United States 10 October: Flushing Meadows Corona Park

Sri Chinmoy Street

Today we celebrated the 11th anniversary of the dedication of the Sri Chinmoy Street in Flushing Meadows Corona Park. This photograph was taken at the original dedication of the street on October 11, 2006.

We began with our traditional 2 mile race which follows the same course as the 6 & 10 Day Race Ultra Races which are held in late April each year.

Peace Run Executive Director, Salil Wilson, served as MC for the event.

Dr Agraha, who convened the program, introduced President of the Sri Chinmoy Centre, Ms. Ranjana Ghose.

Ranjana read an excerpt of Sri Chinmoy's words from the dedication on October 11, 2006. An excerpt follows, "This particular park, Flushing Meadows-Corona Park, has given me many, many, many, many most significant experiences over the years. I have walked, jogged and run for many, many years. Happy experiences, happy, happier, happiest experiences I have received from this, our beloved park."

"You have blessingfully honoured me today by giving the name of the street in my honour. For that I am extremely, extremely grateful to you. But I am having a new experience here. I feel in all sincerity that you have given me the supreme task of lovingly and prayerfully welcoming people who pass every day here. You have given me the opportunity to be a guard on your behalf to welcome them and offer them my and your—our—loving gratitude."

"Every day during my prayers I shall inwardly see and feel that a most beautiful flower is being offered at the feet of this Flushing Meadows-Corona Park. This place, this beautiful place, has also a most beautiful and powerful, powerful soul. During my prayers, my morning prayers, I shall offer a beautiful flower at the feet of the soul that here presides over the park."

Our choir sang two songs Sri Chinmoy had written in honour of the Sri Chinmoy Street and Heart Garden.

Devashishu Torpy, Co-Director of the Peace Run in Europe, shared some recent experiences of running with the torch in Croatia and Italy.

Our invited guests.

We then symbolically walked the Sri Chinmoy Peace Street.

Nilma Silver, Coordinator of the Sri Chinmoy Peace Meditation at the United Nations, introduced each guest and invited them to share their reflections on peace.

Our dear friend and keynote speaker Ambassador Davidson Hepburn, President of the 35th General Conference of UNESCO and Ambassador to the United Nations of the Bahamas for over 10 years.

Ambassador Hepburn spoke beautifully and included these sentiments, "Sri Chinmoy was an innovator for peace—all that he created was done with the goal of encouraging peace to grow within the hearts and lives of individuals; and thereby to foster world-peace. I have been indeed privileged to take part many times in the Sri Chinmoy Oneness-Home Peace Run which he began in 1987; and I have seen hundreds of children in my own home country of the Bahamas, in Kazakhstan and elsewhere run with boundless joy and enthusiasm – certain they can make a difference for peace. Each and every child who holds the flaming peace torch will remember that moment his entire life."

Jimmy Gennaro, three-time New York City Councilman. Jimmy fondly shared his recollections on working on watches with his watch maker father and likened those traditions with our own life's journey and that Sri Chinmoy, like a watch maker repairing watches, leaves his own mark of indelible love on our souls.

Elliott Denman, Olympian for United States at 1956 Melbourne in the 50 km walk joined us for the wonderful morning.

Coach Jim Hurt, Head Track and Field Coach at St. John’s University, is a dear friend and a regular participant at this event.

Richard Innamorato, Founder and Director of the Broadway Ultra Society, fondly shared his recollections of his friendship with Sri Chinmoy.

The choir closed the program by singing our "Thank you" song.