The Words of the Gehring Family

The Pokhara Nepal RYS Project

John Gehring
Oct 1, 2010

The Pokhara Nepal RYS Project was successfully carried out from September 24 -- October 1, 2010. About 30 dynamic youth representing different faiths attended this year's project. Representative came from the Buddhist, Baha'i and Jain religions. The theme of this year's RYS project was "Togetherness in Interfaith Harmony."

All the participants, including the staff and volunteers, were warmly welcomed by the communities of Pokhara and the host Tibetan Buddhist monastery. Ven. Kalsang Lama, one of the most revered spiritual leaders in Nepal, welcomed all RYS participants representing their faith traditions.

In good RYS project form, the participants engaged in the community-based volunteer works, educational workshop, interfaith and community visits, interactive team building exercises, cultural learning experiences and more.

Ambassadors for Peace, the City Chief, various organizational directors, religious leaders, local VIPs and Pokhara residents attended the opening session and the ground breaking ceremony of the RYS Peace Gate.

Service activities included painting the wall around the peace prayer wheel, and digging out an area for the wall around the monastery. As part of the inter-religious activities, we were invited to visit the Manv Mila Jain Organization, the Islamic Center, a Christian church, Buddhist temple and a Hindu temple. All participants were able to broaden their understanding of other RYS teammates.

As part of the cultural program, our group visited the Sarankot mountain where we could enjoy the panoramic view of the majestic Himalayan mountains. An RYS flag was raised there in affirmation of world peace.

The Chief Government Officer from Pokhara presented the certificates to the participants at the grand closing prayer ceremony, which was conducted by the Tibetan Buddhist leaders and the local community.

The Peace gate, the prayer wheel and the wall will remain as an RYS testament of Peace for many members of the local community, visiting Nepalese and foreigners in Pokhara, as well as the families, relatives, friends and devotees from around the world who come to the monastery, community center and social club. 

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