About Jain Society of Metropolitan Chicago
Founded in 1970, the Jain Society of Metropolitan Chicago (JSMC) is a non-profit tax exempt organization registered in State of Illinois and operating under IRC Title 26 U.S.C. - 501(c), Section 501(c)(3) status.
JSMC has a membership of about 1,700+ families, the largest membership representation of the Jain Centers in North America. JSMC is a proud member of the Federation of Jain Associations In North America (JAINA) and has a distinctive honor of having built in 1992 the 1st significant Jain Temple of North America on 15.4 acre property it owns in Bartlett, Illinois.
Jainism is a religion and a way of life for the Jains around the world.
The primary purpose of JSMC is to provide a temple for religious services and a community center for social, cultural, educational and economic needs of the Jain community. Other objectives of JSMC are to increase the awareness of the principles of Jainism, achieve the unity of all Jains, provide a platform wherefrom to project the voice of Jain religion, promote the feeling of amity and brotherhood among Jains and to promote inter-faith understanding, establish communications between scholars of Jain philosophy and members of the Society, and celebrate Jain festivals and holidays.
To offer a trustworthy and structured ground for projecting a common voice of all Jains for promoting principles of Jain religion, providing Jain education to the community, and celebrating Jain social and cultural events in a manner that is compassionate, vibrant, & dynamic to all. In doing so, the organization shall execute its affairs ethically based on a sound infrastructure and responsible conduct, while creating a sustainable financial position.
To establish an inspiring Jain lifestyle that focuses on youth involvement, boasts the highest membership among Jain Centers outside of India, demonstrates having a positive impact on every stakeholder, grows financially to a stable and sustainable debt-free position, becomes a "can't live without" for the community, and attracts visitors as a "must visit"place on Chicago's list.
JSMC has come a long way since its formation more than twenty-five years ago. The idea of organizing JSMC was initiated during PARYUSHANA PARVA in 1969. The constitution for that purpose was adopted in a general body on January 11, 1970.
The aims and objectives of the organization are to provide a platform for projecting the voice of Jainism in the United States, to strive for an increased awareness of Jain principles, and to promote better understanding with other religions and cooperation among different factions of Jainism. From the beginning our community was poised for having a temple of our own. As a step in the right direction, we received Bhagvan Mahavir's Pratimaji (idol) in 1971. Thereafter, the following events took place:
|1969||Inception of the idea of organizing a Jain Society in Chicago|
|1970||Adopted the Constitution for the purpose of JSMC on Jan 11, 1970|
|1988||Purchased 15.4 acres of land for the Jain Center|
|1992||Jain Center opening ceremony in May|
|1993||Pratishtha of Mulanayak Bhagvan, Mahavir Swami and all Ghabhara Pratimajis, Dev-Devi, Ghantakarna Mahavir, Shreemad Rajchandraji, Laghuraj Swami and Bhahmacharji and Atmasiddhi anavaran.|
|1995||Twenty Tirthankar Pratishtha. Also hosted JAINA Convention|
|1996||Shreemad Rajchandra Pratishtha idol and Atmasiddhi Shatabdhi celebration|
|1997||Four Tirthankar Pratishtha|
It is now time to consolidate our financial base and expand our humanitarian and socio-economic activities with the development of JSMC Heritage Fund. We want to award educational scholarships, help our fellow Jains, and provide financial support to people during natural disasters. We would like to continue our efforts toward building other activity centers, expand and enrich our Library and increase support for publications. We want to spread the word about vegetarianism, one of our main religious principles.
We must create the platform for the next generation to continue and expand what we have started; to extend our humanitarian endeavors and excel in every aspects of Jainism.