AN exhibition celebrating 100 years of the Sikh Community in New Westminster was opened by New Westminster Mayor Jonathan Cote on January 24. The exhibition – “An Ocean of Peace” – was named after Sukh Sagar Gurdwara Sahib in New Westminster, which is the focal point of the exhibition.
The exhibition is part of last year’s centennial celebration of the Khalsa Diwan Society New Westminster, the society behind Gurdwara Sahib Sukh Sagar.
The exhibition is open to the public daily from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the New Westminster Museum and Archives, located at the Anvil Centre, 777 Columbia Street, New Westminster.
The history of the Sikh community in New Westminster is as rich and diverse as this exhibition. The Sikh community has been congregating in New Westminster since as early as 1911. In 1913, the Guru Granth Sahib was installed in the home of community leader and devout Sikh Bhai Bishan Singh Ji who, along with Sant Baba Sunder Singh Ji, led the congregation in New Westminster.
In March 1919, Bhai Bishan Singh Ji bought the home next to his own at 344 Boyne Street and donated it to the Khalsa Diwan Society, meaning March 2019 marks the society’s 100th anniversary in New Westminster. The Gurdwara Sahib continued to grow and the current building was completed in 1975.
In 2012 the building went through extensive renovation and expansions. Khalsa Diwan Society New Westminster Gurdwara Sahib Sukh Sagar continues to play an active role in the Lower Mainland’s Sikh community, and in the community of New Westminster.
The exhibition at the Museum features never before seen Sikh historical artifacts from the local community and shares the stories of the Sangat and the Gurdwara throughout the years.
Over 200 members of the community attended the opening night of the exhibition. Besides, Mayor Cote, the other dignitaries who were present included New Westminster MP Peter Julian and New Westminster City Councillors Jamie McEvoy, Chinu Das, Nadine Nakagawa, Patrick Johnstone, Chuck Puchmayr and Mary Trentadue.