Annual Ministry Report 2016

ANNUAL MINISTRY REPORT 2016

ACHIEVEMENTS

Education and Training

SEMINARS AND ACTIVITIES

ISKCON Leaders Sanga (ILS) Seminars 2016 (Delivered in Sridhama Mayapur)

Kaunteya Das – Super Sunday

Iksvaku Das- Vaisnava Life Counselling, The Gita Program.

Manorama das (ISKCON Youth Minister) and Mukunda das (Alachua – CDM Youth)- Youth Engagement

Sri Radhe d.d- Pre.Ma. The Pre-marital program for building successful relationships

Bhakti-vriksha Senior coaches (Vijay Venu Gopal das, Prema Padmini d.d., Vijay Gopikesh pr, Caitanya Avatari pr and Rasamayi d.d.)- Bhakti-vriksha Explosion    

Activities by the Ministers on Training, Supervision and Research

Co-minister H. H. Jayapataka Swami:

  • Annual strategic-planning meeting with CDM central office and managers to promote congregational training
  • Regular Bi-monthly meetings with all CDM staff
  • Providing direction and support towards partnership with ISKCON Youth ministry
  • Developed a new Award & Recognition (medallions) system for congregational preachers around the world.
  • Initiated a research on Children’s programs amongst successful congregations, aiming at producing a generic model to encourage more participation of ISKCON congregations and support Krsna Consciousness engagement for children.
  • Further research and development on different Bhakti Vriksha models.
  • Providing direction in implementing innovative approaches to congregational outreach.
  • Supervision of CDM’s overall annual operation (financial, research, training and promotion).
  • Direction on CDM’s presentations and involvement in 2016 ISKCON Leaders Sanga (ILS).
  • Yearly review of Congregational programs, resources and branding of CDM.
  • Personally visiting areas under his GBC-jurisdiction and supervising local congregational activities
  • Holding Nama hatta planning sessions for expansion and leadership training in Sridhama Mayapur.

Activities by the Co-minister Kaunteya das:

Visits to:

  • USA (Phoenix, Saint Louis, Bloomington, Chicago, Naperville, Milwaukee, Washington DC, Baltimore, Gita Nagari, Towaco, Central New Jersey, Philadelphia & Harrisburg).
  • Russia (Vladivostok, Blagoveshchensk, Irkutsk & Krasnoyarsk)
  • India (Pune, Bangalore, etc.)  
  • Italy
  • Indonesia

Activities by Seva Svarupa Das (General Manager) and Iksvaku Das (Outreach Coordinator)

  • Presentation of various congregational seminars during the ISKCON LEADERS SANGA (ILS) 2016 in Sridhama Mayapur on the topics of: Bhakti-vriksha, Youth, Counseling and Outreach. 
  • Representation of CDM (stall) in London and Reading Ratha Yatras.
  • Training and presentation to Bhakti Vriksha leaders and members in and around London.
  • Presentation of Congregational Awards to Bhaktivedanta Manor congregational preachers.
  • Presentations on Congregational principles and devotee care in Malaysian convention 2016
  • Creation, coordination and delivery of a 10 day pilot course titled Vaisnava Life Counseling (VLC) in Sridhama Mayapur (22 attendees from different parts of the world). This course aims at supporting healthy congregations in ISKCON, by equipping devotees in the practice of providing formal care and assistance to devotees in our communities. It comprises of practical tools in line with Srila Prabhupada’s teachings and promotes the implementation of generic principles of support and counseling for Vaisnavas in different areas of their lives.
  • Congregational training and design of an educational program for BV members in Perth, Australia.
  • Congregational presentations in Kolkata and various temples in South India.

Activities by Bhakti-vriksha Senior Coaches Vijay Venugopal das and Prema Padmini devi dasi in 2016


April               – BV Workshop in Guruvayur Preaching Centre

May                – BV seminars in Simantadvipa Mahacakra (in Mathuradesh, Arabian Gulf)

May                – BV Workshop in Chennai

June                – BV Workshops and Seminars at BV Summer Festival in Russia

June                – Dham Yatra – North India with BV Devotees of Mathuradesh

August            – BV Festival and other seminars and meetings in UK.

August            – Leadership meetings in Simantadvipa Mahacakra (in Mathuradesh, Arabian Gulf)

August            – Janmastami Festival in 3 of our Sectors in Bangalore, where thousands attended

September      – All India BV Family Retreat and Seminars in Hosur, Tamil Nadu

October           – Seminars in Avatari desh and Shyama Desh, Arabian Gulf

Activities coordinated by Bhakti-vriksha Coaches (Manohara Syam Das and Premavati Citra dd)

1. Visit of HG Angira Muni Prabhu in May to Argentina; Delivery of three training seminars; Visits to local Bv groups and organized the BV committee of Argentina.

2. Bv convention in Brazil (Northern Region) organized by HH Yamunacarya das Goswami- During this gathering Maharaja presented the essential aspects of BV development.

3. Yamunacarya Maharaja also visited Buenos Aires, Argentina to support and encourage the development of Bv all around the southern area of Latin America.

Activities coordinated by Bhakti-vriksha Coaches (Caitanya Avatari Das and Rasamayi d.d.)

1.      Minneapolis /Naperville/Atlanta –April / May:

  • There was a special program organized for the devotees who were actively attending Bhakti-vriksha program in Minneapolis. And another big program for the devotees who are attending regular weekly program. Congregation Development Minister HH Jayapataka Swami also visited around the same time and interacted with many new members and encouraged them to be Krsna Conscious.
  • We landed up in Naperville for a short “Meet and Greet” visit with the community leaders and the potential Bv leaders. Based on our assessment we offered couple of Bv implementation options that CDM can offer to help them.
  • On our return, we had a stop-over at Atlanta for a meeting. 

 2.      Surat – June: Conducted a seminar on “How to balance Business, Family and KC life”.

3.     China ISKCON 50 Celebration in July/Aug:

  • We had a five- day program consisting of the history of KC in main land China and the struggle the devotees had to go through in the initial years to bring it up to this stage.
  • After this program, they had organized a Bv training program at the Beijing temple. Around 50 plus devotees participated.
  • After finishing the training, we toured the country side to visit and assess the 2nd batch of Bv leaders who have started their Bv groups.
  • We went to 3-4 provinces before returning back to home base.

4.      Singapore – Aug: There was a contact development program. Around 120 people participated. We told them how they could cultivate all of them and connect them to the local centre.

5.       Madurai – Bv for employees – Time Management Seminar –Sept: We started training them in January 2014 and today they have around 54 Bv groups in a span of two years. In September 2016, they had a specific request for a seminar on “Time Management” to a group of 300 branch heads and managers. 

6.       Minneapolis/Naperville/ Atlanta – Oct:

  • During this visit we did a follow-up with all the “Train the Trainer Program” members of Naperville. We even visited Bv programs conducted by new Bv servant leaders and gave them the necessary inputs.
  • Conducted a Bv training for all the groups organized by the local leader.
  • Rolled out a training program for a selected set of devotees on the basics of Bv and facilitation skills followed by demo of how a Bv program is conducted. 

7.       Madurai –Retreat for Bv –Nov: Sri Sri Krsna Balaram Temple, Madurai had hosted a mini Bv mahamilan.

8.       Tirupati – Devotee care training- Nov

9.       Surat – Grihasta seminar –Dec

10.   Taiwan – January 2017: Celebrated ISKCON 50 and around 10 devotees took the Bv training on facilitation skills. Now they have voluntarily agreed on a sadana tracker program for 3 months. Post that they would start their own Bvs.

Activities in Bangalore (report from Ravindra Nitai Das)

1. We conducted a small ‘Rath Yatra’ festival within our own small premises in the Nagarabhavi centre, wherein there was a full house turn out and lot of festivities.

2. We conducted a SHIKSHA ceremony (photos attached), in which 81 devotees accepted commitments to higher levels of advancement. The details are listed below:

– Shraddhavan 31, Krsna Sevak 15, Krsna Sadak 20, Krsna Upasak 8, Srila Prabhupada Ashraya

 (With this, the potential ‘Shelter’ candidates will be around 10 devotees)

Anukul Keshav Prabhu (and few committee members) had come from ISJM Seshadripuram temple. After the program, we also discussed about our objective towards ‘2020 Bhakti-vriksha’ milestone for Bangalore.

3. Now we have a steady 16 Bv groups in our centre and the total congregation strength of around 200 devotees.

Activities in Kolkata (report from Ashraya Gauranga Das)

Navadvip Mandal Parikrama – 22-26 Jan: Bv conducted Navadvip Mandal Parikrama wherein 800 devotees from Kolkata participated. 

Bhakti-vriksha Annual Convention – 26 – 27 March: 1000 Bv devotees from all Kolkata BV groups participated in this annual event.

Vrinda Garden School – April: With the view of training little Vaishnavas and Vaishnavis in the science of Krsna Consciousness, Vrinda Garden School was established in April 2016. 

New Bhakti-vriksha: As a result of Rathyatra pandal preaching program ‘Jivan Jigyasa’ Seminars were conducted in various areas of Kolkata in 2016. 12 New Bv classes started all over Kolkata after these seminars.

Initiations: 30 devotees from Bv got initiated in 2016. These devotees attend regular Bv weekly programs and are guided by the servant leaders.

Bhagavatam class for youth: In July 2016, weekly Bhagavatam class was started for around 30-40 youth boys in Bv.

Hrishikesh Yatra – 7-18 Oct.

Ekadasi Chaitanya Charitamrita Classes Started

Chaitanya Lila Seminar Started

Bhakti Shastri: 4 Bhakti Shastri batches completed this year. Around 80 devotees completed the course. The batches had started in 2014.

Seminar at ICSI,Bhubaneshwar

Seminar at CA Association, Kolkata

Programs and Partnerships

Tribal Preaching

“ISKCON Tribal Care Initiative” is an initiative of the International society for Krsna Consciousness (ISKCON) to care for the tribal people in India. At this initial stage the initiative will focus on Northeast and East India states.

ISKCON Tribal Care will extend care in five different areas:

  • Spiritual care
  • Emotional care
  • Educational care
  • Healthcare
  • Social care

Bhakti-vrikshas

The CDM is closely working with its network of Bhakti –vriksha leaders to develop further the benefit that Bv is providing to ISKCON. Not only the number of devotees and the grooming of new leaders and preachers, but also the congregational support to local and international projects are some of the many benefits of this program. Since 2014, a working committee was created to promote the streamlining of methods and practices of Bv around the world.

Currently different leaders are delivering training and developing new material or reviewing existing ones for increasing the efficiency of the outreach through Bv. The Ministry is actively working on increasing the training of more leaders and making the availability of resources more widely spread to ISKCON devotees. Translating several of these resources into other major languages is also a priority for our central office.

CDM Youth Service (goals and activities)

  • Producing a youth manual.
  • Prepare presentations to encourage the creation and support of youth programs to leaders and youth worldwide.
  • Maintaining the youth page on Facebook with regular posts about youth initiatives and festivals
  • The CDM office engaging regularly local Mayapur youth to assist in the promotion of Youth Engagement in ISKCON.
  • Promoting youth awareness through Youth Newsletter and social media
  • Created promotional videos to encourage youth engagement
  • Created an international Youth Network with over 20 youth leaders and groups from around the world.
  • Furthering the research for creating a standard Youth Program Package (Manual, Power Point Presentations, etc.)
  • Partnered with ISKCON Youth Ministry to organize the first Youth Leadership Sanga (YLS) in Mayapur in February 2016
  • Supported ISKCON Youth Ministry  with their presentation for ILS 2016

Damodara Program

  • The CDM central office promoted the celebration of Damodara by encouraging teams of devotees to go home-to-home implementing the program in their localities. We used our social media outlets, mass mails to offer devotee the “Damodara Kit” with all the materials required.

Nama-hatta

  • Nama-hatta has reached out to 15,951,000 people. These people have been attending classes, kirtans, bhajans, dramas, honoring prasada, chanting and some are even buying books.
  • 6,200 devotees took training courses in Bhakti Steps (Siksa levels).

ISKCON Prison Ministry (IPM)

(iskconprisonministry@gmail.com, www.iskconprisonministry.org)

This year, the IPM’s report is as follows:

Prabhupada’s Books total: 1,245

Grand Total of all Books and BTGs in 2016: 2,807

CDs: 54

MP3s: 19

DVDs: 9

Japa Mala sets: 62

Neck Beads: 11

Publications

  • Generic Fund Raising Brochure
  • The Sector Leader (Re-print)
  • The Bhakti-vriksha Leader (Re-print)
  • Counseling in Bhakti-vriksha (Re-print)
  • The Bhakti-vriksha Handbook for Members (Re-print)
  • Vaisnava Life Counseling Handbook
  • The Real Business

CDM books for Kindle on Amazon.com:

  • The Sector Leader
  • Free to Preach
  • The Bhakti-vriksha Leader
  • The Third Partner (Eng/ spanish)
  • The Bhakti-vriksha Manual second edition
  • Sri Godruma Kalpatavi
  • The Nectar of Congregational Preaching
  • A Vaishnava in Every Neighborhood
  • Counselling in Bhakti-vriksha

Forbidden Voices (ISKCON Prison Preaching resource – H.H. Candramauli Swami)

Website and Social Media

Website

The website has been upgraded and articles are being posted on a daily basis. 

 www.iskconcongregation.com

Youtube channel

We have 205 videos with a total of 35,525 views.

Facebook pages

We have 4 Facebook pages: ISKCON Congregation, Congregacion ISKCON (Spanish Page), Iskcon Bhakti-vriksha and ISKCON CDM Youth Service.

At present, we have a total of 21,477 likes and an average of 2000 people views on our posts on regular basis.   

Communication (Email: cdmofficeiskcon@gmail.com)

• Maintain correspondence with temple authorities and active preachers to create an awareness of our resources in an attempt to support their efforts.

• Facilitates a communication channel between the temples and preaching centers around the world to share successful experiences and application of our resources.

• Collecting congregational-preaching scores from temples and congregations to ascertain trends in congregational development in ISKCON and to acknowledge outstanding achievements.

• Requesting nominations from GBC members for devotees who have made an exceptional contribution to Congregational development.

• Sending out our e-newsletters on regular basis to keep devotees updated on the activities taking place at the Ministry and on the congregational activities occurring around the world.

  • Management of database nearing 10,000 contacts
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