Disciples and admirers of the late Bhakti Tirtha Swami in Benin, Nigeria honored him with a memorial festival on June 27, the day of his passing. True to Vaishnava tradition, the event was a joyful one, attended by devotees from many countries across West Africa.
Activities began on a Saturday morning with an enthusiastic chanting procession to the public meeting spot. The memorial featured speeches by some of Bhakti Tirtha’s leading disciples, notably Srivas Dasa of Ghana and Pandit Dasa. Pandit, a retired university professor from Benin, spoke at length on Bhakti Tirtha Swami’s teachings about conflict resolutions.
The next day, devotees shared their memories of Bhakti Tirtha Swami. “It was all very blissful,” says fellow disciple of Srila Prabhupada Kavicandra Swami. “I hope that next year we can take more time for such sharing.”
During his lifetime, Bhakti Tirtha Swami was a member of ISKCON’s Governing Body Comission and oversaw many projects in the United States and internationally. He was a spiritual consultant to many high-ranking members of the United Nations, as well as various celebrities, chiefs, kings and high court justices. He conducted seminars on interpersonal relationships, principle-centered leadership and spiritual development, and inspired thousands of Krishna devotees around the world.