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The Star Born in Matara

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Not everyone is dedicated to altruism. The custom of many is to carry out one’s own work on their own. However, among these persons, we have to accept the fact that, although in small numbers, there are individuals within society who work for the benefit of others. Such a monk who belongs to this rare category is the Chief Incumbent of Pelmadulla Pahala Bopitiya Sri Rathnaramaya and Morathota Sri Bodhirukkarama Temple, Bopitiya Siri Saranankara, bilingual, Dharmadutha Pirivena Director, Ratnapura District Parivenadhipathi and workers’ union chief secretary Shasthrapthi Ven. Watagedera Ananda Nayake Thera.

He respects the service, going to extremes. He bows his head to qualities. He is fearless in acting against unwanted activities. One of this monk’s excellent qualities is not hesitating if someone requires help. Such sons of Lord Buddha are very rare. Our Ven. Watagedera Ananda Nayake Thera is a son of Lord Buddha who belongs to that rare category.

Shasthrapathi Ven. Watagedera Ananda Nayake Thera who was awarded the post of Sanghanayake, was born in the village of Watagedera in the district of Matara and was ordained at the Buthkanda Vihara of the Kella Vihara Sangha generation. He was educated at the Pracheena Prarambha Piriven, upto the Shasthrapathi degree and engages to the maximum in service to the Sasana, society and education.

In 2013, the Saranankara Dweebhasha Pirivena was established and based on assistance both locally and from abroad, houses were built for the Samanera novice monks studying there and their parents. Houses are renovated, hospital facilities are provided, and scholarships are awarded. There are more than 50 student monks living there. This Thera’s student monks number close to 40. Among them are piriven teachers and students studying at foreign universities.

The new Nayake Thera’s social service is extremely special. From 2010, he donated annually to students of schools in the districts of Ratnapura, Matara and Moneragala, without discrimination of race or religion; school bags, footwear, school equipment, etc., were distributed. In 2012, he provided textbooks required for piriven student bhikkus of the Ratnapura district for the Pracheena Panditha degree.

With the support of business communities in Malaysia and Thailand in 2019, 20 and 21, during the period of the Covid-19 pandemic, he donated dry rations to all piriven in the Ratnapura district and Pelmadulla, remote temples in the Ratnapura division, and Meheni Arama.

In 2021/22/23, he provided milk cows to the parents of younger monks who were in the low-income earning category and farming families in those villages with the assistance of the Malaysian Youth Association. He also provided dry rations from the year 2019 to on several occasions to the parents of novice monks.

Among the services this monk rendered to the Sasana is serving as the Secretary of the Pelmadulla Shasanaarakshaka Balamandala and as the Secretary of the Ratnapura District Parivenadhipathi Workers’ Association. He worked together with these institutions for the awakening of Buddhism in the Pelmadulla area and during the Vesak, Poson and Sinhala New Year festivals.

In appreciation of the great services rendered to the Sasana as well as socially on behalf of bhikkus and the selfless life of this monk, with the votes of the Sanunayake Vinshathvargika Maha Sangha committee, including the Chief Prelate of the Malwatte Chapter, of the Shyamopali sect, the Thera was appointed as the Sub-Chief Adhikarana Sanghanayake of the Sabaragamuwa Ratnapura Maha Disawa. The awarding of credentials will be done tomorrow (July 27) at the historic Rajapujitha Malwathu Maha Viharaya Mangala Uposathagarya, Kandy. The welcoming ceremony of this monk will be held on July 31 at Pelmadulla Pahala Bopitiya Temple with local and foreign priests and lay dignitaries.

May the blessings of the Noble Triple Gem be granted to this prelate who is engaged in a vast religious mission on behalf of the Sasana, as mentioned earlier very briefly, and an academic mission, as well as to engage in world religious services for a very long time.

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