After 20 years of consistent spiritual assemblies, the BAPS Shri Swaminarayan Mandir in Melbourne, Florida opened on September 4 in the presence of Sadguru Pujya Kothari Swami.
The Mandir Mahotsav celebrations took place from September 2-4, 2016. This three-day event was filled with devotional hymns, spiritual discourses, traditional nagar yatra (town procession), and murti sthapan. In addition, the presence of ten visiting Swamis from the United States and India created an atmosphere of divinity and grand celebration.
On the first day the mandir hosted a Kirtan Aradhana program, where audiences enjoyed an evening filled with energetic bhajans performed by Jaydeep Swadia and Swamis. The next day, on September 3, devotees and well-wishers participated in the colorful Nagar Yatra of the murtis through the heart of Eau Gallie, a suburb of Melbourne. Local residents gathered to enjoy the procession of beautifully decorated floats, traditional dances and the sounds of joyous devotional music. The whole atmosphere was divine and the celebration inspired joy and devotion in the hearts of all.
Finally, on the morning of September 4, the murtis, previously sanctified by Pramukh Swami Maharaj on February 2, 2015 in Sarangpur, were installed in the Mandir by Sadguru Pujya Kothari Swami. This murti sthapan ritual was attended by devotees and well-wishers from the community. The ceremony culminated with the first arti of the new murtis – an event commemorated with the participation and wishes of hundreds of community members.