Marlboro, NJ: The grand opening and Maha Kumbh-abhishekam ceremony of the largest Hindu temple in Marlboro, New Jersey, was held on July 1 involving a live elephant, a helicopter showering flowers, 50 priests, 45 days of rituals and over 10,000 people in attendance, according to reports.
The Muhurtham for the Maha Kumbhabhishekam was set at 10:38 a.m. The consecration of about 20 India-made images of deities carved out of granite and glass-reinforced material was held and devotees and priests from various parts of the world participated in various ceremonies held from June 28 to July 4 in the complex, consisting of Sri Krishnaji Mandir and Sri Guruva-ayoorappan Temple, located in Morganville part of Marlboro.
A procession with the image of Lord Guruvaayoorappan on the top of an elephant, a chariot and vahanotsava of other deities, cultural programs, and recitals, formed part of the opening ceremonies of the Center. Besides the main sanctuary, the center also has a pool, fountains, lawns, a multipurpose hall for events, classrooms, barn housing a cow and a calf and residences for the temple’s 12 priests. The temple will hold classes for teaching various languages of India, free health screenings, food collections for area soup kitchens and fundraisers for disaster victims. About 700 community members were involved in center’s planning.
The Prathishtapana-Kumbh-abhishekam of the center was performed by temple pandits along with scholars from the USA, India and other parts of the world. The center’s daily activities include Pancharath-nam, Suprabhatham, Abhishe-kham, Parayanam, Aarti, be-sides other poojas. It also holds classes in Bharat-natyam, Carnatic music, Gita Vichara, Hindi, Kannada, Kathak, Kuchipudi, Marathi, Sanskrit, Shlokas, Srimad Bhagavad Gita, Telugu, Vedic Religion and Culture, Vishnu Sahasranama and yoga; and activities for children.
Yegnasubramanian, R.G. Krishnan and S.S. Iyer are chairman, vice chairman and secretary respectively of the board while Nandakumar Balija and V. Gundanna are president and vice president respectively of the Executive Committee.
Female majority township of Marlboro, formed in 1848 and recognized as a “Cool City” by the Sierra Club, is known for reported visions of Virgin Mary, The Marlboro Tree and site of The Battle of Monmouth. The Lenni Lenape Native Americans were said to be its first organized inhabitants, where Jonathan Hornik, Jeff Cantor and Jonathan Capp are Mayor, Council President and Administrator respectively. Notable residents include United States Vice President Garret Hobart, footballer Dan Klecko, actress Idina Menzel, actor Kal Penn and sportscaster Jim Nantz.