Saturday, March 31, 2007

Bloggin' the BMG Part 2

I'm about to pass out from hunger but here is a quick update. We started with sweet, sweet drumming this morning that included the smooth sound of a saxophone from one of the young brothers who came. I forgot to mention that in addition to the various New England states represented, we also have Honduras, Cameroon, Ghana, Cape Verde and Jamaica in the house as well. After the drumming we got down in BMG style with prayer that shook the building. It was magnificent and kind of amazing given that we really just got started. Next each brother introduced himself, saying who he is, where he is from and why he came. The answers were as varied as the men, none of which I can include in print because we strive to maintain confidentiality at the Gathering, but what I can say is that it was really moving to have each man have the space to speak from the heart in complete safety, a safety few of us feel on a daily basis as black men in America. Part way through the were able to hear from Dr. William Roberts and Counselor Eugene Andrews, both of whom emphasized the importance of the work of the Gathering to advancing the growth of the Baha'i community and the creation of a new civilization through spiritual transformation. A couple of things stood out, that the local Gatherings like the one we are participating in this weekend are having an impact throughout the United States on Baha'i community life and that our humble efforts have earned the respect and admiration of the highest institutions of our faith. Another point was to stick to the guidance given to us by the Universal House of Justice, a focus that the Gathering has distinguished itself for over the past two decades. Anyway, I really have to eat or I will start saying things that make no sense. I'll be back in a couple of hours with another update. This Gathering has already been one of the best I have attended.