Bahá’ís in Ottawa gathered
to elect the nine members of the Local Spiritual Assembly
As the Bahá’í Faith
clergy, the Local Spiritual Assembly guides, and administers, the
affairs of the community. In this way, governance in Bahá’í communities
springs from the grassroots. Common activities in the Bahá’í Community of Ottawa include classes for the education of
children, devotional services, study classes, discussions on global
issues, social events, the observance of holy days, marriages, and
Many local Spiritual Assemblies around the world also oversee
small-scale educational, economic or environmental development
projects. Such efforts range from the sponsorship of community health
workers to small agricultural projects.
The elected members of the Local Spiritual Assembly of the Bahá’ís of
Ottawa for 2012-2013 are: Fred Afagh, Philippe Allard, Sandy Brown,
Fu'ad Foroughi , Niels Hansen-Trip, Pejman Mosleh, Nabil Seddigh, Frank
Ziaei, Zahra Ziaei.
The Bahá’í electoral system removes partisanship from the democratic
process, thus increasing the likelihood that those elected are not
bound by narrow interests, but rather seek the well-being of the entire
human race. All Bahá’í elections occur by secret ballot without candidacies,
nominations or campaigning, all Bahá’ís 21 and older may vote and serve.
The annual elections are held on the first day of the 12-day Festival
of Ridván (pronounced RIZ-von. This period of twelve days commemorates
Bahá’u’lláh’s proclamation, in 1863, that He was a Messenger of God and
that His teachings represented the continuation of that process of divine
revelation which had given birth to previous religions. On April 21st
Ottawa Bahá'ís gathered to celebrate the beginning of Ridván. Hundreds
of local Bahá'ís and their guests enjoyed a memorable program that included
devotions and prayers from the Bahá'í sacred writings followed by
musical presentations on the significance of the Festival of Ridván.