This data was last updated on 3 July 2018.
Address: 79 Margin Street, Lawrence, MA 01841
Description: Hoi Phat Giao Lam Ty Ni is tucked away in an urban, predominantly Vietnamese and Hispanic area of Lawrence, Massachusetts. A tall chain-link fence runs around the perimeter of the temple’s corner lot, encompassing a parking lot and the brightly painted temple. To the left of the main walkway, a four-foot tall Kuan-Yin Bodhisattva statue (The Bodhisattva of Compassion) greets visitors. Inside, one first enters into the kitchen and dining room area, stocked with donations and offerings from the community. Down a short flight of stairs to the right, there is another space for larger groups to gather or eat together. To the left are the two adjoining rooms where community members make daily offerings and gather for Sunday services. Chairs line the perimeter of the room which is modestly furnished with ornamental hangings. Stepping up into the attached main hall, one finds a Laughing Buddha figure centered on the smaller, front altar. The main altar, set back into the wall, provides the focal point for worship. On top of the altar, a painted Buddha figure sits among an array of offerings including candles, fresh flowers and fruits. The living quarters of the resident monk are on the second level, accessible by a staircase from the main hall. While the temple hopes to be able to expand or buy another property in the future to accommodate the growing community, for now, costs inhibit this possibility.
Leadership: There is one resident monk who acts as the spiritual director of the temple and presides over services and conducts special private ceremonies for community members. There is also a groundskeeper who maintains the upkeep of the temple and its landscaping.
Demographics: As all services are conducted in Vietnamese, the community is largely comprised of recent Vietnamese immigrants and those of Vietnamese descent. While some members live within walking distance of Margin Street, others travel farther distances from Lawrence and beyond to attend ceremonies.
Activities and Schedule: Four to five members come on a daily basis to the temple to give offerings and visit the temple. There are regular weekly services on Sundays in Vietnamese. In the past, the temple has also offered Vietnamese language and culture classes for children in the community.