Baha'i Faith Center (2004)
Baha'is Under the Provision of the Covenant (Bahá’í)
Activities and Schedule
19 Day Feasts
On the first day of each Baha'i month, which is every 19 days, the local Baha'is gather to celebrate the 19 Day Feast. The feast includes "spiritual food" in the form of scripture readings as well as "physical food" in the form of a pot luck dinner. The location is rotated among the private homes of the assembly members. With an emphasis on fellowship, the feasts are similar to an informal party.
Traditional holidays are celebrated, such as the Martyrdom of the Bab on July 9, Birth of the Bab on Oct. 20, Birth of Baha'u'llah on Nov.12, and the Ascension of Abdu'l Baha on Nov. 28.
Abdu'l-Baha and a number of the believers and friends had the practice of gathering around the fireplace to discuss the Baha'i faith. In this informal atmosphere Abdu'l-Baha would answer the peoples' questions and teach them the faith. Since the time of Abdu'l Baha, these "firesides" have developed into a series of classes, taught by members of the faith. The "seeker" is encouraged to ask questions and to "know the truth" with their own intellect. Due to their progressive nature, these classes are offered on a regular basis.
Cable Access Television Show
The Baha'is Under the Provision of the Covenant have a time slot on MCAT, Missoula Cable Access Television, for Tuesday evenings on Channel 7 in the Missoula area and Channel 13 in the Bitterroot Valley. The Television Program is an effort to educate others and share what they believe. It is also an opportunity to provide the Baha'is Under the Provision of the Covenant's commentary on current events.
It is necessary to distinguish between the the Baha'is Under the Provision of the Covenant and what is commonly considered the Baha'i faith in general. The discrepancy between the two lies in a disagreement about administrative structure and succession of leadership. According to the Missoula-based group, the Baha'is Under the Provision of the Covenant consider the majority of Baha'is to be "covenant-breakers" (someone who is actively undermining the Faith). According to Baha'i Assemblies around the state, such as the Butte-Silver Bow Baha'i Assembly, the Baha'i Community of Helena, the Gallatin County Baha'is, and the Livingston Baha'i Group, the majority of Baha'is disregard the Baha'is Under the Provision of the Covenant and neglect to acknowledge them. When pressed, they said they consider the Baha'is Under the Provision of the Covenant to be "covenant breakers."
The Baha'is Under the Provision of the Covenant believe that Shoghi Effendi, the Guardian of the Faith and grandson of Abdu'l-Baha, the son of Baha'u'llah, had instated the International Baha'i Council to be the first stage of a four stage plan culminating with the Universal House of Justice. Mason Remey, who served as a Hand of the Cause under Shoghi Effendi, was said to be the adopted and only son of Abdu'l-Baha. According to the Baha'is Under the Provision of the Covenant, he was appointed by Shoghi Effendi in 1951 to be the president and executive of the first International Baha'i Council and therefore fulfilling the requirements to be the next Guardian. When Shoghi Effendi died unexpectedly without appointing a successor, the Hands of the Cause claimed the Guardianship for themselves. As true Guardian of the Baha'i Faith, Remey declared that the Hands of the Cause and all those that followed them were "covenant-breakers."
In 1991 Dr. Leland Jensen, who is considered by the Baha'is Under the Provision of the Covenant to be the greatest teacher of the faith, announced the formation of the second International Baha'i Council (sIBC). Because the Hands of the Cause and all who follow them are considered to be "covenant-breakers," the first International Baha'i Council (IBC) is faulty and not in line with the covenant. According to the Baha'is Under the Provision of the Covenant, Dr. Leland Jensen's authority stems from the fulfillment of prophesy as well as being knighted by Baha'u'llah. Jensen is seen as the "establisher" of the Baha'i faith.
The Baha'i Internet Education Committee writes, "Dr. Leland Jensen named his 12 apostles to be members of the the second International Baha'i Council (sIBC). He also named Joseph Pepe Remey, appointed by his father Mason Remey, to be the next Guardian seated upon the throne of King David--the president and executive of the sIBC. The second International Baha'i Council (sIBC) is located in Missoula, MT. Today Neal Chase, the appointed son (aghsan) of Joseph Pepe Remey, succeeds his father Pepe upon the Davidic throne as the current president of the sIBC. Neal Chase is the great-grandson of 'Abdu'l-Baha."