October 19, 2021

ISKCON Alachua Hare Krishna Temple, Founder-Acharya His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada

Temple Newsletter

The small "chota" Deities at ISKCON Alachua Hare Krishna Temple

Hare Krishna! The auspicious month of Damodara, Kartika, begins on Wednesday. We've updated our Fall Festivals & Events schedule, including the schedule for Govardhana Puja. Nectar Talks features Balavanta Dasa. Support our Cow Program Fundraiser, and get delicious baked maha-prasad goodies. Help needed in the kitchen on Sundays. And Festival of the Holy Name will be back in its usual location this year. For details, please read on...

Fall Festivals & Events

Kartika offering of lamps to the Deities

First day of Kartika, Wednesday, October 20, the sacred month of Damodara begins. We'll arrange morning walk-through offering of candles, with a roped off area similar to how we handled this last year. The Gopi Gita verses from the Srimad-Bhagavatam will be chanted in the temple room in the evenings, 8:00 p.m; join online or in person.

Diwali, Thursday, November 4. The altars will be beautifully decorated with lights during evening arati, 6:30 pm. Prasad sweet boxes will be available, and there will be a fireworks display;

Govardhana Puja, Friday, November 5. Schedule:

7:20 Guru Puja

8:00 am Deity darshan, Damodarastakam

8:30 am special morning class

9:30 am Giri Govardhana abhisheka by temple pujaris

4:15 pm kirtan in the temple room

5:00 pm Go Puja outside at cow pen

5:15 pm Circumambulate Govardhana Hill

Prasad feast to-go boxes can be picked up starting at 5 pm.

Srila Prabhupada's Disappearance Day, Sunday, November 7.

Festival of the Holy Name, Friday - Saturday, November 26-27, 10:00 am - 9:00 pm.


Maintain Your Temple with a Monthly Tithe

Tithing is the monthly giving back to Krishna of some amount of your hard earned money. As one writer puts it "The basic question is not how much of our money we should give to God, but how much of God's money we should keep for ourselves.”

Your tithing dollars help us pay the regular monthly bills, the electric, gas, water, bhoga expenses, flower budget, yard maintenance, etc. When you come to the temple any day of any week and see the beautiful darshan, the refreshing gardens, breakfast, lunch and feast prasad, understand that this is possible because of our regular monthly tithing donors.

It is the privilege and responsibility of every member of this community to support Krishna's temple.

Become a tither today. Choose an amount you feel comfortable giving each month. Please click here to sign up!


We Need Help to Bring You the Sunday Feast Every Week

  • Kitchen cut up 7:00 am, come on over and join the fun.
  • Packing prasad boxes from 3:30 pm, more hands make fast work. Get to know your fellow New Raman Reti devotees, and remember, service to Krishna's devotees is the highest service.
  • Clean up: wash pots, wipe down counters, sweep the floor, take out the trash, eat humble pie. It's delish!

Nectar Talks with Balavanta Dasa

Balavanta Dasa

Look for Nectar Talks Episode 16 on Wednesday, November 3, 2021, 7-8 pm EDT, when Namamrita Dasa hosts Balavanta Dasa, one of ISKCON’s pioneers. Hear about his contributions to the development of New Raman Reti dhama. Learn about his southern upbringing and how he balances his solid footing in both the secular and devotional world through his successful law practice, and his practice of Bhakti. Take a peek into Balavanta Prabhu’s vision for modern spirituality. Look for us on:


Facebook: Nectar Talks Live & ISKCON Alachua

YouTube: Nectar Talks & ISKCON Alachua Hare Krishna Temple

You can also hear us on Apple Podcast & Spotify


Cow Program Fundraiser

Cakes, pies and cookies, photo courtesy of Shutterstock

Although we are unable to hold the in-person auction this year, you will still be able to support the cows on the most auspicious day of Govardhana Puja, Nov 5, during the most auspicious month of Kartika where all of your devotional service is magnified a thousand times. Our super-excellent bakers will offer all sorts of cakes and pies, burfis and sweets on the altar for the pleasure of Sri Sri Krishna Balarama throughout the day. We will then box them up and anyone who donates $108 or more, either on site or online (see button below), can stop by our fundraising table on the temple veranda during the time of the Sunday walk-through darshan and pick up a box of delicious baked maha-prasad goodies to take home.


Festival of the Holy Name

Festival of the Holy Name

We are excited to announce that this year, Festival of the Holy Name will be back at its usual location at ISKCON New Raman Reti! Join us for two days of kirtan on November 26 and 27 from 10:00 AM to 9:00 PM. We look forward to singing, dancing, and feasting together with all of you. 

Of course, there will be certain safety protocols in place and registration will be required for all attendees. Details and registration form are here.

Let's Experience Kirtan together again!



Festival of the Holy Name banner

On the Receiving End of a Meal Train

Bhakti-lata Dasi

Recently I had my personal battle with the Coronavirus; a very difficult one. For the first week I barely ate at all, lost ten pounds, and became so weak that I could barely stand up or walk. By Krishna's grace, my good friend Rasa Macknight saw my condition and offered to organize a meal train for me. It was the kindest and also the most uncomfortable offer I had ever received; I have always been the commander in chief of our kitchen, and I couldn’t even conceive of others cooking for me. I have happily participated in meal trains before, but I never saw myself as someone who would ever need one. Even in my extremely weakened state, I was thinking, “Oh, I can cook, it’s not so hard,” but the reality was that I just couldn’t. So, after my initial reluctance, I surrendered.

I was not prepared for the emotional response I had the first time a meal was brought to my house. On the giving end, I had always thought that bringing someone a meal was just helpful and kind. On the receiving end, being in such a weakened and helpless position, these wondrous meals, cooked with love by my friends, overwhelmed me with a gratitude that I didn’t expect. 

Being sick can bring about a great feeling of isolation, helplessness, and uselessness, apart from others. I certainly felt like that, being accustomed to being very productive and always engaged in active service. But when the meal trains started, these feelings dissipated, and I felt part of the community. I felt loved, seen, valued, and cared for. And, as Mother Adigopi Priya beautifully worded it, “the prasadam from a meal train tastes like love.” I felt nourished physically, emotionally, and spiritually. And the combination of nourishing meals with the opportunity to rest my body completely, was the magic formula for being able to recover completely. 

The angels on my meal train were Mother Rasa Mackight, Mother Ragatmika, Mother Ananta Rasa, Mother Adigopi Priya Bosworth, Mother Mukhya, Mother Ballavhi, and Mother Manmohini. I am forever grateful for their care and love. 

I am presently on the other side of the sickness, though still anemic, but now that I have the complete picture (the giving and receiving ends of a meal train), I can’t wait to build up my stamina again so I can jump on the next train and bring a loving meal to a devotee in need. 

Your servant, Bhakti-lata Dasi


Srila Prabhupada Lilamrita Readings in Weekly Installments

Srila Prabhupada Lilamrita readings

Hear about Srila Prabhupada's struggles and glories in spreading Krishna consciousness throughout the world. Receive 10-minute installments of audiobook readings of Srila Prabhupada Lilamrita [his biography] sent to your WhatsApp or Telegram every Monday, Wednesday and Friday, read by disciples of Srila Prabhupada. Subscribe via the following links:

WhatsApp: https://chat.whatsapp.com/LacCajLtzpnGI4svUiCCAh

Telegram: https://t.me/PrabhupadaNectar

If you are a Prabhupada disciple and would like to read a 10-minute extract, please drop us an email to: [email protected] We will send you the 2-page extract to be read.

Begging to remain your servant,

Vrisabhanu Dasa (on behalf of the Srila Prabhupada Nectar Team)


In Memoriam: Pita Dasa

Pita Dasa

Pita Dasa ACBSP (second initiation from Tamal Krishna Goswami) passed away last week of natural causes. He had retired to the Alachua community two months ago. Pita Dasa joined in Miami, served in Atlanta, on the Radha Damodara TSKP, on the Library Party in India and was there for the last month in Vrindavan when Srila Prabhupada was passing away. He then served alongside Tamal Krishna Goswami, and lived and served in China for many years. Click here to hear his memories of Srila Prabhupada.


Virtual Jagannatha Puri Parikrama

Karttika Sriksetra Parikrama

Oct 29-31, 2021, ISKCON Mayapur will organize an online Jagannatha Puri parikrama, taking you on a virtual tour of the holy places associated with Lord Jagannatha and Lord Chaitanya Mahaprabhu's pastimes. Three days of pure immersion in Jagannatha consciousness during the auspicious month of Kartika. You will have the opportunity to hear from HH Jayapataka Swami, HH Bhakti Purushottama Swami, HH Bhakti Vijay Bhagavat Swami, HG Atul Krishna Prabhu and many other senior vaishnavas. It will be an interactive program where devotees can ask live questions to the speakers, participate in a quiz and receive amazing gifts.

Seize the opportunity! Click here to register for free.

For more details, contact the organizers via WhatsApp:

+91-9733578071 or +91-9593400192


Deity Maha Items Available

Deity Maha Items are now available on the Radharani Club site:


Clothing and backdrops are wonderful to use for your personal home deities, or to display, or use for your children to dress up. They also make great gifts for the devotees in your life.

Please check out the full listing of what items have been retired from their service to the New Raman Reti Deities and are available right now. You can order online and make pickup arrangements with Mahamaya Devi Dasi. If you need items shipped, email [email protected]  

Grief Support Group, facilitated by Rambhoru Dasi

Guesthouse Accommodations

Our guesthouse is now open for overnight stays with certain restrictions. Please call the temple office for more information: 386-462-2017


Govinda's Gifts

Govinda's Gifts, located next to the Alachua temple building, is receiving new shipments every week. New in stock now: young lady's anarkali dresses, baby ankle bells and pure silver bracelets, silver and tulasi neckbeads for children, beautiful photos of Radhe Shyam and Krishna Balaram, framed and unframed, men's kurtas. Your purchases directly support the temple. Open on Sundays 4:00 - 6:30 p.m.


Request a Prayer

As devotees progress on their path towards becoming more Krishna conscious, sometimes obstacles arise in the form of physical or mental distress. We have re-launched our Prayer Circle of senior devotees who are willing to pray to Their Lordships for you or a loved one to help you overcome such obstacles. To submit a request, and for more information, see the Prayer Circle page on our website.


WhatsApp Broadcast List

The temple has started a WhatsApp "broadcast list" similar to a phone tree. If you are a member of our Alachua / Gainesville / North Florida ISKCON temple community and would like to receive important temple announcements in a timely manner, on your cell phone via WhatsApp text messages, please follow these steps:

1) Install WhatsApp on your cell phone (if you haven't already.)

2) Add the temple's WhatsApp number 352-922-0252 to your phone's Contacts, naming the contact "ISKCON Alachua WhatsApp" or similar.

3) Open WhatsApp, find the temple contact you just created, and text us (from within WhatsApp) a message with your full name, location (nearest town or city) and a request to be added. Example: "My full name is (devotee name / legal name) ______. I live in (town / city) _____. Please add me to the temple WhatsApp broadcast list."

We intend to use this list sparingly, only to send important messages when needed, from time to time; for instance, coordinating temple services, changes in schedules, important reminders relevant to our Alachua community of devotees. Only the admin can send messages to the list, avoiding the back-and-forth messaging between people.


Listen to Past Lectures

There's a treasure trove of nectarean audio recordings awaiting you in our Alachua Temple Live lecture archive. Sometimes people ask us where they can find our recent Srimad=Bhagavatam, Chaitanya-Charitamrita and Sunday Feast lecture recordings. Here's a reminder of where they're stored: from our Alachuatemple.com website menu, click on Live and then Lectures/Podcast. Or go directly to and bookmark https://alachuatemplelive.blogspot.com/. The archive is updated once a week.

Listen to past Nectar Talks interviews and other radio show content here: https://www.alachuatemple.com/radio/


Thank You to Our Donors and Volunteers!

Thank you to all those who have been serving, and contributing, to keep our ISKCON Alachua Hare Krishna temple open and thriving, even in the midst of this pandemic.


Online Events

The ISKCON Alachua Temple broadcasts daily live scripture classes at 8:00 a.m. on our Facebook page and YouTube channel, with audio recordings here.

On Thursdays, 5:00-6:00 pm, Bhagavad-Gita reading and discussion with H.H. Bhaktimarga Swami.


COVID Resources


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Procedures to Visit the Temple

The wearing of face masks and social distancing between non-family members is required on temple property at all times, including for children ages 5 and older. If you are feeling sick, stay home. No loitering. When available, prasad will be distributed in pre-packed to-go containers and we request you take it home with you, so that masks can stay on at all times.

We are open only during scheduled arati times, daily from 4:30-5:00 am, 7:15-8:45 am, 12:00-12:30 pm, 4:15-4:45 pm, 6:30-7:00 pm, and on Sundays, 4:15-6:30 pm. Maximum occupancy of 30 spaces marked on the temple room floor for people to stand or sit, socially distanced, first-come, first-served. (Two family members may share one X-marked spot.) Walk-through darshan at busy times including 7:15-7:45 am daily, and 4:15-6:30 pm Sundays. The temple closes by 7:00 pm each day. Watch our live broadcast on our Facebook page or YouTube channel. Additional details in the "Safety Protocols for Summer Festivals" section.


Guidelines on Travel

The temple follows CDC and our local medical team's guidance for COVID 19 protocols. As more people are traveling now, here are our guidelines on travel.

After Domestic Travel IF YOU ARE VACCINATED:

  • Self-monitor for COVID-19 symptoms; isolate and get tested if you develop symptoms.
  • Follow all state and local recommendations or requirements.

You do NOT need to get tested or self-quarantine if you are fully vaccinated or have recovered from COVID-19 in the past 3 months. You should still follow all other travel recommendations.

After Domestic Travel if you are not vaccinated:

  • Get tested with a viral test 3-5 days after travel AND stay home and self-quarantine for a full 7 days after travel.
  • Even if you test negative, stay home and self-quarantine for the full 7 days.
  • If your test is positive, isolate yourself to protect others from getting infected.
  • If you don’t get tested, stay home and self-quarantine for 10 days after travel.
  • Avoid being around people who are at increased risk for severe illness for 14 days, whether you get tested or not.

Self-monitor for COVID-19 symptoms; isolate and get tested if you develop symptoms.

Follow all state and local recommendations or requirements.

After International Travel if you are vaccinated:

All air passengers coming to the United States, including U.S. citizens and fully vaccinated people, are required to have a negative COVID-19 test result no more than 3 days before travel or documentation of recovery from COVID-19 in the past 3 months before they board a flight to the United States.

After travel:

Get tested with a viral test 3-5 days after travel.

Self-monitor for COVID-19 symptoms; isolate and get tested if you develop symptoms.

Follow all state and local recommendations or requirements after travel.

After International travel if you are NOT vaccinated:

  • Get tested with a viral test 3-5 days after travel AND stay home and self-quarantine for a full 7 days after travel.
  • Even if you test negative, stay home and self-quarantine for the full 7 days.
  • If your test is positive, isolate yourself to protect others from getting infected.
  • If you don’t get tested, stay home and self-quarantine for 10 days after travel.

Avoid being around people who are at increased risk for severe illness for 14 days, whether you get tested or not.

Self-monitor for COVID-19 symptoms; isolate and get tested if you develop symptoms.

Follow all state and local recommendations or requirements.

Where to get tested: Florida Department of Health in Alachua County. Also, CVS Pharmacy in Alachua offers drive-through testing by appointment, either rapid or lab tests.

Where to get vaccinated? CVS, Walgreens and Publix continue to administer COVID vaccines to anyone age 16 or older; the Pfizer vaccine is available for anyone age 12 or older.

CVS: https://www.cvs.com/immunizations/covid-19-vaccine

Walgreens: (click here)

Publix: https://www.publix.com/covid-vaccine/florida

ISKCON Alachua Temple building entrance with flowering bushes. Photo by Madhuryalilananda Dasi, our gardener.

Class Schedule & Vaishnava Calendar

Week of October 19, 2021

TUE 19 - Sukhada Devi Dasi, SB 1.17.1-2

WED 20 - Chaturatma Dasa, SB 1.17.3

Disap. Murari Gupta, Lakshmi Puja, Beginning of Kartika

THU 21 - Tamohara Dasa, SB 1.17.4-6

FRI 22 - Dharmaraja Dasa, SB 1.17.7-8

SAT 23 - Puskara Dasa, CC Madhya 19.160

SUN 24 - Adikarta Dasa, Sunday Feast Lecture

MON 25 - Chaturatma Dasa, SB 1.17.9

Disap. Srila Narottama Dasa Thakura

TUE 26 - Nandini Kishori Devi Dasi, SB 1.17.10-11

Morning class times are 8:00 a.m. EDT unless otherwise noted. The Sunday Feast lecture begins at 5:15 p.m. Tune in live to our ISKCON Alachua Facebook page or YouTube channel; listen to audio recordings in our lecture archive.


Departments and Links

Govinda's Gifts (open Sundays 4:00 - 6;30 p.m.)

Hare Krishna Social Services:

Email: [email protected]

Call: Radha Selvester 9 am - 9 pm 352 727 8211

Night time calls for serious emergencies only.


Newsletter Staff

Editor-in-Chief: Mukhya Devi Dasi

Production Assistance: Manorama Dasa

Article submission deadline: 1:00 p.m. Fridays

Send articles and photos to [email protected]

The editors reserve the right to exclude or edit submissions.

Dedicated to our ISKCON Founder-Acharya His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada 


Hare Krishna Hare Krishna Krishna Krishna Hare Hare

Hare Rama Hare Rama Rama Rama Hare Hare

... and be happy



ISKCON Alachua Temple FacebookISKCON Alachua Temple TwitterISKCON Alachua Temple InstagramISKCON Alachua Temple YouTube

Questions? Contact us today 1-386-462-2017

Email: [email protected]

Website: www.alachuatemple.com

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ISKCON Alachua Temple

17306 NW 112th Boulevard 

Alachua, FL 32615