The Kathina Ceremony of Shanthi Vihara – Nottingham
The fifth Kathina ceremony of Shanthi Vihara & Meditation Centre, the culmination of a series of religious events held over the preceding three and half months, was held on Sunday 22nd October 2017 at St. Patrick’s Church hall in Watnall, Nottingham.
At the invitation of Ven. Teldeniyaye Amitha Thero, the Head of the Shanthi Vihara, 21 Venerable monks attended from 9 other Buddhist Temples in the United Kingdom, representing Kethumathi Buddhist Vihara, Manchestr, Jethavana Buddhist Vihara, Birmingham, Letchworth Buddhist Vihara, London Buddhist Vihara, Athula Dassana Buddhist Vihara, Heathrow, Sambuddha Vihara, Liverpool, Bristol Buddhist Vihara, Cambridge Buddhist Vihara and Leeds Buddhist Vihara.
Though the ‘weather god’, was unpredictable and unkind in most of the morning and previous night the heaven brightened up miraculously as soon as the great meritorious deed commenced its proceedings. Over 250 devotees took part in the ceremony which commenced sharp at 10.45am and concluded at 3.00pm.
On 8th of July, the devotees of the temple led by the sponsors of the Kathina ceremony, Mr. Chaminda Fonseka, Mrs. Thusari Fonseka and Himash Fonseka, invited, in the traditional way, Ven. Monks to observe ‘Vas’. Ven. Teldeniyaye Amitha and Ven. Anamaduwe Wimalajeewa delivered Dhamma sermons, discussions, Vandana and pujas Throughout the “Vassa” season, on Saturdays with other devotees of the Vihara organising, sponsoring and attending every event with great enthusiasm and dedication.
The day’s programme commenced with the administration of ‘PanSil’ by Ven. Pidiwille Piyatissa Nayaka Thera the head of the Kethumathi Buddhist Vihara followed by ‘Buddha Puja’ and ‘Vandana’ conducted by Ven Tissapura Sugatharathana and a Sermon by Ven. Mathugama Palitha.
After the Dana to the Maha Sangha, devotees took part in the traditional Kathina Perahera to the accompaniment of professional drummers. it was a colourful pajent with children and adults alike participating with banners, Sesath, Ata Pirikara and the Kathina Robe. After touring, the procession entered the hall amidst the ‘Sadu Nada’ of the devotees. Following the offering of ‘Ata Pirikara’ and other ‘Pirikara’, the Kathina robe was offered to the Maha Sangha
Ven. Konwawe Ariyarathana of London Buddhist Vihara delivered a short ‘Anusasana’ in Sinhala and Ven. Kaluthara Mittha of Manchester Kethumathi Vihara delivered a short Dhamma sermon in English for the benefit of the children as well as the few non-Sinhala speaking who attended the ceremony. After the ‘Punyanumodana’ by Ven. Amitha, Mr Chaminda Fonseka on behalf of the sponsors, delivered a vote of thanks. The religious ceremony concluded at 1.45pm leaving the devotees to enjoy a sumptuous food at leisure.