Quan Am Statue Dedication Ceremony

Published on July 18, 2013

009I was kindly invited by the compassionate Vietnamese community to attend the statue dedication ceremony of the Quan Am statue at the Chua Tam Bao Vietnamese Temple in Tulsa,OK on June 9, 2013. The statue of Quan Am ( Kuan Yin-Chinese, Kannon-Japenese, Chenrezig-Tibetan, Avalokitasvara-Sanskrit ) at Chua Tam Bao stands 49 ft high and sits on an 8 ft foundation which makes the whole structure 57 ft tall. The statue is made of granite, weighs 400,000 pounds, was shipped from Vietnam in 12 separate pieces in the summer of 2010 and was assembled with cranes. The entire structure was completed late last year and the statue dedication ceremony was scheduled to coincide with the Temple’s Vesak celebration on June 9th. Monastics and laity came from Florida, California, Iowa, Texas, Missouri, Arkansas, Virginia and Louisiana to name a few places as well as from Vietnam and India. Also in attendance was the respected Professor Dr. Le Manh That, Vice Rector of the Vietnam Buddhist University in Ho Chi Minh City. In the late afternoon of June 8th many of the laity were given the Bodhisattva Precepts, and after sunset a preliminary chanting ceremony was held at the Quam Am statue. The vast majority of the photos taken that night contained many orbs or balls of light with varying sizes and several colors – a very auspicious sign! The Abbott of the Temple, Thich Duc Tri, said in an interview with the local newspaper Tulsa World back in March 2011, ” Members of the temple imported the statue to express appreciation to the United States, which accepted them as refugees from Vietnam and gave them the opportunity to live in freedom. We want to contribute to the society the symbol of the compassionate love to all beings and also to beautify the city of Tulsa. ” Hundreds of people attended the formal ceremony and celebration that took place afterwards. Also on hand for the festivities were popular Vietnamese singers from around the country and a Vietnamese news crew. May the Enlightened Activities of Quan Am always continue to benefit the Cries of the World!

Bhikkhu Gunaratana