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Bride and GroomHistory was made last month when two members of the Maidenhead Bahá’í Community – Mr Sasan Padidar and Miss Sasha Starr – became the first Bahá’ís in the 21st century to be married locally.

Their wedding took place at the Monkey Island Hotel in Bray.  The civil marriage ceremony was followed immediately by the Bahá’í wedding ceremony, which was hosted by Counsellor Dr Shirin Fozdar-Foroudi, who had been Sasha’s moral class teacher in Dubai more than a decade earlier.

The wedding guests had travelled from as far afield as The Netherlands, Spain, Brazil, Swaziland and the USA.  The Bahá’í programme reflected this global nature of the gathering, with prayers and passages from the Bahá’í Scriptures read and chanted in six languages.

The Bahá’í teachings stress the importance of marriage and the family as the bedrock of the whole structure of human society, and are designed to protect and strengthen it as a divine institution.  The law of marriage is, in the words of Bahá’u’lláh, “a fortress for well-being and salvation”.

The Bahá’í marriage ceremony is, in essence, very simple.  It comprises an exchange of vows between the bride and groom, in the presence of two appointed witnesses, and after the consent of all living parents has been obtained.  Most often it is enriched by a devotional programme of prayers and readings before the exchange of the vows.

Bahá’ís are free to marry outside of their faith.  Bahá’í marriage, in itself, imposes no obligations on a partner who is not a Bahá’í.  The right of a non-Bahá’í spouse to follow their own conscience is fully recognised.

Mr and Mrs Starr-Padidar honeymooned in Germany.  They will live initially in Maidenhead before, alas, leaving us – to settle in Reading.

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Our New Website

Dear Reader,

Welcome to our new website and blog!

We have moved to this new WordPress site so that we can much more easily publish our news and events – and so that you can keep in touch with us more easily through an email subscription or through our RSS feeds.

We hope to add much more to this site over the coming months. Your comments and feedback are always welcome.

PS our old website will no longer be updated, and will close permanently in October 2010.

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