join us in stewardship of Sanshin's present and future.
Dear Friends of Sanshin Zen Community:
I’ve just come from our annual meeting weekend at Sanshin. Our directors live and practice all over the country and outside of it, and nearly all of them came together in Bloomington for two days of intensive meetings about the future of Sanshin. Of course, stewardship was a hot topic for us as we talked with sangha and staff about the kind of support we need to sustain our practice—support in the form of facilities, human resources and general operations. I’m really encouraged by the skills, enthusiasm, creativity and commitment of my fellow directors, and by the potential for our community’s future.
In these years of leadership transition, we have unprecedented opportunities for growth in a number of areas. We’re poised to be able to expand our programming; offer the dharma to more people locally, nationally and internationally; and produce more publications than ever. But first, we need to work on sustainability—and that’s where you come in.
Before we can think about expansion, we have to make sure the current operation is fully funded and sustainable. Thanks to your generosity, we no longer have the budget gap of previous years, and that means we can now begin to look outward a bit to consider new opportunities. To do that we continue to need a strong and stable place on which to stand while we put our creativity to work.
As a community, we have to take a serious look at what it will take to go forward. We’ve outgrown our current infrastructure in several ways and upgrades are going to require more resources. Investigating that and coming up with options is going to take time and effort. Meanwhile, our day to day zazen, work and study activities must go on as we keep the practice style of our dharma grandfather, Kosho Uchiyama Roshi, alive. We need your support to make sure we maintain a solid base while we determine the best ways to respond to the sangha’s changing needs.
Your continued partnership is vital so that we can maintain our financial stability as we head into the rest of the year. If you gave during last year’s fall appeal, can you make an additional donation this time? If you made a one-time donation, can you sign on as a regular monthly donor through an automatic bank withdrawal or Paypal payment? If you didn’t have the chance to make your gift last year, can you offer it now? It’s easy — just click the Donate button at the top of this page to make your payment online.
On behalf of all nine of us directors on Sanshin’s board, thank you for all of your participation and practice. It’s an exciting time for Sanshin’s community, and it’s the involvement and support of us all that makes Sanshin’s life and practice possible. Please make your gift today.
Mark Pfaff, President
Sanshin Zen Community Board of Directors
Let’s start today working together for tomorrow.
Like Mark, I spent the weekend at
Sanshin’s annual meeting, considering how best to make sure we’re in a position to invite the local and worldwide communities to share in our practice of the dharma. There are so many requests for visits to other sanghas, individual practice guidance, new books and other publications, additions to the program calendar . . . it’s really time to take a step back and see how it might all be done.
As the incoming abbot in 2023, I want to inherit a temple and sangha that not only continue the practice tradition of our founder, Shohaku Okumura, but that have the space to respond to new and relevant opportunities that carry out our mission in fresh, creative ways—not just physical space, but space to breathe, to listen, to take considered risks, to find new resources in new places, and to make best use of what everyone has to offer in the service of the dharma.
Getting to that place is the work of the moment. There is tremendous potential and we’re in a better position to make it happen than ever before—but there’s no question that it will take additional financial resources. Let’s start today by making sure we’re supporting what we already have in place so that tomorrow we can go even further. Please don’t wait to make your gift of financial support.
Vice Abbot, Sanshin Zen Community
P. S. If you’re not already receiving our monthly e-newsletter, be sure to sign up here. You won’t want to miss our updates as our transition goes forward . . . and it’s fun to see what your sangha friends are up to here in Bloomington. You’re a part of our community—stay in touch!