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May 22, 2018 – Vesak Day

I would like to take this opportunity to extend my best wishes to members of the Buddhist faith in Canada on the occasion of Vesak Day.

Vesak is a significant day in the Buddhist calendar as it marks the birth, enlightenment and passing away of Gautama Buddha.

This major festival is observed in Canada and many countries including Bangladesh, Burma, Cambodia, India, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Nepal, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Thailand and Vietnam. 

On Vesak, the faithful attend temple and sing hymns of praise to the Holy Triple Gem – the Buddha, the Dharma (the teachings of Buddha) and The Sangha (the disciples of Buddha).  Special efforts are made to bring happiness to those less fortunate, the disabled and the infirmed.

Toronto is a proud multicultural city that embraces a wide variety of cultures and faiths.  Our city flourishes because of the diversity of people who have chosen to make Toronto their home. It is important to recognize each and every community that plays a part in enhancing Toronto’s social and cultural landscape.

As the Newcomer’s Advocate with the City of Toronto I strongly believe that we must work to together to promote togetherness. We must Respect our newcomer communities. We must Accept our newcomer communities. We should Celebrate our diversity and Embrace our different cultures and traditions, because we are all part of the human RACE.

This festival has deep meaning and significance for all those who share in it.