On Friday 16 June 2000, H.E.
George Sampaiao, President of the Republic of Portugal,
received HDH Pramukh Swami Maharaj at Palacio De Belem in
Lisboa, Portugal. His Excellency, who is also at present
the President of 'The European Economic Community' flew
in specially from Espinho to meet Swamishri. His Excellency
felt honored to meet Pramukh Swami Maharaj and was apprised
of the socio-cultural and spiritual activities of the organization.
The President was very pleased with the fact that Swamiji
has inspired thousands to live a drug-free, violence-free,
crime-free, honest life charged with the spirit of selfless
service, dedication, devotion and discipline.
The President said that Portugal
is a country which is pluralistic and respects and welcomes
people from all faiths and ethnic groups. He added, "I
am very happy that you have come here. You have my hearty
good wishes in your efforts for peace and harmony."
The meeting lasted for half
an hour. The President was very pleased to know of the Shree
Swaminarayan Mandir, London, which is a wonder of the world.
His Excellency was keen to learn of our socio-spiritual
and cultural activities in Lisboa.
Swamishri prayed for peace,
harmony and solidarity to prevail in Portugal. He also blessed
the President for good health so that he could serve the
nation for many years to come.
President was accompanied by his Diplomatic and Cultural
Advisor during the meeting. The Diplomatic Advisor, Carlos
Pereira Marques said: "Pramukh
Swami Maharaj is a delightful personality. He speaks very
few words but his presence radiates divine feelings."