Information about this center is no longer updated. This data was last updated on 26 October 2018.Phone: 313-273-9920
Research conducted by the University of Michigan-Dearborn Pluralism Project.
The Baha'i Center of Detroit meets in a modern, single-story brick building with a basement, opened in 1998 and dedicated on April 9, 2000 in northwest Detroit. From 1980 until 1998, prior to the Baha'i ownership, the building had been a Methodist church. Before moving to this location, the Baha'is had met at several locations in the city. During the 1950s, they owned a meeting house located on Delaware Street in Detroit's New Center Area. In 1980, General Motors bought this property. From 1980 until 1998 they met in a building located on James Couzens Highway, between McNichols Road and Outer Drive, that had been a Kingdom Hall for Jehovah's Witnesses. The current membership of the center is approximately 100, and represent a wide diversity of ethnic groups, including blacks, whites, and Middle-Eastern/Persians. The composition of the membership has remained fairly constant. Although other languages are occasionally spoken, English is the most commonly used in religious services and informal conversations.
DescriptionThe current center is located in an almost entirely African American residential neighborhood consisting of modest single-family and duplex homes in northwest Detroit. Nevertheless, it is close to the city of Southfield and other communities in Oakland County with their rich diversity of people. Despite the fact that the center is on a busy street, it has a well tended lawn in the front and parking on the side and at the rear for approximately 50 cars. On the inside, the center has a large meeting room, a library/bookstore, a kitchen, several offices, and a fellowship room.
Activities and ScheduleDuring the week, there are Baha'i study classes for both adults and children. There are services of worship on Fridays at 8:00 p.m. and Sundays at 10:00 a.m. In addition, there is a youth group community meeting on Sundays. On Wednesdays at 7:30 p.m, there is a devotional service with readings from Jewish, Christian, Islamic, Baha'i and other scripture. In addition to the regular services of worship, the center observes the 11 major Baha'i holy days each year.
LeadershipAs a spiritual assembly, the Baha'i Center of Detroit elects 9 people to its council each April 21. Officers, such as treasurer and Sunday school officer, manage the affairs of the center. In addition to this Baha'i center, there exists an informal network of Baha'is in the Detroit area. There are several other spiritual assemblies in the area, including ones in Farmington Hills, Southfield, and Sterling Heights
In the CommunityThe Baha'i Center regularly takes part in the area's interfaith activities and worship, including area Interfaith Thanksgiving and World Sabbath services. Members of the center have been asked to speak and participate in these services, and the center has invited representatives from other religious groups to speak at their center also. Besides the interfaith activities, the center has been involved in projects with Detroit area youth, the homeless, and the Gleaners foodbank. In keeping with the central tenants of the Baha'i religion, a major emphasis of the center is on racial unity, breaking the barriers of prejudice, and promoting the model of a global society. Therefore, the center strives to be as inclusive as possible. During April, Baha'i African Descent History Month, the center hosts a special series of events focusing on African and African American topics. Members of the center are board members of Model of Racial Unity, Inc., a non-profit organization designed to promote racial unity in metropolitan Detroit. It sponsors an annual conference and produces resources to promote interracial understanding