THE BAHÁ'ÍS OF NEWTOWNARDS
WHO WE ARE
"Who are we?"
"We are the Bahá'í Community of Newtownards, Northern Ireland. We draw our members from all strata of society and religious backgrounds, finding unity in the Bahá'í Faith, the second most widespread religious community in the world. Our Faith gives meaning and direction to our lives both individually and collectively, answering such age old questions as who we are, where did we come from, and where are we headed. It gives great hope for the future at a time when major uncertainties challenge world peace and security."
The Bahá'ís of Newtownards see themselves as a part both of their town and area but also of something far greater. They are part of the world-wide community of the Bahá'ís and people for whom the essential oneness of the human race is a key belief.
The first Bahá'ís moved into the Ards district in the 1970s and the first local people to become members of the faith did so in 1978. In 1979 the first Spiritual Assembly for the Ards w - the local administrative body for the Bahá'í community - was elected. In 2000 it became the Spiritual Assembly for the town. As the Bahá'í Faith has no clergy, or individuals in positions of personal leadership, and all members are involved in its activities, its elected administrative bodies have a key role to play at local, regional, national, and international levels. The local Bahá'ís come from a variety of backgrounds; they work together to enhance both their own religious life and the wider community.