From Ottawa to Slovenia and
back: A Bahá'í traveler’s story By Wendy James
Last week I returned to Ottawa
from Ljubljana, the capital city of Slovenia. I went there at the end
of January to support the Bahá'í efforts to contribute to the spiritual
advancement of their country.
Slovenia is a small, beautiful country just northeast of Italy.
Although it has been dominated by other forces throughout its history,
what has made it possible for it to be a united country is its unique
language. Slovene is not an easy language, but with some effort I
learned to count and recite their alphabet as well as a few other
The primary intention of my short stay in Ljubljana was to offer love
and encouragement to the Bahá'ís as they undertake a range of
activities. Through art classes and other activities I made new
friendships, and some of these friends became attracted by the efforts
of Bahá'ís to aid in the transformation of their neighbourhoods and
communities. At one point, I was even interviewed on a show that was
broadcast on the national television station.
I learned a lot by going to Slovenia and I feel blessed to have had
this experience. I imagine more of these lessons will become clear over
time. From the Bahá'í community in Slovenia, I have a better
appreciation of focus and perseverance.
Bahá'ís first came there to live only 20 years ago, and they are
dedicating their lives to the welfare and advancement of their country.
The Bahá'ís are audacious in the goals they adopt and they move out of
their comfort zones to offer spiritual education for children and
Bahá'í study circles to friends and acquaintances.
Aside from adjusting and missing family and friends, my last three
months have been a very positive experience. I now have dear friends in
Slovenia and, if I am able to serve again for three months, I would
love to return.
On June 10 at 7:30 at the Bahá'í Centre, 211 MacArthur in Ottawa, other
returned international Bahá'í travelers and I will share information
and inspiration from our overseas experiences. I hope to see you there.