The course-ending ceremony of the UBCV’s Summer Buddhist College took place at Dieu Ngu Temple on July 4th, 2011. More than 150 enrollees took part in the ceremony which included UBCV Monks, Buddhist scholars, dignitaries, news and television agencies, and fellow Buddhists.
The ceremony began with the national anthems of the United States and The Republic of Vietnam, a minute of compassionate contemplation, and prayers to the Buddha. After the Message from the UBCV’s Deputy Patriarch, the Most Venerable Thich Chanh Lac gave a speech in which he said the UBCV was committed in training and nurturing young people so that they would be well-equipped in their activities and dedicated to protecting their ancestor’s land and dharma. The Most Venerable also advised enrollees to further develop the knowledge that they had acquired during the program to benefit society as well as the UBCV.
In his speech, The Most Venerable Thich Vien Ly, Head of the Summer College’s Organizing Committee, said “From now on, Buddhist Summer College is no longer confined within the grounds of Dieu Ngu Temple; it is present everywhere we are present. Let each of us extend our internal strength and stand with the UBCV in the struggle against National and Dharma tragedies to bring a new life full of dignity to our beloved fellow Vietnamese. In light of that spirit, let us strive to live the life of a Buddha, an unselfish and forgiving life, the one through which Dharma and mankind always keep flourishing …”
Mr. Vo Van Ai, President of the Vietnam Committee on Human Rights and Director of the International Buddhist Information Bureau, emphasize the importance of preparation of personnel so that once the communist regime in Vietnam collapses, the country will have talents ready to manage and further develop Buddhism and society. According to Mr. Ai, this is a challenging endeavor as 60 percent of Vietnam’s current population were born after 1975 and many of them have been brainwashed by atheist communist ideology.
On behalf of the enrollees at the Summer Buddhist College program, Mrs. Kim Loan expressed the enrollees’ gratitude towards the UBCV Monks and lecturers for the profound and invaluable knowledge during the Summer Buddhist College. Mrs. Kim Loan also pledged to apply the knowledge acquired during the program as a guiding light in enrollees’ life.
The ceremony was concluded with the Graduation Certificates presentation.