On Saturday 14th May 2022, Shree Swaminarayan Mandir Bolton held a Shibir (Fun Day). After a challenging few years with the coronavirus pandemic, it allowed the whole community to come together as one, to connect, bond, and interact as a parivar (family).
This year’s Bhav Pushpanjali Shibir was an extra special one, celebrating our Prem Murti Swamishree Maharaj’s 80th Pragatya Din, we looked back at fond memories and remembered his teachings. Our Prem Murti Bapa said “Unity within a family can be maintained if there is mutual respect and understanding for one another” and always encouraged us to develop important values and nurture key skills that are useful in all aspects of everyday life, and in doing so to ensure we do not forget God and keep Swaminarayan Bhagwan, Bapa and Swamibapa at the forefront in everything we do. Participating in Shibir teaches us to do this through fun, laughter, and healthy competition.
More than 150 youths and adults took part in a full-day Shibir which was designed to convey and nurture key skills in life, such as leadership, public speaking, problem-solving, and working as a team. As the sun broke out through the clouds, the participants arrived arrayed in the colours of the respective teams, eager to participate and excited to learn what the day had in store for them!
The day started off with a Prarthna and Ashirwad from Acharya Swamiji Maharaj who had recorded a personal message for all the participants encouraging that we, the beloved children of Shree Swaminarayan Gadi continue to work together in harmony with 'Ekta' and 'Samp' to please Swaminarayanbapa Swamibapa and that Lord Shree Swaminarayan's divine blessings are always with us.
The day was split up into three parts, with physical games throughout the morning with the first race of Balloon Relay Race ensuring those that were still asleep at this point were fully awake by the end of the first race! After lunch, the second part of the day titled, Stand Up, Speak Up, Build Up commenced with Catchphrase, Articulate, and Guess the Logo which tested the mental agility of the participants using their knowledge of the Satsang and general knowledge.
The final segment of the day was team games where participants had to work together to navigate through games such as, Plank, Hit the Wicket, Hungry Hippos, and the timeless classic that is Tug of War.
The teams were given the task to complete a 1000-piece jigsaw puzzle and miniature wooden puzzles throughout the day. Team Swamibapa was the first and only team to complete the jigsaw.
This year’s winning team was Team Shree Muktajeevan Swamibapa who from the bottom of the leaderboard, got a golden ticket to secure the top position by completing their 1000-piece puzzle. Following closely behind was Team Jeevanpran Abji Bapashree in 2nd place, Team Ghanshyam Maharaj in 3rd place, and Team Acharya Shree Swamishree Maharaj in 4th place.
The event concluded with a raffle before evening maha prasad which was served outside as the sunset on what was a glorious and an exhilarating day!!!
For our younger children, the under 5's, we had a huge bouncy castle and outside play area to keep them occupied and entertained!!!