Bahá'ís of Ottawa come from a variety of backgrounds, brought together
by a common belief in the oneness of humanity and the unity of
religion. We work alongside others to become a force of positive
change, applying insights from the Bahá'í teachings to bring about a
more just, peaceful and unified community.
In her 85th year the Ottawa
artist Joyce Frances Devlin remains a dynamic figure, radiating energy
and spiritual power. Every summer she opens her home gallery in
Burritt’s Rapids to the public with an exhibition of her recent works.
This June, Joyce also had an exhibition of her work at the Vernon
Public Art Gallery in British Columbia entitled “Along the Way.” The
Gallery’s permanent collection already contains a number of her works,
and with this exhibition she was invited to add to this collection. Her
public presentation in June highlighted the Vernon Public Art Gallery’s
plans to build a new gallery.
In this talk, Joyce identified the spiritual source of her artistic
inspiration. She briefly explained that since humanity’s earliest
creative expressions on cave walls, outpourings of art have always
followed the appearance of great prophets or “Manifestations of God”,
who have brought teachings to guide mankind appropriate to different
times. Great periods of art have always followed from the energy
released by these great prophets such as Krishna, Abraham, Zoroaster,
Moses, Buddha, Christ, Mohammed. This process has continued today with
the teachings of the Bab and Baha’u’llah,
who Devlin identified as “the
promised One of all the world’s great religions.” With this
“new era of energy and inspiration released by these two great
Manifestations of God,” Devlin stated, “we can’t imagine where that is
going to take us.”
Joyce affirms that her work has
always been influenced by her love of God. At the age of twelve she was
reading selections of scripture from the great religions and
she came to her own realization that Christ had returned. One day, some
years later, after announcing this conviction in the lunchroom of the
Vancouver School of Art, she was approached by “an old woman
attending one of the classes” who quietly invited Joyce to a Vancouver
meeting where she heard a talk by Allan Raynor, a member of the Baha’i
National Spiritual Assembly. At this talk, she instantly recognized
Baha’u’llah and she became a Baha’i in 1952. Her art has developed
alongside her identity as a Baha’i since her early student days.
In Ottawa, Joyce’s paintings can be found in the halls of Canada’s
Parliament Buildings, where she has done the portraits of a number of
senators. Her works are also part of the Ottawa Public Art Gallery’s
Firestone collection. She is also represented in other Canadian
collections including two University of Alberta public galleries and in
the public gallery in Vernon, BC.
Photo of Joyce Devlin from the Ottawa Valley
Hum website (see link below)
Devlin painting entitled “Nan Gordon” (1963)
from the Vernon Public Art Gallery.
“Joyce Frances Devlin: So Much Beauty,” The
Hum, 1 June 2015
“Joyce Frances Devlin: Painter and a Painted
22 April 2015
a 2014 profile on Joyce Frances Devlin on
rises for Chile Temple inauguration
The world-wide Baha'i community
envisions a time when every community will have its own Baha'i temple,
which is open to everyone regardless of race or religion to gather and
offer prayer and devotions. These temples will serve to strengthen our
individual spiritual connections with the Creator while fostering
collective bonds through service to their community. This long term
vision started with the goal of having Baha'i temples in every
continent. During the 20th century, continental temples were built in
the USA (Chicago), Germany (Frankfurt), Uganda (Kampala), Australia
(Sydney), India (New Delhi), Panama and Samoa (Apia). In 2010,
excavation work began to signal construction work on the last of the
continental temples in Santiago, Chile.
View Photo Callery
The construction of this last continental Baha'i temple has reached its
historic conclusion and the Chile Temple will be officially opened
through a dedication ceremony in mid-October. Further details can be
found in the following article from the Baha'i International Community
- including a notice that live video coverage of the public opening
ceremony will be provided on the Baha'i World News Service website on
13 October, 14:00 GMT, for approximately 90 minutes.
People around the
world will be able to watch this historic event, marking the dedication
of the final continental Baha'i Temple.
Baha'is in Ottawa will be gathering in families and small groups to
watch this historic occasion online and some local Baha'is will be
traveling to Chile to be part of the ceremonies marking the opening of
the Temple - stay tuned for their stories when they return.
WORLD NEWS SERVICE
SANTIAGO — A surge
of excitement and anticipation is palpable among the
Baha'i community in Santiago and abroad as the inauguration of the
of the continental Baha'i Houses of Worship approaches.
The President of Chile, Michelle Bachelet, is expected to attend the
opening ceremony with other dignitaries.
Growing media coverage has brought attention to the significance of
this landmark, and recent articles (see here and here for examples)
have highlighted the uniqueness of this sacred structure. Like all
Baha'i Temples, its nine-sided design stands as a unifying symbol of
the oneness of humankind. The firm behind the Temple's design, Hariri
Pontarini Architects, has described it as "a Temple of
expressing a faith of inclusion".
A feature report, produced by
the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation,
offers a compelling exploration of the conception and design of the
Meanwhile, the Baha'i community of Chile is preparing to welcome
thousands of people for the inauguration, which will take place from
13-16 October. Representatives of indigenous populations and national
Baha'i communities throughout Latin America, along with individuals and
groups from nearly every other continent, will join the celebrations
for the three days following the public opening.
Live video coverage of the public opening ceremony will be provided on
the Baha'i World News Service website on 13 October, 14:00 GMT, for
approximately 90 minutes. People around the world will be able to watch
this historic event, marking the dedication of the final continental
A video capturing the majesty of the superstructure is available here.
Bahá’ís Participate in Sri Chinmoy’s 2016 Peace Run Welcoming Ceremony
“May you become as the waves of
one sea, stars of the same heaven, fruits adorning the same tree, roses
of one garden in order that through you the oneness of humanity may
establish its temple in the world of mankind” - Abdu’l-Bahá
On the morning of
August 3, 2016 Mrs. Wendy James chanted these words
by the son of Bahá’u’lláh, the Founder of the Bahá’í Faith, during an
interfaith welcoming ceremony in Ottawa’s International Peace Garden.
This gathering, which included diplomats and representatives from six
faith communities, honoured more than a dozen runners from Canada,
Australia, Ukraine, Slovakia and Germany who have been running
throughout the United States and Canada since April in support
international peace and harmony.
Mr. Salil Wilson, the Global Executive Director of the Run, told the
approximately sixty participants at the welcome ceremony that this
annual run was founded in 1987 by meditation master Sri Chinmoy. After
leading meditation sessions at the United Nations, Sri Chinmoy invited
runners from across the globe to bring a torch of peace across the
world. During these runs, said Mr. Wilson, it becomes evident that what
unites us is far greater than what divides us. People everywhere want
happy and loving lives.
Sixteen members of Ottawa’s
diplomatic corps, representing countries in
Africa, South and Central America, Australia, the Caribbean, and Europe
added words of support and encouragement to the runners. Peace starts
with each individual, said one; another emphasized the need to make
peace with one’s enemies, for it is easy to be peaceful with one’s
friends; while another speaker stressed the importance of respect at
the grassroots levels. The representative of Costa Rica, which
disbanded its army in 1948 and established a university for peace,
spoke of the need to educate people in peace.
Before chanting the words of Abdu’l-Bahá,
Mrs. James mentioned that
Bahá’ís around the world were working to establish a culture of peace
with children, youth and adults, seeing all as members of one human
family, confident that, in the words of Bahá’u’lláh, “these fruitless
strifes, these ruinous wars shall pass away and the most great peace