Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Hare Krishna Temple

Although you never see the Hare Krishna followers on the streets in their saffron robes anymore they have a very high profile presence on Avenue Rd in downtown Toronto. Their temple is located in a church that was designed by architects Gordon & Helliwell and constructed in 1899  as the Presbyterian Church of the Covenant. Several different congregations occupied the building through the years until it was sold to the Hare Krishna in the mid 1970s. The Norman Gothic building is designated and so must be maintained in its original exterior appearance but many changes have taken place inside including the addition of a restaurant that serves vegetarian meals 6 days/week. I had veggie Thanksgiving dinner there many years ago and it was quite good!

19 comments:

Sharon said...

I guess I never thought of the Hare Krishna group having an actual place of worship. I guess that makes sense.

Lowell said...

I haven't even thought about Hare Krishna followers in years! Yes, they used to be ubiquitous in airports and on street corners! At first I thought, "Aha, an old Lutheran church!." But no, Presbyterian. Close enough!

Lois would love the veggie food!

hamilton said...

I kind of miss seeing those floaty saffron robes.

Deb said...

Interesting post, I thought the same as Sharon, that they renounced property in favour of a nomadic type of existence.

LĂșcia said...

Wow, I've never imagined they would have an imponent temple like this.
What can I say, they have good taste... ;-)

Eyeliquor said...

Very nice!

Regina K said...

Nice building, I remember seeing the Hare Krishna's in the airports. I haven't missed them.

Paul in Powell River said...

Seems almost incongruous, Krishna's in a Norman Gothic Presbyterian Church? Who'd a thought!

La Principessa Errante said...

Do you not just love practical re-use. The building is gorgeous, glad the exterior has remained the same, but also glad someone has figured out how to make a viable go of it too.

Randy said...

That is a big church.

Jack said...

That is the last place I would expect to find Hare Krishnas. And, you are right, we never see them any more. What happened?

Lowell said...

Hi Pat,

Re your comment on The Villages: She was 18 when I married her! We'll celebrate our 55th this Friday. And her hair is her natural color. Go figure. Mine's been all gray for years!

Mo said...

Hare Krishna and Norman Gothic seem an odd marriage.

Halcyon said...

I think everyone in toronto knows this place. You got a really nice shot of it. It is a lovely building and I'm glad someone takes care of it. :)

PerthDailyPhoto said...

If the sign wasn't there, and you hadn't said Pat, there is no way I'd have thought of this as a Hare Krishna temple, such a wonderful looking church.

JM said...

The building is fantastic but it's the last place I would imagine an Hare Krishna gathering! They surely look out of place there! :-)

EG CameraGirl said...

I had no idea Hare Krishna had a place on Avenue Road!

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NixBlog said...

It's so incongruous! Nevertheless, it is good that it is still being used a place of worship instead of being remodelled as residential units - as so many old churches here are.