Wollongong celebrates Baha’i New Year’s Day

The Baha’i New Year’s Day, a time of new beginnings and hope, will be celebrated in Wollongong this week.

For Baha’i, March 21 is a day of deep spiritual significance which is marked by a community get-together.

Wollongong Baha’i Community secretary Allison Atkinson said the date was fixed to the northern hemisphere’s vernal equinox on which there are equal hours of daylight and darkness.

‘‘It is a time of joy and celebration where [in the northern hemisphere] the darkness of winter comes to an end and the reappearance of light, warmth and the beauty of spring’s flowers unfold,’’ she said.

‘‘It is a day of new beginnings – of change and hope.’’

Ms Atkinson said Baha’i New Year or Naw Ruz was the first day of the Baha’i calendar and one of nine Baha’i holy days.

She said it marked the end of a 19-day fast, which was a period of reflection and spiritual reinvigoration.

In Wollongong, the Baha’i community will celebrate Naw Ruz with an evening of music and dance this Saturday at the University of Wollongong from 7.30pm including traditional Persian music and dance performances.

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