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A French Revolution?

Tuesday, 25 September 2007 / Published in Editorial, Praghosa Dasa / 7,665 views

By Praghosa dasa

A little over 2 years ago the European GBC body at their annual meeting, held that year in New Vrajamandala Spain, decided to make a concerted effort to assist the French Yatra.

As a result of that meeting a group of devotees was formed under the name ‘Renouveau du Yatra Francais’. The members of that committee were/are Sivarama Swami, Hrdaya Caitanya das, Siksastakam das, Gopaswami das, Nitaigaurasundara das, Madhvacarya das, Nitai Saci Suta das, Madhusevita das, Prabhupada vani das, Bhavasindhu das and Praghosa das.

Over the last 2 years that group of devotees have met regularly both in person as well as weekly phone conference calls. As a result of their regular association the following has come to pass:

· The establishment of a downtown preaching centre for over a year that resulted in 3 new full time vaisnavas, book distribution that is at it’s highest in France for many years and regular, almost daily Harinamas
· The establishment of a communication team who have been working hard to improve our opportunities in France by engaging with political leaders, academics, media and other faith traditions
· The establishment of a fundraising team that has resulted in us raising the necessary laksmi to attain a new mortgage free home for Sri Sri Radha Parisisvara. This is the first home that They have owned in Paris for over 20 years. Please view the accompanying photos, bearing in mind that these pictures were taken prior to any renovation work commencing!
· The establishment of a reconstituted French National Council
· As the prime focus has been on Paris, the Renouveau team initiated a fund raiser for New Mayapur which resulted in the New Mayapur project receiving a significant donation
· We have also focused on inviting and facilitating senior devotees to visit France to give their support and association. To date at least 10 devotees who would not usually visit France have graced us with their presence. We are confident this trend will continue

These are the main developments over the last two years and in general the mood of the French yatra has improved considerably. This improvement has been accompanied by a change of President in France. By all accounts Nicolas Sarkozy will preside over a more liberal and devotee friendly administration. He has already initiated a review of organisations who desire the demise of other genuine expressions of spiritual faith that differ from their own.

Srila Prabhupada often commented how France was an important country

“So France is [a] very important country”. RC Mayapur March 1st 1977

Somehow our movement has been more or less on hold there for nearly 2 decades. By Krishna mercy, the desire of the devotees, and the application of intelligence and organisation, maybe the shackles are now beginning to lift…..

Click on a photo below to see the enlarged version

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7 Responses to “A French Revolution?”

  1. Its great news that Sri Sri Parisisvara have a new home. Is it in Paris or in a suburb or where? Are there any pictures of the Deities in their new abode?
    Your humble servant, Hari-sauri dasa

  2. Praghosa says :

    Dear Hari-sauri prabhu,

    The new temple is just a few stops on the Paris metro from the centre of Paris, in an area called Sarcelles (the old part of Sarcelles).

    No pictures yet of the Deities in Their new home, as renovations are still underway!

    Your servant, Praghosa dasa.

  3. Locanananda dasa says :

    This is great news, Praghosa prabhu. Sarcelles is a town in the suburbs north of Paris, about mid-way between the center of Paris and Ermenonville, the Deities’ last home. It is four stops from the Gare du Nord on the RER train.

    Your report of increasing book distribution and regular Harinam in Paris is amazing. I feel like getting out my dancing shoes and flying over there with my new harmonium.

  4. nrsimhananda says :

    Formidable! I have been coming to France for the past three years that my son has been attending film school, and I know that the problems facing the yatra were immense – and sensitive. The acquisition of the new home for the deities went through many dashed hopes, yet the devotees perservered. Such dedication is admirable and awesome. All glories to the devotees who contributed to this effort. Paris has more tourists that any other city in the world, and its preaching opportunities are unlimited. A devotee can preach in many languages there – especially in the summer months. My obeisances thousands of times to those who have been participating in the revival of the French yatra. Viva La France!
    YS, Nrsimhananda das
    ITV
    PS The “Guide to Self Realization” dvd (all five Acarya series) includes the option for French subtitles.

  5. radhacaran says :

    Pragosh prabhu, thank you for the photos of the new place. I had darshan of Sri Sri Radha Parisivara last July 4th and cooked the raj bhoga offerings for Them. I hope next time I see Them it will be in Their new abode. They have patiently waited through the most difficult situation to be reinstated in a comfortable new home and I have no doubts They will attract many new comers and many preachers. I joined in Paris at the Rue Lesueur Temple and Radha Parisisvara where the first deities I served. I pray I can be of service to Them again in a not too distant future. Your servant Radhacaran.

  6. sailendriya says :

    Hare Krsna!
    That is such good news!
    Sri Sri Radha Paris Isvara are very dear to me as I had the honour of serving them in the old temple in Rue le Soeur all those years ago!
    I have worried about their position and it is wonderful to know that they will have a great new temple at last!
    Sri Sri Radha Paris Isvara ki Jai!!

  7. gaura bhakta dasa says :

    Hare KRSNA
    I have read the enthusiastic reply to the new temple of sri radha paris isvara and i would like to thank all devotees of the world for their blessings .
    When the temple will be ready we invite all devotees to come and give their association.
    such a wonderful mouvement that srila prabhupada created so that the all world can come and live .
    Actualy he built this house (krsna consciousness) because he knew that in material world people are alone and sad .
    So temples and centers are shelters for all people .I remember first time i visited temple was in london (bury place )i have offered my obeisances to the deities radha london isvara,
    and few weeks later my life changed.
    in conclusion we can say : temples are transcendental !
    your humble servant gaura bhakta dasa

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