The North American Temple President’s Meeting
January 9 – 12, 2020, Washington D.C.
Mukhya devi dasi : Fifty-one devotees from around the United States and Canada came representing their temples and preaching centers. Badrinarayan Swami, Anuttama das and Praharana devi dasi came to represent the GBC. Manorama das came in support of the ISKCON Youth Ministry, Janaki devi dasi represented the NA CPO, and Vraja Vihari das, the head of ISKCON Resolve also participated.
This is the third year the meetings have been created and run by second generation devotees headed by Gopinatha Bloch. Gopinatha has his Master’s Degree in Organization Development and brings amazing talents, skills and knowledge to this big task. His backup team in making sure all the participants were well fed and taken care of is a super group of second generation devotees from Baltimore, D.C., Alachua (Aravind Itikat and Sri Rama Poddar) and Houston. Rukmini Poddar from Alachua came to create graphic note taking on the whole meeting. It was such a pleasure to work with these devotees, to see their sincere desire to serve everyone and take part in ISKCON as we push into the future.
If you go to this link http://bit.ly/37GMyca, you’ll be able to see some of the details and the topics we covered. All information sharing was done is small group settings. This method is very effective for bringing points across, you get to learn from peers experiencing success and problems, develop real and personal relationships, and even learn more about yourself. It left everyone feeling satisfied, uplifted, enthusiastic and connected.
One nice program that came out of the meetings is creating local regions for more small group discussions, information and resources sharing, and giving and getting support. Alachua is part of the South East region which includes Tallahassee, Jacksonville, Gainesville Krishna House, Orlando, Atlanta, Hillsboro N.C., and New Talavan. Manorama das joined in with us. Miami temple was not represented at the meetings, but could always join in if they want to.
We plan to maintain quarterly Zoom meetings, share festival information, look at ways to utilize our “retiree” talent, create educational courses for our region such as the Grhasta Course and the Disciple Course; look at bulk buying. We are looking at creating a Regional Retreat and a Regional Tour on Manorama prabhu’s bus. There is so much we can accomplish by working together, knowing each other better, and giving support as we are best abled to do. With an emphasis on these things our TP Meetings are a great experience.