Five of us did the eighth consecutive Pula Prison program : Misra Purandara Nadiya Nimai ,Malati Mala dasi and Ajitendra joining us for the first time.While waiting in front of the prison gate, a police car appeared with two guards who we’ve never saw before. One of them with folded hands said “Hare Krishna!”.
All glories to Mahasimha Prabhu in Croatia and Mother Vikalotkarsini in Slovenia together with their team of devotees they organized and carried out 10 jail programs in 9 different prisons in May. As they come in we are posting the reports of the programs on our website holyjail.com
Who would expect rose bushes, flower beds, gentle cats and domesticated pigeons in the prison, the biggest and one of the most revered in the country, built at the beginning of the last century as a fort aimed at keeping wrongdoers away from the rest of the society? However, that is exactly what we ran into during our first visit to Lepoglava, Croatia. And not only that. We met, very kind guards, and a strange notice on the toilet room (“It is forbidden to play music in the toilet“ ) and above all – a devotee! We also found out that the world of restrictions can be conducive for overcoming our own restrictions.
Mother Vikalotkarsini arranged prison programs throughout Slovenia for Candramauli Swami and a team of devotees from Ljubljana, time came for the first program in Celje.
When we came on the seventh consecutive program at Pula prison, five inmates were there (mostly the ones who were regularly attending before), surprised to see only us. “Where is the special guest?” they asked. Now we were the ones to be surprised. There was no special guest scheduled, only the usual crew! Finally we understood they had been waiting for Srila Prabhupada. To announce the program, we made a poster with a photo of Srila Prabhupada in the background so they thought that he would come personally to give a lecture. We had to disappoint them and excuse our Acharya for not attending this program with more than a valid excuse – he has left this world in 1977.
Judging from the start of our trip from Rijeka, I could say it was going to be a very successful program. And it was, indeed. Even more than that.
When a police officer on the Croatian border heard from the devotees headed by Candramauli Maharaja that they are going for prison preaching programs in Lepoglava and Remetinec, they warned them about the later one, considering it more challenging but I never found out why.
It was one of the first hot days this year when Mahasimha and I arrived there at noon, after a hilarious drive in his old Opel. Soon after the rest of the team showed up. Candramauli Maharaja was graciously dressed as always but the garments of others looked more like gopis’ running to the forest after they have heard Krsna’s flute.