Bh. Mario Cimperšek received in Ljubljana the first initiation from His Holiness Prahladananda Swami. His new name is Madana Gopala das.
We wish Madana Gopala prabhu a successful and swift progress in devotional service to guru and Gauranga!
The month of December is always marked by the Prabhhupada Marathon, when devotees around the world join forces and increase the frequency of distributing books. So we decided to increase the frequency of the Monthly Sankirtan Festival, which we held four times in December. Thus, we can say, the Monthly Sankirtan Festival became the Weekly Sankirtan Festival.
Immeasurable thanks to all the devotees who, despite the challenging winter conditions, spent hours and hours on the street singing in harinam and handing out books and cookies to passers-by.
Thank you from the bottom of our heart to the organizers and all those who supported this wonderful program with their valuable services such as cooking, chopping vegetables, production of cookies for distribution, transportation of devotees to sankirtan, hospitality, etc.
So in these four festivals, we distributed about 500 transcendental books of Srila Prabhupada!
The unity of the devotees around the sankirtan mission was so popular with everyone that they expressed a desire to continue with sankirtan festivals with greater frequency in the future.
That the Vaisnavas are full of compassion and that, when most needed, they are willing to put everything aside for someone's benefit has been shown in the unfortunate case of Hanuman das, who ended up in hospital in critical condition due to covid-19 infection. As soon as we learned of the seriousness of the situation, we informed the devotees in the hope that a few of us would gather and chant the holy name for the benefit of prabhu, his family, wife Remuna and son Sudarshan. To our great surprise, in just a few hours from the announcement, the temple was full of devotees, not only from Zagreb but from all over Croatia. The Bhajans were led by Divya-prabanadha das, Sundarananda das, Kakudmi das, Amala-harinama das and Tirtha-sevana das.
In spite of everything, Krishna still decided that Hanuman das should go to a new life, and he reminded the rest of us that we should give our best, but in the end He is the one whose decision is the last.
We ask all who read this text to offer prayers for Hanuman prabhu and his family.
Although only one Mantra Waves program was held in December, it proved to be very successful as it brought together new and young people two of whom subsequently ended up in the temple very quickly, in the service of Sri Sri Gaura Nitai.
We continued to chant Hare Krishna and study Sri Isopanisada in the company of our young devotees and friends.
We also had distinguished guests from distant countries who joined us online.
We held one such sanga at the Bhakti Yoga Center in the company of His Holiness Bhakti Ananda Tirtha Maharaja.
In December, the first meeting of devotees, mostly young people, was held for the purpose of preaching in the city of Zagreb. The participants presented their own achievements in terms of preaching and revealed plans and goals for the future. Great emphasis has been placed on one very interesting program that you will have the opportunity to hear more about in the next issue of the Newspaper.
Did you know that ISKCON Zagreb Nova Jaladuta temple has an office in the city center with working hours from 10:00 to 17:00? The only problem is that its location is not fixed, so if you want to visit it, you have to take a short walk between Main Square, across Park Zrinjevac to the Central Station. The mobile office is easy to recognize because it is shimmering orange and the sounds of Prabhupada's bhajans can be heard from it. It is possible that this “office” will stop you sooner than you will find it yourself.
So, one Saturday, that “walking office", ie Lomancita das, approached Mr. Tihomir and offered him books, and he happily accepted them and reciprocated with a donation. In addition to the books, Lomancita handed Tihomir a personal invitation to one of our gatherings in the temple, to which he replied that he would think about it. He didn't have to think long, because after only a few minutes, bhn Kristina approached him also, who, you guessed it, also offered him books. Her offer of books did not pass this time, but her personal invitation to come for gathering with devotees passed. It didn't take Tihomir much to understand how he was destined to come to the program.
Thus, Mr. Tihomir used the first opportunity to come to the temple, from which he practically did not leave. He would often stay in the temple overnight, and when he did not spend the night in the temple, he would inevitably come at least for the second part of the morning program, prasadam and service.
Since he was in close contact with the "infected", Tihomir soon showed a great desire to take to the streets in harinam and sankirtan and share good fortune with others.
One of the services he enthusiastically embraced was contacting devotees and our well-wishers by phone to offer them a 2022 calendar as a gift. So most devotees had the opportunity to meet him over the phone.
In December, the Gopal guru school resumed its activities. Twice a month, in the hall of the Joyful Kitchen restaurant in Radićeva Street, devotee children gather and continue to develop their devotional skills with a carefully designed program by teachers Ayodhya-deva das, Sumitra devi dasi, Dinadayadri devi dasi and Tirtha-sevena das.
In one of the last Newsletters, we announced that the work on arranging the parking lot should have started in December. In part, they are, as you can see in the attached photos.
However, on the recommendation of several experts, including our bh. Marin, an engineer from Dubrovnik who is actively involved in the project, we decided to move the date to February. The reasons for this are the following: 1) More favourable weather conditions necessary for the production of quality substrate; 2) More time to raise funds up to the full amount of HRK 206,000 (although we are very close!). It is also known that works of this type often require additional, unplanned costs.
At this moment, we have HRK 182,000 collected so far.
The contractor guarantees that the quality of workmanship will be top notch. One of our well-wishers, a good connoisseur of the contractor and his colleague in the profession, also guarantees that our contractor is a top expert and deserves our trust.
Some interesting things about it: Namely, the cubes are very practical, because if, for example, the sewer pipe is damaged in the ground, it is enough to just take out a few cubes, fix what needs to be done and just put it back in place. The load capacity of the cube is min. 60 tons. The contractor gives a long-term guarantee and has committed to coming to complete the joints for the next three years. All this guarantees that this parking will last for decades.
Our next step is to step up fundraising and try to close the financial construction by the end of February. Therefore, we invite you all to help us in this, especially at this time when we have so little left to reach!
The new calendar for 2022 with the theme of our beautiful Sri Sri Gaura Nitai and all the important dates that Vaishnavas mark, has finally been published and you can pick it up at the Zagreb temple or order it by mail, if you haven't already.
It is our great pleasure to invite all of you, who want to contribute or simply be informed about the events in the Zagreb Hare Krishna community, to regular spiritual gatherings iṣṭa-goṣṭhī, in the temple, every Sunday from 8:30 to 9:00.
Srila Prabhupada in Srimad Bhagavatam (3.29.17) writes: "For a devotee, there is no point in making friendships with ordinary persons; he should make friendship with other devotees so that by discussing among themselves, they may elevate one another on the path of spiritual understanding. This is called iṣṭa-goṣṭhī.”
The program is informative and inspiring in nature. Everyone will have the opportunity to share something inspiring, ask a question and give a report on their own devotional activities in Krishna consciousness.
Since we have determined this year that the book-distribution marathon will last until January 7, 2022, and that the collection of all results usually takes several weeks after the marathon, we will give you a full report in the next issue of the Newsletter. For now, we would just like to reveal that drastically more books were distributed in the 2021 marathon than in the past!
Donations for the temple or for Club 108 can be paid at IBAN: HR1123400091110102369.
Donations for the construction of parking lots or other capital projects can be paid at IBAN: HR5623400091510955126.
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