今天下午，吉祥宝聚寺迎来了长青班约230位的年长者，大殿里不断传来阵阵的笑声和掌声，热闹非凡。正所谓，“家有一老，如有一宝”，更何况是一群总年龄过万岁的阿公阿嬷回到了心灵之家, 所有的“家人”都雀跃不已, 积极热心款待。节目安排得非常紧凑，也非常地贴心。尤其颁发《全勤奖》及《念佛精进奖》的时候更是充分地体现了阿公阿嬷们活到老学到老的精神，是值得我们效仿的楷模！
Earlier this afternoon, the main shrine hall of BW Monastery was filled with lots of warmth and laughter as a group of 230 elderly from the Evergreen classes came for a visit. Like the saying “there’s no place like home”, the organizers and volunteers had taken much efforts to plan the event and lined it up with lots of activities to provide our dearest ah-gongs and ah-mas with the best experience possible.
One of the programs, was an award ceremony to congratulate those who had never missed a session of class in the past year, and also to the top 3 students in each class who clocked the highest records in chanting. Despite their age, they continue to persevere joyously in learning the dharma and are truly role models whom we can learn from!
A few of our classmates attended the event, let’s hear what they would like to share. ☺
“I am very grateful to the volunteers, care coordinators and monitors who have accompanied my mother these few years as my mother is a much happier person after starting her classes beginning from the senior citizens monthly class to bi-weekly insightful praises class and eventually the weekly dharma class. She is enjoying this journey with fellow virtuous classmates and volunteers and currently looks forward to join these classes every week. They have certainly warmed her heart and filled her daily life with love and kindness.
My gratitude to the Three Jewels and rejoice everyone’s contribution in enriching the lives all these senior citizens. Rejoice with gratitude! 👏😊🙏”
“In the past, Ah Mah was able to walk and run, she will always make a point to attend the Evergreen class, happily make lots of kueh kueh for her classmates and get her certificate for 颂经奖.
After a fall last year, she was unable to walk and has to be seated on wheelchair. Now, she hardly goes for her classes as everyone at home is busy working and unable to bring her to class. Today, she took the initiative and told us she wanted to attend the Evergreen 殊胜日. She was very happy at the event and rejoiced those receiving the awards. She recollected that she used to receive 颂经奖 in the past and shared that though she didn’t receive the certificate this time, she felt happy chanting at home too.”
“I feel truly honoured to have this opportunity as a docent guide to share with the old folks from 长青班about the Monastery. Though there were changes to the plans till the day before the event, it’s amazing how the organizers and volunteers responded promptly and worked together in harmony. During the docent guide by the group members, multiple dialects filled the air, as we took imaginary steps with the old folks around the monastery and learn more about the place. Eventually, everything went well with blessings from the Three Jewels and it was certainly the best outcome we could have hoped for.
In fact, I have totally forgotten about my stage fright standing in front a large crowd too! It’s also a heart-warming experience to watch how volunteers, family members, as well as venerables expressed lots of care and concern in their words and gestures when communicating to the old folks. Rejoice to everyone who has participated!”
“When Sister PeiEr approached me to help in the planning of the docent sharing for Evergreen Class, I didn’t know what to expect. In the past, I have co-ordinated secondary school students for the learning journeys but 250 elderly doing a monastery visit is something not attempted before by our Training and Development Department nor the monastery.
After a meet-up with the Organising Committee of Evergreen Classes, we better understood their needs and constraints. Though we may not be familiar with each other, our goal was the same. To let the seniors have a memorable, enjoyable and safe visit. We made multiple adaptations to our plans in order to ensure that the elderly are well taken care of.
Sister Guat Meng and I continued to make arrangements for the visit as Sister PeiEr was going overseas. We made a great team!
All came together to a wonderful finale on 10.9.17 for the one-stop docent sharing to the elderly in the main shrine hall. Like watching the National Day Parade in comfort of our homes, the elderly had the magnificent view of the Buddha and Bodhisattvas while listening to the docents sharing done in Cantonese, Hokkien and Mandarin with PowerPoint slides on BW Monastery’s facilities! They even took a virtual trip to Canada, learning about the spiritual lives of the venerables there.
The Blossom Seeds team also shared about their outreach programmes and taught the seniors some good exercises!
Not forgetting our IT wizards behind the scenes. They were trained in the morning and by the afternoon, were all ready to serve at their station!
Kudos to all the docents, volunteers, organising committees and family members who supported the seniors in their participation!
GRATITUDE TO THE TRIPLE GEMS FOR A SUCCESSFUL EVENT FOR THE ELDERLY!
REJOICE TO ALL! ”
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