Cultural Diplomacy Initiatives with the Buddhist community in the Philippines

In celebration of Esala Poya Day, a soulful rendition of Bhakti Gee devotional songs was performed by the Filipino members of the Embassy’s staff together with the officers and their families in a ceremony organized by the Embassy of Sri Lanka in Manila and Buddha’s Light International Association (BLIA) at the Fo Guang Shan (FGS) Mabuhay Temple on 23rd July 2021.

The solemn event commenced with the blessings by the venerable monks followed by the offering of poojas and lighting of the traditional lamp.

In her welcome remarks, Ven. Shi Miao Jing, Abbess of the FGS Mabuhay Temple, encouraged the audience to recognize the value of incorporating the teachings of Buddha particularly on the virtues of kindness, compassion, and optimism in their respective lives amidst the current health crisis. The venerable monk also mentioned their foundation’s programs in Sri Lanka particularly their constant support in primary education schools they established in Sri Lanka.

Addressing the audience, Ambassador Shobini Gunasekera elaborated on the importance of the celebration of Esala Poya in commemorating significant events in the life of Buddha. She then commended the notable advocacies of the FGS in Sri Lanka and the Philippines while expressing her interest to collaborate further on any potential activities with the Buddhist community in the Philippines.

BLIA and the FGS are supportive partner-organizations of the Embassy in its cultural diplomacy initiatives towards the promotion of goodwill and friendship with the Filipino people through the sharing of unique facets of culture, tradition, and way of life from Sri Lanka.

Embassy of Sri Lanka
28 July 2021