tsunami memorial

From the Canadian Bahá’í News Service:

Religious communities in Canada honour victims of tsunami disaster

TORONTO, ON, 07 January 2005 (CBNS) — A national memorial service held in Ottawa on Saturday, 8 January 2005, to honour those lost or missing following the earthquake and tsunamis in South Asia drew the support of a number of religious organizations, including the Bahá’í Community of Canada.

Governor General Adrienne Clarkson and Prime Minister Paul Martin took part in the ceremony, along with representatives of nine world religions, consisting of Islam, Buddhism, Hinduism, Zoroastrianism, Sikhism, Christianity, Judaism, Native Spirituality, and the Bahá’í Faith. The Bahá’í Community of Canada was represented by Ms. Susanne Tamas, Director of Governmental Relations and member of the National Spiritual Assembly, the Bahá’í Community of Canada’s national governing council.

Bahá’ís around the world have shared the sadness and deep distress at the loss of life that has motivated a worldwide response to this natural disaster. The international governing council of the Bahá’í International Community, the Universal House of Justice, made a contribution to the United Nations relief efforts, and Bahá’í communities in the countries most affected by the disaster have also made contributions to national relief organizations. Individual Bahá’í believers have, to the extent possible, provided various kinds of personal assistance in those countries. Bahá’í institutions have encouraged believers in other countries to make donations directly to reputable international or national organizations that are actively seeking relief funds.

The tsunami memorial was broadcast on CBC Newsworld, CTV, and CBC Radio at 12:00 noon ET.

The following prayers, revealed by Bahá’u’lláh, the Founder of the Bahá’í Faith, were read in both official languages during the nationally televised service:

Thou art He, O my God, through Whose names the sick are healed and the ailing are restored, and the thirsty are given drink, and the sore-vexed are tranquillized, and the wayward are guided, and the abased are exalted, and the poor are enriched, and the ignorant are enlightened, and the gloomy are illumined, and the sorrowful are cheered, and the chilled are warmed, and the downtrodden are raised up. Through Thy name, O my God, all created things were stirred up, and the heavens were spread, and the earth was established, and the clouds were raised and made to rain upon the earth. This, verily, is a token of Thy grace unto all Thy creatures.

Ô mon Dieu, tu es celui dont les noms guérissent les malades, soignent les infirmes, désaltèrent les assoiffés, apaisent les âmes tourmentées, guident les égarés, relèvent les humiliés, enrichissent les pauvres, instruisent les ignorants, réconfortent les désespérés, consolent les affligés, raniment les coeurs glacés et soulagent les opprimés. Ô mon Dieu, par ton nom, toute chose créée s’anima, les cieux se déployèrent, la terre fut créée, les nuages se formèrent, la pluie se déversa sur la terre. Ce sont, en vérité, des signes de ta grâce envers toutes tes créatures.

The utterance of God is a lamp, whose light is these words: Ye are the fruits of one tree, and the leaves of one branch. Deal ye one with another with the utmost love and harmony, with friendliness and fellowship. He who is the Day Star of Truth beareth Me witness! So powerful is the light of unity that it can illuminate the whole earth. The one true God, He Who knoweth all things, Himself testifieth to the truth of these words. Exert yourselves that ye may attain this transcendent and most sublime station, the station that can ensure the protection and security of all mankind. This goal excelleth every other goal, and this aspiration is the monarch of all aspirations.

La parole de Dieu est une lampe dont la lumière tient dans ces mots : Vous êtes les fruits d’un même arbre, les feuilles d¹une même branche. Que vos relations avec vos semblables soient toujours empreintes d’amour et d¹harmonie, de l’esprit le plus amical et le plus fraternel. Celui qui est l’Étoile du Matin de la vérité en porte témoignage ! Si puissante est la lumière de l’unité qu’elle peut illuminer toute la terre. Le seul vrai Dieu, Celui qui connaît toutes choses, rend lui-même témoignage à la vérité de ces paroles. Efforcez-vous d’atteindre cet état transcendant et sublime par lequel peuvent être assurées la protection et la sécurité de l’humanité tout entière. Un tel but dépasse tous les autres, une telle aspiration est la reine des aspirations.

O my God! O my God! Unite the hearts of Thy servants, and reveal to them Thy great purpose. May they follow Thy commandments and abide in Thy law. Help them, O God, in their endeavor, and grant them strength to serve Thee. O God! Leave them not to themselves, but guide their steps by the light of Thy knowledge, and cheer their hearts by Thy love. Verily, Thou art their Helper and their Lord.

Ô mon Dieu ! Ô mon Dieu ! Unis les coeurs de tes serviteurs et révèle-leur ton grand dessein. Puissent-ils suivre tes commandements et observer ta loi. Aide-les, ô mon Dieu, dans leurs efforts et accorde-leur la force de te servir. Ô Dieu, ne les abandonne pas à eux-mêmes, mais de la lumière de ta connaissance, guide leurs pas et de ton amour, réjouis leur coeur. En vérité, tu es leur Soutien et leur Seigneur.

On this note, have you seen We Are One yet? It’s also linked on Martin’s website.