Otis Library in Norwich to host Tibetan official Friday

Norwich — A North American representative of the Dalai Lama will visit Otis Library on Friday morning to meet with library officials, local and state political leaders and library patrons prior to an event Friday evening at Ocean Beach.

Ngodup Tsering, representative of His Holiness the Dalai Lama in North America, contacted library officials last week and expressed a desire to meet with city officials during his visit to Connecticut, Otis Library Director Robert Farwell said.

Tsering will visit Otis at 10:30 a.m., tour the library and speak to invited guests and members of the public in the library community room. He will talk about Tibetan communities in the United States and Canada and explain how the Tibetan exile administration operates.

Bassem Gayed, multicultural services coordinator at Otis Library, said the local leader of the Tibetan community in Norwich and Connecticut is a frequent patron of Otis Library, and local Tibetans use the library for their U.S. citizenship classes.

“He came to me last week and said Mr. Tsering is the representative of the Dalai Lama in America, and wanted to talk to me,” Gayed said Wednesday. “He called from (Washington) D.C. and said he was traveling and attending an event in New London and wanted to visit and meet with officials, mayors and senators.”

Gayed sent invitations to the Norwich City Council, local state legislators, the Norwich Community Development Corp., Norwich Adult Education and Norwich Free Academy Diversity Director Leo Butler, among others. The event also is open to the public.

Norwich has a growing Tibetan community, Gayed said, and many are taking English classes and citizenship classes.

In New London, the Tibetan American Community of Connecticut is hosting a 33rd birthday celebration of His Holiness, the 17th Gyalwang Karmapa Ogyen Trinley Dorje and a teaching of the sacred mantra of Manjushri Bodhisattva of Wisdom at the Port ‘N Starboard conference center at Ocean Beach Park.

Tsering "travels to different states where Tibetan communities live and explains their cause is peaceful,” Gayed said.

For information about the Otis Library event, contact Gayed at (860) 889-2365.

c.bessette@theday.com

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