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by Mark Towfiq
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Bahíyyih Khánum
Pages 117-120

29: It is not unknown to those who stand firm ...

It is not unknown to those who stand firm in the Covenant and Testament of God that the centre of violation and his associates, from the day of the ascension of the Ancient Beauty, may His Great Name be ever exalted, have been working night and day and continually putting forth all their efforts, to spread disorder and disrupt the Faith. At this time, because of our terrible affliction, the ascension of `Abdu'l-Bahá--may the quintessence of our souls be sacrificed to His sacred resting-place--they are busying themselves more than ever with the circulation of false rumours and idle imaginings, their purpose being, one way or another, to instil doubts into the minds, and thus to achieve their vain and futile ends.


Alas for them, however, there is no doubt at all that they will achieve nothing but the failure of their plans and the frustration of their hopes. Utter disappointment and a bitter end is all they will ever gain--just as `Abdu'l-Bahá--may our lives be sacrificed for His meekness--has foretold in His Will and Testament, where He clearly and unequivocally sets forth the dissidence, the mischief-making and the wicked designs of that abominable band. And it is certain that through the never-ceasing confirmations of God, the light diffused by the loyalty of the true believers will scatter the darkness of the suspicions which the malicious have been spreading, and the brightness that streams from the believers' faces will dispel the gloom of the people of doubt.


Briefly, for some time they had been applying to the various government agencies, in the hope that with the government's assistance they would be able to obtain legal support for their empty claims. However, God be praised, they were disappointed. Then came a day, Tuesday, January 30--that is, four months ago--when the disaffected gathered together at the Mansion of Bahjí, invited in some of the rabble of Akká, and after joint consultation, determined to go to the Holy Tomb, forcibly wrest its key from the caretakers, and hand it over to the arch Covenant-breaker, pivot of the violation. Such was the plan, the disgraceful action, devised by the prime mover of mischief and his lieutenant.


They then committed the brazen act. From the caretaker of the Holy Tomb, Áqá Siyyid Abu'l-Qásim, they took away the key by force, and he, unable to withstand their attack, at once dispatched his assistant, Áqá Khalíl, to Haifa, to report to Shoghi Effendi what had taken place. The news reached Haifa about two hours after sunset, and the matter was instantly referred to the Governor. On his stringent orders, the key was surrendered that very night and placed in Government custody until the matter could be fully investigated to determine the question of rightful ownership.


Now, after the passage of four months, the Government has rendered its verdict, to the effect that the question should be put to the Bahá'í community, and that whatever decision the Bahá'ís arrive at will be conclusive. If the Bahá'í community considers Mírzá Muhammad-`Alí to be excommunicated, then he has no rights whatever to the takeover. Therefore, wherever Bahá'ís reside, they must, through the given city's Spiritual Assembly, and bearing the signature of named individuals who are members of the elected body, inform the British authorities in Jerusalem, either by cable or letter sent through His Majesty's ambassadors or consuls, that the Bahá'í community, in conformity with the explicit writings and the Will and Testament of His Eminence `Abdu'l-Bahá, Sir Abbás Effendi, texts well known and available in His own hand--recognize His Eminence Shoghi Effendi as the one to whom all Bahá'ís must turn, and as the Guardian of the Cause of God, and that they have no connection whatever, either material or spiritual, with Mírzá Muhammad-Ali, whom they consider to be excommunicated from the Bahá'í Faith, according to the explicit writings of `Abdu'l-Bahá.


It should be the request, therefore, of Bahá'ís of all countries, both men and women, in every important centre, wherever they may reside throughout the world, that the officials of His Britannic Majesty's Government in Palestine, its Headquarters being Jerusalem, issue a categorical order that the key of the Holy Tomb--which is the Point of Adoration and the sanctuary of all Bahá'ís in the world--be restored to His Eminence Shoghi Effendi, the Chosen Branch, and in this way to render the Bahá'í community, whether of the East or of the West, more appreciative than ever of British justice. The text of both cable and letter, together with the address, have been written on a separate sheet, as enclosed. The message is to be signed by the representatives and known followers of the Bahá'í Faith in that city.