Buddhist Head Temple Consecrated

May 19, 2008

Author: Christine Morente

Source: The Mercury News


Her Holiness Shinso Ito was the picture of quiet dignity as her followers cheered - and gleefully took her picture at a respectful distance.

When she walked past, they bowed - a sign of reverence for Shinnyo-en's first female leader.

The 66-year-old's task Sunday morning was to consecrate the Japanese Buddhist order's new U.S. Head Temple in Redwood City.

The site was once owned by the Mount Alverno Sisters of St. Francis, a Roman Catholic order. After 40 years on the 24-acre property, the sisters could no longer afford to keep it.

"This was once our home, our temple," said Sister Patricia Rayburn to about 3,000 people who traveled from parts of South and Central America, Asia, and the United States to witness the temple's opening. "This will be blessed and consecrated to be your home and your temple. Together, we set aside this place for a purpose. Everyone can discover and bring out their true self - and bring peace and harmony to our world."