Hindu temple opened in South Dakota

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Sioux Falls in the Tea suburb of one of the largest cities of South Dakota saw the launch of its first Hindu temple on October 14. The Bhoomi Pooja of the temple site was held in 2016 while cost estimates for the two phases of the temple were placed at $585,000.
Grand opening of the Hindu Temple of Sioux land (HTOS), earlier was scheduled for August 26 but it got delayed due to waterlogging caused by unexpected rains. The Siouxland temple held its first service in Tea on Sunday morning.

Temple organizers say it took 10 years to finally bring a temple to the area. Organizers of The Hindu Temple of Siouxland say they are proud to finally have a temple in South Dakota to call home.
“I think the vision and perseverance of the community is important. This is an example of the will of this community to come together to build this temple,” says Chairman of the Board of Siouxland temple Archana Chatterjee. The temple will be open on Saturdays and Sundays from 10 am to 1 pm. The services are open to all.
Ancient Hindu rituals were performed at the Temple Opening Ceremony (Prana Pratishtha). The Murti Sthapana included sacred pitcher worship, consecration of deities, ceremony of fire and lights, flowers offering, liturgical dance, bhajans etc. These rituals are believed to “endow the temple deities with divine power and bless the community in which they reside”.

North Dakota and South Dakota, States in the Great Plains region of USA are spread out in about 147,814 square miles area. There is a considerable growth of Hindu populations in the Dakotas.
Welcoming this development, Rajan Zed, President of Universal Society of Hinduism, commended efforts of temple leaders and area community observing that it was important to pass on Hindu spirituality, concepts and traditions to coming generations amidst so many distractions in the consumerist society. He hoped that this temple would help in this direction.

The “Mission and Objectives” of HTOS in southwest of Sioux Falls include: “Practice ideals of Hinduism through worship, education and community involvement”. It plans to celebrate “Festival of Lights” on November 3. Archana Chatterjee and Muthukumarappan are Trustees Chair and Vice Chair, while Ramesh Singh and Kalyan Boinapalli are President and Vice President respectively.
Tea, incorporated in 1906 and whose tagline is “a growing tradition”, celebrates “Teapot Days” every June, which include “Crowning of Ma & Pa Teapot”. John Lawler is the Mayor.

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