President U Htin Kyaw, First Lady Daw Su Su Lwin and family held a ceremony for paritta recitation and for paying respects to the aged in Thongwa in the Yangon Southern District and welcomed the new year.
Paritta recitation is the ancient Buddhist tradition of reciting verses and scriptures in order to ward off evil fortune or dangerous conditions.
President U Htin Kyaw, family and congregation first received the Five Precepts administered by Thongwa Township Ovadaciriya Sitkone Monastery Sayadaw Bhaddanta Kovida and then listened to the recitation of paritta by the Members of the Sangha. Afterward, the President and his family donated offertories to Thongwa Township Ovadaciriya Sitkone Sayadaw Bhaddanta Kovida. The Yangon Region Chief Minister and wife, Yangon Region Hluttaw Speaker, Yangon Region government ministers, Hluttaw representatives and officials then donated offertories to the Sayadaw and monks.
State Sangha Maha Nayaka Committee member Thongwa Myoma Yayle Monastery’s presiding Sayadaw Saddhamma Jotika dhaja Bhaddanta Nandarlinkara then delivered a sermon to the congregation, followed by sharing the merits gained.
The President and his family then paid respect and presented cash and kind to 115 elders representing the 1,514 elders above 80 years old. Elder U Hla Tun expressed words of thanks on behalf of the elders. The President and family then shared merits of the donation.
After the ceremony, the President and First Lady cordially met with the elders.
The President and wife have been holding the New Year donation ceremony in Thongwa since 2012 and this was the fifth time.—Myanmar News Agency