A New Shrine Room for Paris Vihara
Passing another milestone in the long history of the International Buddhist Centre in Paris, France a religious ceremony was held on the occasion of the laying of the foundation stones for a new shrine room.
The programme was held under the guidance of the Head of the Vihara Ven. Parawahara Chandarathana Nayaka Thera. Euro 200,000 project will be completed before the Wesak Poya day of this year, the Nayaka Thera said. Paris International Buddhist Centre is one of the oldest and well-established Buddhist Temples in Europe.
A large number of Sri Lankan as well as Laotian, Cambodian, Thai, Vietnamese, Chinese and European devotees and supports of the temple took part in the programme. Several Buddhist monks from all the Sri Lankan temples in France and some of the European cities also attended the ceremony. Among the leading monks who attended the ceremony were Ven. K. Ananda Nayaka Thera, Ven. Murungasyaye Gananissara Nayaka Thera, Ven. Wathogala Dhammika Thera, Ven. Balangoda Ananda Mangala Thera, Ven. Meewallawe Pagnaatissa Thera and Ven. Mapalagama Jinaananda Thera.
Ven. Chandarathana Nayaka Thera laid the first foundation stone while the Mahasangha chanted Seth Pirith. Members of all the other communities also took part in laying foundation stones. The International Buddhist Centre is situated at a one hundred perch land at No.7, Cite Fermin Bourgeios in Paris.
Ven. Parawahera Chandarathana Nayaka Thera opened the centre in 1981. Most Ven. Balangoda Ananda Meththeiya Nayaka Thera attended opening ceremony. Before long Ven. Chandarathana managed to attract the attention of many Sri Lankan expatriates living in and around Paris and Lebourget. They provided much needed assistance in maintaining the Vihara.
Daily religious programmes, weekend Dhamma School, meditation classes and all the other religious activities are organised at the centre. A library with a comprehensive collection of books on Buddhism in French and English languages is open to all the visitors. Ven. Chandarathana Thera said that the new Shrine Room would be very useful, as the number of devotees visiting the temple has increased through out the years. He thanked every one who participated on the day and for all who are helping in the building project.