SUISUN CITY — Suisun City will open its Aug. 27 session with a Hindu prayer read by Rajan Zed, leader of the Nevada-based Universal Society of Hinduism.
It’s the first time in the town’s history that a Hindu prayer will open a council meeting.
“I think it will be very nice,” said Suisun City Mayor Pete Sanchez, who had received a request from Zed to make the invocation at an upcoming meeting.
Sanchez said he has also put out an invitation on his Facebook site to anyone else who wants to volunteer to offer an invocation at council meetings.
“I hope when others hear it (Zed’s invocation), there will be more interest,” Sanchez said.
Zed is expected to first deliver the Hindu invocation in Sanskrit, considered a sacred language in Hinduism, and then read the English translation, according to a release from Zed.
Zed, president of the Universal Society of Hinduism, has spent at least the past three years traveling around the Western U.S. opening city and state legislative meetings, from Alaska to Arizona, with ancient Hindu prayers.
He also read the first Hindu opening prayer in the U.S. Senate in 2007, which was interrupted by protests from Christian fundamentalists, according to news reports.
Hinduism is the oldest and third-largest religion in the world. There are about 3 million Hindus in America.
The Suisun City Council has opened its meetings with an invocation delivered by the city manager for several years. Several other city councils in Solano County start their meetings with a moment of silence.
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