Update: Utah's New Hindu Temple and Congregation Leader

May 10, 2003

Source: Deseret News


On May 10, 2003 Deseret News reported that "the resident priest of Utah's newest temple has traded his revered place among the majority faith in India for leadership of a minority faith congregation in a state whose collective population is less than half of his native city... Pandit Shashidhara Somayaji, the new priest of Sri Ganesh Temple, moved from Bangalore, India, to take a job in South Jordan... Shashidhara Somayaji is still getting used to what residents view as a growing suburb, where everyone says 'hello, hello' to a newcomer — particularly a shy-appearing Indian whose faith includes a visible mark in his forehead... After a decade of dreaming about their new temple — not only a spiritual but a cultural gathering place for the state's Indian community — the group opened its new 2,000-square-foot facility for a three-day public dedication celebration last weekend. Pandit Somayaji found himself in the middle of it all after members of the temple committee launched a worldwide search for a full-time priest, and he was invited to apply for the position."