Bush Fire January 2020 record

 Update Fri 31Jan 20

RFS Southern Highlands warn us that from Fri 31 Jan-Sat 1 Feb-Sun 2 Feb will see the rising temperature which will elevate fire danger in this area. Friday will be VERY HIGH FIRE DANGER RATING. So monks will be more vigilant and inspect the whole monastery day and night. The whole month of Janurary is the monks' intensive practise of mindfulness and Vipassana- in- action meditation, so far. Breathe mindfully, smile peacefully.

Update Thurs 30 jan 20

At 2 PM we had a new fire erupted at the beginning of the Teudts road. Thanks to RFS who stopped the fire immediately. We are sending a lot of Metta to Wingecarribee Shire Council which seems to be very ignorant of the crisis and the need of the victim of bushfire. Please click here for news.

 

 

 

There are some aerial photos of Penrose next to the monastery from Patrick Edwards.

A blind and disabled wombat migrated from the burnt bush and now becomes a new resident in the hole under the kitchen. When she first arrived a few days ago, she looked so exhausted  and almost dead. After a drink, 5 carrots and a sleep, she regained her energy and started to walk/ creep to eat grass. Today she looks much stronger.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Update Wed 29 Jan 20

The whole area of the monastery was covered by thick smoke in the early morning and late evening due to the backburn activities near Penrose and Wingello. There are a few spot of smouldering fire in the men area. The temperature was quite high, the monks could not do much work in the day time. Just try to monitoring the fire situation. Chao Khun Supachai, the Head of Thai monks in Australia / Abbot of Wat Dhammadharo,Canberra visited us in the afternoon. We inspected the whole burnt area of the monastery. He said 'it is worst than Wat Buddhadhamma in Wiseman Ferry last year bushfire incident '. He promised to bring many Thai monks to join the chanting blessing on 28 Mar 2020 of our 30th Anniversary.

 

Update 26-27-28 Jan 20

 We saw a lot of backburn activities between Penrose and Bundanoon to protect the two villages. Teudts road remains closed until further notice. We lost one more hut in the Men's area. All monks and the cat returned to the monastery. A lot more wildlife came to the small green pocket area around the main shrine since 75 acres (3 / 4 of the monastery) were burnt. At least 7 new wombats were spotted around the kitchen area. It is very thick smoke at the presence. The new fire flared up SW of the Morton National Park.

 

Update Sat 25 Jan 20

 

Please click here for more photo

 

Update Fri 24 Jan 20

The Teudts road was closed, the railway line was closed. The fire flared up again this evening, the RFS tries to prevent Bundanoon town from this unstoppable fire. We need to cancel our Open day on this weekend until the situation is safe. Monks are in Kim's home and will try to return to the monastery as soon as it is safe.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Update Thur 23 Jan 20

Today the bushfire restarted in Kangaloo valley in front of the main shrine at lunch time. A few minutes later the strong wind changed direction, and the fire went around and encircled the monastery and all properties in the Teudts road. In sudden the strong wind empowered the fire and the combustion crossed Teudts road. The fireys came in with many trucks and helicopters. They worked very hard in this severe condition to contain the fire. Our neighbors lost their homes, sheds and water tanks. We lost 3 huts in the men area, water tanks and all the recycled building materials. Many big gum trees are still burning, and the trees continue to fall down. It is very dangerous now. We lost the power. So Kim invited three monks and the cat to stay overnight at her beautiful home again. Please click here for more photos.

Update Tue 21 & Wed 22 Jan 20


The bush fire started again this afternoon in the Morton National Park, but the RFS put it off immediately. Our Teudts road is opended already. So welcome back our visitors on this weekend. But we all have to be vigilant due to the smothering fire in the valley next to the monastery.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Update Mon 20 Jan 20

The peacock returns home after a long holidays for14 days at Kim's home. As soon as the peacock came back, a lyre bird and a mother wombat greeted him. And a python survivor is resting on a burnt stump.

 

 

Update Sun 19 Jan 20

Thanks to many friends for helping to do cleaning up and cutting some burnt trees in the monastery today. It is a mammoth task and it can take months to finish by only 3 monks. But by the kind support of everyone, today we finished  the internal cleaing job, and moving a lot of bush fire fuel around the lady bathroom. Thanks to all donors of carrot and animal food. Boys and girls had fun feeding animals yesterday. Sadhu Anumodhana and thank you very much to all.

Please click here to see more photos in google drive

and click here to ABC news.After the Inferno

Andrew Bevillie and Fiona visited the monastery on 12 Jan 2020, after lunch both received a very special Thai massage from our 'strike'massuar team.

 

 

 

 

 

Update Sat 18 Jan 20

We had a little rain last night, good enough to slow down the bush fire, but not enough to end the fire in the monk area. The Teudst road remains closed. We had many friends, boys and girls helped to clean up the first part of the monastery. We can't wait for the second 'strike' team of helpers tomorrow. Thank you again for all of your Metta.

Please click here to see more photos.

And map of the Morton fire updated 18 Jan 20

Update Fri 17 Jan 20

The bush fire is still active in the monastery with plume of smouldering fire in the valley. It was quite misty today with a very little rain. The RFS team from Wilton and Wingello patroled the monastery this morning. Kim helped to cook vegetarian KFC and Tom Yum to feed the fireys. They seemed to enjoy hot food on this cool day. We have seen many rock wallabies and wombats coming closer to the main shrine lawn. It is only the small green pocket surrounded by the black burnt bush.Thanks to our local friend, Charlotte for wild life food.

Update Wed 15 & Thurs 16 Jan 20

The whole day of 15 Jan 20 was an action day. In the air, a few helicopters rotated to drop water bombs into the burning bush in the Men's area from midday to 8 PM, maybe 30 loads. On the ground, many local RFS from Berrima, Bundanoon, Moss Vale, Bowral, Penrose, Wingello fireys took turn to control the bush fire until they run out of water. Luckily the support teams arrived in the afternoon, so our firies could continue to battle the fire. We broung coconut water, ginger beers, kombucha drinks for them.Some told us that they fought the fire for 36 hours, some didn't sleep for 2 nights in the roll. Most of them were exhausted. We really feel grateful for thier unconditional love. They are the true Bodhisatva.

Every night we see more black tail rock wallabies, wombats, goannas, lyre birds, parrots and many other wild lives come closer to the main shrine. Because there is only a small pocket of browny green grass for them. The monks need to put out more fruit, vegetables, and whatever we have to feed them all.

We have had a few Thai senior monks visiting us two days ago; Phra Boommuni, the Abbot of Wat Phra Sri Mahatat, Bangkok, Phra Thepsilapon, the Abbot of Wat Pa Buddharangsee, Leumeah, Chao Khun Yoi of Wat Buddharangsee, Sydney.

And today Ven. Ban Ruo, Abbot of Prajna monastery, Picton and Ven. Zheng Yun, Abbot of Ding Hui temple, Campsey visited us and supported us with generous donation.

Ven. Wai Yim, Abbess of International Buddhist Sham Shan temple, Morriset kindly gave us donation a few weeks ago, and may other generous friends deposit thier donation directly into our accounts.

We plan to rebuild a shed as soon as the bush fire threat is over. We will reopen the monastery on Sat 18 and Sun 19 Jan 2020 for the 1st cleaning up operation. Unfortunately we can't accommodate any helpers yet until the monastery is safe. Thank you very much for all of your love and help.

 

 

Dear Kim & all at Sunnataram

 Thank goodness you are all safe. I was very sad to see your Instagram posts about the fires and losing all women's accommodation, but I am also grateful that the monastery was saved and the monks still have their home.

 I recently spent a weekend with you in September 2019 and slept in the Pink Hut, I thought you might like these photos that I took as a memoir.

 I have also today transferred $50 to your account as a donation to assist with the repair and rebuild of the women's accommodation so that future retreats can continue; receipt attached.

 Sending you my love & best wishes for blessings to come out of this event.

 Terri x

 

RFS Theresa Park 16 Jan 2020

Please click here for more photos

 

Update Mon 13 & Tue 14 Jan 20

The bush fire is still smouldering in the Monk area. There are many large fallen burnt and burning trees along the Parami road- the walking meditation path around the monastery.

RFS volunteers daily inspect the monastery and our neighbours’ bush lands. We witnessed big helicopters dropping water in the forest adjoining the northern part of the Monk area.

Wombats, rock wallabies, lyre birds, possums, birds and many wildlife  always come to the kitchen area both day and night for food and water because 2/3 of the bush land in the monastery and  a big northern section of the Morton National Park around Penrose, Wingello and Bundanoon are charcoal black burnt.

We are expecting a big cleaning up operation in the monastery commencing on this coming weekend (Sat 18th & Sun 19th Jan 20).

Cleaning Operation

  1. Indoor cleaning: to remove ashes, dirt, burnt debris inside library, pavilions, the bathroom units, meditation huts etc.
  2. Cutting the fallen burnt trees:  skilful chainsaw operators, helping hands to remove the wood.  (If you have any heavy machines like bulldozer, excavator, 4wd folklift, 4wd truck or ute, please contact us. )
  3. Raking around the existing huts to prevent the spread of bush fire.

 

The monastery is still under the threat of the active bush fire, we lost total ladies accommodation, and the Men's accommodation is still burning. We are sorry that we can't provide any accommodation to volunteers. All helpers please come to help just for the day. Thanks.

Please let us know if you or friends would like to help by email [email protected] so our volunteers can prepare meals for you all.

Things to prepare

  1. Gloves
  2. Eye protection
  3. Facial masks
  4. Working clothes
  5. Your chainsaw if you have one

 

รายงานไฟป่าไหม้วัดป่าสุญญตาราม บันดานูน รัฐนิวเซาท์เวลส์ ประเทศออสเตรเลีย

ศุกร์ที่ 10 และเสาร์ที่ 11 มกราคม 2563 ไฟป่าที่ลุกลามมาจากป่าสงวน มอร์ตอน ทางทิศตะวันออกเฉียงใต้ ได้มาถึงเขตป่าสงวนรอบ ๆ วัด พร้อมทั้งอุณหภูมิที่ร้อนขึ้น และถูกกระพือด้วยลมจากทิศใต้ ทำให้ไฟป่าขยายตัวอย่างรวดเร็ว จากเชิงเขาถึงยอดเขา ความร้อนจากไฟป่าทำให้ต้นไม้ที่แห้งอยู่แล้วติดไฟ เมื่อไฟป่าโหมเข้ามาจึงทำให้ต้นไม้ใหญ่น้อยในบริเวณเขตสตรีติดไฟอย่างรวดเร็ว และความร้อนจากไฟทำให้อาคารใหญ่ที่พักสตรี และกุฏิอุบาสิกาหลายหลังไหม้ละลายอย่างรวดเร็ว

เจ้าหน้าที่ดับเพลิงได้ทุ่มเทกำลังรถดับเพลิงกว่าสิบคันรถ จากหลายหน่วย  และพนักงานกว่า60 ท่าน พยายามฉีดน้ำ แต่ไม่สามารถดับไฟป่าที่ร้อนแรงได้ จึงได้ขอให้เฮลิคอปเตอร์ขนาดใหญ่ที่สุด ทิ้งน้ำลงมาหลายเที่ยวบิน เพื่อสกัดไฟป่า มิให้ลุกลามเข้ามาในเขตศาลาปฏิบัติธรรม อุโบสถ พระเจดีย์ กุฏิ 14 หลัง และอาคารใหญ่ที่พักอุบาสก ในเขตสงฆ์

ปัจจุบัน (14 มค 2563) ไฟป่ายังไม่ดับสนิท ลุกติดเป็นระยะในพื้นที่ป่าในเขตสงฆ์ เจ้าหน้าที่ดับเพลิงได้ผลัดเวียนเข้ามาฉีดน้ำดับไฟ และเฮลิคอปเตอร์ยังคงทิ้งน้ำดับไฟจากทางอากาศทุกวัน

ความเสียหายด้านสิ่งก่อสร้าง ทรัพย์สิน และชีวิต

  1.  พระภิกษุ 3 รูป ปลอดภัย เพราะได้อพยพ ไปพักที่บ้านคุณคิม แมคสวีนีย์ เป็นระยะเวลา 14 วันก่อนหน้านี้ (ตั้งแต่วันที่ 29 ธค 2562)
  2.  อาคารใหญ่ ที่พักของสตรี กุฏิอุบาสิกา 3 หลัง ศูนย์จิตอาสา 1 หลัง ถูกไฟไหม้หมด และกุฏิที่พักสตรีอีก 5 หลังได้รับความเสียหาย จนไม่สามารถใช้เป็นที่นอนได้
  3.  แท็งก์เก็บน้ำฝน พลาสติก ขนาด 12000 ลิตร จำนวน 5 แท็งก์ และ แท็งก์เก็บน้ำฝนขนาด 3000 ลิตร 1 แท็งก์ ถูกไฟ ไหม้หมด

แท็งค์น้ำพลาสติกขนาด 12000 ลิตรอีก 2 แท็งก์ได้รับความเสียหายมาก แท็งค์น้ำเหล็กขนาด 15000 ลิตร จำนวน 2 แท็งค์ และขนาด 3000 ลิตร จำนวน 3 แท็งก์ ได้รับความเสียหายจนเก็บน้ำไม่ได้

  1. ป่าไม้ ต้นไม้ อันเป็นเขตปฏิบัติกรรมฐานของวัด ถูกไฟทำลายไปถึง 90 ไร่ คิดเป็นพื้นที่ 2 ใน 3 ส่วนของวัด

 

 

ผลกระทบที่มากที่สุด

เนื่องจากวัดป่าสุญญตาราม บันดานูน อยู่ห่างไกลจากเขตชุมชนคนไทยในซิดนีย์และแคนเบอร่า ปกติจะไม่มีการรับสังฆทาน การทำบุญประจำเดือน หรือการทำบุญตามประเพณี และกิจนิมนต์อื่น ๆ และไม่มีเงินสนับสนุนจากกองทุนใด ๆ ทั้งภาครัฐและเอกชน  ได้แต่อาศัยปัจจัยในตู้บริจาค เป็นค่าใช้จ่ายทั้งหมดในวัด ซึ่งไม่เพียงพอต่อการจ้างช่างต่าง ๆ

คณะสงฆ์ของวัดป่าสุญญตาราม บันดานูน จำต้องทำงานนวกรรม ก่อสร้าง บูรณะ ปฏิสังขรณ์ ศาสนสถานด้วยตนเอง  และใช้วัสดุมือสอง ที่เขาเหลือใช้ หรือทิ้งแล้ว ในการสร้างกุฏิเสนาสนะ นิทรรศการประวัติศาสตร์พุทธศาสนา สวนธรรมะ อุปกรณ์สื่อธรรมะสำหรับวิปัสสนาภูมิ ฯลฯ

ซึ่งสิ่งก่อสร้างทั้งหมดในวัดป่าสุญญตาราม มุ่งเพียงวัตถุประสงค์อย่างเดียวคือ การเผยแผ่พระพุทธศาสนา โดยการจัดอบรมกรรมฐานประจำเดือน เป็นธรรมทาน ให้กับประชาชนผู้สนใจ นานาชาติ ตั้งแต่การก่อตั้งวัดฯ เมื่อปีพ.ศ. 2533

ในแต่ละเดือนจะมีผู้ขอรับการอบรมฯ เป็นจำนวน 40- 50 ท่าน ผลที่ได้รับเป็นที่ประทับใจ ได้รับการตอบสนองเป็นอย่างดี จำนวนผู้ปฏิบัติธรรมเพิ่มขึ้นทุกเดือน เพราะสภาพสังคมที่บีบคั้นจิตใจประชาชนมากขึ้น เขาจึงหันหน้ามาสู่พุทธศาสนาเอง

การที่อาคารที่พักในเขตสตรี และเขตปฏิบัติธรรม ถูกไฟป่าเผาไหม้ ทำให้ทางวัดป่าสุญญตาราม ไม่สามารถให้การช่วยเหลือประชาชน ทางด้านจิตภาวนาได้ ทั้งที่ในขณะนี้ชาวออสเตรเลียนหลายคนกำลังมีความเครียด กังวล ทุกข์อย่างหนัก เกือบทั่วประเทศ จากภาวะวิกฤติของไฟป่าในครั้งนี้ และต้องการความช่วยเหลือด้วยธรรมะ และการทำจิตภาวนามากกว่าเดิม

ความช่วยเหลือ

ในปัจจุบัน ทางวัดป่าสุญญตาราม ยังไม่ได้รับการติดต่อเรื่องความช่วยเหลือจากหน่วยงานใด ทั้งในออสเตรเลีย และประเทศไทย มีคณะพุทธศาสนิกชนหลายท่านแสดงความเป็นห่วงใยและต้องการช่วยเหลือ แต่เนื่องจากไฟป่าในเขตวัดฯ ยังไม่ดับ และมีโอกาสลุกกระพือ ทำความเสียหายได้อีก ทางวัดฯ จึงยังไม่สามารถสรุปความเสียหายอย่างละเอียดได้  แต่ทางวัดฯ จำต้องอาศัยกองทุนเป็นจำนวนมากในการก่อสร้างอาคารเสนาสนะ และสถานปฏิบัติกรรมฐานใหม่ในอนาคตอันใกล้นี้อย่างแน่นอน

 

พระมานะ วิริยารัมโภ

เจ้าอาวาส วัดป่าสุญญตาราม บันดานูน   14 มกราคม 2563

 

 

 

 

 

 

Update Sun 12 Jan 2020

 Thank you to Kim and Jim who kindly rescued all three monks, a cat and a peacock, and looked after us for 2 weeks in their beautiful home. A very big holiday in the 5 stars resort in Moss Vale.

 

Friend in need is a friend indeed.

All monks and the cat returned home today with action pack ! Massage and fighting the fire.

 

Thanks to Sananya and her massage team from New Castle and Ooh, Moss Vale who came to give an amazing Thai message to the fire fighters ( after the treatment finished, the fire restarted in the monk area in the monastery. This team came back to stop the bush fire immediately. A big sadhu to the massage team.)

 

Sadhu with Aon, Peter, Bo, Matoom and Keng who gave a powerful massage to the Andrew,captain of RFS, Wingecarribee, his wife and firey friends. They all feel privileged.

 

All of you are the first Thailand team who represent all Thai people to practise gratitude to Australia by giving free massage to fire fighers. Many more 'massage strike teams' are coming on the next Sunday 19 Jan 20.

 

Khun Chakkrid, the Thai Consul-General, Sydney is a remarkable person. After he heard the news re: Sunnataram bush fire, he immediately visited Bundanoon. He thoroughly inspected the damages of the monastery.

 

As soon as Bo and Matoom spotted the restarted bush fire in the monk area, Khun Chakkrid jumped into action, assisting the monks to stop the fire. He is indeed a committed public officer who genuinely cares for people.

 

A big thank to Khun Kim who rang the RFS after she saw the fire was beyond our ability to stop it.

 

Luckily, Matoom fought the fire bravely and Bo is the best fire spotter.

 

We called 000 a few times, and helped to stop the fire at the opposite neighbor's home.

 

The Morton fire is still smouldering  in the monastery, the fireys vigilantly patrol this area both day and night. Tomorrow they will call helicopter water bomb to stop the fire in the monk area. Thanks to thier hard working and compassion.

 

This is a special ‘welcome home' ceremony for the monks and the cat.

 

Update Sat 11 Jan 2020

Afternoon Inspection to Sunnataram Forest Monastery

All the shrubs and trees on the property were burnt in different degrees, but the whole bush area looks black.

The Gratitude Pagoda, two pavilions, the main shrine, the library, both bathrooms, the world map and all accommodation in the Men’s area are unscathed.

However, the Friday bush fire inflicted major damage to accommodation in the Ladies’s area. The Ladies’ dormitory with 20 beds, the chef’s hut, the new volunteer hut, blue hut and pink hut were destroyed completely.  Hut #3 , #4, both caravans were damaged partially but need to be repaired before people can use them.

We have lost six of the big plastic water tanks (12,000 litres) in the Ladies area. And a few tanks in the workshop were damaged to a degree.

Also there is high risk of burnt trees falling around the monastery, in particular in the Ladies area.

Thanks to all fire fighters both on the ground and in the helicopters who have been working very hard to safeguard the monastery and animals.

The monastery will remain closed to general public until further notice. The fire is still active on the Teudts road.

Tomorrow (Sun 12 Jan 20) the monks and the cat will return to the monastery. A small group of volunteers will start a massage treatment for some fireys and volunteers in the local area

Next weekend on Sunday 19 January we offer Thai vegetarian lunch to the public and especially volunteer fire fighters, who are welcome to come and receive a Thai massage J and anyone who would like to visit the monastery, you are most welcome.

Please click here for more photo

 

Update Fri 10 Jan 2020

https://www.abc.net.au/news/2020-01-10/nsw-bushfire-weather-conditions-hot-damaging-winds/11855538

The ladies dorm and other ladies' huts were burnt down by bush fire this afternoon. We are waiting to be allowed to enter the monastery for further inspection. Tonight will be another extreme fire condtion.


 

Yesterday a big bulldozer cleared the fire trails around the monastery from the monk’s area to the lady’s area, as the last defence line.

 

This afternoon the Morton fire flared up at Teudts road leading to Sunnataram Forest Monastery and Coalmines road to Santi Forest Monastery.

 

Many helicopters dropped water to stop the bush fire in front of Sunnataram Monastery. There were many fire personnel and fire trucks on site. Their presence showed their strong will power and effort to halt the bush fire on this road, and to protect the monastery and Bundanoon town.

 

As the fire fighters were battling against the bush fire destroying all accommodations in the Lady area, at Kim’s home in Moss Vale, the three monks, Kim and her family did chanting and meditation, and sent our Metta for the safety of all fireys, people and animals.

The bush fire is currently under control until the south wind comes up in the middle of tonight. Let’s see what will happen.

Chokdee sent his love to all of us, and thanks for all fire fighters and friends.

vdo pennytimms twitter

 

 

 

Update Thur 9 Jan 2020

Monks still feed wild animals, and prepare the last defense for the extreme bush fire tomorrow.

 

Update Wed 8 Jan 2020

The Morton Fire is still very active in Southern Highlands, especially along the Teudts Road where the monastery is standing. All fire fighters are working very hard along the containment line. Even both fire fighters and our masseurs are so eager to start the massage project, we have to wait until next week when the situation becomes less dangerous.

 

Update Tue 7 Jan 2020

 

Mr Chakkrid Krachaiwong, the Thai Consul – General, Sydney with his wife and team visited the Southern Highlands to inspect the damages caused by the bush fire to the Buddhist monasteries in NSW.

 

After lunch at Kim’s home, we travelled to Bundanoon, and were kindly welcomed by David RFS Inspector from Wingello,  and escorted by him and our Wingello friends to visit Sunnataram Forest Monastery, Bundanoon.

 

Even though Sunnataram is still intact, the Morton Fire is still smouldering in the valley in front of the monastery, and ready to reignite again at any time. David advised the monks it is not safe to stay overnight in the monastery.

 

Then we drove to Wingello to inspect Vejjasala Retreat Centre, which was partially damaged by last Saturday bush fire.

 

David said he was surprised to see the main building and other small huts being spared from the fire.

 

The fire surrounded the main shrine, and combusted everything around it. But miraculously the bush fire just stopped 10 metres away from the main hall.

 

We helped to connect Bhante Tejadhammo, the Abbot of Vejjasala Centre to talk to both the RFS Inspector and the Thai Consul-General, who both offered some help to restore the Centre immediately.

 

We stopped by Wingello Fire Station and discussed how the Thai community in Sydney can help and support the fire fighters.

 

We learnt from David that RFS stations are inundated by food, water, and clothes donations. They don’t have any more storage.

 

So we delightfully agreed on the idea of Thai massage for fire fighters and victims who have suffered from the bush fires in the Southern Highlands.

 

The Thai Consul-General will organize a team of Thai masseurs from Sydney, the RFS Wingello will choose the date and location.

 

Everyone is happy.

Please click here to see photos in google drive

 

Update Mon 6 Jan 2020

The roads leading to Bundanoon were opened in the afternoon. We visited Santi Forest Monastery, Bundanoon and it is still intact.

Then we drove to Vejjasala Retreat Centre, Wingello.
We were so sad to see part of Wingello town was burnt down to ashes.

The forest along the way on the Forest Road to Vejjasala Center was charcoal black. Many big trees are badly burnt and can fall down at any time. The power lines were cut off from fallen trees. A few properties were destroyed by bush fire.

Vejjasala lost one hut, one old library, and some damage on the plastic water tank. We tried to stop some spot fires near the main building before we left for Bundanoon.

Along the way to Sunnataram Forest Monastery, we saw 50-70 firies in the Wingello Fire Station, they were all exhausted. The commander of the fire brigade advised us that it is not safe to stay overnight at the monastery. The Morton Fire is not over yet, it can restart again at any time. We thanked them for their kindness in save so many lives and properties.

Sunnataram Forest Monastery is still intact, but it is very smoky. We can see the plume of bush fire smoke in the valley in front of the main shrine.  

As soon as the animals heard our voices, they gathered round - the parrots, ducks, wallaby and the baby wombat. We put out a lot fruit and water for them every day we have been allowed to return since the evacuation.  They are our family members.

Thnak you very much  to Ven. Wai Yim International Buddhist Cham Shan temple, Morriset for your support.

Please click here to see photos

Early this morning ( Mon 6 Jan 2020) our lovely neighbours in Penrose, Margie and Curly @curlyscompost kindly inspected the monastery. No fire damage in Teudts road was their report.

Unfortunately monks are not allowed back to Bundanoon yet as fires still burning on the other side of Bundanoon and Exeter, as well as fires at Wingello on the Marulan side of our villages.

Thank you again for all firies who are protecting our communities.