‘Katina Cheevara’ Pinkam Procession at Sri Sambodhi Viharaya Commences from Army Headquarters
The “Katina Cheevara Pooja”, one of the most meritorous acts in the buddhist calendar which symbolizes the commmencement of the rainy season and confining to a retreat, got underway at Sri Sambodhi Viharaya, Gregory Road this morning (19) with the cooperation, extended by the Army at the request of the temple incumbent, Ven Daranaagama Kusaladhamma Nayake Thera, preceded by an all-night ‘Pirith Chanting’ ceremony, the previous Vap Full Moon Day (18).
During the early hours, Commander of the Army Lieutenant General Daya Ratnayake, carrying the sacred “Katina Cheevaraya” inaugurated the the colourful procession, comprising drummers and dancers of the Army cultural troupe from the Army Headquarters premises. Many Senior Officers, including Major General Crishantha de Silva, Chief of Staff joined the procession as it wended its way to the temple as organized by the Sri Lanka Army.
Commander of the Army, Lieutenant General Daya Ratnayake, Commander of the Navy Vice Admiral Jayanath Colombage, Mr N.K. Illangakoon, Inspector General of the Police, Mrs Damayathi Ratnayake, President, Seva Vanitha Army Barnch (SVAB), Major General E.M.M. Ambanpola, Chairman, Sri Lanka Army Buddhist Association, senior officers and a large gathering of devotees were associated with the ceremony.
With the offer of “Dehet Wattiya” (traditional tray of betel) to the Mahanayaka of the Asgiriya Chapter, the Most Venerable Udugama Sri Buddharakkhitha Thera who presided the ceremony by the Commander of the Army, the day’s itinerary began with the participation of about 100 monks, reminding of the times of the Buddha who advised monks to be confined to monasteries during ‘Vassana’ (rainy) season without wandering for delivery of sermons outdoor. The ‘Pinkama’ concluded with the offering of the Katina Cheevara, invocation of blessings and offer of “Heel Dana” to the Maha Sangha.