Mahmud writes: "The morning was cloudy and rainy. At the hotel the Master was presented with some newspaper articles reporting last night's meeting and giving an account of His talk. Dr Faríd arrived today from Boston to join us. As some professors and clergymen had come by to visit the Master, He spoke to them on the relationship of human souls, universal peace and the harm caused by prejudices. His words were particularly enjoyed by the professors from the university and the ministers showed their humility. After giving a detailed description of the teachings of the Supreme Pen, He said:
This is the purpose of the people of Bahá. Would you not like to serve such an ideal? I hope you will put forth effort in this direction so that the world of men may find real unity, become released from prejudice and be freed from war and bloodshed. Our efforts are for this. Bahá'u'lláh has opened a broad vista to humanity. For instance, when the people of different religions, races and nations were reviling each other, He addressed the people of the world saying, `O people! Ye are the fruits of one tree and the leaves of one branch.'
The minister from the black church extended an invitation to the Master to speak at his church. Because of the lack of time, the Master gave His apologies. Although the Master had intended to stay in Montreal for only two or three days, His visit had lengthened into a week. The fame of the Master had spread throughout the vicinity. Newspapers printed accounts of the meetings and many of the tributes to `Abdu'l-Bahá. The Master had requested copies of the news stories to be sent to the friends in the East. The response was so generous that one room was completely filled.
During the afternoon, while cheering the friends, He also attended to the mail and read petitions from the friends of the East and the West. At one moment He was answering important questions and the next He was dictating words conducive to the betterment of the social status of women and their confirmation in the Kingdom of God.
When the guests had left and the Master was completely exhausted, He went out alone for a walk to refresh Himself. He then boarded a tram which took Him far out of the city, then another tram which went out of the city by another route and finally took a taxi. The driver asked for the name of the hotel but `Abdu'l-Bahá did not know. He pointed to him to go straight ahead and, suddenly, there was the hotel. With His hair dishevelled and His smiling face, He told us how He had gotten lost. `Once in the Holy Land,' He said,
`Áqá Faraj lost the way to Yirkih. I advised him to loosen the reins of the animal. When the ass was left to itself it went straight to its destination. Today I pointed to the chauffeur to go straight on and by chance I reached my hotel among all these hotels.
That evening He spoke to a meeting of the Socialist Club with majesty and dignity. The audience lined His way and the chairman, who was speaking as the Master arrived, stepped forward, grasped His hand and led Him to the podium. The president introduced the Master in most glowing terms, concluding, `Now, `Abdu'l-Bahá will teach us the principles of brotherhood, prosperity and the upliftment of the poor.'
As the Master was delivering His address on economics and the adjustment of society according to the principle of moderation, the audience broke into spontaneous applause, clapping their hands with joy and excitement. At the end, the chairman sought `Abdu'l-Bahá's permission for those who had questions to ask them. Every answer evoked further applause and admiration to such an extent that the walls of the building seemed to vibrate to their foundations.
The meeting continued to such a late hour that the audience itself began to realize that to continue would not only be impolite but might also be injurious to `Abdu'l-Bahá's health. As the Master moved towards His carriage, the people surrounded Him, demonstrating their heartfelt reverence and humility. `Abdu'l-Bahá, often moved to express His thankfulness for the help and assistance of the Blessed Beauty, said, `Praise be to God that the confirmations of the Kingdom of Abhá are descending continually. Mr Woodcock used to say that Montreal was a city of Catholics and the center of intolerance. Now let him come and see what has transpired here. Not a sound can be heard from the Catholics.'"
It is a shame that the Master did not have time to speak in the Black church. But how marvelous to think about all of that publicity! And the energy that surrounded Him. And the funny story of how he got lost on the way back to His hotel. We sometimes lose track of the human side of `Abdu'l-Bahá in the face of so much divinity. . . .