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Large Thai Buddhist Temple Set To Open In Raynham

RAYNHAM (CBS) - The people behind a new, majestic building hope it will bring people together.

They say it's the largest Thai Buddhist temple outside of Thailand and it's about to open in Raynham. And that's a joyous event for the Buddhist and Thai communities in the area and perhaps beyond.

A multi-day celebration began Thursday as about 500 Thai Buddhist monks from around the world converged on the gold topped temple in Raynham, the culmination of nearly 10 years of work.

Buddhist Temple
500 Thai Buddhist monks came from around the world for the opening of the Thai Buddhist Temple in Raynham. (WBZ-TV)


Phra Promwachirayan is one of the highest ranking monks in Thailand.

"He would like to utilize this wonderful temple as a center for all nations. Asian people, European people and American people can all utilize the facilities here," he told WBZ-TV through a translator.

Why build in Raynham?

Well, they wanted to build the temple in Massachusetts in honor of Thailand's King who was born at Mt. Auburn Hospital in Cambridge in 1927.

"This is actually to me, the most wonderful thing in my life. It represents the love for us to the King, to honor our King," says Dr. Joy Marzilli, who worked on the project from the beginning.

Buddhist Temple
Thai Buddhist temple in Raynham. (Photo by Ken Tucci-WBZ-TV)

The soaring architecture and design inside and out bring together both Thai and New England elements.

"The most exciting thing is when you hear people say, wow, this building is like a drop from heaven," says Been Wang, the building's designer.

And you don't have to practice Buddhism to be welcome here.

"Loving, caring is the most important thing," says Abbot Phra Promwachirayan.

The $60 million temple also has 2 museums, a library and conference rooms.

The celebration at the 100,000 square foot building continues all weekend.

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