It was a bright, sunny day and over 1,500 people attended the event. More than 60 Venerables from Taiwan, Canada, and all over the US joined Texas Buddhist Association President Venerable Jan Hai and American Bodhi Center Abbot Venerable Hung I in celebrating this momentous occasion. Together the Venerables lead 48 TBA members in performing the Purification Ceremony. They walked around the Meditation Hall, while reciting the Great Compassion Sutra and the Heart Sutra. This was followed by singing of the American National Anthem and the Song of the Buddha by two TBA members. Next, the Ribbon Cutting Ceremony for this historic event was carried out by eleven Elder Venerables and eleven honored guests and TBA members. Then the Opening of the Meditation Hall was carried out by 88 year-old Elder Venerable Zen Hua. He symbolically used a golden key to open the Meditation Hall and announced to everyone that “From this day onward, American Bodhi Center is officially open to continue to turn the Dharma wheel and to work towards the benefit of all sentient beings”. Lastly, the Inauguration Ceremony of the Buddha Statue was completed in front of the Buddha Statue by five Elder Venerables.
This auspicious event was brought to a close by a colorful and lively performance of the Dragon Dance by 27 members of the TBA Youth Group, which immediately caught the attention and wonder of all the guests in attendance.