Ridván is the Most Great Festival of the Bahá’í Faith. This twelve day period (April 21st to May 2nd) with festivities on the first, ninth and twelfth days marks the episode prior to the departure of Bahá’u’lláh from Baghdad when He made His public declaration to be the Manifestation of God for today. During the Ridván Festival, Bahá’ís all over the world elect their local and national governing councils for the coming year. Naw~Rúz (New Year) is celebrated on March 21st each year. Prior to this day, there is a nineteen day fasting period from March 2nd. This is a time of purification when the faithful abstain from food and drink from sunrise to sunset.
The Birthday of the founder Bahá’u’lláh is observed on November 12. The Hold Days of the Bahá’í Faith were gazette in 1972 and Bahá’ís are required to abstain from work or school. People of other Faiths are often invited by their Bahá’í friends to participate in their holy day celebrations.