Charlotte Baha’i Community

This profile was last updated in 2003

Activities and Schedule

Center activities can be found on the Charlotte Baha’i website, which is updated frequently. The community offers many programs geared toward different aspects of the community. The children’s program is called the Brilliant Star Baha’i School, which meets on Sunday after the devotional gathering. During the same time, the adults usually meet in a separate room to further their learning as well. The Baha’i Youth Workshop is for the teens and young adults. This group meets to teach the messages of the Baha’i faith through the performing arts.

Introductory meetings are held every Thursday for people who are interested in the Baha’i faith and for Baha’is who want to learn more about their tradition.

The Baha’is meet 3-4 times a week.

Sundays

– Refreshments 9:30 A.M.

– Devotional Gathering 10:00 A.M.

– Brilliant Star Baha’I School 10:45-11:45 A.M.

– Baha’I Youth Workshop 1-5:30 P.M.Tuesdays
– Fireside Rego Residence, University City 7:30 P.M.

Thursdays

– Introductory Information Meeting 7:30 P.M.

Every Other Friday

– Fireside Wachob Residence, Mint Hill 7:30 P.M.

Every Nineteen Days

– The Nineteen Day feast

The Charlotte Baha’i community meets every 19 days or the first of the month according to the Baha’i calendar for the Nineteen Day feast. The Baha’i year consists of 19 days in 19 months with 4 extra days in the Baha’i leap year.

The Nineteen Day Feast is the community’s regular worship gathering. Both children and adults are welcome to attend. It promotes and sustains the unity of the local Baha’i community.Three elements must always be present at the Feast: spiritual devotion, administrative consultation, and fellowship. While food is normally served, the focus is more on a spiritual feast than a literal one. According to Baha u’ llah, the feast was “to bind your hearts together” even if nothing more than food and water is served.

History

The Baha’i Community of Charlotte established its administration in 1958 with a local Spiritual Assembly of nine members. There is probably some record of who those individual members were, but the community does not remember who they were, nor do they place any special achievements on those individuals.

Demographics

The community has approximately 200 members. Each age group is almost equally represented. Because it was founded in 1958, it is a relatively young community.

The Baha’is spoken to by Pluralism Project researchers were from diverse religious backgrounds. In a room with less than 10 worshippers in it, there were former Catholic, Pentecostal, Jewish, Muslim, and other denominations of Christianity represented.

Description

The community in Charlotte uses a very modest house as their place of worship. The house is used only as a center of worship. The bedrooms have all been converted into classrooms, and the living room is set up with a semi-circle of chairs for devotional worship.

The goal for every Baha’i community is to one day be a worship center that will be the focal point for a community’s spiritual life. There are currently seven houses of worship in the world today, one on each continent. The Charlotte community worship center would not be considered a house of worship, but it is their goal to one day have their own house of worship.

Research by:

Christina Price 01/25/2003