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Consulate General of Sri Lanka

High Commissioner Asoka Girihagama graces Thai Pongal celebrations in Montréal

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Sri Lanka’s High Commissioner to Canada, Asoka Girihagama was the Special Guest at the Thai Pongal celebrations organized by the Thamillor Oli Association of Quebec in collaboration with the Montréal Tamil Schools and Fine Arts Schools on 12th January 2019 at the Ecolé Lucien Page Auditorium in Montréal, Quebec.

 High Commissioner Girihagama and Mrs. Sudarma Girihagama were welcomed by the organizers on their arrival.

Addressing the large gathering, which consisted of prominent dignitaries including MPs, MNAs the Mayor, City Counsellors and representatives of different cultural communities, High Commissioner Girihagama spoke of the prominence according to all religious festivals in the Sri Lankan calendar and stated that the festivities begin for the year with the celebration of Thai Pongal. Speaking of the significance of the celebrations, Sri Lanka’s High Commissioner stated that the celebrations bring families together and is a time when old enmities, personal animosities and rivalries are forgotten. He said that estrangements are healed and reconciliation effected on this festive occasion.

High Commissioner Girihagama also commended the community members for following their cultural practices and traditions although they live thousands of miles away from their motherland for many years, which he said, proved the popular saying that “culture has no boundaries and limits”.

The Thamillor Oli Association was established in 1984 and has been working towards uniting Tamil community throughout Montréal and helping them to integrate into the Canadian society. The Association has also been in the forefront of keeping the community’s heritage and culture alive through language development and fine arts including music, art, dance and poetry.

The celebrations included many cultural items performed by the members of the community.

 High Commissioner Girihagama was accompanied by his spouse, Mrs. Sudarma Girihagama.

 

Sri Lanka High Commission

Ottawa

14th January 2019

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Foreign Minister Marapana calls on Sri Lankan diplomats to boost the image of Sri Lanka overseas through effective execution of public diplomacy

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Foreign Minister Tilak Marapana has called on Sri Lankan diplomats to boost the image of Sri Lanka overseas through efficient and effective execution of public diplomacy, utilizing its intrinsic brands such as Buddhism, gems, tea, spices, high-end export products and the warmth of traditional Sri Lankan hospitality.

Minister Marapana made these remarks at the certificate awarding ceremony on Friday (11 January) of the two-week long Public Diplomacy and Media Relations training programme, organized by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs for its officials in collaboration with the Sri Lanka Press Institute (SLPI) with a view to enhancing their public diplomacy and media relations skills. The programme was attended by the officers of the 2018 intake of the Sri Lanka Foreign Service and a group of mid-level officers serving in the Ministry.

This was the first time in two decades that the Ministry organized a professional training programme dedicated to public diplomacy and media relations for its officials.

Read more: Foreign Minister Marapana calls on Sri Lankan diplomats to boost the image of Sri Lanka overseas through effective execution of public diplomacy

 

High Commissioner Asoka Girihagama graces SLCAO Community event in Ottawa

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Sri Lanka’s High Commissioner to Canada, Asoka Girihagama on the invitation of the Sri Lanka-Canada Association Ottawa (SLCAO), was the Chief Guest at the Sri Lankan Community Festive Dinner Dance held at the St. Isidore Church Hall in Kanata on 5th January 2019.


In his addressed at the event, High Commissioner Girihagama stated that the SLCAO which began functioning 43 years ago with about 138 members is a well established community organization in Ottawa. He noted that the Association has been carrying out many charitable activities including helping flood victims in Sri Lanka. The High Commissioner also commended the Senior Group of the SLCAO for the various events they have continued to conduct including meditation, religious programmes, etc for their members.

Read more: High Commissioner Asoka Girihagama graces SLCAO Community event in Ottawa

 

High Commissioner Asoka Girihagama participates at religious observances to invoke blessings for the New Year

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Sri Lanka’s High Commissioner to Canada, Asoka Girihagama participated in special religious observances organized separately by the three Buddhist temples in Ottawa consisting of the Ottawa Buddhist Vihara, Hilda Jayewardenaramaya and the Ottawa Theravada Buddhist Vihara and Cultural Center in Orleans, during the course of 1st January 2019.

 

High Commissioner Girihagama in his address at the temples, in the Sinhala and English languages, expressed his appreciation to the Chief Incumbents for their commitment in carrying out their religious duties with limited facilities and funds. He appreciated the weekly religious programmes, such as Dhamma schools, meditation classes and religious discussions etc., conducted by the three temples.

 

He acknowledged the support extended by the Government of Canada in granting religious freedom enabling the functioning of the temples and other religious places. The High Commissioner also paid tribute to the devotees for their support extended to the temples.

 

The High Commissioner was accompanied by his spouse, Mrs. Sudarma Girihagama and staff of the High Commission.    

 

Sri Lanka High Commission

Ottawa

2nd January 2019

   

High Commissioner Asoka Girihagama attends Christmas celebrations in Ottawa

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Sri Lanka’s High Commissioner to Canada, Asoka Girihagama and staff members attended the Christmas celebrations organized by the Ottawa Sri Lankan Catholic Prayer Group and addressed the invitees on 22nd December 2018.

At the celebration that was held at the St. John the Apostle Church, High Commissioner Girihagama commended the Ottawa Sri Lankan Catholic Prayer Group for their dedication in bringing the community together to celebrate Christmas, which is celebrated in many parts of the world.  He noted that Christmas is not only religious event and it has cultural dimensions which strengthen bonds between family members as well as communities.  High Commission participates and encourages religious and cultural events such as Thai Pongal, Avurudu, Vesak, Eid, Deepavali and Christmas annually to bring harmony, peace and friendship among the communities.

Read more: High Commissioner Asoka Girihagama attends Christmas celebrations in Ottawa

   

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Contacts

Address

Consulate General of Sri Lanka

36, Eglinton Avenue West,

Suite 301

Toronto, ON M4R 1A1

Tel

416 323 9133

Fax

416 323 3205

Email

srilanka@bellnet.ca