December 10, 2018

1925: First Dutch Baha’i arrived at the World Center

Yesterday a Dutchman arrived here from Port Said, the first Dutch Bahá’í, so far as we know. He has been a sincere and earnest truth-seeker for years. About 9 months ago he left his home at the Hague and walked on foot through Belgium, France and Italy. Then he felt some inward urge to go to Egypt, and travelled thither by a Dutch Cargo Steamer. When the steamer arrived at Port Said Mahmood Effendi, one of the Port Said Bahá’ís came on board and was introduced to Mesdag (the Dutchman). They struck up a friendship at once and after 2 days Mesdag went to live in Mahmood’s house. There he met Martha Root, Mr. Schopflocher and various other Bahá’ís, read my book [Dr. Esslemont’s: ‘Baha’u’llah and the New Era’] and became thoroughly interested and seems now already a firm believer. He has already, since his arrival yesterday morning, translated our 8-page folder into Dutch and we hope he will be able to do much to make the Cause known in Holland and win adherents there. 
- Shoghi Effendi  (From a letter dated May 9, 1925, written on behalf of Shoghi Effendi to an individual believer; ‘Arohanui: Letter from Shoghi Effendi to New Zealand’)