The Dalai Lama visits Westminster Abbey

Wednesday, 20th June 2012

The Dalai Lama visits Westminster Abbey

The Dalai Lama visited Westminster Abbey on Wednesday 20th June 2012 for A Moment of Prayer and Reflection in the Nave.

The gathering included representatives from 17 other faiths and Christian denominations.

The welcome, concluding with the Lord’s Prayer, and blessing were pronounced by the Dean of Westminster, the Very Reverend Dr John Hall.

The Reverend Andrew Tremlett, Canon in Residence, read St John 14: 27-28. The Venerable Bogoda Seelawimala, Head Priest of the London Buddhist Vihara, read Dhammapada 183 and 291.

Prayers were led by Lord Singh of Wimbledon, Representative of the Sikh community; Rabbi Laura Janner-Klasuner, Representative of the Jewish Reformed Synagogues; Mr Anil Bhanot OBE, Representative of the Hindu Community; Dr Natubhai Shah, Representative of the Jain Community; and the Reverend Michael Macey, Minor Canon of Westminster and Precentor.

Anthems were sung by the Choristers of Westminster Abbey conducted by James O’Donnell, Organist and Master of the Choristers. The organ was played by Robert Quinney, Sub-Organist.

His Holiness Tenzin Gyatso, the Dalai Lama, is the 14th and current Dalai Lama, as well as the longest lived incumbent. He won the Nobel Peace Prize in 1989 and earlier this year was awarded the 2012 Templeton prize at St Paul’s Cathedral. He is the spiritual leader of the Tibetan community. His political leadership of Tibetan people in exile has been passed to Lobsang Sangay, a former senior law fellow at Harvard University, who is the recently-elected Kalon Tripa (Prime Minister) of the Central Tibetan Administration-in-exile at Dharamsala in India.

The Dalai Lama last visited the Abbey in June 1981 and before that in October 1973.

See also:

The Order of Service (PDF, 89 KB)

The Dean's welcome (PDF, 66 KB)