Vitebsk Bahá’í Community
The first Bahá’ís declared in Vitebsk in 1993. In 1994 the number of them reached 10 people which became possible to elect the Local Spiritual Assembly for the first time in Vitebsk. In 1996 an official registration of Vitebsk Bahá’í Community was carried out by the Regional Executive Committee.
At present, the community holds the following activities:
- Regular devotional meetings, or the so-called “nooks” of calmness, pacification, of emotional and spirit rest.
- Feasts and Bahá’í Holy Days. They are a good reason for meeting together in a spiritual and festive atmosphere, for having a talk and discussing community affairs and needs.
It became a tradition within the Vitebsk community that celebration of Naw-Ruz is really a great and attractive feast. During several years, the Community has been inviting both residents of Vitebsk and friends from other cities and even countries for the feast! It is well-remembered the bright moments of Naw-Ruz feasts held in restaurants “Lyamus” and “Golden Dragon”, in the English Cultural Center which programme included multimedia, multi-cultural dances, songs, parables, games, quizzes, etc. Some official representatives paid a visit to our feasts, for instance, from the City and District Executive Committees, as well as the Head of the Philosophy Department of the Vitebsk State University who wrote two scientific articles about Bahá’í Faith and published them in the Belarusian scientific collections of articles.
- Study circles aimed to provide spiritual education and personal development. They have unique teaching technique when no teacher with special knowledge is required. However, thanks to consulting method, it allows the study group to consider different aspects of an issue, express opinions, share experience on different topics using the study materials with quotations, questions and exercises – all arranged logically and consistently to make it more convenient. It is also possible to adapt the materials and put them into practice. For instance, such topics are discussed as Sense of Life, Life and Death, Nature of a Soul, Prayer as Spiritual Nourishment, Children Education and Upbringing, Bahá’í History, etc.
- Children classes on spiritual and moral education. Children are taught to acquire virtues and develop creative abilities such as singing, drawing, embroidery, handicrafts, communication skills for easy socializing where games of cooperation are of great importance.
- Language circle to study English
- Talk shows for the youth