Message from the National Spiritual Assembly regarding pilgrimage – 14 October 2020

Posted: 2020/10/15

14 October 2020 / 19 Will 177

All Local Spiritual Assemblies
All Regional Bahá’í Councils
All Registered Groups

Dear Bahá’í Friends,

We are writing to share with you the following letter dated 8 October 2020, written on behalf of the Universal House of Justice to all National Spiritual Assemblies:

Further to the letter dated 12 March 2020 written to you on behalf of the Universal House of Justice regarding the suspension of pilgrimage and brief visits, the House of Justice has asked us to convey to you the following information.

In the intervening months since this decision was communicated to you, little has changed to make it possible for friends to visit the Holy Land. The coronavirus pandemic continues to grow worldwide; government restrictions on movement and travel change constantly; flights are rescheduled or cancelled at short notice; in many countries, including Israel, quarantine requirements are in place and can change from day to day; hotels decline bookings by people from countries they perceive to have high infection rates; and social distancing regulations make it difficult to organize group activities and gatherings.

Regrettably, as a consequence of the uncertainties outlined above, which render it very difficult for pilgrims to make plans without undue risk of disruption or financial loss, it has become necessary to extend the suspension of nine-day pilgrimage until the start of the 2021–2022 season in October 2021. Should circumstances make it possible at any point before that to allow brief visits to resume, you will be informed.

The House of Justice is aware that the believers will share its disappointment but fervently hopes that they can be welcomed to the Holy Land in the not too distant future.

Kindly assure the friends in your communities that the House of Justice will offer prayers in the Holy Shrines that they may be surrounded by the tender mercies of Bahá’u’lláh and protected under His sheltering wing.

With loving Bahá’í greetings,
Karen McKye, Secretary