The National Baha’i Center in Suriname requires renovation and the Universal House of Justice has assigned the task of raising the necessary funds (€13,000 or appx. $18,000 Canadian dollars) to two National Spiritual Assemblies: Netherlands and Canada.
The choice of the Netherlands is understandable considering that Suriname was claimed as a colony by the Dutch in 1667 and only gained its independence on November 25 1975. Dutch is still their official language.
The choice of Canada however is puzzling. There is no connection between the two countries other than Canada being a wealthier nation that can afford to support the renovation effort.
But if that is the only criteria that makes sense, the Universal House of Justice could have easily asked any number of countries that are wealthy to send them the funds. Why not the US? Japan? Germany?
Suriname is a tiny country (the smallest in South America) with less than half a million citizens which live mostly in Paramaribo – the capital city along the North coast.
It would even make more sense to ask a country in the same continent. For example, Brazil or Venezuela. Or Chile (oh, right, they’re kind of busy with their own project).
Perhaps the Universal House of Justice is keeping close tabs on the financial state of the Baha’i community in Canada and knows they can easily afford it.
For more information, here is the website of the Baha’i community of Suriname.