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Dear Members of the Ripa Sangha,

As we mark the passing of our summer retreat, many memories will remain forever etched in our minds….the blessings we received, the deeper practices, shared emotions, the work, moments of irritation, but also the many laughs and moments of grace. The richness of each moment is woven together, staking out a path that builds a shared history with our Teachers. We are so fortunate to have our precious Teachers that illuminate an exciting journey for each of us!

This year marks an important milestone in our common journey. Under the sign of the Fire Monkey, we commemorated the day, month and year of the birth of Guru Rinpoche on August 13th in the exceptional presence of Kyabje Tertön Namkha Drimed Rabjam Rinpoche, along with Dungsey Gyetrul Jigmé Rinpoché and Dungsey Lhuntrul Dechen Gyurmey Rinpoche and other members of the noble Ripa family. Members of the Sangha wished to demonstrate to His Eminence their love and devotion to him and contribute to his long Vajra life through two important and symbolic gestures.

An oak tree was planted on the grounds of our center

On Thursday, August 18th, the full moon day, an oak tree was planted on the RIC (Ripa International Center) grounds to symbolize the strength and integrity of His Eminence’s life and the flourishing of his activities for future generations. The location was carefully chosen with Feng Shui guidance. Sangha members that were present contributed by watering the roots of the tree while Lama Tenzin recited the Long Life Prayer for His Eminence.

Gift of a Golden Vajra

With inspiration from Annie Michel, a collection was organized to raise funds for the purchase of a golden Vajra that will be offered to His Eminence which will symbolize the abundance of our love for him and the Sangha’s wish for his long life. Thanks to your generosity, a total of 3,200 CHF was collected. Following the advice of Gyetrul Jigme Rinpoche, the Vajra will be made using 24 karat gold – the more donations we are able to collect, the greater the Vajra!

We would like to extend this call to those who were not present during the retreat to participate. You may associate yourself with the immense merits of this action by writing to prior to September 8, 2016, if you wish to make an offering.

Sangha Meeting

On August 11th the traditional meeting of the Sangha was held. This year the priority was to share with members the latest news since implementation of new management and a new strategy last December. The presentation highlighted the three most important points of the new strategy that have been implemented to ensure the survival of our center.
1. Commercial development and improved marketing of our seminar and housing facilities to ensure we reach the break-even point.
2. Implement new marketing programs to improve the awareness and recognition of our Center.
3. Strengthen the involvement of the Ripa Sangha in the Ripa Supporter Program to ensure financial stability of Ripa operations – a separate mailing will arrive in the coming days providing further information, including details on how to enroll in this program.

Pujas to remove obstacles for the Ripa International Center

A formal request was submitted to His Eminence upon his arrival at the RIC in early August so he could advise us on the best way to remove obstacles that might still exist and hamper the development of the Center. His Eminence advised us to have a Chöd Fire Puja. The ritual
was performed on Monday, August 15th, led by Dungsey Lhuntrul Rinpoche along with Karma Shedrup, Lama Tenzin, Tashi Palden, Tashi Tobjay, Tenzin Norbu and thirty members of the Sangha who were still present.

By late afternoon and shortly before closing, His Eminence confirmed that the last vestiges and obstacles that had remained were eliminated successfully!  Ki KI SO SO LA JYAL LO!!

We want to thank everyone who participated in this wonderful and close retreat –  your involvement, your smile, your support, your spirit of cooperation and your positive outlook. We also want to recognize all those who participated from afar through their donations. Our attitude and devotion are the true gifts we give to our Teachers!

We look forward to future events that we may again share together. The Fall and Winter program are ready and will be sent by email very soon. Also, please watch for Michèle’s email, highlighting the best moments of the Summer Retreat.

Yours Sincerely in the Dharma,

Begoña and the Entire RIC Team!