Who in their right mind would get up in the middle of the night, or stay up late, in order to go to a worship service in the middle of the night – at 1:00 a.m. to be exact?
They must be crazy!!!
Not quite, but some think so anyway.
It is not unusual for members of the Baha’i Faith to stay up past midnight on November 27, or take a nap then get up after midnight, in order to attend a special holy day worship service at 1:00 a.m. the morning of November 28. For 1:00 a.m. is the time of the observance.
Why at 1:00 a.m.?
Because members of the Baha’i Faith have records showing when historical events happened and they can observe them at the time they originally occurred. On November 28, at 1:00 a.m. in the morning, the Head of the Baha’i Faith left this life. His name was ‘Abdu’l-Baha, meaning ‘Servant of the Glory,’ and He died in 1921.
He had been born in Tehran, Persia in 1844 and, at the age of nine, went into exile with his father. The entire family went except for a baby who later died. His father was a prisoner of conscience. He was a member of a princly family and had been offered His father’s position at the court of the Shah, but He was not interested in a political career. He was more interested in improving the lives of the people. He was attracted to the teachings of a religious reformer and was consequently jailed. He was tried for conspiracy to assasinate the Shah, but He had not been involved. Being innocent, all of His lands and other property were seized and He was sentenced to a lifetime of exile and imprisonment.
‘Abdu’l-Baha was therefore expelled with His father from the land of His birth and never lived or visited there again. At His father’s death ‘Abdu’l-Baha learned that He had been appointed to Head the Baha’i Faith and He did so for thirty years. In that time the Baha’i Faith spread well beyond Persia, to Europe, America and as far east as Japan. He began the creation of the Baha’i administrative order, there is no clergy (decisions are made by councils of consultation), he laid the cornerstone for the first Baha’i House of Worship in North American when he came here in 1912 and He interred the remains of the Bab, the religious reformer who started it all and was executed in Iran in 1850.
His soul ascended from this physical world at 1:00 a.m. on the morning of November 28, so Baha’is around the world gather at that time to commemorate his passing.