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Web Talk

Louise Mathew Gregory, Sowing the Seeds of Racial Harmony

Jun 14, 2020

Sunday, June 14, 2020, 2 p.m. Eastern (11 a.m. Pacific, 7 p.m. in London)

"Seed In Your Heart" book cover

The talk will start with a brief examination of the major sources used in researching the book. This will be followed by an overview of the life story of Louise Mathew Gregory, an English woman born in the Victorian era, whose marriage to Louis Gregory, an African American lawyer, is considered the first Bahá’í interracial marriage. Unusually for the time, she was an educated woman and worked as a teacher in Luxembourg and Paris before her marriage. Her later travels, over a 14-year period, took her to Hungary where she was the first to teach the Faith, and to Bulgaria and Yugoslavia where she acquired the distinction of being the first Bahá’í pioneer to those countries. Janet will expand and explore some features of the book including:

some aspects of Louise’s personality – was she shy? She was a modern independent woman – how did this affect her marriage?
some of the difficulties Louise and Louis had to face in their marriage
Louise’s husband Louis was an outstanding Bahá’í and later appointed a Hand of the Cause. Was she overshadowed by her brilliant husband and has she now begun to emerge from obscurity?

Links to suppliers of A Seed in Your Heart: the Life of Louise Mathew Gregory.

US Baha’i Distribution Service

George Ronald (UK)

Baha’i Books UK 

Australia Baha’i Distribution Service 

Contributors

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Janet Fleming Rose

Janet Fleming Rose’s biography of Louise Mathew Gregory (1866–1956), A Seed in Your Heart, tells the story of an Englishwoman who is best known for her marriage to the African American Bahá’í Louis Gregory, whom Shoghi Effendi posthumously named a Hand of the Cause of God. But Louise—who, as a new Bahá’í, traveled to Egypt to meet ‘Abdu’l-Bahá, heard Him talk in Paris and London, and then traveled with Him to the United States—had many accomplishments of her own. She was awarded a university teaching certificate, unusual for a Victorian woman, and pioneered in Luxembourg, Hungary, and the Balkans, including lengthy stays in Bulgaria and Yugoslavia.

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