Message from the Abbot

When three Buddhist monks, Venerables Da Yue, Dun Xiu and Yue Ming established the monastery more than 100 years ago in 1906, it was called the "Big Thatched Hut". The monastery was merely a small hut at the outset. The first Abbot, Venerable Ji Xiu turned the desolate place into arable land and with his calling attracted devoted monks and laymen and established the rustic style of Buddhist Ch'an (Zen) life in Hong Kong. During the war and tremulous times, Venerable Fat Ho, the second Abbot, committed his exceptional vision and enormous effort in building and expanding the monastery, establishing rules and disciplines for the monastic order, and raising funds and building schools for education whilst spreading Buddha teachings. His enormous contribution laid a solid and unshakable foundation for the subsequent progressive development of Po Lin Monastery. The third Abbot, Venerable Tsang Sau devoted to spreading the Dharma and developing the sangha, achieving many merits and delivering many sentient beings. Venerable Wai Ming, the fourth Abbot, had great foresight in establishing active communication with the Buddhist order in Mainland. At his time, the monastery was presented with a treasured copy of Qianlong Tripitaka, bridging a communication gap of 30 years between the two places, also paving the way for Chinese Buddhist order's generous support and donations to the building of the Tian Tan (Altar of Heaven) Big Buddha Statue in Po Lin Monastery. Venerable Sing Yat, the fifth Abbot, led the monastic order in seeing to the building and opening of the Big Buddha Statue, raising Hong Kong Buddhist order's profile at the international level, establishing its position in the international cultural and art arena. Venerable Chor Wai, the sixth Abbot achieved in organizing and delivering large-scaled talks and seminars, spreading Buddha's teachings to the general lay people, to the benefit of the wider community in the long term.

Since I was ordained as the seventh Abbot in 2005, I have set out to carry forward the firm commitments of my six predecessors to spread the teaching of the Buddha for the benefit of all sentient beings and to help the needy people. I have been endeavoring to consolidate and deploy resources for religious, cultural and social services.

Po Lin Monastery has always supported China's policy of "development through education". Since 1996, we have contributed towards the building of over 300 schools under the Project Hope in Mainland China. Construction of the Grand Hall of Ten Thousand Buddhas commenced in November 2007 and the grand opening was held on 31 October 2014. It houses the Hall of Ten Thousand Buddhas, Scripture Library, Meditation Hall, Dharma Hall and a permanent Ordination Platform. This monumental building will be a central place for holding religious and cultural events. The new Grand Hall will have an exhibition venue of over 3,000 square meters for displaying ancient Chinese and precious Buddhist relics. The purpose of setting up the exhibition venue is to preserve relics of historical importance and to showcase Chinese and Buddhist cultural heritage locally and overseas.

The development of Po Lin Monastery is part of Hong Kong history. I am deeply grateful to all for the support given to us over the years. The monastery is progressing with time and will continue its effort in spreading the Dharma and in contributing to the continuous development of education, cultural and community services.

I wish you all good health and well being. May you be blessed with auspiciousness.


Sik Chi Wai