Hindu Mandir Executive Conference 2015
Pandit Sharma attended the 10th Hindu Mandir Executive Conference in Trinidad on October 5, 2015. The event was a grand success and well attended by Hindus from the Caribbean, Canada and the U.S.A.
In his welcome remarks, Shri Sat Maharaj of Trinidad summarized the history of migration of Hindus from India to the Caribbean Island, starting in 1838. Vallabha Tantry of MN Hindu Temple stressed the importance of the family’s role in educating and exposing children to our Dharma and explaining the rituals to them. Fred Stella of Michigan cited and decoded Pew Research’s recent reports on the challenges that Abrahamic and Dharmic faith traditions are facing to retain the next generation in their fold. Dr. Vindya Vasini Persaud of Guyana spoke on the Hindu woman’s role and contribution to the family and society. I spoke about the science behind a successful marriage. In his inaugural address, Swami Pratyabodhananda of AVG spoke on “strengthening the Hindu family”. The session ended with closing remarks by Gauri Shankar Gupta, High Commissioner of India to Trinidad and Tobago.
The HMEC deliberated on the following five resolutions:
· HMEC with Hindu organizations’ support in North America and the Caribbean will set up a task force comprising of Hindu educators and specialists (such as psychiatrists) to assist the leadership in Guyana, Surinam, Trinidad and nearby smaller islands.
· HMEC approves the formation of a group of legal practitioners, including lawyers and mediators from Canada, USA and the Caribbean to assist Mandirs and Hindu organizations in those countries.
· HMEC appeals to the governments of Andhra Pradesh and Telangana to give Hindu temples and other Hindu religious institutions the same privileges that are accorded to Churches and Mosques.
· It is hereby resolved by HMEC that every Mandir in North America and the Caribbean should have a Teacher (Acharya) just like they have a priest. The Teacher should be able to provide education and also answer questions related to puja, rituals and Hindu Dharma in general.
· It is hereby resolved by HMEC that Mandirs should come together and conduct a collaborative seva project in India.