December News and Events
Posted December 26, 2003
Dear Devotees and Friends,
Hare Krishna and Happy Holidays to you all from Sri Sri Radha Govinda Mandir! Despite the cold temperatures outside, it is always warm inside the halls of Sri Sri Radha Govinda's Mandir, because there is always the association of kind devotees, like yourselves. Our holiday wish is for you and your loved ones to be happy and healthy in Krishna Consciousness.
** Recent Events **
December 14 - Gita Jayanti Festival
Though a second Nor'easter storm crashed through the New York area, close to 200 devotees came to the temple for the Sunday program, and were able to take part in the sublime festival. After the kirtan, devotees were invited to purchase Bhagavad Gitas in large quantities at discounted prices. One eager devotee purchased 30 copies of the 1972 reprint Bhagavad Gita As It Is, and an equal number of Gujarati Bhagavad Gitas, to distribute at social functions. Likewise, many devotees walked off with a case of Gitas which they planned to give as gifts for the holidays. The Sunday school students delighted the audience by reciting selected verses from the Bhagavad Gita. This was followed by a Gita Yajna ceremony, where some of the book sponsors were invited to offer oblations to the sacrificial fire, while chanting the principal verses of the Bhagavad Gita.
Srimad Bhagavad Gita As It Is ki-jai!!!
** Upcoming Events **
New Year's Eve Festival - Wed - Dec. 31, 2003 - 7pm - Midnight
7:00pm - Sri Sri Radha Govinda Sandhya Arati
7:35pm - Bhagavad Gita lecture
8:00pm - Cultural program (dances and short drama)
9:00pm - Prasadam Feast
10:00pm - Bhajans
12:00 Midnight: Srila Prabhupada Guru-Puja
then from 12:30am till 4:30 am we will continue to sing bhajans until the first Mangal Arati of the new year to Sri Sri Radha Govinda.
** News and Happenings **
- Originally, the plan after Janmastami was to install a new floor in the temple room, replacing the worn out floor which has served the temple for more than 20 years. However, the priority shifted with the upcoming cold winter. Thus the temple management decided to allocate the temple assets to the procurement of a new heating and air-conditioning unit, which would service the temple room, restaurant, lobby, and prasadam room below. The purchase was made at the end of November, and the new unit will be installed on the temple roof in early January. This will be a major improvement to the temple with the bonus that a heated temple will make it easier for more devotees to come to the temple during the winter months. Furthermore, on the major festival days like Ratha-yatra and Janmastami, the A/C unit will be able keep everyone cool and comfortable as they chant and dance for Lord Krishna's pleasure.
- The Prasadam Bake Sale has been a big hit at the temple on Sundays. The devotees are always eager to purchase professionally made cakes, cookies, desserts, and homemade bread, as well eating fresh pizza and other delicacies. The money raised from the weekly sales is being kept in a fund devoted exclusively to the renovation of Srimati Radharani's Kitchen. The present kitchen needs to be demolished, and replaced with new walls, a new walk-in cooler, a larger pot washing area, and some new kitchen equipment. The hope is that the funds can be raised, and the work completed before Ratha-Yatra 2004 (at the latest)... In addition to the regular cooking duties, the new kitchen will be able to facilitate different prasadam distribution plans (in the works), which would enhance the temple's montly income, and encourage devotees to regularly visit the temple on weekdays and nights.
- There has been some concern about the security at the temple in recent months, as certain visitors to the temple tend to create a non-Vaishnava atmosphere, especially during prasadam time, as most of these visitors come with the invitation for "free food." Although they, as conditioned souls, have a right to Lord Krsna's mercy, it should not come at the cost of the well being of the devotees. The temple management requests the devotees to be vigilant and report any and all suspicious activity to the Temple President, or Temple Management. On a different note, if you do see a curious visitor (first time guest) at the temple, please do your best to make them feel at home. Srila Prabhupada built a house in which the whole world can live. It is up to his followers to keep that house welcoming for all spiritual aspirants.
- There is an appeal put forth by the temple management to our regular members to help the temple improve its facilities and capacities overall for the pleasure of Sri Sri Radha Govinda. We require your input, comments, blessings, and ideas, so that we can advance the mission of Srila Prabhupada. If you know of a new way to get the message of Krishna Consiousness out to the people of NYC, please let us know. If you have ideas or professional contacts which can help us upgrade the temple's facilities and assets, please share them with us. If you would like to render some devotional service to Sri Sri Radha Govinda, please contact us. We are always eager to help you serve the Lord, and thus make real advancement in spiritual life.