Greenbelt Interfaith News

    September 1998

    Zoroastrian Heritage Center Opens in Houston
    By Aban Rustomji
    FEZANA Journal (Federation of Zoroastrian Associations of North America)

    Zarathushtis from Houston and many other places gathered at Houston's Zarathushti Heritage and Cultural Center on April 10 to celebrate its inauguration. Six hundred invitations were mailed to Zarathushtis and Zarathusti associations worldwide. Over 500 people attended the three-day celebration from Texas, British Columbia, California, Colorado, Kansas, Michigan, North Carolina, New Jersey, Ontario, Quebec, Tennessee and Virginia. Luminaries included Mehraban Zartoshty and his family from Vancouver, FEZANA President Dolly Dastoor, FEZANA Secretary Mehran Sepehri, and Atlanta's Farrokh Mistree and family (well-loved Sunday School teacher, previously of Houston).

    On April 10, a Jashan was performed. The symbolic fire lit seventeen years ago at the home of Hoshang and Armavaz Sethna, who housed Sunday School, was brought to the Center. After the ceremony, the fire was placed in the afarganyu that was brought all the way from Sukkur, Pakistan. The fire was lit by nearly two generations of Zarathushtis who have passed through the portals of the Zarathushti Sunday School and there were 40 children accompanied by their parents who gathered around. Ervad Shapur Pavri of Houston said he never dreamed this day would come and professed that it was the mobed's duty and privilege to satisfy the spiritual needs of the community. On the very morning of the Jashan, a "ghanta" (bell) for the prayer room was received, air-shipped as a gift from J. N. Guzder, Trustee of Bombay Parsee Panchayet.

    This article was revised by Greenbelt Interfaith News from its original form, with permission of FEZANA and the author.

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