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  Greetings, friends of the Portland Center!  
 As the days begin to lengthen, let us reach symbolically 
for the light of wisdom shed by the Great Ones of this path. 
Let us honor our Guru, Paramahansa Yogananda 
and our Paramguru, Swami Sri Yukteswar as we gather 
in March  to commemorate each one's Mahasamadhi. 
In Divine Friendship,
Portland Center  of Self-Realization Fellowship
Portland Center E-Newsletter
February-March 2018 - Vol 9,  Issue 1             
In This Issue
From Master
Services and Activities
Mahasamadhi Commemorative Services
Holiday Photo Album
Sunday School Happenings
Long Meditation
2018 Convocation announced by SRF
Day of Service
News from the Managing Council
Other Activities
How to Make a Financial Contribution
Closing Inspiration
Join Our Mailing List!
Contact information for SRF and nearby SRF groups
From Master
"Do not look for a spiritual flower every day. Sow the seed, water it with prayer and right endeavor. When it sprouts, take care of the plant, pulling out the weeds of doubt, indecision, and indifference that may spring up around it. Some morning you will suddenly behold your long-awaited spiritual flower of Realization."
      Paramahansa Yogananda 
Services and Activities 
Upcoming Events:   For information about the regular monthly schedule and additional special activities in February and March, please refer to the Portland Center website or pick up a copy of the Quarterly Calendar of Services in the foyer at Portland Center.
Here are some highlights in the coming months, with more details found in this edition of the newsletter:
February 2018

Long Meditation with kirtan - Saturday 2/17, 10:00 a.m.- 4:00 p.m.
General Membership Meeting, with lunch preceding - Sunday 2/25, 12:00 noon following the 11:00 a.m. service 
March 2018
Paramahansa Yogananda Mahasamadhi Commemorative Service - Wednesday March 7, 8:00 p.m.-9:00 p.m., preceded by optional meditation from 7:15-7:45 p.m.

Sri Yukteswar Mahasamadhi Commemorative Service  - Friday March 9, 8:00 p.m.-9:00 p.m., preceded by optional meditation from 7:15-7:45 p.m.
Daylight Saving time begins Sunday March 11

Day of Service - Saturday 3/17, 10:00 a.m.-3:00 p.m.  
Good Friday March 30:    Center open for individual meditation 10:00 a.m.-12:00 noon
April 2018

Easter Sunday comes early this year -  April 1 - so we're including a preview of Easter events:

Easter Vegetarian Pot Luck - Sunday 4/1, 12:00 noon, following the Inspirational Service   
Sunday School Children's Easter Egg Hunt - Sunday 12/31, 11:30 p.m.-12:30 a.m.

 Mahasamadhi Commemorative Services  
 "To those who think me near, I am ever near"  
We invite you to join us for two Mahasamadhi Commemorative services, honoring our Guru Paramahansa Yogananda on Wednesday March 7, and our Paramguru, Swami Sri Yukteswar on Friday March 9.  
Both services begin at 8:00 p.m. and are preceded by an optional meditation from 7:15-7:45 p.m. Please bring the traditional offering of a flower or flowers, and if financially able, a donation in a plain white envelope.  
Holiday Photo Album

Beginning with a Thanksgiving potluck, our Portland Center family enjoyed a fulfilling season of deep meditations, joyful commemorative services, and spiritual fellowship in our festively decorated chapel. We're happy to share several photos from some of these events: 

Chapel Window Decorations


Nativity scene and Prayer Tree (right) in Information Room

Christmas tree

Our beautifully decorated chapel tree

Enjoying each others' company during our Christmas potluck 

Master's picture garlanded for Birthday Commemorative service and meditation

Master's birthday

Master's favorite carrot cake was enjoyed by all, after singing Happy Birthday to him following the Commemorative service


A heartfelt 'thank-you' goes out to all the devotees whose volunteer service  
made this such a memorable and uplifting holiday season!

Sunday School Happenings

Entrance to Encinitas Retreat 
Last fall three of our Sunday School teachers ventured south to Encinitas Retreat for a weekend seminar and teacher training, where they were able to connect with many other teachers and assistants from various SRF temples, centers, and groups. SRF Youth Services program offers these trainings and seminars twice a year, in the fall and spring, and they are open to all teachers and assistants.  
Thank you to Shikha, Seema, and Kripa for taking the journey and sharing  
the wealth of information with our Sunday School team!  
SRF Youth Services program provides curriculum and detailed guidelines for Portland Center's Sunday School program. To learn more about our philosophy and approach, please visit Programs for Youth at SRF's website, and also Portland Center's website, where you will find information about our Sunday School. 

Long Meditation
Saturday, February 17 We will have a long meditation with kirtan, beginning at 10:00 a.m. and ending at 4:00 p.m. As always, we ask that if you are unable to attend the entire meditation, plan to come for the morning half only. Out of consideration for other devotees, please meditate at home if you have a cough or are possibly contagious. We also ask that you wear clothing and jewelry that do not make noise when you move, to avoid disturbing the profound meditative silence during this special time.

"Find the supreme answer to the human heart's longing for love by loving God and by immersing yourself in divine love through meditation. Give out more love, understanding and kindness; broaden the circle of your love to include all God's children."                 Paramahansa Yogananda

Convocation 2018

SRF standard image
Whether you've never attended Self-Realization Fellowship's annual World Convocation or have participated every year, you are warmly invited to join the SRF worldwide spiritual family for a week of monastic led classes and talks, powerful group meditations, and pilgrimages to places made sacred by the presence of our Guru.  
Convocation 2018 will again be held at the Westin Bonaventure Hotel in downtown Los Angeles, August 5 - 11. Registration for Convocation itself will begin mid-February, but if you do plan to attend, please note that hotel registrations for the 2018 Convocation will be available at participating hotels starting Thursday, February 1. SRF recommends that you book early as hotels fill up quickly, often on the first day that registration opens! For more information and updates, visit the SRF website.
View of the Bonaventure Hotel towers
New for 2018: Simultaneous Spanish translation
will be available during most events 
Day of Service

The deeper you meditate and the more willingly you serve, the happier you will be.
Paramahansa Yogananda

The Managing Council of Portland Center is hosting the next Day of Service, to be held on Saturday March 17 from 10:00-3:00 p.m. There will be a meditation at 9:30 a.m. for those who would like to attend. Not only do we spend the day beautifying our Center, but these events are a good time to meet new people and socialize with other spiritually minded souls. There will be lunch too! So come garden, polish, organize and pray the day away! We hope to see you there. Please sign up in the Information Room if you plan to come.

News from the Managing Council 

Greetings, friends of the Portland Center!  
The council held its first general membership meeting in over a year on December 10th.   Approximately thirty people were present. It was a packed agenda with a budget report, a request for approval on an expenditure for some electrical work and a presentation on replacing our current seating in the sanctuary with new chairs; replacing the carpet throughout the building was part of the overall plan.
We received a lot of feedback that could not be resolved at the meeting so we have decided to hold another general membership meeting on February 25th to look at the chair and carpet proposal again, discuss, brainstorm and hopefully vote on moving forward in the best possible way. Lunch will be served prior to the meeting. Anyone with an interest in having more comfortable seats for meditation, a beautiful sanctuary and to find out what this project will entail is encouraged to attend. Your ideas and participation are encouraged.
Building Maintenance
As mentioned above, we will be having some electrical work done. It will include some basic things like installing GFCI outlets and verifying that everything electrical has a ground.   Emergency lighting will be installed in the sanctuary, foyer, basement and upstairs. Safety and compliance with regulations are our concern.
Your skills are needed!
We have a need for one or more volunteers to join the maintenance committee. Someone is needed to coordinate maintenance projects and oversee routine check-ups on things like smoke alarms, lighting, faucets, painting needs, etc. If interested, please contact the volunteer coordinator Sarah Floyd at PortlandCenterSRF@gmail.com or fill out a volunteer form on our website. It will get sent automatically to Sarah. Thank you!
May God and Gurus bless each one of us as we continue serving, loving, and meditating. We are truly blessed to have the teachings of these great Masters to guide us on our way home.

Portland Center Building Exterior  
Jai Guru!
Sarah Floyd
Sharon Schaefer
Rebecca Field 
You may contact us via email at: PortlandCenterSRF@gmail.com . 
Other Activities
Sunday School
Sunday School classes are offered every Sunday from 11:00 a.m. until 12:00 p.m. for boys and girls ages 3-13 in the Sunday School Room. All children age 13 and younger are encouraged to attend Sunday School and may enroll at any time.

Sunday Socials  
Socials are held on the third Sunday of each month in the Sunday School Room following the Inspirational Service. Light refreshments are provided.  

Kirtan meditations, with devotional chanting accompanied by traditional Indian instruments, are generally held on the last Sunday of the month, from 8:00 a.m. to 10:45 a.m. 
Kirtan Services start  with the Energization Exercises at 8:00 a.m., followed by periods of devotional chanting and meditation.  During the 10:00 a.m. service, there will be chanting instead of an opening prayer and a reading. Master strongly encouraged chanting as a way to deepen one's meditations and devotion. If you are unable to  stay for the full kirtan period, you may enter or leave the chapel during the chanting at 9:00 a.m. and 10:00 a.m.
How to Make a Financial Contribution 
Portland Center of SRF is supported solely by financial contributions from members and friends, and by volunteers who donate their time. Proceeds from our Book Room sales also benefit the Center.
If you write a check to the group, please know that checks payable to "Portland Center" will be deposited locally and used to support our Center's activities, pay utility bills and so on. Checks payable to "Self Realization Fellowship" are sent to SRF headquarters in Los Angeles, where they are used to support SRF's work. It is customary when writing checks during special services such as commemoratives to make the check payable to SRF.  
Some members choose to make regular donations to our Center. One convenient option is to set up automatic bill pay through your bank.
Thank you for your support!
April-May 2018 E-Newsletter  
The submissions  deadline for our next issue  
is March 15 th.
Thank you!   
When I consider Thy heavens, the work of Thy fingers, the moon and the stars,  
which Thou hast ordained; what is man, that Thou art mindful of him?  
and the son of man, that Thou visitest him?
  Psalms 8: 3-4 King James Version
In Divine Friendship, 

E-Newsletter Committee
Portland Center of Self-Realization Fellowship