Ganesh Temple of Queens welcomes all faithful

When the Ganesh Temple was consecrated 40 years ago, it got a cold reception from its neighbors in Flushing, Queens.

Dr. Uma Mysorekar said that in 1977 Hindus were not well understood and the neighbors thought they were kind of like a cult. She said that people threw eggs and tomatoes at the temple while it was under construction.

Now an average of 3,000 people of all faiths stop by to pray every week. Eight main deities are represented and 20 saints adorn the walls.

Nearly all of the materials used to build the temple and the lovely hand-carved accents came from India, of special significance of course to its worshippers.

The temple sits on 123,000 square feet. A hallway leading to the entrance has eight representations of Ganesh to welcome devotees as they go in to pray to the remover of obstacles.

Anyone perhaps hungry after praying can stop by the temple canteen to grab a bite of authentic Indian cuisine.

A gift shop is also at the temple for anyone looking for an artifact or souvenir, even of their experience while there, which is something Dr. Mysorekar has been pleased to see happen and prays it continues. She said the temple welcomes people of all faiths to come accept God in any form or shape and feel the "vibrations of faith."