On August 29, to celebrate Sangha Day while adhering to Covid-19 safety measures, Buddha’s Light International Association organized the Sangha Offering and Blessing Drive-Thru event again this year. At 10 am while the monastics were conducting the Sangha Day Celebration Dharma Service in the Main Shrine, more than 200 vehicles from 20 subchapters of BLIA Toronto were lined up already in an orderly manner outside the Temple. Members couldn’t wait to join the event. At the same time, they also use their mobile devices to join the Dharma service while waiting in their cars.
The Drive-Thru event started promptly at 11 am. Everyone followed the instructions of the traffic control volunteers and began slowly driving past the front of the Temple. They were welcomed and blessed with holy water by the Abbess, Venerable Chueh Fan. The other Venerables also presented the members with flower offerings to the Buddha, and blessing gifts. In addition, because this year, August 29 was also the birthday of the founder of Fo Guang Shan, Venerable Master Hsing Yun. As part of the birthday celebration, the Temple prepared special lunchboxes and birthday buns for all participants. Many people in the vicinity were curious and attracted by the long line of vehicles as well as the chanting of Om Mani Padme Hum on the loudspeaker, some even joined in the Drive-Thru.
Members used flags, ribbons, balloons, drawings, flowers, auspicious greetings and paintings to decorate their vehicles to further expressed their joy and appreciation for the monastics and the BLIA for organizing the drive-thru event. They were intensely grateful for the opportunity to be back at the Temple to meet all the Venerables and volunteers. There was a constant stream of words of appreciation such as “thank you Venerable” and “Shifu Jixiang (Auspicious blessings to Venerable)”. Many of them also filmed the whole process of the Sangha Offering to share with their friends and social media.