The Mandir Mahotsav at the BAPS Shri Swaminarayan Mandir in Kansas City, KS commenced joyously on Thursday, September 4, 2014 with auspicious welcoming rituals as well as a ribbon cutting ceremony in the presence of Sadguru Pujya Mahant Swami and Sadguru Pujya Tyagvallabh Swami.
On Friday, September 5, 2014 devotees, volunteers, and well-wishers gathered together in reverence for the Vishwashanti Mahayagna ceremonies. Amidst vibrant crowds of people, many sacred blessings and prayers were expressed in order to instill peace in the lives of those gathered, to the community at large, and to the world. The evening program consisted of inspiring discourses by Swamis, as well as a lively kirtan-aradhana program.
On the morning of September 6, 2014, the city of Shawnee, Kansas witnessed the official inauguration of the BAPS Shri Swaminarayan Mandir and Cultural Center. As members of local Hindu community drove up to the site on a quiet suburban road, the grand Mandir complex and colorful opening festivities unfolded before them. The rituals for the consecration of the murtis (sacred images) started with the chanting of Vedic verses in the presence of Sadguru Pujya Mahant Swami and Sadguru Pujya Tyagvallabh Swami. The murtis of Bhagwan Swaminarayan and Aksharbrahman Gunatitanand Swami, Shri Ghanshyam Maharaj, Shri Radha-Krishna, Guru Parampara, Shri Sita-Ram, Shri Shiv-Parvati, Hanumanji, and Ganeshji were consecrated at the beautiful traditional styled Mandir.
After the murti-pratishta arti, everyone had the opportunity of engaging in darshan of the newly installed murtis as well as the annakut, an offering of traditionally delicacies. In the assembly that followed, Sadguru Pujya Mahant Swami relayed the importance of Mandirs in shaping our lives, and how Pramukh Swami Maharaj has inspired millions around the world to build such places of worship in order to preserve pure faith and devotion to God.
Many visitors attended the celebration along with several city officials, including Chief John Mattox of the Shawnee Fire Department and Fire Marshal Corey Sands, who were not only impressed by the beauty of the Mandir, but also by the spirit of sacrifice and service that went into the creation of the structure. Hindu worshippers throughout Shawnee and the Greater Kansas City area are now delighted to have a place to congregate, practice their faith and participate in time honored festivals and celebrations that will promote strong moral and spiritual values for generations to come.