Part of the annual ISKCON festival in Mexico City.
Devotees were preparing for their weekly Sunday Feast at the ISKCON center in Tijuana, Mexico, when tremors were felt from the 7.2 magnitude earthquake that struck 108 miles away near Mexicali, Baja California.
The quake, which hit at 3:40pm, was the most severe Mexico has seen in seven years and caused the city of Mexicali to declare a state of emergency. There were power cuts, and hospitals and public buildings were evacuated, while the city reported three quake-related deaths, about 120 injuries and 30 collapsed or damaged buildings.
In Tijuana, the earthquake caused buildings to sway, and Easter celebrations were interrupted as people rushed for open ground.
The ISKCON center, however, was not damaged, nor were any devotees injured.
“Priests were cleaning the altar when the tremors were felt, and laid the marble Deities of Krishna Balarama down on the altar, as a precautionary measure so that they wouldn’t fall,” says Mahananda Dasa, who serves at the Tijuana center and has been part of ISKCON Mexico’s national committee since 2007.
The priests then carried the 18-inch high Deities outside, in case of further tremors.
According to Mahananda, all other ISKCON temples in Mexico are also safe and have not sustained any damage.