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Kirtan Fest and Inter-faith Prayers at ISKCON of Houston for Harvey Victims

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HOUSTON: Despite all odds caused by hurricane Harvey and related rain and flooding, Kirtan Fest Houston was attended by over 150 guests at ISKCON of Houston over the Labor Day Weekend. The schedule was modified to 2 days instead of 3-day weekend due to city-wide flooding and transportation challenges. The special guests of the festival included: HH Bhakti Sundar Goswam; HG Nityananda Dasa, GBC Member – Texas; HG Gaura Mani Devi & HG Param Das from Vrindavan; HG Amala Kirtan Dasa; HG Advaitacharya Dasa from San Antonio, TX; and HG Gopi Gita Devi and HG Hari Das from Dallas. Due to flight cancellations other special guests were not able to attend the festival.

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In his speech HG Nityananda Dasa, GBC member for Texas, appreciated and encouraged the organizers to make it an annual festival where devotees from different parts of the country can come and relish the taste of holy name in the association of like-minded devotees.  

Texas Governor Greg Abbott proclaimed Sunday, Sept. 3rd as a Day of Prayers in Texas—which happened to coincide with the appearance day of Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakur, who envisioned people from all nations coming together harmoniously through the blissful chanting of the holy names of God. An interfaith prayer segment in the spirit of Thakur Bhaktivinoda was added to Kirtan Fest and was attended by representatives of different faiths. The Vaisnava prayer was sung by HG Gaura Mani Devi. The prayers concluded with the offering of pusphpanjali by the 200 people in attendance, followed by an aarti to Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakur.

HG Guru Bhakti Dasi, Kirtan Fest Chair, says “HH Tamal Krishna Goswami, on his last visit to Houston in 2001, encouraged us to organize an event focused on kirtan & Krsna katha where devotees could come together like they do in Hungary for Janmastami. It took the younger devotees, namely Madhava Charan Dasa, with his organizational skills to get the ball rolling & Ramdas, with his love of kirtan to add tweak the schedule to ensure a smooth flow. We had an excellent team of dedicated devotees who were creative, responsible and fully service oriented which was very refreshing and enlivening to work with. They brought Goswami Maharaja’s desire to fruition and as Goswami Maharaja had predicted, it brought all the devotees blissfully together.”

Conscious Houston, the temple’s youth coordinated a donation drive collecting articles  for donation to shelters in Houston and surrounding area.

For videos, pictures and updates on dates for Kirtan Fest 2018 – please like and follow www.facebook.com/kirtanfesthouston

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