Sultán (Sovereignty) 174 B.E.
HOME FRONT PIONEERING
A report from Jersey: Channel Islands Cluster
"It was a blessing to have the opportunity to visit a pioneer – a pioneer on an island no less, and only a 45-minute flight from Bristol airport. Arriving in Jersey there was a joyful meeting with Eleanor, a short bus ride to St Helier, and a walk through the Christmas-lit town to our accommodation. It is a bright and comfortable flat rented by the Council for England to support the work of pioneers and travelling teachers in the Channel Islands. We prayed together, asking for God’s blessings and guidance. Next morning we were joined by Mary and Marlene, two stalwart believers and Jersey residents, and after an uplifting devotional we shared news. A dignified gentleman joined us, who wanted to learn something about the Faith. The conversation was deep and touched on oneness, community life, the giving up of self, and destiny.
Viv pays a visit to Eleanor, a pioneer in Jersey
Later we walked along the narrow pavements of St Helier to visit a young lady who works nearby, and who has been introduced to Baha’u’llah through seeing the film Light to the World. She agreed to visit and eat with us the following day. Her visit became a beautiful little fireside with just the three of us, the great difference in our ages did not signify and we learned about her hopes, dreams and challenges, and her desire to help those younger than herself to break free of the negative forces of society that entrap them. A bus, passing fields of pretty Jersey cows, took us to St John on the other side of this little island. We had been invited to visit a Polish mother. Eating home-baked apple cake, playing with the children, learning about her family and about the life of the sizeable Polish community in Jersey we felt blessed to spend time with our unworldly, warm and capable new friend.” Shoghi Effendi, when writing to the believers, often urged them never to feel disheartened. After preparing ourselves for a children’s class we momentarily felt disappointed when it was cancelled. Which of us hasn’t had that feeling when our carefully made plans don’t materialise? Yet we remembered that God often has different plans from our own, and later a different opportunity for teaching arose. Very little ever goes quite as we envision it, and yet surely our earnest prayers to be led by God’s guiding hand are always answered. People from outside Jersey who have arrived and made this island their home say that they treasure the sense of community, the quiet and peaceful life, the lovely countryside and coast, and the safe and friendly environment for their children. The Channel Islands are welcoming and charming. Devoted pioneers have laid the groundwork here. Through our sustained efforts may the precious seeds they have sown bear their destined fruit."
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