On October 20, Bahá'ís around
the world celebrate the Birth of the Báb, one of the eleven Holy Days
in the Bahá'í calendar.
Bahá'ís in Ottawa celebrated the Holy Day, on the evening of October
19. Community members and friends gathered in six different
neighbourhoods throughout Ottawa. One such gathering was at the Ottawa
Bahá'í Centre at 211 McArthur Ave. In total, close to 300
adults, youth and children participated. For each location,
friends had prepared a program that included selected readings from the
writings of the Báb and Bahá’u’lláh, music and refreshments.
The Báb, a title which means ‘the Gate,’ is considered by Bahá'ís to be
a messenger of God whose mission it was to prepare the way for
Bahá’u’lláh, the Founder of the Bahá'í Faith.
Siyyid 'Ali-Muhammad, a merchant from Shiraz, Persia (now Iran) was
born on Oct. 20, 1819. In 1844 he proclaimed that he was the bearer of
a Divine Revelation which would prepare humanity for the advent of the
Promised One of all religions. He took the title “the Báb” which means
“Gate” in Arabic. Fearful of the spread of the Báb’s teachings, Persian
authorities executed him in 1850. His remains are buried on Mount
Carmel in Haifa, Israel, under a golden-domed Shrine, a site of
pilgrimage for Bahá'ís around the world.