After traveling over 8,800 miles by car and 2,500 miles by plane all across the United States and Canada to spread the glory and supreme philosophy of Lord Swaminarayanbapa Swamibapa, Acharya Swamishree’s 2014 North American Vicharan came to an end on Tuesday, August 5, 2014, when Acharya Swamishree departed for the United Kingdom to celebrate the grand opening of Shree Swaminarayan Mandir Kingsbury.
During Acharya Swamishree’s two-month vicharan, He performed the Murti Pratishtha ceremonies and Mahotsav celebrations of grand new temples Shree Swaminarayan Temple Canada and Shree Swaminarayan Temple Delaware, the Patotsav ceremonies of temples and Hari Mandirs in Los Angeles, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Chicago, and New Jersey, and the pratishthas of new Hari Mandirs in the states of Tennessee and Ohio. There are now five principal temples and five Hari Mandirs of Maninagar Shree Swaminarayan Gadi Sansthan in North America. In addition, Acharya Swamishree and sants visited hundreds of homes and businesses of disciples and delivered countless sermons to elucidate the supreme knowledge and teachings of Lord Swaminarayanbapa Swamibapa.
The Subhechha Samarambh program was held at Shree Swaminarayan Temple New Jersey on Monday, August 4, 2014, the day before Acharya Swamishree departed. Around 5 PM, everyone gathered inside the temple prayer hall, and sants performed kirtan-bhakti. Afterwards, Acharya Swamishree performed sandhya aarti, and everyone recited daily niyams. Once niyams concluded, Acharya Swamishree showered His divine blessings upon the entire congregation for the last time during His 2014 North American vicharan. Honorable guests were blessed by Acharya Swamishree, disciples offered garlands to Acharya Swamishree and sants to bid them farewell until next time, and many disciples and Swamibapa Pipe Band members were then honored for their outstanding seva to the temple as a part of the annual seva recognition awards at Shree Swaminarayan Temple New Jersey. Acharya Swamishree then blessed all of the disciples and gave everyone His divine darshan before being escorted out of the temple.
Monday evening after the program, many disciples gathered inside Shree Muktajeevan Swamibapa Community Hall to have the divine darshan of Acharya Swamishree having His evening thaal. The hall was decorated with many plants and flowers, and Acharya Swamishree was seated at the center with sants seated around Him. As they enjoyed their evening meal, disciples were able to have their divine darshan. Disciples also sang thaals and kirtans as Acharya Swamishree dined. Afterwards, disciples were served mahaprasad.
Acharya Swamishree performed His last aarti of the vicharan at Shree Swaminarayan Temple New Jersey around 4:30 PM on Tuesday, August 5, 2014. He blessed disciples inside the temple one last time before exiting. He was then seated inside His car outside the main entrance of the temple, and a police escort led the car from the temple to Newark International Airport. Disciples had formed a line all along the temple driveway, and as Acharya Swamishree left the temple grounds, He gave His divine darshan to them all.
Upon arriving to the airport, disciples gathered around Acharya Swamishree one last time for His divine darshan in the terminal lobby. Acharya Swamishree was garlanded before He and the mandal of sants accompanying Him to the United Kingdom were escorted to security. Acharya Swamishree and sants waved to disciples, who had congregated just outside security to watch Acharya Swamishree and sants go, the entire time as they went through security and walked towards their gate. Disciples joyfully waved back at them. Airport security, realizing just how special Acharya Swamishree is, made special accommodations for the disciples so that disciples could enjoy their final vicharan moments with Acharya Swamishree. Just when disciples thought Acharya Swamishree was making His final stride away from security and towards His gate, He turned back around and walked all the way through the security clearance up to where disciples were congregated to give them His divine darshan and smile and wave at them one final time. As Acharya Swamishree walked back towards His gate, disciples went home smiling from ear to ear.
Acharya Swamishree’s flight to London departed around 7:30 PM, and His 2014 North American vicharan came to an end. Acharya Swamishree will continue to elucidate the Lord’s teachings in the United Kingdom and will perform the grand opening of Shree Swaminarayan Mandir Kingsbury.
As we reflect every year Acharya Swamishree tours North America, it is miraculous how much the Satsang has grown throughout the continent since Jeevanpran Shree Muktajeevan Swamibapa’s visit in October of 1970. This is all due to the blessings of Lord Shree Swaminarayan, Jeevanpran Shree Abji Bapashree, Jeevanpran Shree Muktajeevan Swamibapa and the countless efforts of Jeevanpran Shree Muktajeevan Swamibapa and His Divine Holiness Acharya Swamishree. The disciples of Maninagar Shree Swaminarayan Gadi Sansthan residing in North America are forever thankful to Acharya Swamishree and sants for being able to witness the spectacular events they did during this vicharan. They pray to Lord Shree Swaminarayan, Jeevanpran Shree Abji Bapashree, Jeevanpran Shree Muktajeevan Swamibapa, and Acharya Swamishree that the glory of the Lord continues to spread throughout this continent and that the disciples are able to please them more and more with each passing day. They pray that each year Acharya Swamishree tours North America, their dharma, gnan, and bhakti flourish and develop beyond those of the previous year.