Nuns - 0ldest Convent 1895
Vandana Puri Devi, President, Saradeshwari Convent 1895:
Invited by Ramakrishna Monk, Swami Bhashyananda, come West
Sannyasini Gauri Mata Puri Devi is the "only woman monastic disciple of Sri Ramakrishna" who founded the "first womens convent" in 1895, commissioned by Sri Ramakrishna. Sri Sarada Devi, the Holy Mother, who after Sri Ramakrishna's passing became known as Sri Sri Ma, the Universal Mother, dedicated and guided Saradeshwari Convent, leaving" her only woman monastic disciple" Sannyasini Durga Mata Puri Devi, to carry on as Sannyasini Gauri Mata Puri Devi's successor.
Swami Vivekananda wrote in 1896: "Hence it is my first endeavor to start a math (Convent) for women. Please show this letter to Gauri Ma,Yogin Ma etc., and through them establish a womens math (Convent). Let Gauri Ma be President there.. I shall supply all the necessary expenses for that work."
Swami Bhashyananda President of the Ramakrishna Order Vedanta Society in Chicago and Vivekananda Monastery in Ganges, MI., translated the book, "Sannyasini Gauri Mata Puri Devi, A Monastic Disciple of Sri Ramakrishna" and sent his disciple Eva E. Schroeder to the oldest women's Convent, making her the first "western woman" to receive sannyas from the Saradeshwari Convent. She received the sannyas name, Sannyasini Gaurivrata Puri Devi. He wrote inviting President Mataji Vandana Puri Devi to come to the Vivekananda Monastery and participate in the establishment of a Temple to Sri Sri Ma and bring to the west, a "Truth Untold" of the direct women monastic disciples of Ramakrishna /Sarada Nuns. They accepted the invitation in 1998 and inaugurated Mother's Temple in Ganges, MI.
The ground breaking ceremony and dedication of the Mother's Temple was celebrated earlier, in Feb. of 1992 with Sannyasini Gauribrata Puri Devi, (monastic resident of Vivekananda Monastery) and disciple of Swami Bhashyananda since 1973, and Ramakrishna Monks, Swami Chidananda, Swami Tapasananda, Swami Atmalokananda, Swami Yogeshananda, Swami Brahmarupananda, Blessings of Swami Sarvagatananda and Swami Bhashyananda Maharaj. Ramakrishna/Sarada Nuns, Oldest Convent 1895, were finally honored.
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