I received a piece of good news from Venerable Roger, CEO of FPMT last night. My precious guru, Lama Zopa Rinpoche, has appointed a new Abbot of Kopan Monastery in Nepal. He is none other than our resident teacher in Amitabha Buddhist Centre, Singapore, Geshe Chonyi !
Lama Zopa Rinpoche has requested the ceremony be done as soon as possible, and on the morning of 14 July at 5.30am a small ceremony was completed. The public official enthronement of Khenrinpoche Geshe Chonyi will be at the end of this year, and many guests from other monasteries, including representative of His Holiness the Dalai Lama will be invited.
Geshe Chonyi has been the resident teacher of the FPMT center in Singapore, Amitabha Buddhist Centre, for the past 12 years. As Geshe-la is still committed to teaching the Basic Program (with exams) to 230 students in Singapore for the next 5-6 years, he will for the time being remain in ABC for about 8 months in a year and spend the remaining 4 months in Kopan.
The retired Abbot of Kopan Monastery, our most compassionate Khensur Rinpoche Lama Lhundrup, is said to be very happy with the arrangement. This transition has come about in the course of Khensur Rinpoche Lama Lhundrup's illness which is at an advanced stage. Lama Lhundrup is quite weak but mentally appears quite calm. There is quite a bit of pain due to the ulcers ... especially one that is pressing against a main artery in the stomach. Lama Zopa Rinpoche has requested that students continue many Ksitigarbha prayers for Lama Lhundrup.
Lama Lhundrup was very happy as this whole transition period has the guidance of Lama Zopa Rinpoche's (who himself is recuperating from stroke) presence in Kopan and Osel's (reincarnation of Lama Yeshe) recent visit. Lama Lhundrup felt this was very auspicious and positive.
Khenrinpoche Geshe Chonyi just came back to Singapore from Kopan last night. May the Dharma continue to prosper under his guidance in Kopan Monastery as well as in Amitabha Buddhist Centre in Singapore. For me, I just feel very fortunate that I have signed up and committed to and able to receive Geshe-la's BP teachings of Lam rim 'bring ba in ABC for the next 5-6 years. After his stint in ABC, Geshe-la may have to focus on his duties in Kopan Monastery. All the very best to our Geshe Chonyi!