The Program

A Two-Day Conference with programs for Adults & Junior Youth, as well as Children.

 

The Heroes Teaching Conference is a historic gathering that will bring together Bahá’í adults, youth, junior youth and children as well as some of their like-minded friends from all over Southern Queensland and Northern New South Wales. The program will help each of us find our place in service to Baha’u’llah and humanity. Drawing on the heroism of the past, it will inspire us to arise and, through humble service, become heroes of the Faith for this age.

Day One & Two Children’s Program

Childcare Service

In addition to the Heroes Conference children’s program, which will be available for children aged 5-11, we are delighted to also offer a complementary professional childcare service for younger children on both days of the conference: 10am to 6pm on Saturday and 10am to 5:00pm on Sunday.

The childcare program will cater for ages 1-4, and will be split into appropriate age groups depending on registration numbers.

Should you wish to take advantage of the Heroes Conference children’s program (ages 5-11) or child care service (ages 1-4), please ensure that you register your child/ren using the online registration form at www.bahaiconferences.com.au. To arrange for the appropriate number of carers/teachers we need to know numbers well in advance, so please register your child/ren by 25 March. Places cannot be guaranteed if you do not register by this date.

Once you register your child, you will receive confirmation via email about their placement, and be sent a consent form to complete and sign.

Please note: Parents will need to provide the following for their child/ren benefiting from the childcare service:

  • Snacks / drinks
  • Milk / bottles
  • Diapers and wipes
  • Spare clothes
  • Medication
  • Any other special requirements

 

 

Day 1:

Saturday, 6th April 2019

10:00 am – Devotions

10:15 am – Acknowledgment of Country & Welcome

10:25 am – Counsellor’s Keynote Address (Session 1)

11:05 am – Music & Story: Sacrifice & Service

11:15 am – By Member of National Spiritual Assembly: Universal Participation: The role each one of us can play in the advancement of civilisation (Session 2)

11:45 am – Screening of Daga Extract from “A Widening Embrace”

11:55 am By Counselor: Transformation of a Community: The Daga Story (Session 3)

12:30 pm Pacific Islander Dancing

12:45 pm Lunch

2:00 pm Group Singing

2:15 pm – Screening of Extract from “Light to the World”

2:30 pm – Worship & Service: Strengthening the Devotional Character of our Communities (Session 4)

3:00 pm Group Singing

3:10 pm – Afternoon Tea

3:40 pm Workshops

5:40 pm Dinner

7:00 pm Dramatic Performance: Martha Root (Abridged)

7:30 pm Devotions

7:40 pm Live Music


SESSION SYNOPSIS

Counsellor’s Keynote Address (Session 1)

“The world is in travail, and its agitation waxeth day by day” Wrote Baha’u’llah. Today, we see this turmoil all around us. We live in a world in the clutches of manifold ills. Religious fundamentalism, nationalism and racism are on the rise. Different versions of “us” and “them” are pushing people apart and trust in institutions and moral values are at their lowest ebb.

The reality that humanity is one people is the starting point for building a new world.  Bahá’ís are striving to move humanity towards Bahaullah’s vision of unity. We are engaged in efforts with like-minded people to build communities founded on principles of love, unity and justice. We are developing our capacity for engaging those around us “in conversations about how to bring about spiritual and material well-being through systematic application of the divine teachings”. We welcome, in a wide embrace, everyone who wishes to join us in building of a new world. We have the means and the framework to build communities untainted by racial, national, or religious prejudice and transform both the material and spiritual aspects of life. This session will explore the concepts and elements of the framework of the divine Plan which is the surest way to contribute to community’s prosperity and wellbeing.

By Member of National Spiritual Assembly: Universal Participation: The role each one of us can play in the advancement of civilisation (Session 2)

The pattern of community life we are creating is to give rise to vibrant and purposeful new “communities wherein relationships are founded on the oneness of mankind, universal participation, justice, and freedom from prejudice”. This new environment makes it possible for all to play their part – whatever that might be – and contribute to the betterment of society while receiving loving mutual support and assistance.

The House of Justice notes that should we “learn the ways and methods of community building in small settings… the long-cherished goal of universal participation… we are certain, [will] move by several orders of magnitude within grasp. This session will assist us to appreciate the wide embrace of the framework of the Plan, how we can all arise to play our part and how we can serve in small settings.

By Counselor: Transformation of a Community: The Daga Story (Session 3)

Bahá’u’lláh’s Revelation is vast. It calls for a profound change not only at the level of the individual but also in the structure of society. The children of Daga sing a song that describes the journey of profound change that they are on as individuals and as a community. A transformation caused by the Revelation of Baha’u’llah that is manifesting itself “both outwardly and inwardly” and affecting both the inner life and the external conditions.

The Daga story, is the story of a cluster, as told by the children in the song, that is advancing the frontiers of learning from its early days. This is a song that we can all sing as we walk the path of service individually and collectively. It is a song of change and transformation that we will learn and sing in this session.

Worship & Service: Strengthening the Devotional Character of our communities (Session 4)

The Mashriqu’l-Adhkar has been described by ‘Abdu’l-Baha as “one of the most vital institutions of the world”, which binds together the two essential and inseparable aspects of Baha’i life: worship and service. As we advance our community building efforts across diverse settings, we become conscious of the emergence of the devotional spirit that characterises our service and finds expression in the hosting of devotional gatherings and the educational activities.

The House of Justice states “….in their acts of service, especially in their regular devotional gatherings, Bahá’ís everywhere are laying the spiritual foundations of future Houses of Worship.”

This session will assist our understanding of how every act of service will contribute to the development of vibrant communities and how “Devotional gatherings, the embryo of the local Mashriqu’l-Adhkár, kindle the stirrings of the spirit and ignite the flame of service.” And that visiting one another’s homes weaves bonds of love and union. And that teaching can become a way of life.

Workshops (Themes)

(i) How do I start a devotional gathering in my neighbourhood?

(ii) How do I shed my fears of reaching out to my neighbours?

(iii) How do I read the reality of my neighbourhood?

(iv) How do I move from a service provider mentality to a collaborator mentality?

(v) How does our language evolve to be aligned with our framework for action?

(vi) What are the range of conversations I can have around the Baha’i Faith and its community building processes?

(vii) How can the Training Institute help build capacity for service?

(viii) What are opportunities for offering a period of service?

(viii) What are opportunities for homefront pioneering?

(ix) What does a culture of learning look like and what is my role?

(x) Junior Youth & Youth

(xi) Persian: 18th Jan, 2019 (Opportunities for service)

Day 2:

Sunday, 7th April 2019

9:30 am – Devotions

9:45 am Welcome

10:00 am Panel Discussion

11:00 am Story

11:15 am Playing Our Part in Moving Populations towards Baha’u’llah (Session 5)

12:00 pm – Commitment to Service: Planning (Session 6)

1:00 pm – Lunch

2:30 pm Children’s Presentation

2:50 pm  Raising Future Champions of the Cause: Children, Junior Youth and Youth (Session 7)

3:20 pm By Dr Janet Khan: The Individual, the Institutions & the Community: The Three Protagonists of the Plan (Session 8)

3:40 pm Closing Remarks

3:50 pm Devotions & Group Singing


SESSION SYNOPSIS

Panel Discussion

The objective of the Panel discussion is to explore the concepts and elements of the Five-Year Plan with those who have grassroot, neighbourhood, cluster and institutional experience. The Panel discussion will explore questions such as: What does the concept of working in small settings, neighbourhoods, entail, what experience have we gained in Queensland? What does a day in the life of a Training Institute Coordinator or Area Teaching Committee look like? How do we achieve universal participation in the work of the Cause, what experience do we have in Queensland? What was the Summer Initiative, what was achieved? What are areas that needs support in Queensland, how can the friends assist? How can Local Assemblies best support the provisions of the Plan? And so forth. The Panel discussion will be facilitated by the Counsellor.

Playing Our Part in Moving Populations towards Baha’u’llah (Session 5)

The purpose of the current series of global plans is to advance the process of entry by troops, a process that can be conceptualised as the movement of populations towards the future world order envisaged by Bahá’u’lláh. This session will explore how such a movement can occur at the level of individuals, neighbourhoods and clusters. In doing so, it will provide a practical framework that can be used to visualise and track the progress made in the teaching and community building work at all of these levels, progress that will ultimately result in responding to the goals and objectives of the current Five-Year Plan in the Queensland region.

Raising Future Champions of the Cause: Children, Junior Youth and Youth (Session 7)

The responsibility of the Bahá’í community towards young people does not end when they first start serving. The significant decisions young people make about the direction of their adult lives (education, work, marriage) will determine whether service to the Cause of God was only a brief and memorable chapter of their younger years, or a long-term, fixed centre of their life.

This session will hear from a panel of parents and youth, who will speak to each stage of the material and spiritual development of a child, junior youth, youth and young adult. They will explore how we can orient a generation of youth towards a lifetime of uninterrupted service.

By Dr Janet Khan: The Individual, the Institutions & the Community: The Three Protagonists of the Plan (Session 8)

In humanity’s history, the interactions between the individual, the institutions and the community, “have been fraught with difficulties at every turn, with the individual clamouring for freedom, the institution demanding submission, and the community claiming precedence.” The relationship that binds these three protagonists needs to be redefined and reconceptualised.  The old ways of the relationship and interaction between the individual, the institutions, and the community has subjected humanity to much crisis.

This session will explore questions such as: How is the relationship of these three protagonists redefined in the Divine Plan? How is this different from what we are observing in the world? What characterizes the relationship between the three protagonists in the Baha’i community? How should those serving the institutions of Bahaullah’s World Order view their function and their role? How do they express this? What is the relationship of the individual, the institutions and the community to the Head of the Faith – the Universal House of Justice?