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Victory Day Commemorated in New York

Victory Day Commemorated in New York

The 4th Anniversary of liberating Sri Lanka from the cruel clutches of terrorism was held for the second year in a row in grand scale in New York on Saturday May 18, 2013. The event was held at the New York Buddhist Vihara in Queens and was attended by well over 300 patriotic Sri Lankans. The event was organized by the Permanent Mission of Sri Lanka to the United Nations in Collaboration with the Sri Lankan Community of the New York, New Jersey, Connecticut Tri-State area to invoke blessings on the brave men and women who sacrificed life and limb for the unity of Sri Lanka. The multi-cultural and a multi-religious event was attended by Buddhist, Hindu, Islam, Christian Clergy and their representatives from their respective communities.

During the ceremony a two minute silence was observed in honor of all fallen heroes who sacrificed their precious lives defending Sri Lanka. The Sri Lankan National anthem was sung lead by the Catholic choir of New York. Following the National Anthem a flag blessing ceremony was held where the flags of Sri Lanka Army, Navy, Air Force, Police, and Civil Defence Force were blessed by the high priest of the New York temple, Ven. Kurunegoda Piyarhissa Nayaka Thero. The 'Pen Wedeema', to invoke blessings according to Buddhist tradition was conducted by the Dhammajyothi Thero from the Boston Buddhist Vihara. A unique feature which was much in line with the Buddhist Philosophy of spreading Metta even to the enemies, was the invoking of blessings on the deceased terror cades, who are also the children of the Sri Lankan Nation, but unfortunately misguided or forcibly recruited.

Religious services were conducted by Buddhist, Christian, Hindu, and Islam priests. A picture display of the Humanitarian efforts of the Tri-Forces reminded of the hardships suffered by the innocent civilians.

During his speech the Ambassador and the Permanent Representative to the United Nations Dr. Palitha Kohona emphasized the need to remember and honour the sacrifices of the Sri Lankan Armed Forces. Two patriotic songs that were sung by the Queens Buddhist community group and Visharada Shalika Aroshini brought tears to the gathering

Ambassador and Deputy Permanent Representative to the United Nations, Maj Gen Shavendra Silva reminded those present that the Victory Day commemoration is not about celebrating the death of brutal terrorists but is the celebration of the liberation of the hundreds of thousands of innocent Tamil civilians from the grip of terror.

The event was concluded with a candle light vigil by all attendees who placed candles outside the New York Buddhist Vihara. A short Victory Day commemoration documentary video was also played during the Candle lighting ceremony. Later all present got together for a sumptuous meal.


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