Pennsylvania: Presbyterian church turns Hindu temple

Rajan Zed
Rajan Zed

Rajan Zed 11Shree Swaminarayan Mandir, associated with Shree Swaminarayan Vadtal Gadi (SSVG), has formally opened in Scranton (Pennsylvania, USA) after murti-pratishtha ceremony recently.

According to reports, this building used to be a Presbyterian church before.

Murti-Pratishtha Mahotasv for this Hindu temple at 933 Prescott Avenue, which has been around for about two years, was held on June 21 and 22. A celebratory parade was organized on June 21 evening; which included a carriage drawn by two horses, dancing and music through the city streets. Many participants and some religious leaders of the group travelled long distances to participate in the ceremony, reports suggest.

Meanwhile, distinguished Hindu statesman Rajan Zed, in a statement in Nevada (USA) today, applauded efforts of temple leaders and area community to realize this Hindu temple complex.

Rajan Zed, who is President of Universal Society of Hinduism, further said that it was important to pass on Hindu spirituality, concepts and traditions to coming generations amidst so many distractions in the consumerist society and hoped that this temple complex would focus in this direction. Zed stressed that instead of running after materialism; we should focus on inner search and realization of Self and work towards achieving moksh (liberation), which was the goal of Hinduism.

Besides India; SSVG also has temples in USA, United Kingdom, Canada and Australia. SSVG also runs Shree Swaminarayan Agyna Upasana Satsang Mandal-USA.

Hinduism, oldest and third largest religion of the world, has about one billion adherents. There are about three million Hindus in USA.

Incorporated as a borough in 1856, Scranton, whose tagline is “Pennsylvania’s Progressive City”, had been ranked among Best Places to Raise Kids. US Vice President Joseph Biden and show host Bill O’Reilly have been associated with it. William L. Courtright, Robert E. McGolf and David Bulzoni are Mayor, City Council President and Business Administrator respectively.

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