Founder Acharya His Divine Grace
A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada

ISKCON Auckland Celebrated 20th Anniversary of Sri Sri Radha Giridhari Temple
By Kulavati Krishnapriya Devi Dasi, ISKCON News Staff Writer   |  Feb 25, 2024
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Devotees from across New Zealand came to ISKCON Auckland to celebrate the 20th anniversary of Sri Sri Radha Giridhari Temple from January 19-21, 2024. 

Day one began with a kirtan festival followed by a Rath Yatra on the second day of festivities. The main celebration was the third day with the Chandan Yatra and a flower abhishek of the Deities, Sri-Sri Radha Giridhari. The temple leadership also reverently celebrated the inauguration of the Ayodhya temple on January 22nd with an abhishek of Lord Rama followed by sumptuous prasadam.

Srila Prabhupada personally installed the deities at ISKCON’s first New Zealand temple, a small rented house at 155 Landscape Road, on April 18th, 1972. They were then moved to a temple at 67 Gribblehirst Road, just a block away. In 1978, after Prabhupada’s departure, devotees purchased the 100-acre where these latest festivities were held. This celebration commemorates when the deities were installed in their present location back in 2004.

Kalasamvara Das, Temple President of ISKCON Auckland, acknowledged the devotees’ contribution to the installation of the deities and the opening of the temple. He fondly recalled Srila Prabhupada’s guidance during the installation ceremony, remembering how Tusta Krishna Das had brought Sri-Sri Radhe Giridhari from India to Auckland himself.

Sri-Sri Radhe Giridhari.

Kalasamvara said, “The most appreciated part of the event was the flower dress for which the devotees worked for a couple of weeks to prepare. There was an abhishek for the new Guru Parampara deities also.”

ISKCON Auckland is experiencing a significant growth phase. Kalasamvara Das said, “We have a 100-acre property purchased in 1978, which is about a 30-minute drive from Auckland. Many devotees struggled to establish the current site. We have a small Govardhan built here. Over the past two decades, the devotee community has also given rise to a flourishing primary school.”

He concluded, “We want to expand our primary school from about 200 students to include a high school. We have established some new buildings in the school, which is right next to the temple.”

To follow the inspiring service of the Auckland devotees, visit their website and follow them on Facebook.

 

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