Legacy Of Courage
The Life of Ola Pawlowska, Knight of Bahá’u’lláh
by Suzanne Schuurman
The story of a remarkable life that began in the Austro-Hungarian Empire of Franz Joseph, spanned two World Wars, and played out on three continents.
‘I was extremely happy in Kasai. I felt free, gloriously free as never before in my life . . . I was dependent only on the Bahá’í institutions which I loved and respected.’
Here is the story of a remarkable life that began in the Austro-Hungarian Empire of Franz Joseph, spanned two World Wars, and played out on three continents.
Born into the Polish aristocracy, Ola Pawlowska was told she would never have to earn her living. War and early widowhood changed all that. Fleeing Nazi-occupied France to Canada with her young daughter, Ola worked at various jobs, mainly as a secretary at the Polish Legation – but in Canada she also encountered the Bahá’í Faith, and in 1953 she became a Knight of Bahá’u’lláh to the St Pierre and Miquelon Islands off the Canadian coast.
But the services for which she is best remembered still lay ahead. Pioneering to the Congo in the early 1960s fulfilled a life-long dream to live in Africa. She was to stay for the next thirty years, loved by many and courageously confronting the many challenges of a rapidly expanding Bahá’í community in a country with vast distances to be covered.
And in her eighties, Ola Pawlowska pioneered yet again – to her beloved homeland of Poland, where she saw the establishment of Poland’s first National Spiritual Assembly.
Beautifully written by Ola’s daughter Suzanne Schuurman, this book is a real page-turner. The world of the pioneers who responded to the Guardian’s call has vanished; the history of the Bahá’í world is now being written in every island and territory; but Ola’s story will be an inspiration to all those who possess the spirit of adventure.
The cover for "Legacy of Courage" has received an American Design Award in the book design category.
216 x 138 mm ( 8.5 x 5.5 ins)