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A Time for Joy
Colorful banquet table with an assortment of fruits, cakes, flowers, and decorative objects.

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On the MPTF campus, we celebrate and mark time with residents, staff, and supporters with our Celebrations of Culture Series. The programs offer opportunities for lifelong learning and recognize that our campus, our staff, and the industry at large are increasingly more diverse. Though we provide opportunities for specific religious rituals and worship, this series is intended to offer broader cultural offerings and exchange that allow all of us to grow, enjoy, and feel a sense of community and neighborhood on the campus.

Recently, on March 21 we celebrated Nowruz, the Persian New Year, with a joyous live performance in our theater. The event was a beautiful collaboration with volunteers from the MTO LA Center, who also generously arranged to supply MPTF with PPE and food during the pandemic. “Over the past few years,” MTO said, “our relationship with MPTF has flourished, culminating in last year’s Nowruz presentation, which was warmly received by all. This year, we were honored to expand upon that success, utilizing MPTF’s theater stage and screen to showcase a live Sufi Zekr group, Zendeh Delan spiritual music, soulful poetry, visualization videos, and a Haftseen spread and various pastries, allowing everyone to savor the sweetness of the new spring season. We are grateful for the opportunity to share our school’s teachings with the wonderful residents, staff, and guests of MPTF, and we eagerly anticipate further exchanges in the years to come.”

We spoke to them further about this special occasion, and they generously explained the following: “Nowruz, meaning ‘New Day,’ holds profound significance as the Persian New Year and the arrival of spring, a time of rejuvenation and new beginnings cherished by over 300 million people worldwide. It’s a time for families and friends to come together, sharing joy and hope for the future. At the heart of Nowruz lies the Haftseen, a special display filled with symbols arranged in homes adorned with elements embodying renewal and growth. Before the new year, families will set up the Haftseen in their homes with items such as wheatgrass or sprouts, a sweet pudding, dried oleaster fruit, apples, garlic, sumac, and vinegar, which symbolize rebirth and growth, sweetness and fertility, love, beauty, medicine and health, age and patience, and sunrise and new beginnings.”

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