With a grand blessing ceremony and free vegetarian event, a new Guan Yin Citta Buddhist Practice Center opens in Prato, Italy
On September 22, 2019, Buddhist friends in Prato, Italy have a brand-new place to call their spiritual home. The Guan Yin Citta Buddhist Practice Center marked its official opening with a formal Blessing Ceremony and Free Vegetarian Event on the beautiful Sunday. Over 2000 people attended this gathering and expressed their gratitude towards Guan Yin Bodhisattva and Master Jun Hong Lu, the founder of Guan Yin Citta Dharma Door.
The fully renovated Buddhist practice center is an integrated multi-services place providing comprehensive Buddhist chanting, learning and wellness to area residents. The grand opening marked the culmination of a years-long Dharma propagation process. Since Master Jun Hong Lu visited Milan and held a large-scale free Dharma Talk in 2017, Guan Yin Citta Dharma Door has been vastly spreading across Italy. Many people have benefited from the practice and successfully overcome their life difficulties by following Master Jun Hong Lu’s Buddhist teachings.
The day before the official opening, hundreds of volunteers from Italy and other areas of Europe had started the opening preparation. A well-planned volunteer meeting was conducted and discussed all the “to do” activities for the event. The meeting also helped chart out a realistic schedule and timeline for accomplishing the goals. To make sure there is plenty of food during the vegetarian event after the blessing ceremony, many volunteers had started cooking and preparing for the big lunch in the next day. Many of them didn’t sleep and worked all night.
On the day of opening, many Buddhist friends had arrived at the venue as early as 6:00am in the morning. They started to retrieve admission tickets at 7:00 and stood a line outside the main hall. At 9:00am, attendees were allowed to enter and to make incense offerings to Buddhas. One hour later at 10: 00am sharp, the blessing ceremony officially started. The crowds all solemnly stood with both of their hands joined to chant Buddhist scriptures, including Great Compassion Mantra, Heart Sutra, the Holy Names of all the Buddhas on the altar. After the ceremony, the gloomy weather changed into sunrise and turned warm. Everyone felt the immense rays of Buddha’s light immerse themselves in the warmness and blessings. They gratefully thank Guan Yin Bodhisattva for his great compassion and great mercy.
After free vegetarian lunch, the “Buddhist Friends Meeting” started at 12:00pm. The featured sessions include the introduction of Guan Yin Citta Dharma Door, related activities organized before, Master Jun Hong Lu’s Dharma Talk for this specific opening event, story sharing by Buddhist friends who overcame life difficulties through practicing Guan Yin Citta Dharma Door. At the end of the meeting, several volunteers performed chanting Great Compassion Mantra and received extended applause from the audience.
The Prato Buddhist practice center now opens to the public from Monday to Sunday year around. Welcome to the practice center to pray and to make incense offerings to Buddhas. To better help people learn the essence of Buddhism, diverse activities will be arranged in the near future, including free vegetarian tasting event, children’s Dharma Class, life liberations, etc. The volunteers in Prato center will continue to make efforts to spread the core values of Buddhism and help more people alleviate suffering.