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BNASAA (Baha’i Network on AIDS, Sexuality, Addictions and Abuse)

 

For 20 years, BNASAA has provided a safe environment for Bahá’ís to experience healing and growth on personally sensitive issues. The power of the Word of Bahá’u’lláh and the protection of the Covenant are the basis and provide the transformative nature of all BNASAA activities.This year’s conference theme is: “Building a Safe Community – There’s More Work to Do”The Conference theme seeks to address experiences that some individuals have had in the Bahá’í Community. Well intentioned individuals can be very hurtful by seeming to dismiss the experiences and concerns of Bahá’ís who have experienced various kinds of afflictions, especially those arising out of abuse, alcohol, drug use or sexual orientation.

BNASAA provides a safe and protected environment where those experiences and concerns can be shared, and viewed in light of the Writings of Bahá’u’lláh and the Covenant.The program will include presentations on Making Connections, Seeking the Wisdom of the Heart, Transforming your Devotional Practice, Suffering, Forgiveness and Justice, as well as a keynote speaker and smaller group workshops that address specific areas of concern: Addictions, AIDS, Abuse, Sexuality and Sexual Orientation. A representative of the Continental Board of Counselors will be there to provide individual assistance.

Because of the sensitive nature of the Conference, and in order to safeguard the sense of safety and love for both the individual as well as the group, it is important that attendees plan to be there for the entirety of the conference — arriving Thursday evening and committing to staying through the entire weekend.

One of the primary purposes of the Conference is to create a sense of community and safety; people coming and going throughout the weekend is disruptive to that purpose. If for any reason an attendee cannot be there for the whole conference from opening night to the Closing Circle on Sunday, they must discuss this with a member of the planning committee prior to the Conference.

General information about BNASAA can be found at the BNASAA website. BNASAA is a committee of the National Spiritual Assembly of the Bahá’ís of Canada and conducts Conferences throughout the United States and Canada.

If you have specific questions contact BNASAA at bnasaa@sympatico.ca or 905-889-8168.

I’ve been going to these conferences since the very second one, and am soooo greatful that such a “safe haven” exists inside the Baha’i community, for discussing these sensitive topics. I’ve learned to reclaim my nobility by being there.

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