North American Baha'i House of Worship, Wilmette Illinois

North American Baha'i House of Worship, Wilmette Illinois

The Baha'i Electoral Process: Unit Convention

Stories Aug 22, 2023

Over the weekend of September 30 through October 1, 2023, Baha'is will gather at their unit conventions to elect a delegate from their electoral unit to participate in the annual election of our National Spiritual Assembly, the national administrative body for Baha'is of the United States.

Baha'u'llah eliminated the creation of any form of clergy in the Baha'i Faith. Instead, the affairs are administered at local, regional, national and international levels. Baha'i elections are a spiritual undertaking, with the election process like none other. Participation in this sacred task connects every enrolled Baha'i with the process of building a new, unique system of governance.

“...the friends must wholeheartedly participate in the elections, in unity and amity, turning their hearts to God, detached from all things but Him, seeking His guidance and supplicating His aid and bounty.” - Translation from a Persian letter of Shoghi Effendi

What is the importance of the Baha'i Unit Convention?

Diagram of the vital role of individual participation in the electoral process: from delegate elections to election of the National Spiritual Assembly to the election of the Universal House of Justice
"Again I earnestly appeal to every one of you, and renew my only request with all the ardour of my conviction, to make before and during the coming Convention yet another effort, this time more spontaneous and selfless than before, and endeavour to approach your task—the election of your delegates as well as your national and local representatives—with that purity of spirit that can alone obtain our Beloved’s most cherished desire...." – 23 February 1924 written by Shoghi Effendi to the Bahá’ís of America, published in “Bahá’í Administration: Selected Messages 1922-1932” [rev. ed.], (Wilmette: Bahá’í Publishing Trust, 1980, p. 65)

How are the friends in your unit seeking to foster universal participation in the Unit Convention? Share your stories with

Next edition: The History of Unit Convention