>> Working Bee
Last weekend was the King of Thailand's birthday. The Embassy staff and others in the Thai community organized a working bee at the monastery to celebrate the occasion and to dedicate merits to his majesty. The stupa was the main focus but gardening and cleaning work also got done. It was a very happy and friendly time - as well as getting a lot done. Sadhu! [photo]
>> Pre-vassa Visits
It is a part of our tradition to visit senior ajahns to pay respects and receive blessings for the forthcoming vassa. This year we spread this over several days and went to see Bhante Jinalankara at Dhammagiri, Ajahn Natawat at Wat Dhammaprateep [Newlands], Luang Por Poi at Wat Laos [Porirua] and Chao Khun Sumai at Wat Buddhajayamahanat [Island Bay]. We are very fortunate to have so many senior monks in our neighbourhood and to have good, friendly relationships with them. In the same vein, the three new monks that recently arrived to spend the vassa at Wat Thai came to visit us on Tuesday. A very pleasant exchange. [photo]
>> Meditation Workshop
Meditation Workshop Saturday 4th August; 1-5pm, at the monastery. Suitable for both beginners and experienced. This will also be on 1st Sept. but NOT 6th Oct or 3rd Nov [Kathina is on the 4th]
>> Stupa Update
Lindsay has taken a lead with the painting and this is now finished down to the base. Ajahn Kusalo did a (scary) repair of the topmost umbrella. With that done and as a part of the Thai working bee the scaffold was taken down. The concrete slab on the west-side has been broken up along with some of the original stone work in that area. We have had the digger in and foundations for the reclining Buddha Rupa pavilion are well underway. The move out of the ground should get started next week. [photo]
Watch that space!
>> Web Host
We have recently changed our web host and have been having a few transition issues. If you have had trouble with the website it would be good if you could let us know - especially if you can detail something like: "I clicked this and that happened" so we can isolate any problems. This part of the reason there has been no news for a while - as well as the pre-vassa wind-down :) We are also using a new mail delivery system so hopefully the news gets through.
Our meeting on Sunday July 15th went very smoothly. Many thanks to all those who took the time to attend. There were no 'matters of business' arising and the standing committee was reelected unopposed. Such a quiet and uneventful meeting reflects the general tone of the monastery; cool and calm. Both material and financial support is quite sufficient for our needs. Anumodana. The minutes of the meeting will be posted on the website when they are finished. Previous minutes can be seen here
The first (transition) week is almost done and we will start a week of group meditation on Saturday afternoon. This coincides with the meditation workshop and you are all welcome to join us for this as well as during the coming week. The schedule: morning puja: 5:15, then 8.30-10.30, returning after lunch at 2 until 5pm, then evening puja at 7pm.
The lunar observance nights (7pm) and Sunday evenings (6pm) will continue throughout. See above for meditation workshop details.
You are generally welcome to come and visit at any time but do allow that we are in retreat mode so may not be so engaging. If you wanted to meet with Ajahn Kusalo he is generally available after the meal - about 11:45am
This is some months away but as this is the first formal Kathina in several years we are a bit more 'ahead of time' looking to be sure that everything is organized. The main thing we have done is set a date - Sunday, November 4th. The Kathina cloth has a sponsor and other elements are coming together. There will be more detail later.