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Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Sisira Ranasinghe and wife found Buddhist temple in Fort Wayne, Indiana



Ranasinghe and wife found Buddhist temple 

During most of the 38 years Dr. Sisira Ranasinghe and his wife Sarogini (or “Gini”) have lived in Fort Wayne, they’ve had no formal place to worship Buddhism, their religion. 

The Ranasinghes struggled to expose their two children to their native religion; in fact, Sisira and Gini invited a monk from Washington, D.C., to their home several times. The family created a Buddhist altar in their home so they had a place to worship, but they always wanted more. 

They were motivated to establish a formal temple in Fort Wayne after Gini’s Mother became acquainted with two Sri Lankan monks living in California. 

The Ranasinghes founded the Indiana Buddhist Temple in 2003, with those same two monks relocating to provide spiritual guidance. Originally located on Webster Street in Fort Wayne, it is now located in a two-story house on a large lot at 7528 Thompson Road, Hoagland. It is the only Sri Lankan Buddhist Institute in Indiana. (Theravada Buddhist temples vary according to language and ethnicity; other Buddhist temples in Fort Wayne are associated with Laotians, Burmese, and Mon natives). 

The temple offers free meditation classes that are open to anyone interested. It also offers many Buddhist activities and cultural events throughout the year, such as the Sinhala and Tamil New Year Festival last April. About 200 devotees from Indiana and neighboring states attended the celebration and participated in the Avurudu activities, according to the temple’s web site. “The temple draws a lot of visitors,” Sisira said. 

After years of having no one and no place for sharing their religion, now the Ranasinghes spend the greatest amount of their free time at the temple, nurturing the monks and others. “The monks are extremely happy,” Sisira said. And so are the Ranasinghes.

 

3 comments:

  1. What an achievement! Well done Sisira and family. Speedy

    ReplyDelete
  2. Sisira

    It was a great pleasure to sit with you in the same table at the London Reunion in 1990's. Well done my friend on your achievement.

    ND

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  3. Well done Sisira.I haven,t met you since 1990 london Reunion.You will remember your Thurstan College Chemistry teacher Upendra from ketawalamulla.I was a border in her home until my 1st Year in the Medical School.
    Best wishes,
    Sumathi

    ReplyDelete