Australian Baha'i Sites

‘An indelible mark’: Children’s class excursion to Baha’i temple reinforces concept of service and worship

Families from the ACT children’s classes travelled to Sydney to hold an end-of-term celebration at the Continental Baha’i House of Worship, exploring the theme of service and worship while reinforcing bonds of faith, unity and joy. 

ACT Children’s Class families gathered at the Sydney Baha’i House of Worship.

The two-day event was held at the end of June and featured engaging discussions, arts and crafts, a nature walk exploring the temple grounds’ unique flora and fauna, and an inspiring children’s prayer service. 

Five-year-old Enoch said he loved the flowers and temple surrounds. “They were so beautiful and they made the Temple more beautiful,” he said.

One parent said staying overnight in the temple grounds was a gift. “When the children were asleep my husband and I went for a walk and circumambulated the temple.”

Participants attending the nature walk at the end-of-term celebration.

Children’s class teachers described the event as “unforgettable”, leaving an “indelible mark on the hearts of all who participated”. 

“The accompaniment of children in children’s classes extends to the accompaniment of every single member of the family,” the teachers reflected. “Fostering service, outward orientation, unity, and community brings out the joy of service. 

“Enrichment of the institute’s educational delivery through service projects, art exhibitions, holy day programs, and excursions, to mention a few, revitalises community life.” 

The teachers said families who attended were generous enough to cover the costs of the camp, including materials and transport costs, and to give of their time. “Individual contributions to camp costs were introduced, and we hope to learn more about making this a participatory culture,” they reflected. 

The Baha’i faith places great emphasis on the spiritual education and development of children. Baha’i communities all over Australia are working to establish various activities and programs for children, each aimed at fostering their spiritual growth and well-being and empowering them to transform the society around them.

Sydney Baha’i House of Worship temple director, Roya Shahgholi, said the excursion was just one example of how communities, families, groups of friends, and neighbourhoods can visit the House of Worship. 

“This sacred place serves as a spiritual centre for the community, fostering a sense of unity, and is a space for families and children to connect through prayer, touching their spirit at a young tender age,” she said. 

Families attending a special prayer session at the Baha’i House of Worship as part of the end-of-term celebration.

Fourteen families attended the end-of-term celebration which not only acknowledged the children’s completion of the term, but also enriched their education, connecting them and their families to the Continental House of Worship, and the concept of service and worship. 

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The Baha’is of the Australian Capital Territory are passionate about working alongside well-wishers of humanity to effect change in their neighbourhoods, accompanying one another and strengthening the moral education system taking root in the region.

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Published in July, 2024, in Community Stories > Community Building

Available online at: horizons.bahai.org.au/community-stories/an-indelible-mark-childrens-class-excursion-to-bahai-temple-reinforces-concept-of-service-and-worship/

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