaic or materialist, will of their own volition and most gladly enter their children in such advanced Bahá’í institutions of learning and entrust them to the care of Bahá’í instructors.


1929-02-12 Passing of Harry Randall

USBN#30 March 1929

“Grief-stricken passing Harry Randall, distinguished and beloved servant of Bahá’u’lláh. Assure family, friends, fervent prayers, heartfelt condolences on behalf Holy Leaves and myself. Hold be fitting memorials.

(signed) SHOGHI.”


1929-02-13 Manifestation as Source of Inspiration


February 13, 1929, Haifa

“…We all know that the recognition of the Manifestation is itself the source of all inspiration. Without that the world cannot be carried a step further. Many beautiful philosophies have been voiced in the past, but it is only the simple teachings of Christ, of Muḥammad, etc., that have shaped the conduct of the masses. Likewise, it is only through Bahá’u’lláh that the Golden Era will be ushered in. Meantime, all these different movements that are humanitarian in their aspect, do their share in getting the world ready for hearing these Teachings by which Bahá’u’lláh will heal the ills that have befallen humanity.”

Your true brother,


1929-02-14 To an Afnán, Work on Shrine of the Báb Begun

The Priceless Pearl, Rúḥíyyih Khánum, p235



1929-02-15 Rights of Covenant-Breakers


Prepared by The International Teaching Centre— 28 November 1999

You must of course send Avarih (a Covenant-breaker) his title deed through the Qamṣar Local Spiritual Assembly, as it is his right. The friends must have full regard for his rights inasmuch as civil rights have no relation whatsoever to the beliefs of individuals. The Bahá’ís must be free and sanctified from religious prejudice and from ignorant fanaticism.

(From a letter to a Local Spiritual Assembly dated 15 February 1929— Translated from the Persian)


1929-02-15 To Caswell, News from Portland

Divine Springtime— Louise Caswell Recalls, p8

My dear Mrs. Caswell,

I am directed by the Guardian to thank you for your welcome letter of January 17th with enclosures.

The news of the friends’ constant activities and services in Portland is specially gratifying to our Guardian, as we learned with pleasure from Rúḥí, of their staunch faith, proper understanding of the Cause and of their eager desire to help in its progress and establishment. Not least your endeavors are looked to with very great hopes and expectations.

(Signed) Soheil Afnán


My dear Co-worker,

I deeply appreciate the spirit of your unsparing devotion to the Cause, and will supplicate the Almighty to guide you, protect you, and sustain you in your labours.

Your true brother,(Signed) Shoghi


1929-02-27 Formation of New Assemblies

USBN#31— April 1929— page 6

The following words, written on February 27, 1929, on behalf of the Guardian by one of his secretaries…

“Concerning the institution of new Assemblies, Shoghi Effendi believes that the present form of the By-laws which considers April 21 as the only date on any year, though it has some disadvantages, yet as a whole is better than otherwise. One year of experience will better enable it to participate in the important nation (Bahá’í) affairs. Then there will be a sort of uniformity throughout the Bahá’í world.”


1929-02-27 Attitude toward Ruth White

Instructions Concerning Attitude Toward Those Attacking Cause

“The Bahá’í News Letter,” no. 31, April 1929.

A copy of the pamphlet published by Mrs. Ruth White was sent to Shoghi Effendi in January.

February 27, 1929

“I have in a letter addressed to the National Assembly set forth my views regarding the contents of Mrs. White’s pamphlet. I have thus far received no intimation from the Palestine authorities, and have no reason to believe that they will consider it worthy of their consideration. The friends, however, should avoid hurting her feelings and should abstain from provocation. Her case will suffer the fate which has met Dyar’s opposition in ‘Reality,’ and should be totally disregarded by the believers. What will endure and gather strength are the institutions which the believers are rearing in the heart of the continent, all else is shifting sand and doomed to extinction.

(signed) Shoghi.”


1929-02-27 Passing of Harry Randall

Bahá’í World Volume III, p213

I wish to refer, in conclusion, to the sad and untimely death of our dearly beloved and highly distinguished brother and fellow-worker, Mr. Harry Randall. The unsparing efforts which he exerted for the promotion of the Faith, the passionate eloquence with which he diffused its teachings, the mature judgment and ripe experience which he contributed to its councils, the liberality with which in days of prosperity he supported its institutions, and above all his upright and generous character, are traits that will long live after him, and which bodily separation can never remove. I will most fervently supplicate at the holy Threshold, and wish you to join with me in my prayers, for the spiritual advancement in the realms beyond of a soul that has already achieved such a noble standing in this world.

Your true brother,

Haifa, Palestine
February 27th, 1929


1929-03-12 To Laura Dreyfus-Barney, Receipt of Hippolyte Photo& Tribute

Haifa, Palestine
March 12, 1929

My dear Laura Khánum:

I have delayed answering your very kind letter till the receipt of the most welcome photos of our departed& beloved Hippolyte, one of which I will take the liberty with your consent, to send to America for publication in the next issue of the Bahá’í World.

I am deeply appreciative of your generous offer of a scholarship in memory of your dear husband,& I feel that the best procedure would be to send the pamphlet you sent me to the Ṭihrán Assembly who will be acquainted thereby with the nature of the work of the university& will be better qualified to appoint the suitable student. I will myself communicate with them& will ask them to write to you directly in connexion with any matters that may arise in future. I find it difficult to make the appointment in person, as I find no one here in Haifa or the adjoining countries that could really use to the best advantage the opportunities presented by such a university. Furthermore, a direct connexion with the recognized national representatives of the Bahá’ís of Persia, would I feel, be more appropriate& closer to the wish of Hippolyte himself.

Please, be assured, dear Laura Khánum, of my profound sympathy with you in your great bereavement, as well as of my lively gratitude for your noble& generous action.

Yours affectionately,


1929-03-xx Petition Regarding Bahá’u’lláh’s House

USBN#31— April 1929— page 6


“League Council pronounced in favor Bahá’í Petition regarding Bahá’u’lláh House. Faith triumphant over deadliest enemy. Inform believers. Avoid for present widespread publicity. Cause much indebted to Mountfort’s magnificent achievement.

(signed) Shoghi.”


1929-03-xx Wilmette, Eleventh-Hour Fund Goals

USBN#31— April 1929— page 8

…the beautiful message which has just come through Rúḥí Afnán, as follows:

“The problem that in these days is arousing his (Shoghi Effendi’s) anxiety is the way this large sum is to be collected in such a very short period of time, to resume the building operations right after the convention. He, as well as some of the other friends who are motivated by a great force of faith, believe firmly that God’s miracles will not fail to perform their wonders and at the very eleventh hour the full sum will be collected. Shoghi Effendi wishes you to express his loving greetings to all the friends in Wilmette and ask them to join with him in their moments of private prayer and meditation, and ask God not to fail them, but as heretofore send them His confirmations and blessings.”


1929-03-xx Land-Mark in the History of the Cause in America

USBN#31— April 1929— page 5

“My dear and precious co-worker:

The progress of the Fund is highly satisfactory and I will pray that the efforts so strenuously exerted may be sustained and blessed by the Master who is vigilantly watching from on high the self-sacrifice of His faithful disciples. I am sure that the friends realize by now the vital necessity of doing their utmost to insure the success of the Plan by the next Convention, which I sincerely hope and pray may constitute a land-mark in the history of the Cause in America.”


1929-03-xx Prayers for Wilmette Assembly

USBN#31— April 1929— page 8

Rest assured that my prayers will continue to be offered for the esteemed members of the Wilmette Assembly, whose sacred mission is to play a leading part in the stimulating interest and action in behalf of the Mashriqu’l-Adhkár.

Your true brother,


1929-04-25 Donating Rug from Shrine of Bahá’u’lláh

USBN#38 February 1930 insert

“Am sacrificing the most valuable ornament of Bahá’u’lláh’s Shrine in order to consecrate and reinforce the collective endeavors of the American believers speedily to consummate Plan for Unified Action. Appeal for unprecedented self-sacrifice.”

A Persian Silk Rug, or Palace Carpet, of Tabriz weave, measuring nine feet eleven inches by fourteen feet, exclusive of fringe and margin.

A narrow strip of woven gold thread forms a margin around the rug. Beautifully sustained floral motives in crimsons and browns occupy the center on a field of rich ivory. The fine and characteristic border is of dark and very rich coloring, a fine dark crimson being predominant, enriched with a beautiful pale blue.

The rug appears to be between sixty and eighty years old and is in flawless condition.


1929-04-25 Insights into World Problems


April 25, 1929, Haifa.

“…For undoubtedly, the friends possess an insight into world problems that far surpass those claimed by men of learning who view them only from a material point of view, and therefore fail to appreciate their true significance.

As Bahá’u’lláh states in one of His Tablets, the world has been suffering from individuals who have prescribed the remedy without knowing the ills of humanity and also have hindered the True Physician from helping man.”

Your true brother,


1929-04-28 Message to the Convention

USBN#32— May 1929— page 3

“Overjoyed remarkable evidences vitality of Faith. Glorious self-sacrifice American believers. Soon shipping silken carpet (from) Bahá’u’lláh’s Shrine as crowning gift on altar of Bahá’í sacrifice. Boundless gratitude, truest, deepest love. Shoghi”

Haifa, April 28-29, 1929.


1929-04-28 Shipping Rug from Shrine

USBN#38 February 1930 insert

“Soon. shipping silken carpet from Bahá’u’lláh’s Shrine as crowning gift on altar of Bahá’í sacrifice.”— Cablegram, April 28, 1929.


1929-05-01 Meetings in Foundation Hall

USBN#33— July 1929— page 4

To Mrs. Corinne True…

“My dear co-worker: The meetings in the Temple Foundation Hall should be primarily devotional in character, and any addresses delivered there must be of a strictly Bahá’í character. The Teachings must be referred to, quoted, explained and amplified, and if non-Bahá’í subjects are referred to, they should be considered in the light, and in confirmation of, Bahá’í principles and teachings. We must preserve the identity and purity of the Faith, without restricting it to a rigid and exclusive dogma.

Your true brother and well-wisher,
(Signed) SHOGHI.”

Haifa, Palestine
May 1, 1929


1929-05-07 To Mayor of Haifa, Prevention of Mendicancy

The Priceless Pearl, Rúḥíyyih Khánum, p296

Fortunately, this is a problem which does not affect the Bahá’í Community, as under our laws begging is strictly prohibited. I appreciate, however, the importance and timeliness of the measure you are considering and take pleasure in enclosing a cheque to your order for 50 [pounds]— in behalf of the Bahá’í Community in anticipation of any plan that the Municipality may devise for the alleviation of poverty and the help of the needy in Haifa. You may be assured that the Community will rigidly observe any regulations that may be put into effect.


1929-05-25 Greeting to Convention

USBN#32— May 1929— page 1

“Convey assembled friends (in) Convention deep appreciation substantial progress Temple Fund. Am sacrificing the most valuable ornament (of) Bahá’u’lláh’s Shrine in order (to) consecrate and reinforce (the) American believers speedily to consummate Plan (of) Unified Action. Appeal for unprecedented self-sacrifice. Riḍván greetings.(I) desire (to) remind all believers (of the) necessity (for) unconditional acceptance (of) whatever position and duties (may be) assigned by delegates and National Assembly.(I) deprecate all refusals (of) candidature.”


Haifa, Palestine,
April 25, 1929.


1929-05-29 To Mary Maxwell, On the Profession of Flying

The Maxwells of Montreal Vol II, Violette Nakhjavani, p137

Concerning the profession you have chosen, namely flying, Shoghi Effendi does not consider himself in a position to give you any advice along that line. What he wishes you to do is to abide by what your parents, both your father& mother consent to. What they mutually agree upon is his wish.

My dear co-worker:

I am much pleased to learn of your growing activities in the Cause& I will supplicate from the depths of my heart in your behalf at the holy Shrines that the Beloved may graciously guide you& assist you to render inestimable services to His Cause in the days to come.

Your true brother,


1929-05-29 To Incoming National Assembly

USBN#32— May 1929— page 1

“May incoming Assembly’s term of office so auspiciously inaugurated culminate in actual completion first unit of Mashriqu’l-Adhkár. Invoking Bahá’u’lláh’s blessing on your deliberations.”— Shoghi.


1929-05-29 Unfortunate Case when Parents and Children Differ

Marriage, Consent of Parents to

Compiled by Research Department of the Universal House of Justice.

It is surely a very unfortunate case when the parents and children differ on some grave issues of life such as marriage, but the best way is not to flout each other’s opinion nor to discuss it in a charged atmosphere but rather try to settle it in an amicable way.

Written on behalf of Shoghi Effendi 29 May 1929 to two believers.


1929-05-31 To May Maxwell, Disharmony in NYC, Sohrab Situation

The Maxwells of Montreal Vol II, Violette Nakhjavani, p122

Your most welcome letter has truly cheered my heart. I trust& pray that you may be instrumental in restoring perfect harmony& cooperation among the friends in New York. I have the utmost admiration for your deep sense of loyalty, your tact, your loving kindness& high endeavours& I will pray that you may be given the strength to carry on& consolidate the noble work you have already achieved. Your true brother,



1929-06-12 Sending Martha Root to Federation of Educational Association Conference

The Priceless Pearl, Rúḥíyyih Khánum, p104

To the Third Biennial Conference on the world Federation of Educational Associations

My dear co-workers for humanity: I am sending Miss Martha L. Root, American journalist and international Bahá’í speaker and teacher, as an international Bahá’í representative to your Congress in July. She will present to you my letter of greetings to your great Congress. With all best wishes for you in your noble undertaking.

I am, your brother and co-worker, Shoghi.


1929-06-xx “Star of the West” Improving

USBN#33— July 1929— page 7

“The Star is decidedly improving in scope, style, and effectiveness, and I wish to congratulate you both on the progress already achieved. I will continue to pray for your efforts at the Holy Shrines, that the “Star may grow to mirror forth in all their power and beauty the sublime and dynamic principles of the Bahá’í Faith.””


1929-07-08 “Preserved Tablet”

References of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá and Shoghi Effendi to the Hidden Words
Compiled by Research Department of the Universal House of Justice.
Published in Bahá’í Studies Review 9

The “Preserved Tablet” is a spiritual expression and has no actual existence. It sometimes refers to the Manifestation Himself, Whose knowledge encompasses the knowledge of the former and the latter generations.

(In the handwriting of Shoghi Effendi on the margin of an incoming letter dated 8 July 1929, instructing his secretary translated from the Persian)


1929-07-29 Central American Teaching

USBN#129 August 1939, p5

He wishes you now to ask all the newly-incorporated local Assemblies to have a photograph of their Assembly taken and sent through your Assembly to Haifa. These Assembly pictures are needed to accompany the certificates of incorporation when published in the next issue of The Bahá’í World.

In closing he wishes me to stress once again the vital importance of the present stage in the collective teaching undertaking of the American believers represented in the opening up and definite settlement of the Central American Republics— which, as emphasized only recently in his cabled message to the N. S. A., constitute the chief and immediate teaching objective of the American believers throughout the present Bahá’í year. No effort, he feels, should be spared to open up, however tentatively, each of the remaining Central American Republics in the course of the remaining eight months, and every facility and encouragement extended by the N. S. A. to all those who volunteer to settle and work in these territories. Only through such systematic teaching effort, guided by the N. S. A., and collectively supported by the entire body of the friends, can the Inter-American teaching campaign, which ushers in the period of the world spiritual mission of the American believers, forge ahead, be steadily extended in its southward penetration, and the high teaching goal set up by the Seven Year Plan completely attained at the appointed time. Let us take courage, and consecrate our all to the furtherance of this divinely-appointed task.

July 29, 1939.


1929-08-01 Encourage Economy

USBN#34— October 1929— page 3

To Mr. McDaniel on

My dear and precious co-worker:

Your subsequent letter of June 19 has also been received and I hasten, though exceedingly tired by my unceasing and ever extending activities, to assure you of my keen eagerness to witness a definite achievement regarding the Plan of Unified Action by the American believers. I trust and pray that before the end of this year the full amount will have been subscribed and I would again urge the utmost economy and careful consideration of every preliminary expenditure. A body of experts should be consulted that unnecessary expenditures may be strictly avoided. May the Beloved guide you and sustain you in your efforts.

Your true brother,


1929-08-20 Collecting and Publishing Tablets

Writings, Bahá’í: Importance of collecting and safeguarding, compiled by Bahá’í International Archives. Published in Bahá’í Studies Review, 11, pages 100-102

The work of collecting and publishing the Tablets is one of the most important tasks that this generation has to undertake for upon it depends our true understanding of the Cause and its principles. The more we put it off, the more we are apt to lose some of the original writings.

Yet, important as this task may be, it is fraught with difficulties. The early translations are far from being accurate, no matter who the translator may be. Shoghi Effendi firmly believes that only Tablets with the Master’s signature and in the original tongue should be recognized. Any translations or copies of them fail from having real authority. This shows the importance of collecting the original Tablets that bear the Master’s signature.

20 August 1929 to an individual believer on behalf of Shoghi Effendi


1929-09-10 To Sir John Chanallor, Outbreak of Trouble in Palestine

The Priceless Pearl, Rúḥíyyih Khánum, p283

Your Excellency:

I have learned with profound regret of the lamentable occurrences in Palestine, and hasten, while away from home, to offer Your Excellency my heartfelt sympathy in the difficult task with which you are faced.

The Bahá’í Community of Palestine, who, by reason of the Faith, are deeply attached to its soil truly deplore these violent outbursts of religious fanaticism, and venture to hope that, as the influence of Bahá’í ideals extends and deepens, they may be enabled in the days to come to lend increasing assistance to your Administration for the promotion of the spirit of good will and toleration among the religious communities in the Holy Land.

I feel moved to offer Your Excellency in their behalf the enclosed sum as their contribution for the relief of the suffering and needy, irrespective of race or creed…


1929-09-20 Collecting ‘Abdu’l-Bahá Tablets

USBN#35— November 1929— page 1

Dear Mrs. True:

Shoghi Effendi wishes me to acknowledge the receipt of your letter dated July 7th and to assure you of his ardent prayers for the success of the work you are undertaking.

The work of collecting and publishing the Tablets is one of the most important tasks that this generation has undertaken, for upon it depends our true understanding of the Cause and its principles. The more we put it off, the more we are apt to lose some of the original writings.

Yet, important as this task may be, it is fraught with difficulties. The early translations are far from being accurate, no matter who the translator may be. Shoghi Effendi firmly believes that only tablets with the Master’s signature and in the original tongue should be recognized. Any translations or copies of them fail from having real authority. This shows the importance of collecting the original Tablets that bear the Master’s signature.

May I in closing reassure you of Shoghi Effendi’s prayer and extend to your his loving greetings.

Yours sincerely,
Rúḥí Afnán.

Haifa, Palestine.
September 20, 1929.

The National Assembly urgently requests those believers who possess original Tablets from ‘Abdu’l-Bahá to cooperate in the special effort now being made by Mrs. Corinne True, acting under appointment by the Assembly, to catalog all available Tablets with a view to the publication of a Volume Four of Tablets from ‘Abdu’l-Bahá.

The three volumes edited with such loving care and distinction by Mr. Albert Windust contain only Tablets received before 1914. The unpublished Tablets consequently were revealed in the last years of the Master’s earthly life, and their importance for present and future believers is beyond our capacity to appreciate.


1929-09-20 To Individual, Need for Broad Outlook

Science and Technology#4

Compiled by Research Department of the Universal House of Justice.

As to your entrance to Reed College as an undergraduate… No one could think more than the Master did of the great need for capacity, knowledge and a broad scientific outlook in the service of the Cause, but as against the hard and dry intellectuals, he wished such knowledge to be coupled with an intense love for the welfare of humanity.


1929-11-01 His Birthday Anniversary

USBN#29— January 1929— page 2

“My dear and valued co-worker: I wish to add a few words in person regarding the commemoration of my birthday anniversary. I would earnestly request all believers and Assemblies not to observe, under any circumstances, whether officially or privately, my birthday anniversary. I strongly feel that only anniversaries in connection with the life of the Báb, Bahá’u’lláh and ‘Abdu’l-Bahá should be celebrated by the believers. It will, I am sure, prove conducive to my own spiritual growth and happiness, and would be in the best interests of our beloved Faith. I trust that you will acquaint all the believers with this insistent request of mine and I feel sure that they will all joyfully respond.

Your true brother,


1929-11-24 Response to Report from Nayríz

Against Incredible Odds, pp65-6

That spiritual friend’s letter has attained the glance of His Highness, the Guardian of the Faith, may my spirit be sacrificed for his friends. The account of the recent tragic events in Nayríz and the description of the calamities sustained by the loving friends there have become known in his presence and caused him sadness. He said: ‘This Servant will, with tongue and heart, offer thanks at the Court of the Munificent Lord for having enabled His tested servants and trusted friends to appear, in the face of a deluge of trials and an onslaught of adversities and afflictions, with such firmness, steadfastness and integrity as to cause the Concourse on High to utter their praise and the dwellers of the Abhá Paradise to glorify them. Neither had the blade and shaft of the ungodly any effect on their glorious spirits, nor has the fatal poison and torture affected their illumined and attracted inner selves. Undoubtedly those sincere, detached and steadfast believers have, with their acceptance of various persecutions, caused the Blessed Tree to grow further throughout the world, have added to the splendours of the light of the brilliant truth of Baha’u’lláh’s Cause and the manifestation of the power and might of the Word of God.’

He then said:

This Servant, with a heart throbbing with love and a soul overflowing with affection for those gems of firmness and steadfastness, praises and extols the spirit of fidelity and sacrifice evinced by those chosen by the Almighty in the path of that Luminous Moon, and will continually pray in the Holy Shrine, beseeching God to protect and preserve those servants of His Sacred Threshold from the cruelty of tyrants and the oppression of the ungodly, and to cut off the hands of the transgressors. Assure all the persecuted and dear admirable friends of Nayríz of this Servants loving-kindness. Impart to their hearts the hope that, God willing, soon will the ancient glory reveal the beauty of its countenance and the sun of aspiration of the people of Bahá will shine on the highest peak. Patience and composure are essential, calmness and tranquillity needed. The evildoers will definitely pay for their evil deeds and will serve as a lesson to others.

The praise in his holy presence of the extraordinary steadfastness shown by Jináb-i Ḥájí Mírzá Aḥmad, the merchant, upon him be the glory of God, caused his bounteous favours to flow.

Convey loving-kindness and favours on behalf of Shoghi Effendi to your esteemed wife, Amatu’lláh Túbá Khánum, your mother, Amatu’lláh Núríyyih Khánum, and your children, Áqá Mírzá ‘Abdu’l-Ḥusayn, Áqá Mírzá Masíh and Shamsu’d-Duhá.

Also gladden the hearts of Jináb-i Áqáy-i Tírandáz, Áqá Isfandyár-i Khursand, Jináb-i Áqá Khudádád, the Parsí merchants, upon them be the glory of God, with the glad-tidings of His favours.

Written at the instruction of his blessed person. Rajab 1348, 24 November 1929. Núrud-Dín Zayn.

Postscript in the handwriting of Shoghi Effendi:

This Servant will, in these holy precincts, remember that friend who hath endured patiently at times of calamity, affliction and adversity. I will also implore the Almighty to ease the affairs of those loved ones and to release them from tyranny. Be assured.

The Servant of His Threshold, Shoghi.

source: Khátirát-i Talkh va Shírín p176-7

After the Nayríz uprising, Mirzá Muḥammad-Shafí (Rúḥáni) wrote a report of the atrocities to Shoghi Effendi and received this reply.


1929-11-29 Cooperate With Others


November 29, 1929, Haifa.

“…The Cause, we hope, is the heart and soul of each and every one of its adherents, but that does not prevent us from working and co-operating with all who stand for the same ideals.”

Your true brother,


1929-11-xx Lull in Funds for Temple

[to Treasurer Carl Sheffler]

USBN#36 December 1936 p4

“I grieve to learn of the comparative lull in the flow of funds for the Temple. I still entertain the fondest hope for the collection of the entire sum by the next Convention and feel strongly as I have already cabled the National Spiritual Assembly that no expenses whatever should be incurred unless absolutely and urgently required, until the sum of$400.000 is attained. Do not feel disheartened. Persevere in your labors and be assured of my ‘constant prayers’.”


1929-11-xx Response To Plan

USBN#29 Jan 1929 p1

“I wish to… express in person, the deep sense of my appreciation and gratitude in view of the sustained, unanimous and generous response of the body of the believers to the Plan. Much still remains to be achieved, and the future still holds its perils and uncertainties. I would, however, renew, with the utmost earnestness, my plea for perseverance, concentration and self-sacrifice, that the eyes of an expectant world may soon witness the concrete evidence of the undiminished vitality of the Faith of Bahá’u’lláh in that land.”


1929-12-03 To Queen Marie with Invite to Pilgrimage

Her Eternal Crown: Queen Marie of Romania and the Bahá’í Faith, Della L Marcus, pp157-8

Haifa, Palestine
3 December 1929

Her Majesty
The Dowager Queen Marie of Rumania Bucharest

Your Majesty:

I have received, through the intermediary of my dear Bahá’í sister, Miss Martha Root, the autographed portrait of your Majesty, bearing in simple and moving terms the message which your Majesty has graciously been pleased to write in person. I shall treasure this most excellent portrait, and I assure you that the Greatest Holy Leaf and the Family of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá share to the full my feelings of lively satisfaction at receiving so strikingly beautiful a photograph of a Queen whom we have learned to love and admire.

I have followed during the past few years with profound sympathy the disturbed course of various happenings in your beloved country, which I feel must have caused you much pain and concern. But whatever the vicissitudes and perplexities which beset your Majesty’s earthly path, I am certain that even in your saddest hours you have derived abundant sustenance and joy from the thought of having, through your glowing and historic utterances on the Bahá’í Faith as well as by your subsequent evidences of gracious solicitude for its welfare, brought abiding solace and strength to the multitude of its faithful and long-suffering adherents throughout the East. Yours, surely, dearly-beloved Queen, is the station, ordained by Bahá’u’lláh in the realms beyond, to which the strivings of no earthly power can ever hope to attain.

I have, immediately upon the publication of the second volume of ‘The Bahá’í World’ by the American Bahá’í Publishing Committee, forwarded directly to Bucharest, to the address of your Majesty and that of H.R.H. Princess Ileana, copies of this most recent and comprehensive of Bahá’í publications. I will take the liberty of presenting in the course of the coming year the third volume of this same publication, which I trust will prove of interest to your Majesty.

May I, in closing, reiterate the expression of profound appreciation and joy which the Family of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá and Bahá’ís in every land universally feel for the powerful impetus which your Majesty’s outspoken and noble words have lent to the onward march of their beloved Faith.

The Family also join me in extending to your Majesty, as well as to H.R.H. Princess Ileana, a most cordial welcome, should your Majesty ever purpose to visit the Holy Land, to ‘Abdu’l-Bahá’s home in Haifa, as well as to those scenes rendered so hallowed and memorable by the heroic lives and deeds of Bahá’u’lláh and ‘Abdu’l-Bahá.

With deepest affection,


1929-12-05 Progress of Work on Bahjí

The Priceless Pearl, Rúḥíyyih Khánum, p232

The Mansion of Bahá’u’lláh, occupied for about forty years by Muḥammad-‘Alí and his followers, has at last been evacuated and the enclosed photograph will indicate in what a state they have left it! Restorative work has commenced and the pilgrims are already visiting the room where Bahá’u’lláh passed away and where He passed the most peaceful and happiest days of His life.


1929-12-06 Bahá’í World

USBN#37— January 1930— page 7

“Kindly urge Bahá’í World Editors to take immediate steps ensure arrival manuscript final form Haifa by end of April. Exercise great care maintenance high standard.(SHOGHI)”

The following cablegram was then sent to our Guardian:

“Supplicate you urge all National Assemblies send Bahá’í World material to Editorial Secretary at once.(W INDUST)”


“Have written Assemblies. Your Committee should urge them also directly.



1929-12-12 Can Sell Rug from Shrine to Non-Bahá’ís

USBN#38 February 1930 insert

“Shoghi Effendi informs you that the rug can be offered for sale among Bahá’ís and non-Bahá’ís alike.”— Soheil Afnán

In accordance with the Guardian’s purpose and instructions, the National Assembly has requested Mr. George Spendlove, a believer exceptionally qualified by expert knowledge and experience, to undertake the responsible task of arranging for the sale of this rug. Its value has been established at the sum of$20,000, at which figure offers will be considered whether from Bahá’ís or non-Bahá’ís, but no offer from a non-Bahá’í will be accepted until those interested among the believers have been given full opportunity to acquire the rug for the Cause.


1929-12-31 Sohrab

USBN#46— November 1930— page 9

To the National Assembly

“Feel strongly Aḥmad Sohrab should uphold unconditionally authority local and national Assembly. Have in no letter of mine departed from this basic principle which alone safeguards unity of Cause.”


1929-12-xx Persian Letter of Intro for Martha Root

Martha Root: Lioness at the Threshold, M. R. Garis, p338

the Leader of the men and women teachers, Her holiness Miss Martha Root…. It is incumbent and obligatory upon all the beloved of God and hand maidens of the Merciful One in that sacred land to receive that noble soul with their hearts and souls, and to perform the ceremonies of hospitality towards her with all respect and the utmost affection….[He urged them to] spread banquets and adorn gatherings and assemblages[for] that chosen one of His Holiness the Almighty and the bearer of the fame of the cause of Bahá, both in words and in deeds. For this unique believer with an astonishing power and matchless courage and constancy has raised the cry of Ya Bahá’u’alláh [sic] in the loftiest places and brought the sacred name of our blessed Faith to the hearing of mighty personages including Princes, Ministers, erudites and royalty. She has thus represented before the eye of the great men of the world the wronged ones and workers of that land as a people of eminence and excellence. She deserves every kind of love and affection and is worthy of infinité honor and glorification.


1929-xx-xx Great and Manifold Services of the Star of the West

USBN#33— July 1929— page 8

And in a letter from Soheil Afnán to Mr. Dale S. Cole of Cleveland (with Shoghi Effendi’s handwriting at the bottom of the letter)

“It has been a great pleasure to our dear Guardian to receive your letter and to learn of your close cooperation with the “Star of the West”.

“It is to the Star of the West and the great and manifold services that it can render that Shoghi Effendi looks with the greatest expectations…. At this time of world-wide doubt and general perplexity, it is perhaps the greatest services to be able to breathe out in your writings what will ultimately prove to be the greatest solution for the troubles of today.”

..the following from our Guardian….

“We should strive in all our utterances to combine the discretion and noble reticence of the wise with the frankness and passionate loyalty of the ardent advocate of an inspiring Faith.”


192x-xx-xx To a Distant Cousin, Handling Correspondance

The Priceless Pearl, Rúḥíyyih Khánum, p67-8

One of my most pressing problems is that of individual correspondence. To copy the Master, is presumptuous on my part, and in view of the rapid extension of the Movement, impracticable. To correspond in person with some and not write to others, I am sure you realize will lead gradually to friction, discouragement and even animosity, as you know fully well the considerable number of friends who expect much and do little. To do away utterly with individual correspondence, and rely on indirect written messages, penned by my helpers and associates, whilst I would devote my time to direct correspondence with the Assemblies throughout the world, is also a difficult problem. I would indeed value your views on this thorny problem. The latter course has the obvious objection of severing all personal relationships with the individual friends.


1930-01-01 Mrs. Chanler

USBN#46— November 1930— page 9

“In none of the Guardian’s letters to Mrs. Chanler has Shoghi Effendi approved of her attitude toward the local and national Assemblies. One of those who was over-zealous about The New History Society wrote Shoghi Effendi that the members of the New York Assembly are gradually becoming milder and perhaps drawn to the History Society. This is to solve the problem in the wrong way. It is not the Assembly that has to be won to the cause of some rebellious person, but that person brought back under the authority of the Assembly.”


1930-01-02 Russia will Become a Delectable Paradise

Eastern Europe and the Soviet Union A Compilation From the Bahá’í Writings,#33

Compiled by the Research Department of the Universal House of Justice

Russia will in the future become a delectable paradise, and the teaching work in that land will be carried out on an unprecedented scale. The House of Worship established in its very heart will shine forth with dazzling splendour, and the call of the Most Great Name will reverberate in its temples, its churches, and its places of worship. We need to show forth patience and forbearance. In these momentous convulsions there lie concealed mighty and consummate mysteries, which will be revealed to men’s eyes in the days to come.

(2 January 1930 to an individual believer— translated from the Persian)


1930-01-26 To Coswell, Teaching Work

Divine Springtime— Louise Caswell Recalls, p9

January 26th, 1930.

“He (the Guardian) was much touched by your assurance to devote your endeavors to the progress of His Faith, and in welcoming such spontaneous enthusiasm and sincerity, he wishes me to assure you of his ardent prayer that all your efforts may be successful and that you may render increasing services to the onward march of the Cause in America.

(Signed) Soheil Afnán.”


1930-01-30 Attending History Society Meetings

USBN#46— November 1930— page 9

The Guardian’s Reply (January 23, 1930)

“Attendance Aḥmad meeting conditioned upon Aḥmad’s unquestioned acceptance to conduct meetings on lines fully sanctioned by National Spiritual Assembly. True unity can only be preserved by maintenance paramount position National Spiritual Assembly.”

response to 4 NYC query 1930-01-23

“Is it your desire for sake of unity New York that we attend Chanler meeting?”


1930-01-31 Fervent Plea German Bahá’ís for Unity

Germany, France, Italy, and Switzerland

Compiled by Research Department of the Universal House of Justice.

Published in Bahá’í Studies Review 4:1


(31 January 1930)


1930-01-xx Bahá’ís in Holy Land Contribute to Temple Fund

USBN#37— January 1930— page 3

“Bahá’ís of Haifa, Acre and Adasiyyih, conscious of America’s glorious self-sacrifice, jointly contributing no less than four thousand dollars, toward Mashriqu’l-Adhkár. Cabling sum next week. Have addressed appeal to believers throughout East to reinforce noble endeavors (of) their American brethren.”

(signed) SHOGHI.


1930-01-xx Response Temple Fund Status

USBN#37— January 1930— page 1

“Much gratified. Urge continued self-sacrifice. Loving appreciation.”

(Signed) SHOGHI.

The impressive response made to Shoghi Effendi’s recent general letter concerning the Temple, has brought the Construction Fund almost to the point of completion. If all pledges reported to the Treasurer are paid, only$22,000 must be contributed in order to make the total sum of$400,000 required for resuming construction.

Mr. Scheffler reported the following balance as of January 16, 1930:
Temple Construction Fund
National Bahá’í Fund..$10,000

When these facts were reported to the Guardian by cablegram, the above reply was received.


1930-02-03 To May Maxwell, 19 Distinguished Western Bahá’ís

The Maxwells of Montreal Vol II, Violette Nakhjavani, p163-4

Shoghi Effendi is in these days busy collecting interesting material for the forthcoming number of the year-book. Among others he is collecting the pictures of some of the old friends who have passed away and who have rendered distinguished services to the Cause. He has already gathered the pictures of nineteen distinguished figures among those who have rendered eminent services to the Cause in the East. He wishes now to gather an equal number from among the old Western Bahá’ís who have passed away and who have done great services to the Cause.


1930-02-15 To Editor of ‘The Palestine Bulletin’

Her Eternal Crown: Queen Marie of Romania and the Bahá’í Faith, Della L Marcus, pp165-6

Haifa, Palestine
15 February 1930

To the Editor of ‘The Palestine Bulletin’
P.O.B. 683 Jerusalem

Dear Sir,

This is to acknowledge the receipt of your communication of the 13th instant in which you express your desire to devote the columns of your ‘Bulletin’ to an account of the rise and progress of the Bahá’í Faith.

I feel that the best I can do is to send you under separate cover a copy of the latest edition of ‘The Bahá’í World’, a production which portrays, fully and faithfully, the manifold activities as well as the essential character and purpose of the Faith of Bahá’u’lláh.

You will find on pages 173-177 the text of the open letters which the Dowager Queen of Romania has felt impelled to pen as a testimony of her faith, in admiration for the Message of Bahá’u’lláh.

With kind regards and best wishes,
Yours sincerely, Shoghi

This resulted in an article in the Palestine Bulletin on 18 Feb 30


1930-02-15 To Alaine Locke, Translation of Íqán

This letter was first published in “Alain Locke: Bahá’í Philosopher,” p. 48, republished in Alain Locke: Faith and Philosophy, p. 285.

Persian Colony, Haifa
15-11-30 [sic]

Dear Dr. Locke:

Shoghi Effendi has been lately spending his leisure hours translating the Book of Íqán for he considers it to be the key to a true understanding of the Holy Scriptures,&[sic] can easily rank as one of the most, if not the most, important thing that Bahá’u’lláh revealed explaining the basic beliefs of the Cause. He who fully grasps the purport of that Book can claim to have understood the Cause.

Yet, Shoghi Effendi believes that mere translation into English phrases is not sufficient. It is essential to make the idioms& expressions lively English, a thing which he alone cannot possibly achieve. Thinking, therefore, that you will be the best fitted to render him an assistance along that line, he is sending you the part that he has already completed. He would be most appreciative if you go over it carefully, studying every sentence— its structure as well as choice of words— & giving him your criticism as well as constructive suggestions that would make it more lucid, English [sic]& forceful. As it is a Holy Scripture, Shoghi Effendi has tried to put it in the English of the Bible, preferring its ways of expression better than any other. What he sends you now is half of the book, the rest he will mail as it is translated.

The form that it is in at present is far from being the last one. Yet he wishes to have all the possible suggestions before he puts it in its final form.

Shoghi Effendi is fully aware of the many duties you have& how pressing your time is,& had he known of an equally fitting person he would surely have saved you the trouble. Yet he finds himself to be compelled. He hopes, therefore, that you will give this work your close attention.

If the book is completed& rendered into a lucid& forceful language, the service it will render to the Cause will surely repay all your endeavours. In many places you will see the same idea expressed in other words& inserted in paranthesis [sic]. You can chose [sic] any of the two. In case you have any suggestions just mention in what page& line it is. You need not send him back the copy after going over it, for he may desire to refer to them later. He has enough copies here. Though he wishes you to give it all your attention he will be much obliged if you take it up immediately.

With deepest appreciation

Yours ever sincerely
Rúḥí Afnán


1930-03-01 Response to NYC LSA Cable, Chanler

USBN#46— November 1930— page 9

The Guardian’s Reply (March 1, 1930)

“Much relieved, gladdened, fervently supplicating dear valued Mrs. Chanler and Assembly may through fire (of) Bahá’í fellowship be welded, unitedly uphold unity of faith and supremacy (of) Bahá’í representative Assemblies.”

response to this cable fm NYC LSA

“Mrs. Chanler’s request (to) continue her classes (in) Bahá’í Center granted, Implore divine confirmation.” [28 Feb 1930]

On receiving the Guardian’s cablegram the New York Assembly courteously invited Mrs. Chanler to meet and consult upon the significance of the Guardian’s message. This invitation was refused.


1930-03-01 To Blomfield Requesting Come to Haifa

Lady Blomfield: Her Life and Times, Robert Weinberg, p288



This was written in anticipation of visit of Queen Marie.


1930-03-08 To Queen Marie Invited Her To Pilgrimage

Her Eternal Crown: Queen Marie of Romania and the Bahá’í Faith, Della L Marcus, pp169



1930-03-26 To Queen Marie Renewing Invitation To Pilgrimage

Her Eternal Crown: Queen Marie of Romania and the Bahá’í Faith, Della L Marcus, pp170




1930-03-29 Thanks for Tablets

I am directed by the Guardian to express his grateful appreciation for your letter… with the volume containing copies of the Tablets revealed to the friends in ___ by the Master and Bahá’u’lláh.

In accomplishing this task you have rendered a most valued and permanent service to the Cause in ___ and posterity will owe you a debt of gratitude very hard to repay.

Furthermore this compilation shall be of indispensable value and use to the Guardian and to all International bodies that may meet in Haifa whether in the distant or near future. You are quite aware, of course, with the fashion in which both Bahá’u’lláh and the Master gave some of their most important teachings as part of their Tablets addressed to far-away friends. Hence the necessity of such compilations throughout the world.

29 March 1930 to an individual believer on behalf of Shoghi Effendi

Writings, Bahá’í: Importance of collecting and safeguarding, compiled by Bahá’í International Archives. Published in Bahá’í Studies Review, 11, pages 100-102


1930-03-xx To Mr Roa for SE re trans BNE into French

Bahá’í Studies Bulletin Vol 5#1-2 September 1985 pp92

I am directed by Shoghi Effendi to acknowledge receipt of two chapters of the French translation of Dr. Esslemont’s book which you had sent him.

He has read them and is well pleased except that he wishes me to remind you and Mrs. Roa not to attempt a too literal rendering because that is bound to affect the language of the French translation unfavourably. He wishes you rather to attempt a faithful rendering of the thought and meaning of the original in as good French as possible without of course deviating too much.

(March 1930)


1930-04-02 To Martha Root Deserves Honors Have Been Ill

The Priceless Pearl, Rúḥíyyih Khánum, p105

You fully deserved all the honour, the love and the hospitality which the Persian friends have so remarkably shown towards you. I have been so busy after my long and sever illness, that I have felt unable to answer promptly your letters, you have, however, been always in my thoughts, particularly during those hours when I visit the Holy Shrines and place my head on the sacred threshold.


1930-04-02 To Martha re Situation With Queen Marie

Her Eternal Crown: Queen Marie of Romania and the Bahá’í Faith, Della L Marcus, pp173-4

I am now writing to you quite confidentially regarding the projected visit of the Queen to Haifa. Unfortunately it did not materialize. The reason, I absolutely ignore. Although I sent her two wires, renewing my invitation to her already expressed in the letter I wrote her when you were here, and deploring the unauthorized publicity given by the Press in Palestine, England and America, I have had no reply from her whatever. All I received was a wire from Cairo on March 28 from the Romanian Minister, Lahovary, who wired as follows: ‘Her Majesty regrets that, not passing through Palestine, she will not be able to visit you’. I do not know whether my letter of December last, which I showed you, and in which I acknowledged receipt of her photograph, as well as my two wires to her after her arrival in Egypt, have been intercepted or miscarried. The two wires I sent her were as follows…‘Deeply regret unauthorized publicity given by the Press.’ I should not be surprised if these communications as well as your letters and the rosaries have not reached her at all. I so much wish to know the real situation, whether any malicious propaganda has not damped her enthusiasm, or whether she is unable to communicate with us. Reporters who called on me, representing the United Press of America, telegraphed to their newspapers just the opposite I told them. They perverted the truth. I wish we could make sure that she would at least know the real situation! But how can we ensure that our letters to her Majesty will henceforth reach her. I feel that you should write to her, explain the whole situation, assure her of my great disappointment. I hope your letter will reach her… I cherish the hope that these unfortunate developments will serve only to intensify the faith and love of the Queen, and will reinforce her determination to arise and spread the Cause. Please, let me know of any news you receive. I thirst for news and find all ways to her barred and blocked.

Be not sad or distressed, dearest Martha. The seeds you have so lovingly, so devotedly and so assiduously sown will surely germinate. ‘Abdu’l-Bahá is guiding you and will bless your heroic efforts. Persevere, and never lose heart.


1930-04-23 To May Maxwell re Photos of Early Believers

The Maxwells of Montreal Vol II, Violette Nakhjavani, p166

I am directed by Shoghi Effendi to thank you so much for your letter of March 15th with the photograph of Mrs. Knobloch and her Tablet enclosed. Also for the photographs you sent him under separate cover which have already reached him and in good time, thanks to your endeavour& enterprise. Of course you know that they are intended for the forthcoming issue of the ‘Bahá’í World’.

My dear and precious co-worker;

The photos you sent me have all reached safely, and I am deeply appreciative of your efforts.


1930-04-xx Financial Questions that Confront the Cause

USBN#40— April 1930— page 17

A recent letter from Haifa to the finance chairman-

— “The financial questions that confront the Cause are all very pressing and important. They need a judicious administration and a wise policy. We should study the needs of the Cause, find the fields which will give the greatest yield and then appropriate the necessary funds. And such a task is surely most difficult and responsible.”

“Please convey to the members of the National Assembly Shoghi Effendi’s loving greetings. He is fully conscious of the burdens they have to bear, but he is confident that through their sincerity and wisdom they will guide the Cause through even the greatest storms….”


1930-04-xx Resumption of Construction of Temple

USBN#40— April 1930— page 2

“Nothing will be more conducive to my refreshment and strength than the news of the resumption of the construction of our sorely-neglected Temple. This is the reason why I feel that everything else, however urgent and weighty, should be subordinated to the Temple activity, which must for the present and for some time to come be regarded as the paramount and vital issue facing the American believers.”



1930-05-11 To Martha Encouraging to Return to Germany& Balkans

Her Eternal Crown: Queen Marie of Romania and the Bahá’í Faith, Della L Marcus, pp176

I feel that on your return to Europe, you should concentrate your efforts on Germany and the Balkans. I hope and pray that in the Balkans you may be enabled to establish Bahá’í centres where the believers may be able to carry on the work which you have so gloriously and devotedly initiated. I feel also that you should make an attempt to meet the Queen, who has already expressed the hope to see you. I will continue to pray for you from the depths of my heart.


1930-05-23 To May Maxwell re Situation with Sohrab Argument for Administration

The Maxwells of Montreal Vol II, Violette Nakhjavani, p122-3

Every one who has studied the Cause deeply cannot but be certain that Bahá’u’lláh’s purpose in His Mission was not merely to expound certain principles& renew the spirit that the previous prophets brought to the world, but also to establish a definite social fabric that would make those principles of practical value. In a word what Bahá’u’lláh has come to this world for is a World State— the Kingdom of God— the greatest institution that the world has yet seen.

The administrative side of the Cause which is the embryonic stage of that world order, is therefore just as much an intrinsic& indispensable part of the teachings, as the principle of unity of mankind etc. To consider a person a Bahá’í, who does not believe in the administration, is just as if we were to consider him as such when he takes exception to those basic principles

Shoghi Effendi does not have anything to say against Mrs. Chanler for she is making all that sacrifice for a certain noble ideal of service. He only pities her to be so duped by Aḥmad. All of Shoghi Effendi’s grudge is against Aḥmad who, appearing in the garb of a servant, is doing nothing more than to injure the Cause by sowing the seeds of dissension among the friends,& of securing his own means of livelihood…

Regarding Aḥmad, I feel that if the friends individually& collectively are not watchful, a gradual departure from the spirit& form of the Faith on his part, aided by the resources placed at his disposal by Mrs. Chanler, may soon bring about a state of grave confusion among the believers,& create a split in their ranks. We should be both firm and conciliatory. I look to you as a powerful instrument for the preservation of the unity& of the integrity of our beloved Faith,& will continue to pray for your high endeavour from the depths of my heart.


1930-05-25 Convention Greetings

USBN#41 May 1930 p2

“Convey assembled delegates expression profound gratitude, heartfelt congratulations their heroic achievement. May speedy construction entire edifice usher in era unprecedented triumphs beloved Faith as promised by ‘Abdu’l-Bahá.

“America’s sustained, glorious sacrifice will assuredly endow rising edifice with such spiritual potencies as shall excite wonder, admiration all peoples. Befittingly inaugurate resumption Temple construction. Consecrated carpet need neither be sold nor returned. Dedicated as permanent ornament first Mashriqu’l-Adhkár of the West. Advise Convention cable National Assemblies news this historic ceremony.

“Martha’s triumphal, unhindered progress through Persia has paved way for delegation representing western Bahá’í’s visit to advance interests of Faith in Bahá’u’lláh’s native land. Deepest love.”

(Signed) Shoghi.


1930-05-30 Instructions re BW Vol III

USBN#48— February 1931— page 9-10

To the BW Editorial Secretary

Dear Mr. Windust:

Shoghi Effendi desires me to acknowledge the receipt of your letters of April 6th and March 23rd. The packages of photographs that you sent for “The Bahá’í World” have all reached him. He has selected the most appropriate and has returned the rest to your address in a number of packages. He is deeply grateful to you for the painstaking efforts and the thoroughness and the devotion with which you have collected the material for the forthcoming issue. The entire manuscript has reached him safely. He went over it most carefully, rearranged the whole material, added a few articles, prepared a table of contents which he inserted in the manuscript, arranged the photographs and the captions for each, divided the material into Four Parts and sent them under three separate covers a few days ago to your address.

He is delighted with the illuminated manuscript insert which he has chosen as a frontispiece of the book, and has placed it in its proper place in Part One. We need not insert the translation of the text of the manuscript. He prefers the non-varnished copy. If you think, however, that moisture will affect it, he has no objection to your inserting instead the varnished copy. The photographs for “The Bahá’í World”, he has inserted them all in the manuscript. He would advise the Committee neither to add to, nor to discard, any of the photographs already inserted. He has divided each of the Four Parts into Sections. He has grouped the photographs of each Section and added them to their respective Sections. As to the exact locality of each photograph in these Sections, he has left it to the discretion of the Committee. He would not advise to displace these photographs from one part to another. He would ask you to kindly return to him all the photographs that are within the manuscript after the printing of the book. Among these photographs are two collective ones. On each page of these two collective photographs are nineteen reproductions of outstanding Bahá’ís in the East and in the West. The one is entitled, “Apostles of Bahá’u’lláh”; the other, “Disciples of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá.” He has joined to each a list of the name and title of these Bahá’ís. He would request the Committee to arrange the two collective photographs in a manner that they would face each other in the book. In the back of each he feels the list of their respective names should be inserted. Shoghi Effendi has not yet received Horace’s article on “Survey of Current Bahá’í Activities in the East and West.” He would advise you to insert it immediately if it is finished without awaiting a further word from Shoghi Effendi. He feels that the sooner the book is printed the better. He would advise the utmost care both on the part of the proof reader and the printer. Particularly regarding the transliteration of Oriental terms, he would urge you to exercise the minutest care. He has carefully revised both the list and the articles in this connection. The book should present a distinctive scholarly character and should be free from all manner of type error. The appreciative replies he has received from eminent men to whom he has sent “The Bahá’í World” and to whom he hopes to send Volume III, makes it absolutely imperative to maintain, nay even to improve if possible, the standard already attained. He would particularly request you to insert in the beginning of the book, on a separate page, a statement saying that all the photographs in Volume III are strictly copyrighted and should not, without specific authorization, be reproduced. As to the color of the book, Shoghi Effendi feels that as Volume I has a green cover and Volume II a blue one, that Volume III should be red. He is sending you enclosed the particular shade of red which he feels it advisable to adopt. He would request you to ensure that the cloth cover of Volume III should be exactly in this shade.

Shoghi Effendi is sending enclosed a check for twenty pounds as his promised contribution towards the expense involved in the preparation of the illuminated manuscript. He has already informed the friends in the East and particularly Persia to take the necessary measures for a prompt and substantial order immediately the book is published. The sacred photographs, most of which have never been published before, are of such a nature as to excite the interest of both the Bahá’ís of the East and the West. The graphic and detailed description of the declaration of the Báb in Shíráz, which Shoghi Effendi has included in Part One is bound to arouse much interest, as the details of that historic meeting are unknown to even the old believers in Persia. That is why he feels that the greatest care should be exercised in the printing of the book.

Shoghi Effendi would wish to have mailed to his name, immediately the book is published, which he hopes will be by the middle of the summer, one hundred (100) copies. He hopes that the friends in every part of the world will cooperate in making the issue of this book a successful financial undertaking. He wishes in conclusion to express his deepest appreciation of your continued and devoted endeavors and wishes me to assure you of his prayers for your success in your many services to the Cause. This letter should not be published in “The Bahá’í World”. It is only for the information of “The Bahá’í World Committee”.

Yours Sincerely,

Rúḥí Afnán.

P.S.— Shoghi Effendi will be pleased to send the price of the hundred copies he has ordered immediately he receives them. R.A.

My Dear and precious co-worker:

I cannot refrain from adding a few words to this already detailed letter, the expression of may deepest admiration for your unsparing efforts in the service of our beloved Faith. Your whole-hearted devotion, conscientious labors, and thoroughness of service are greatly valued and prized by me, and I trust that in the days to come your scope of service may increasingly widen and bear the richest fruit. I have asked Rúḥí to convey my messages and suggestions in my behalf in this letter regarding “The Bahá’í World”, and I am sure that they will be duly considered, as I have great hopes in this publication. I am sending you under separate cover a photo of the London friends which I would suggest to be inserted before or after George Townshend’s “Reflection” on the Hidden Words in Part IV.

Lovingly and gratefully,



May 29, 1930.


1930-05-30 To Alfred Lund re New History Society& Sohrab

Bahá’í Studies Bulletin Vol 2#1 June 1983 pp73-4

Persian Colony

Haifa, Palestine


Dear Mr. Lunt:

Shoghi Effendi wishes me to acknowledge the receipt of your letter dated May 12th 1930 as well as the enclosed minutes of the N.S.A. He hopes that the changes made in the secretarial work will be for the good, for generally dividing the work between heads brings confusion. After a few years of labour the secretarial work became systematic, and organized. Shoghi Effendi hopes that the present form it has taken will be a step forward. Anyhow you have his earnest prayers and best-wishes.

Concerning the New History Society which seems to have aroused great admiration among some& great indignation among others, it has really become a problem very difficult to solve. Even though both the Assembly and individuals have written to Shoghi Effendi& asked his opinion none seems daring enough to take a stand. As long as Aḥmad does not want to accept the administration, Shoghi Effendi cannot conscientiously trust him. To accept the Cause without the administration is like to accept the teachings without acknowledging the divine station of Bahá’u’lláh. To be a Bahá’í is to accept the Cause in its entirety. To take exception to one basic principle is to deny the authority& sovereignty of Bahá’u’lláh,& therefore is to deny the Cause. The administration is the social order of Bahá’u’lláh. Without it all the principles of the Cause will remain abortive. To take exception to this, therefore, is to take exception to the fabric that Bahá’u’lláh has prescribed, it is to disobey His law.

In his letters to the Assembly as well as to the individual friends, Shoghi Effendi has made it clear that the friends should in no way associate themselves with the New History Society if these fail to obey the Assemblies. What the friends have been doing is to win over the Assemblies to the New History Society rather than by showing a firm stand make the History Society come to the Assemblies. And this has greatly displeased Shoghi Effendi.

In the May Number of the ‘Psychology’ a copy of which the History Society sent one there is an article on the Bahá’í movement. It definitely states that there are “two sister organizations; one meeting at 110 West 57th Street; the other the New History Society.” It is strange that old and experienced Bahá’ís should acquiesce with such articles that strike at the unity of the Cause, that the Master tried to secure.

It may be that the New History Society has succeeded to attract many souls into the Cause. No one denies that. But there is no reason why such work should not be achieved by the Bahá’ís. The teachings are Bahá’í teachings, only polluted. The only thing they have is that they possess on their staff a person who refuses to accept the social order of Bahá’u’lláh& whose main object is personal ascendancy. That they succeed only shows that the Bahá’ís are failing to do their duty and nothing more.

Excuse me for writing so strongly but it is a candid expression of Shoghi Effendi’s attitude. Notwithstanding this, however, it all rests with the National Assembly to see what is advisable. It is a local problem that they have to solve. Shoghi Effendi only hopes that the members of that spiritual body will be guided in their work and will follow what is to the best interest of the Cause.

Shoghi Effendi hopes that this newly elected assembly will succeed to accomplish a great deal in the field of teaching. We have to add to our numbers& get in new blood if we desire to live and inaugurate the social status that Bahá’u’lláh has brought to the world. With best wishes and loving greetings,

Yours ever sincerely,

Rúḥí Afnán

My dear co-workers

The newly established Secretariat as well as the character of the proceedings of this year’s memorable convention have filled my heart with joy and hopefulness. I strongly feel that the teaching work should be regarded henceforth as the paramount issue facing the American believers. Aḥmad Sohrab’s activities should be watched carefully, lest a weak handling of this extremely delicate situation may confuse the minds of the friends& cause a split in the Cause. The Cause has already triumphed over such cases which flare up for a tine& then recede into the shadows of oblivion& are thought of no more. The case of Khayru’lláh, Fareed, Dyar, Mrs. Whyte and others testify to this truth. May the Beloved guide your steps, inspire your hearts& bless your efforts.



1930-05-30 Watch Sohrab

USBN#46— November 1930— page 9

“Aḥmad Sohrab’s activities should be watched carefully, lest a weak handling of this extremely delicate situation may confuse the minds of the friends, and cause a split in the Cause. The Cause has already triumphed over such cases which flare up for a time then recede into the shadows of oblivion and are thought of no more. The case of Khyrellah, Fareed, Dyer, Mrs. White and others testify to this truth.”


1930-05-xx To May Maxwell re Choice of Distinguished Early Believers

The Maxwells of Montreal Vol II, Violette Nakhjavani, p166

I have already cabled my joyous satisfaction and appreciation of your prompt response to my request. I am greatly pleased with your choice and these will in due course appear in the ‘Bahá’í World’.

When published in the BW, Shoghi Effendi designated them as Apostles of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá


1930-06-30 re Kitáb-i-Íqán

USBN#46— November 1930— page 2

To the National Assembly

“As the Íqán is the most important book wherein Bahá’u’lláh explains the basic beliefs of the faith, he thought a proper rendering of it would infinitely enhance the teaching work in the West. He hopes that this new rendering will be an improvement on the previous one, but he fully admits that it is far from perfect, far from the original itself. Shoghi Effendi has given the proper transliteration of the Eastern terms and wants you to abide by them, keeping every dash, point, accent or inverted comma. To help you in this, he has also on a separate sheet written these in their proper form. He wishes you further not to include the introduction that exists in the last edition, for he does not think it worthwhile and enlightening. Drop also the glossary that exists at the end of the last edition and form a glossary using the definitions that he has sent to be put in the forthcoming Bahá’í World. As Shoghi Effendi has been emphasizing the need of submitting all publications to the Reviewing Committee, he wants to be the first to abide by that rule, though he hopes that they will not make unnecessary delay. In Germany they have translated the Íqán from the last translation and they are waiting for Shoghi Effendi’s rendering to make the necessary alterations and publish their own. The proceeds of the sale of the book Shoghi Effendi wishes to go to the American National Assembly in an unlabelled form. This is a gift of his own personal labors that he wishes to present that body and he wishes it to be considered as a token of appreciation for the help they have rendered him in carrying on his arduous task.”

(Signed) RUHI AFNAN.

“Unable to find a good typist, I have had to do the work myself, and I trust that the proofreaders will find it easy to go over and will not mind the type errors which I have tried to correct. I would especially urge you to adhere to the transliteration which I have adopted. The correct title is, I feel, ‘The Kitáb-i-Íqán,’ the sub-title ‘The Book of Certitude.’ May it help the friends to approach a step further, and obtain a clearer idea of the fundamental teachings set forth by Bahá’u’lláh.”

(Signed) SHOGHI.


This accompanied the manuscript of his translation of the Íqán.


1930-07-04 To Blomfield re Her Help With His Translating

Lady Blomfield: Her Life and Times, Robert Weinberg, p297

You know how appreciative he is for this help and therefore I need not express it…

He hopes you will give to it as much of your time as you can spare… I am sure you will find the task very interesting, because the history as it develops is becoming more and more absorbing

My deepest thanks for your suggestions in connection with the Íqán which I deeply appreciate. I am sending to your address today a further instalment of Nabíl which I trust you will find interesting. I am soon leaving for my summer rest which I need badly, though I am hoping to devote most of my time to the translation of the narrative. I hope to send you some more as soon as I receive the instalment which I am mailing today.


1930-07-05 To Alaine Locke re Translation of Íqán

First published in “Alain Locke: Bahá’í Philosopher,” p. 49, republished in Alain Locke: Faith and Philosophy, p. 287.

49 Persian Colony

Haifa, Palestine


Dear Prof. Locke:

Shoghi Effendi wishes me to acknowledge the receipt of your letter as well as the mss. of the Íqán which you had so kindly gone over. Though they were not so many, he found the suggestions you gave most helpful. In translation work the greatest difficulty is to give the thought a lively English expression. This is most difficult for the person who gets absorbed into the original form& is charmed with its beauty. Shoghi Effendi has already incorporated your suggestions& sent his manuscript to the National Assembly for publication. It naturally depends upon that body& the reviewing& publishing committees to decide whether it should come out immediately or not.

The most important service that can now be rendered to the Cause is to put the writings of Bahá’u’lláh in a form that would be presentable to the intellectual minds of the West. Shoghi Effendi’s hope in this work has been to encourage others along this line.

In closing may I express Shoghi Effendi’s best wishes for your health as well as for the services you are rendering to the Cause.

Yours ever sincerely

Rúḥí Afnán

My dear co-worker:

I wish to add a few words expressing my deep appreciation of your valued suggestions in connexion with the translation of the Íqán. I wish also to express the hope that you may be able to lend increasing assistance to the work of the Cause, as I have always greatly admired your exceptional abilities& capacity to render distinguished services to the Faith. I grieve to hear of the weakness of your heart which I trust may through treatment be completely restored. I often remember you in my prayers and ever cherish the hope of welcoming you again in the Master’s home.

Your true brother,



1930-08-30 For Shoghi Effendi to a National Spiritual Assembly

Unlocking the Power of Action,#27

Compiled by Research Department of the Universal House of Justice.

The work of the Assembly should be to capitalize the energy and devotion that exists among the friends and guide them along proper channels, whereby good work would be accomplished and no harm be done to the Cause. The first quality for leadership, both among individuals and Assemblies, is the capacity to use the energy and competence that exists in the rank and file of its followers.


1930-08-30 Response to Individual re History Society

USBN#46— November 1930— page 9

Letter from the Guardian, Through His Secretary, to a Believer of Yonkers, N.Y.

“A year ago, Mrs. Chanler wrote Shoghi Effendi of her plan to work independently of the Assembly. In answer he expressed his disapproval in a most unquestionable term. In the letters and cables that Mrs. Chanler wrote subsequent to that, Shoghi Effendi expressed the same view again. He knew that for a body to defy the Assembly is contrary to the best interests of the Cause; that not only will conflict arise but it will react unfavorably in other parts of the world.

“Some persons in the (United) States feel that the History Society was badly represented to Shoghi Effendi. The source of all our information is the writings of Aḥmad, and the publications of that group. In all his circular letters he harped on the note of freedom, and denounced the red tape that characterizes organizations. Freedom, which Aḥmad reiterates… is not a bad thing if considered in view of the interpretation that Bahá’u’lláh gives in the Aqdas.(See quotation No. 1, above— Editor). The freedom that He commends is a freedom which is a fruit and result of law and proper administration. The other kind of freedom which is in defiance of law He considers to be animal, and far from being of any good to man. He says, ‘True freedom is in obedience to My law.’

“No one wrote to Shoghi Effendi against the History Society; it is Aḥmad’s reports that caused Shoghi Effendi’s mistrust. This literature has not had this effect only on Shoghi Effendi but also on the friends of Australia and New Zealand. In the last two weeks we have had two letters from prominent and firm Bahá’ís of New Zealand and Australia who referred to the History Society and its literature with greatest disapprobation, and with great astonishment that nothing is being done.

“The Cause is an international institution. Every act done in one Center will have some reaction in some other locality. What if the spirit that Aḥmad preaches should be practised in its full? The whole Cause will as a result be destroyed.”


1930-08-30 To Alfred Lunt re Sohrad& New History Society

Bahá’í Studies Bulletin Vol 2#1 June 1983 pp74-5


Dear Kr. Lunt:

Shoghi Effendi wishes me to acknowledge receipt of your letters dated June 20th, July 14th, 17th& 18th, copies of the Bahá’í directory& the minutes of the National Assembly of June 17th to 29th 1930.

Concerning Aḥmad’s attitude towards the Assembly& the decision you have taken, Shoghi Effendi has already sent you a cable heartily approving the language as well as the purport of the decision. Since then we have received letters from different parts of the world such as Australia& New Zealand informing us that Aḥmad has been sending them his literature& keeping them informed of his activities. They all expressed indignation at his attitude& were astonished that nothing had been done. Anyhow, Shoghi Effendi is glad that the decision was taken for it would have had a very bad offset upon those countries where the friends are still unexperienced& where the Assemblies cannot stand the flouting of some individuals.

I personally believe that the reason why the New History Society succeeded in attracting new individuals was because that were so many devoted Bahá’ís found there a field for teaching& lend the society their whole-hearted assistance. I think if the Assembly provides a similar field for service& gives them a chance for work such greater work would be achieved. The work of the Assembly should be to capitalize the energy& devotion that exists among the friends and guide them along proper channels, whereby good work would be accomplished& no harm be done to the Cause. The first quality for leadership, both among individuals and Assemblies, is the capacity to use the energy& competence that exists in the rank and file of its followers, otherwise the more competent members of the group will go at a tangent& and try to find elsewhere a field of work& where they could use their energy.

Shoghi Effendi hopes that the Assemblies will do their utmost in planning such teaching activities that every single soul will be kept busy.

In a cable that he sent about ten days ago Shoghi Effendi left the question of the publication of the Íqán in the hands of the Assembly. The help he could render was in translation work, the financial side has to be considered by the Assembly itself. Only a few days after sending the first part he mailed the second. I hope you have received that also.

Please convey to all the friends Shoghi Effendi’s loving greetings, especially to the members of the National Assembly& the blessed angels working at the Evergreen Cabin.

Yours ever sincerely,

Rúḥí Afnán

PS. Concerning the cornerstone of the Temple which was laid by the Master, Shoghi Effendi says that it has no other special significance than a great honour conferred by the Master upon that building& it should be treated as a cornerstone& nothing more.


[Postscript by Shoghi Effendi]

With the assurances of my deep appreciation of your high endeavours& of my prayers for the success of your manifold activities.

Your true brother,



1930-08-xx Passing of Bourgeois

USBN#45— October 1930— page 1

“Grieve passing (of) Bourgeois. May Almighty reward richly his high, unforgettable endeavors. Convey his family heartfelt condolences.”




1930-08-xx re New History Society

USBN#44— September 1930— page 2

“Approve action regarding History Society. Deeply appreciative loyalty (of) believers.”— (Signed) SHOGHI.


Under these conditions it becomes the obvious responsibility of the National Spiritual Assembly to inform the friends that the activities conducted by Aḥmad Sohrab through the New History Society are to be considered as entirely independent of the Cause, as outside the jurisdiction of the Local and National Assembly, and hence in no wise entitled to the cooperation of Bahá’ís.

[USBN#43 August 1930]


1930-09-19 To Nancy Bowditch Primary Purpose of Assemblies

“The Artist’s Daughter”, Nancy Douglas Bowditch, p224

20. Letter to Mrs. Harold Bowditch from Shoghi Effendi via Rúḥí Afnán. Dated 19-9-30. The Persian Colony, Haifa, Palestine.

Dear Bahá’í Sister;

Shoghi Effendi wishes me to acknowledge the receipt of your letter dated August 18th, 1930. He hopes that as chairman of the Assembly you will succeed to render many services to the Cause in Boston. Such offices carry with them great responsibilities, but these are blessings for they enable us to serve the Cause so much more. The primary duty of the Assemblies is to take the initiative and find the ways and means for spreading the Cause and strengthening its position.

Teaching in these days is of paramount importance. Shoghi Effendi hopes that the Boston friends will do their best to provide nice meetings where the public is attracted and then encourage personal contact with those who are interested.

The Cause needs new blood, it needs more and more new adepts, new and competent servants. If we do not achieve that we will soon discover ourselves a secluded dying institution. A group can either progress or die, it can never linger idle and survive. Shoghi Effendi will remember the members of the Boston Assembly in his prayers and ask for them divine guidance and help.

Yours ever sincerely,

Rúḥí Afnán.

Note in Shoghi Effendi’s handwriting:

Assuring you of my fervent prayers for your success and spiritual advancement.

Your true brother,



1930-09-19 To Nancy Bowditch re Services in Boston

The Artist’s Daughter, Nancy Douglas Bowditch, p224

Dear Bahá’í Sister;

Shoghi Effendi wishes me to acknowledge the receipt of your letter dated August 18th, 1930. He hopes that as chairman of the Assembly you will succeed to render many services to the Cause in Boston. Such offices carry with them great responsibilities, but these are blessings for they enable us to serve the Cause so much more. The primary duty of the Assemblies is to take the initiative and find the ways and means for spreading the Cause and strengthening its position.

Teaching in these days is of paramount importance. Shoghi Effendi hopes that the Boston friends will do their best to provide nice meetings where the public is attracted and then encourage personal contact with those who are interested.

The Cause needs new blood, it needs more and more new adepts, new and competent servants. If we do not achieve that we will soon discover ourselves a secluded dying institution. A group can either progress or die, it can never linger idle and survive. Shoghi Effendi will remember the members of the Boston Assembly in his prayers and ask for them divine guidance and help.

Yours ever sincerely,

Rúḥí Afnán.

Assuring you of my fervent prayers for your success and spiritual advancement.

Your true brother,



1930-09-30 To Blomfield re Translation of Dawnbreakers

Lady Blomfield: Her Life and Times, Robert Weinberg, p297-8

It brings the story to the banishment of Bahá’u’lláh from Persia, a most logical place to stop, Shoghi Effendi hopes that you have received the previous pages. He has not yet had time to go over the suggestions you have sent him but he is delighted to see that they are numerous

‘My dear Sitarih Khánum,’ added the Guardian. ‘I am indeed most thankful to you for your painstaking efforts in going over the manuscript and of giving me your valuable suggestions. I trust that you will not be finding it too tedious and exacting a work. I have been working very hard on it, and I trust that it will help advance the interests of the Cause in the West. Again thanking you from the bottom of my heart, Yours affectionately, Shoghi.


1930-10-19 To May Maxwell re Chanler& Sohrab

The Maxwells of Montreal Vol II, Violette Nakhjavani, p124

The situation in New York is certainly confused& critical. The utmost firmness& vigilance are required at the present moment on the part of the old believers, who have already experienced such crises& know full well that the Cause has eventually surmounted them. Aḥmad is the one who will precipitate this crisis. Mrs. Chanler is his dupe. He will through her do his utmost to bring about a division among the believers. I urge you to endeavour to save Mrs. Chanler from his grasp& to open her eyes to the truth. I will pray that the Beloved may guide your steps, cheer your heart& sustain your devoted efforts. Be not sad nor disheartened, the Cause will eventually triumph.



1930-10-24 Appeal to Believers re Historical Society Situation

USBN#46— November 1930— page 10

“Appeal American believers, New York believers in particular,(to) recall (during) these days of stress (the) sacredness of their trust (and the) nobility of their calling. Slightest evidence (of) internal division highly detrimental.”


1930-10-24 Re Ruth White

No. 47— January 1931— page 1

(Mrs. Ruth) White’s base, preposterous imputations should be entirely ignored. Her machinations can never succeed impede onward march of Cause. Present agitation will assuredly die down. Appeal American Bahá’ís, New York believers in particular, recall these days of stress sacredness of their trust, nobility of their calling. Slightest evidence internal division highly detrimental. Have just completed rough rendering of most detailed authentic narrative early days of Faith trusting its eventual publication may serve heighten enthusiasm deepen faith American believers.


1930-11-04 To Blomfield re Translation and Publication of Dawnbreakers

Lady Blomfield: Her Life and Times, Robert Weinberg, p298

‘I wish to thank you from the bottom of my heart for the pains you have taken in going so thoroughly over the manuscript which I am afraid you have found in parts tedious and wearisome,’ wrote Shoghi Effendi. ‘Would you advise its publication? I trust that you are feeling well, and that opportunities to sow the seed and disseminate the knowledge of the Cause are easily forthcoming. I feel rather tired after my strenuous work this summer, and I am now again plunged into an ocean of work on my return to Haifa. Wishing you all success, and assuring you of my prayers at the holy Shrines…’


1930-11-30Participation in the Inter-Religious Congress

USBN#62— May 1932— page 11

World’s Fair (1933) Religious Congress Committee

“I feel that every effort should be made to secure from the authorities their approval for the holding of a special Bahá’í session in connection with the Inter-Religious Congress, at which a paper should be read on the Cause, its purpose, teachings and activities. The American believers, and if feasible, believers from Europe, should be adequately and befittingly represented. It would, I am sure, be of great value to the Cause, and if properly organized, would considerably enhance the prestige of the Cause. An international Bahá’í Congress would, on the other hand, due to manifold obstacles in our way, not produce this result. I trust and pray that the Assembly will be divinely assisted and inspired in taking the most effective preliminary measures for such a valuable and far-reaching undertaking.”



1930-11-30 Politics of Fellowship of Faiths

USBN#72— April 1933— pp. 3

Your letter of November 17 reveals the character of the Fellowship of Faiths and I would urge the Assembly to exercise the utmost possible pressure on any believer no matter how influential he or she may be to withdraw from participation in its political activities.

(signed) SHOGHI.

Haifa, Palestine,

November 30, 1932


1930-11-xx Greetings to Emperor of Japan via Martha Root

The Priceless Pearl, Rúḥíyyih Khánum, p105



1930-12-07 All Letters Approved

USBN#53— July 1931— page 5

(From letter to Mrs. Marion Little, New York)

“I wish to add and say that whatever letters are sent in my behalf from Haifa are all read and approved by me before mailing. There is no exception whatever to this rule.”

(Signed) SHOGHI


1930-12-30 To Philip Hainsworth re Teaching in Africa

Looking back in Wonder, Philip Hainsworth, p101-2

Dear Bahá’í Brother;

Your two letters, one undated, and one dated April 19, have been received by our beloved Guardian, as well as the pamphlet— which he was delighted to see.

He would be delighted to see you go as a pioneer to Africa and to later have your mother join you. She seems the true heroic pattern! He feels that in as far as possible the African pioneers should seek to get a job which will take them to one of the countries chosen and ensure employment for them there. It does not seem wise or necessary for a Bahá’í to stress the fact he or she is going there to teach. A people’s religion is their own business, and they can talk about it privately as much as they like without neglecting their employer’s work.

Also, he feels no rules can be laid down about how to teach. Usually one teaches those receptive souls one finds. The same should apply to the beginning of the work in Africa. Any direct teaching work with the more primitive tribes would have to be done after finding out the best and most tactful way of doing it. The first step is to get to Africa, and, in view of the cost involved, and the state of the Fund, the pioneers should make every effort to get sent out there or at least get employment after arriving, thus relieving the Bahá’í Fund as much as possible. If this fails, then of course all the expense will have to be paid by the Fund.

The Guardian is very pleased over the publications in African languages, and greatly appreciates what you have accomplished in this field, as well as your many other services.

He will certainly pray you may settle your affairs satisfactorily at home, and then find a way to go to Africa.

At present no pilgrims are permitted, as you know, but he feels sure some day you will again be a welcome guest in Haifa.

With Bahá’í love, R. Rabbání.

May the Almighty bless your strenuous, constant and high endeavours, and enable you to enrich continually the splendid record of your valuable services to His Faith and its nascent institutions.

Your true and grateful brother, Shoghi.


1930-12-xx Effect of Progress of Temple

USBN#47 Jan 1931 p2

‘The progress of the Temple work is already reacting most favorably on the believers throughout the East, and will through them bring about a great reaction in favor of the Cause. I would appeal to all American Believers for concentrated and sustained effort in the prosecution of this great and holy enterprise. May the Beloved bless their high endeavors and fulfil their hearts’ desire.’


1930-12-xx To Indian Asian Womens Conf re Profound Interest

The Priceless Pearl, Rúḥíyyih Khánum, p273



1930-xx-xx Concerning the Corner-stone

USBN#46— November 1930— page 6

“Concerning the corner-stone of the Temple, which was laid by the Master, Shoghi Effendi says that it has no other special significance than a great honor conferred by the Master upon that building and it should be treated as a corner-stone and nothing more.”


1930-xx-xx The Example of Master in Teaching

USBN#47— January 1931— page 6

“Let us bear in mind the example which our beloved Master has clearly set before us. Wise and tactful in His approach, wakeful and attentive in His early intercourse, broad and liberal in all His public utterances, cautious and gradual in the unfolding of the essential verities of the Cause, passionate in His appeal yet sober in argument, confident in tone, unswerving in conviction, dignified in His manners— such were the distinguishing features of our Beloved’s noble presentation of the Cause of Bahá’u’lláh.”


1930-xx-xx To Tudor Pole re effect of Ruth White Campaign

The Priceless Pearl, Rúḥíyyih Khánum, p119

The most powerful and determined opponents of the Faith in the East, who have challenged the very basis of Bahá’u’lláh’s Message,… have not even hinted at the possibility of the Will being a forged document. They have vehemently attacked its provisions, but never questioned its authenticity. I feel that the greater the publicity given this vital issue, even if it should involve any government, the better for the Cause

I feel pity rather than alarm at the efforts Mrs. White is exerting… so great and weighty an issue which she raises, involving as it does the honour of the Cause, is bound sooner or later to be verified… I am convinced that the stir she may create will be not detrimental but advantageous to the Faith.


1930-xx-xx To Unkown re Shoghi Effendi’s Station

The Priceless Pearl, Rúḥíyyih Khánum, p76

Concerning Shoghi Effendi’s station: he surely has none except what the Master confers upon him in His Will and that Will also states what Shoghi Effendi’s station is. If anyone misinterprets one part of the Will he misinterprets all the Will.


1931-01-08 Necessity of Unity


January 8, 1931, Haifa.

“…What is the use of building an edifice to stand for Universal Peace when those who are to occupy it are divided among themselves? The very first consideration of the friends should be to establish the necessary spirit of love and kindliness among themselves and then try to reflect it to the world outside. True unity is of the hearts of men. We have to secure it before we go to building of Temples. Once that is achieved, then the friends should devote their time and energy toward the attraction of new souls.

Surely the best form of service is when we can pay our own expenses but sometimes we cannot afford it. In such cases the Master permits us to accept the help offered us by others.”

Your true brother,



1931-01-14 Commends BW Vol III

USBN#49— March 1931— page 2-3

My dear Mrs. Little:

I am directed by our Guardian to express his grateful thanks for your letter written on behalf of the Publishing Committee and dated December 16, 1930. He has received the copy of the Bahá’í World Vol. III, with the greatest pleasure and he wishes me to hasten and assure you that he is highly satisfied with the work.

I am also asked to express Shoghi Effendi’s unqualified gratitude to the members of the Publishing Committee and not least yourself for their labors and industry in producing such a noteworthy publication. With his greetings and good wishes to you all,

Sincerely yours,

(Signed) Soheil Afnán.

My dear Co-worker:

I am extremely pleased with the third volume of the Bahá’í World and have already sent a copy to Persia and encouraged the friends throughout the East to order copies directly from New York.

Your true brother,

(Signed) SHOGHI.

Haifa, Palestine,

January 14, 1931.


1931-01-19 To Blomfield re Dawnbreakers

Lady Blomfield: Her Life and Times, Robert Weinberg, p299

[The Guardian’s] hope in undertaking this task was to present to the western friends the bare facts of the early days of the Movement, so that the same spirit that animated its early servants may again inspire the friends and arouse them to further exertions and sacrifices.

My dear Ladee,

I wish to thank you most deeply for the painstaking efforts entailed in going so carefully over the entire manuscript. I greatly value your suggestions and will gladly incorporate them in the final copy. I have been revising it very drastically of late… I have been working ten hours a day since I returned home and hope to send it for publication by the end of next month. Again thanking you from all my heart, and with my best wishes to Parvene Khánum, Your true brother, Shoghi. I have added about two hundred pages of notes, all of which I trust will not weary the reader. Shoghi


1931-01-30 re Upcoming Bahá’í World Volume

USBN#48— February 1931— page 8-9

to the BW Editorial Secretary

My Dear Mr. Windust:

I am directed by the Guardian to thank you for your letter of January 8th with enclosures, all of which he has read with much interest. In view of the importance which, as you are well aware, Shoghi Effendi attaches to “The Bahá’í World” publications, he wishes me to express his grateful and profound appreciation at every available opportunity for the painstaking efforts you lavish upon its publication.

He is already looking forward to a still more instructive and attractive production this year and he patiently awaits the Manuscript next April. You can collect on the other side of the Atlantic all the material you want. He will sift and decide upon them here, after having your recommendation. With the assurance of his affection and prayers for you and your daughters, and with his sincere trust in the materialization of your visit to Haifa,

Sincerely yours,

Sohiel Afnán.

My dear and precious co-worker:

I feel strongly that the forthcoming issue of “The Bahá’í World”, to which you are so devotedly attached, will arouse keen and widespread interest. I eagerly await the Manuscript by the end of April. I would like to urge that the original colors of the Manuscript which has been sent to you for reproduction should be distinctly and faithfully reproduced, inasmuch as the colored reproduction of the Master’s photograph on the frontispiece of Vol. II is slightly different and inferior in shade as compared with the original. May the Beloved guide you, sustain you, and fortify you in your historic task.

Your affectionate brother,



January 30, 1930.


1931-01-xx Passing of Consul Schwarz

USBN#49— March 1931— page 5

“Inexpressibly sad, profoundly deplore passing (of) Germany’s outstanding Bahá’í pioneer worker. The memory (of) his distinguished services (will be) imperishable.(The) Greatest Holy Leaf joins me (in) assurance (of) affectionate prayer (and) heart-felt condolences.”

(Signed) SHOGHI.


1931-02-07 Vigilance Regarding Orientals

USBN#53— July 1931— page 5

To New York Spiritual Assembly

“Appeal believers recall Master’s repeated warnings exercise vigilance discrimination reception Orientals otherwise great mischief will result; their credentials, behavior should be critically examined.”

(Signed) SHOGHI.


1931-02-11 Prevailing Distress in America

Mrs. Edris Rice-Wray Carson,

413 Blackhawk Street,

Chicago, Ill.

Persian Colony,

Haifa, Palestine,


Dear Mrs. Carson:

Shoghi Effendi wishes me to acknowledge the receipt of your letter. He was very glad to hear of the determination of you and the other young members of the Bahá’í group to arise in serving the Cause.

The prevailing distress in America and Europe should awaken the Youth to the futility of concentrating their whole life on purely material pursuits. They should learn the lesson that spiritual considerations should be the dominating factors of our life, that our guiding purpose should be to enhance our moral life and seek what is eternal and abiding.

Should the different nations continue to go wrong and be guided by the selfish desire of personal aggrandisement, you will be the group that will suffer most. Our present policies bear their fruits only in the future, and it is the Youth of the present that are the men and women of the future.

In his moments of prayer and meditation Shoghi Effendi will remember you all and ask for divine guidance, that you may spread the teachings of the Cause and raise the standard of peace and goodwill throughout the world.

Yours ever sincerely,

(Signed) Rúḥí Afnán.

With the assurance of my loving prayers few your spiritual advancement and success in the service of the Cause,

Your true brother.

(Signed) Shoghi.


1931-02-xx Passing of Francis William Breed

USBN#49— March 1931— page 3

“Assure you sympathy, prayers, departed father; love.



[Mr. Breed was father of Florence, wife of ‘Alí Kuli Khán]


1931-03-03 To Martha Root re the Work Dawnbreakers Entailed.

The Priceless Pearl, Rúḥíyyih Khánum, p217

I have just completed, after eight months of continuous and hard labour, the translation of the history of the early days of the Cause and have sent the manuscript to the American National Assembly. The work comprises about 600 pages and 200 pages of additional notes that I have gleaned during the summer months from different books. I have been so absorbed in this work that I have been forced to delay my correspondence… I am now so tired and exhausted that I can hardly write… The record is an authentic one and deals chiefly with the Báb. Parts of it have been read to Bahá’u’lláh and been revised by ‘Abdu’l-Bahá… I am so overcome with fatigue caused by the long and sever strain of the work I have undertaken that I must stop and lie down.


1931-03-09 Association with Orientals

USBN#53— July 1931— page 4-5

My dear co-workers:[New York Spiritual Assembly]

I wish to add a few lines and remind you of the necessity of refusing to admit to your assembly, or associate with, any Oriental who does not have proper credentials from a recognized Spiritual Assembly. I am sure that a few are trying to cause mischief and bring about a split in the ranks of the believers in these days of stress, and the utmost caution should be exercised, lest these mischief-makers succeed in undermining the foundations of the Cause.

Your true brother and well wisher,

(Signed) SHOGHI.

Haifa, Palestine,

March 9, 1931.