Sripad Avadhut Maharaj took the midnight express train from Moscow last night, and arrived in Saint Petersburg at eight o' clock this morning. He has come up specifically to celebrate Srila Sridhar Maharaj's Vyasa Puja.
The 108th anniversary of Srila Sridhar Maharaj appearance is actually tomorrow, but since the weekly public service in Saint Petersburg is held on a Saturday, there will be a big program in the temple later this afternoon to celebrate Srila Guru Maharaj's birthday.
About seventy devotees and guests attend the festival, which has been advertised locally with posters and pamphlets. Avadhut Maharaj begins the program with a brief talk highlighting significant events in Srila Guru Maharaj's biography, and I give a slide show presentation put together with pictures from the Sri Chaitanya Saraswat Math archives, showing Srila Guru Maharaj from his early days in Calcutta with Srila Bhaktisiddhanta to his final days in Nabadwip with Srila Govinda Maharaj.
After a rousing kirtan and arati, Avadhut Maharaj and I help to serve out a splendid prasadam feast in Srila Guru Maharaj's honor. Some of the many preparations include: rice, dahl, curd and other subjis, pakoras, halavah, and sweet rice.