We are pleased and excited to announce the wonderful success of the first TOVP fundraising tour of 2017 in Gujarat, India. Pledges were in excess of $1.5 million and we left with the overwhelming feeling that Lord Nityananda is Himself in charge of this historic project and is blessing us.
On January 28th, under the shelter of Lord Nityananda’s Padukas and Lord Nrsimha’s Sitari, the TOVP Team consisting of Jananivas prabhu, Ambarisa prabhu, Mother Svaha and Braja Vilas prabhu made their way to Gujarat for a nine day tour of the cities of Vallabh Vidyanagar, Baroda, Surat and Ahmedabad, organized by His Grace Yasomatinandana prabhu. We held programs at all the major temples as well as with private groups of business people, speaking simply and plainly the glories of this project. We didn’t know what to expect considering the uncertain financial situation in India.
To our amazement and surprise, the devotees all came forward with their pledges, even some that had donated before. In Surat the Bhakti Vrksha leaders were so enthused they had already raised their pledges before our arrival!!! On top of that the temple management from every temple also made commitments for donations spanning the next five years.
Local media also came forward and covered our fundraising events in some locations. Please see the article below from the Times of India.
Once again, we experienced firsthand that the Lord is really in control of the TOVP project, and as long as we cooperate to fulfill His desire and the desire of His dear servants, the acharyas, He will reciprocate in kind and allow us to be instrumental servants for His pleasure. What more can we ask or aspire for?
Additionally, we realized Srila Prabhupada’s words that the individual temple’s will also offer their financial support to build this temple, not just the members. If this idea can be implemented in all parts of the world as was spontaneously done in Gujarat we will achieve a milestone in our fundraising efforts. With straw in our teeth we humbly request all temple managers to kindly consider this idea.
Lastly, we would like to recognize and thank all the leaders and managers of the Gujarat Yatras who helped make this possible, especially Yasomatinandana prabhu, the zonal GBC. He went beyond the call of duty to organize, inspire and personally attend all the fundraising events. His example of dedication and support of the TOVP fills our hearts with love and gratitude for his unswerving service to Srila Prabhupada. We also thank Vrindaban, Visnunama, Satcitananda, Basu Ghosh and Nityananda Rama prabhus and all the numerous others who assisted them. Without their dedicated and inspired efforts this tour would not have been possible at all.
Our next tour to Malaysia is scheduled for this April/May. Tours to China and other parts of India are also in the process of being scheduled. Please pray for our continued success. We are moving forward with remarkable speed on all fronts of fundraising and construction and are on track and on schedule for the Grand Opening of the Temple of the Vedic Planetarium in 2022.
To make a donation or pledge please click on the link below:
The Times of India – Ahmedabad
Gujaratis donate over $1mn for ISKCON temple project
Ahmedabad: Alfred Brush Ford and his wife Sharmila organized a fundraiser at Iskcon temple on Saturday evening for the ambitious Sri Mayapur Chandrodaya Mandir (Temple of the Vedic Planetarium). Ford had started his Gujarat travels from February 1. It was the first state on his pan-India itinerary.
Alfred is the great grandson of the founder of Ford Motor Company, Henry Ford.
“Gujarat is a state blessed by Lord Krishna,” Albert said at the Ahmedabad meeting. “It is a great pleasure to be here. I had been to Rajkot and Dwarka several years ago. Our collection of funds is going very well. We were ably supported by Jasumatinandan Das in the cause. We have collected over US $1 million (approximately Rs 6.72 crore) in just three days which is very encouraging.”
Talking about the temple project that started in 2009, Albert Ford said they are following in the footsteps of Srila Prabhupada, founder of Iskcon, who had dreamed of a spectacular temple at Mayapur as a tribute to Chaitanya Mahaprabhu. “The process started with his travels to the West and sharing his dreams to revitalize Veda and ancient culture in India,” said Ford, who is chairman of the project.
His wife Sharmila said that, for the first time, visitors will be able to see 3D model of the universe as explained in the Hindu scriptures. The 350-feet-high temple will show Golok Dham at the top and Patal at the bottom, Ford said.
Braj Vilasa Das, director of fundraising, said that apart from personal donation of Rs 250 crore by Ford, the project has collected an additional Rs 100 crore for the temple which is expected to cost Rs 700 crore. “Around 95% of the construction for the primary structure has been done. We expect the project to be complete by 2022. An 80-feet-high Kalash will be established above the dome this March,” Das said.