On one side the Rice Bag cryptos like #AntiHinduStalin are trying hard to “eradicate” #SanatanaDharmaOn the other hand, churches in Christian nations are converted into Sanatan Dharmic Kshetras, they are voluntarily giving away as no one’s showing up to their churches.
In the viral post, we can able to see a church grey in colour which is surrounded by Hindu devotees and many people, looks more like a inaugural function with music and chants. The viral clip is 30 second where the church’s cross symbol is replaced with temple urn, Hindu priests are seen breaking coconuts, there is a cow for pooja, many orange clad saints are doing some religious rituals and the whole crowd in the place is celebrating the worship in the video.
This video is shared with the claims saying that, since nobody is coming for the church, it has voluntarily gave it to the Hindus to convert it to the temple for them to worship. This same video is spread all over social media with similar claims that can be seen here, here, here, and here. Come let’s check the authenticity of this viral claim.
What’s the truth?
When we started our research using the keyframes from the viral clip we got an article published by the news channel “WETM 18 News” with a title “Germany-based spiritual group buys former Catholic Church in West Elmira” published on 16 March 2022. According to the article, “A historic church in Elmira that closed last fall has reportedly been purchased by another spiritual group that says the building is its first temple in America.
Bhakti Marga, an organization that describes itself as a “spiritual movement and organization” focused on “developing a personal relationship with” God, reportedly purchased the former Our Lady of Lourdes Parish in West Elmira in January. The transaction was reported in the Star Gazette’s real estate transaction database.
From there, we searched the website of “Star Gazette’s real estate” and found the transaction details of the buyer and seller from their database. According to the information in the website, on 20 January 2022, “BHAKTI MARGA, NORTH AMERICA” bought the church from the seller “PARISH OF MOST HOLY NAME JESUS.”
This clearly proves that the church is sold to Bhakti Marga located at North America and not given freely for the Hindus to convert it into a temple.
Moreover, we got a YouTube video from the channel namely “Bhakti Marga America” with a title ‘ELMIRA: New Ashram and Mandir Announcement’ published on 26 January 2022.
According to the description box of the video, ‘The ashram will be the home of Paranitya Narasimha, the main Murti in the temple. The ashram will be a new home for residents and a place for guests to come, visit and enjoy the spiritual energy of the Mandir. We look forward to serving you and the community with love, and wish the Grace of our beloved Guru Swami Vishwananda may touch your heart during your visit. Jai Gurudev!’
Also, we got a video clip from the Bhakti Marga America’s Instagram handle with the inaugural function and festivites on 1 September 2023.
The above evidence proves that the church is sold to Bhakti Marga and they have inaugurated it as a temple.
Therefore, we conclude that the viral clip claiming the church is given away to Hindus to form a temple is false. In reality, the church is sold and now formed into a temple by the Bhakti Marga.