The Bahá’í World Centre

The Shrine of the Báb is the focal point of the Bahá’í World Centre properties in Haifa, Israel.As is the case with three of the other world religions (Judaism, Christianity, and Islam), ties of historical circumstance bind the Bahá’í Faith to the Holy Land. Before His passing, Bahá’u’lláh indicated that the world headquarters for the Faith He had founded would be in the Haifa/‘Akká area in the north of what is now Israel. The region today is home to the spiritual and administrative heart of the Bahá’í Faith.

Every year, thousands of Bahá’ís visit Haifa and ‘Akká as pilgrims and have the privilege of visiting these sites in the company of fellow believers from all parts of the world. At five-year intervals the elected representatives of the national Bahá’í communities gather in Haifa to elect the members of the Universal House of Justice, which administers the international affairs of the Faith from its seat on Mount Carmel.

The final resting places of both Bahá’u’lláh and the Báb lie in the region. The gold-domed Shrine of the Báb, sits on the slopes of Mount Carmel in Haifa, while the majestic Shrine of Bahá’u’lláh is located just across the bay in Bahjí, outside of ‘Akká. Situated in the heart of magnificent gardens, these two spots are the most holy places in the Bahá’í world.

The administrative centre of the Bahá’í Faith is in Haifa. Located on Mount Carmel, just above the Shrine of the Báb and at the top of an arc-shaped path in a monument garden, is the Seat of the Universal House of Justice, the international governing body of the Bahá’í Faith. From this building and others nearby, a staff of more than 600 people from 60 countries administers the international affairs of the Bahá’í world community.

The four buildings forming the arc on Mount Carmel in Haifa, Israel, constitute the principal administrative buildings of the Bahá’í world community.From Haifa, information is transmitted back and forth with national Bahá’í communities, international goals and plans are disseminated, social and economic development projects are monitored, statistics are collected, and international funds are managed. There is also an International Archives Building, within which are housed relics, writings, and artifacts associated with the lives of the Báb, Bahá’u’lláh, and ‘Abdu’l-Bahá.
* Adapted from Bahá’í Topics, an information resource produced by the Bahá’í International Community.