Kanchuka Puja and Flag Blessing ceremonies held in Anuradhapura in view of 73rd Anniversary of Navy

Demonstrating its deep reverence, the Sri Lanka Navy held the Kanchuka Puja and Naval Flag Blessing Ceremony under the patronage of Commander of the Navy, Vice Admiral Priyantha Perera, along with the attendance of the President of Navy Seva Vanitha Unit, Mrs. Mala Lamahewa on 16th and 17th November 2023. The events, organized by the Naval Buddhist Association, unfolded at the Ruwanwelisaya and Jaya Sri Maha Bodhi in Anuradhapura, in anticipation of invoking blessings on the forthcoming 73rd Anniversary of the Sri Lanka Navy, slated for 09th December 2023.

To mark Sri Lanka Navy’s 73rd Anniversary, a series of multi-religious events are scheduled to commence. The Commander of the Navy initiated the ceremonies by participating in Buddhist rituals, paying his obeisance to the Chief Incumbent of Ruwanweliseya, Chief Sanghanayake of North Central Province and Chancellor of the Rajarata University, Venerable Ethalawatunuwave Ganathilaka Thera on 16th November. Subsequently, the Kanchuka Puja ceremony took place at the Ruwanwelisaya, where the Commander of the Navy flanked by senior officers, expressing their spiritual reverence, adorned the pagoda with a 300m-long Buddhist Flag which was brought to the premises by a colourful procession.

Following that, under the insightful guidance of the Venerable Ethalawatunuwave Ganathilaka Thera, Deputy Chief Incumbent of Maha Vihara and Maha Pirivena and custodian of the offering of Ruwanweliseya, Venerable Kuda Galaweve Ganawimala Thera, oversaw the performance of religious observances. Concurrently, offerings of Pirikara and Permissible Drinks (Gilanpasa) were presented to the Bhikku.

This morning, on the 17th of November, the Vice Admiral Priyantha Perera called on the Atamasthanadhipathi, Chief Sanghanayake of Nuwara Kalaviya, Most Venerable Pallegama Hemarathana Thera. Following this visit, a vibrant procession accompanied the naval flags to the sacred Jaya Sri Maha Bodhi, where blessings were sought. During the ceremony, Chief Adhikarana Sanghanayake of Northern and North Central Provinces and Chief Incumbent of Lankaramaya, Venerable Ralapanawe Dhammajothi Thera, performed Pirith Chanting and invoked blessings on the naval flags.

At the invitation of Commander of the Navy and under the guidance of Most Venerable Pallegama Hemarathana Thera, Chief Sanghanayake of Northern and North Central Provinces, Venerable Dr. Nugethanne Mangala Dharmakeerthi Sri Sobhita Rathanajothi Pangananda Nayaka Thera delivered the main sermon. During the sermon, he transferred merits on fallen naval war veterans and invoked blessings on missing and disabled naval heroes who ensured the sovereignty and territorial integrity of the motherland. In addition, members of naval family who have made enormous sacrifices all these years, being great pillars of strength to naval personnel, were also acknowledged. While expressing wishes for the Sri Lanka Navy's strength in safeguarding the nation and the continued promotion of Buddhism, Venerable Dr. Nugethanne Mangala Dharmakeerthi Sri Sobhita Rathanajothi Pangananda Nayaka Thera also invoked blessings upon Commander of the Navy, all naval personnel, and their families for success in their future endeavours.

Chief of Staff of the Navy, Rear Admiral Jayantha Kularatne, President of Naval Buddhist Association and Director General Engineering, Rear Admiral Ravi Ranasinghe, Deputy Chief of Staff and Director General Operations, Rear Admiral Pradeep Rathnayake, Director Generals, Area Commanders including Commander North Central Naval Area, Rear Admiral Kanchana Banagoda, Director General of the Sri Lanka Coast Guard, executive committee members of the Navy Seva Vanitha Unit, officers and sailors from the Navy Headquarters and other Naval Commands were also present on these events.