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The Sri Saddhatissa International Buddhist Centre held its annual year end Inter Faith Ceremony combined with the commemoration of the 2004 Tsunami, at a well-attended gathering, on Friday 30th December 2017. 

The ceremony was presided over by Aggamahapandita Galayaye Ven. Galayaye Piyadassi, MBE, Chief Sangha Nayaka Thero of the United Kingdom. Ven. Dr Handu Pelpola Mahinda Nayaka Thero lead the recitation of the five precepts at the start of the proceedings before the invitees, led by the Chief Guests Her Excellency Amari Wijewardena, High Commissioner of Sri Lanka and Councillor Rekha Shah , the Worshipful Mayor of Harrow, lit the traditional oil lamp.

Blessings/Prayers were offered by Sister Georgina Long ( Brahma Kumaris); Dr Senevi Athurupana Buddhists); Mrs Patria Aquino ( Bhais) Rev Daya Perera ( Christians ); Mrs Allison Johnson ((Harrow Quakers); Mrs Niroo Desai( Hindu); Mrs Varsha Dodhia ( Jain); Mr Jack Lynes,( Chair Harrow Inter Faith on behalf of the Jewish Community); Mr Mukthar and Hafez Ridwan Jamaldeen (Islam); Mr Gopal Singh Bachu ( Sikh)Mr Phiroza Gan- Kotwal ( Zoroastrian).

HE Amari Wijewardena, High Commissioner of Sri Lanka; Councillor Rekha Shah, the Worshipful Mayor of Harrow; Councillor Kana Naheerathan, former Mayor of Brent; Hon. Mei Sim Lai, DL Representative Deputy Lieutenant for Brent; Hon. Navin Shah, Member of the London Assembly; Mr Nizam Ismail, former Mayor of Harrow; Councillor Kareema Marikar of Harrow; Dr Zimar Sivardeen, President/ Chairman, British Sri Lanka Association; Mr Victor Cherubin of the CCAT, addressed the gathering.

All the speakers spoke about the Tsunami disaster and Aggamahapandita Galayaye Piyadassi Sangha Nayaka Thero, after his welcome speech, invited the guests to observe two minutes silence in memory of those who were affected by the Tsunami as well as all natural disasters as well as manmade disasters – wars and conflicts.

Some time ago UNESCO adopted the motto “Wars are made in the minds of men; Peace also can be achieved in the minds of men “. It was hoped that the minds of people will be focussed on PEACE and not destruction in 2017.

 

 


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