THE BAHÁ'ÍS OF DERRY
A TRIBUTE TO PHILIP HAINSWORTH
Philip Hainsworth passed away peacefully at his home in Sevenoaks, Kent, on 16 December 2001 at the age of 82. The news was greeted with great sadness by the Bahá'ís of Derry. Only a few weeks before, the members of the local “cluster” (group of communities working together) had decided to take the name “the Hainsworth cluster” in memory of the fact that Philip's time in the city some sixty years before made him the area's first known Bahá'í resident.
This local link was overshadowed by Philip's service to the Bahá'í Faith since he became a follower in 1938. He was an active promoter of its teachings but also interested in a number of other socially-aware causes, he served on elected Bahá'í institutions at a high level for almost five decades, was a noted speaker, and the author of several books and numerous articles. When Philip passed away the Universal House of Justice, the supreme governing body of the Bahá'í Faith, said that it was “deeply grieved” at the news and paid tribute to his “outstanding record of dedicated service”. The National Spiritual Assembly of the Bahá'ís of the United Kingdom stated “It is difficult to capture in words the monumental contribution...that Philip made... Philip served the Cause which he loved with all his being with his characteristic vigour to the very last days of his life... Philip Hainsworth was indeed a rock upon which this Bahá'í community was built”.