She lay in the dust by the side of the road, alone and abandoned in her suffering. Her family had rejected her, and this poor widow had made her way to Brindaban, where an estimated ten thousand elderly, homeless women reside, hoping to find solace in the city blessed by the presence of Lord Krishna.

The large, malignant tumor on her back emitted such a noxious odor that no one came near her. Filled with pain, and having had no food or water for days, she prayed to God to allow her to die.

Nayaswamis Jyotish and Devi with a widow from Brindaban at Paramhansa Yogananda Charitable TrustThen something unexpected happened. A man appeared before her and told her to go to one of the Paramhansa Yogananda Charitable Trust care homes. “They will help you,” he said. “But,” she replied, “I don’t know where this place is or how to get there.”

He clapped his hands, and a three-wheeler (small motorcycle rickshaw) appeared and drove her to the care home, where the poor widow was bathed and fed by the staff. When they saw the cancerous tumor on her back, they took her to the nearby Ramakrishna Mission Hospital to receive surgery and treatment.

After a period of recovery, she returned to the care home, where she received the loving attention of the staff and regained her health. A few weeks later, she came up to the director of the home holding a copy of Autobiography of a Yogi. Pointing to Yoganandaji’s picture on the cover, she said, “This is the man who found me by the side of the road and sent me here.”

We heard this story last week when we visited Brindaban to see the work of the Paramhansa Yogananda Public Charitable Trust, a part of Ananda Sangha’s service in India. Started in 2014, and led by Ananda member Manjunath Kini, the Trust is quickly becoming a model for charitable works in this sacred city. (See this recent article.)

In 2014, Manjunath began with six dedicated people from the Brindaban area who were unfamiliar with Ananda, but felt a calling to serve the homeless widows. The small staff began by going door to door to see what help they could offer.

Now in 2017 the Charitable Trust has:

* eight residential care homes where food, lodging, and loving care are provided free-of-charge to 220 widows.

* distribution centers to provide milk and vegetables to 1250 widows on a daily basis, and monthly food staples to an additional 4000.

* a staff of ninety workers who operate the care homes and several small clinics, distribute food, bring the sick to the local hospital, and make about 2400 home visits each month.

Paramhansa Yogananda Charitable Trust staff with Nayaswamis Jyotish and Devi

Staff of Paramhansa Yogananda Charitable Trust.

These are all wonderful accomplishments, but what inspired us the most was Yoganandaji’s growing presence in those involved with the Trust. Most of the staff practice the Energization Exercises and meditation daily now, and have taught these techniques to the widows, who practice them also. One third of the staff have taken discipleship vows.

Photos of our line of masters and of Swami Kriyananda are present everywhere, and the work is now becoming a “Paramhansa Yogananda” Charitable Trust in spirit as well as in name.

While we were visiting one of the care homes, an elderly widow came up to us with a question. She was reading Swamiji’s Essence of the Bhagavad Gita in Hindi, and wanted to know why Krishna urged Arjuna to fight. How wonderful it was to share with her (through a translator) the symbolism of this great scripture as Master explained it.

In Yoganandaji’s poem “Samadhi,” he writes: “The sparrow, each grain of sand, fall not without my sight.” Though we are often unaware of God’s loving presence in this world, His eye is ever watchful, seeking to help those in need. Blessed are they who become channels for His love and compassion to the least of His little sparrows.

In God and Guru,

Nayaswami Devi

P.S. To find out more, see the Paramhansa Yogananda Charitable Trust page on or visit their Facebook page for recent updates.

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  1. Dear Deviji,

    Thank You for sharing this!
    Tears are flowing, as I am so full of gratitude for all you and Jyotish, Ananda in it’s many forms, Swamiji, and the Masters are doing for this world… May this work and His ray continue to grow, flourish and spread across the world – bringing LIGHT, bringing JOY , bringing LOVE… That we may remember that we are all one human family and see GOD EVERYWHERE!

    Master IS everywhere – JAI GURU!!

  2. That’s great!
    Trust is doing novel works of charity; indeed God’s work..
    My good wishes to all such unique personalities..
    May God bestow his blessings on such pious souls..

  3. Premavatar …. Jai Guru. So awesome to read about Master’s visit and the inspiring work our Gurubhais are doing at Vrindavan. Thank you for sharing Devi Ji.

  4. Love this story about Master coming to help the dear widow. And what the work of the Trust is doing!! Incredible! I had no idea how far reaching this Trust has become. Thank you, Devi for sharing. Victoria

  5. Thank you for bringing this story home to us.
    Tears of joy I weep this morning. It is such a lovely reminder of the glorious goodness that is so near to us.

  6. Dear Devi,
    This is so beautiful.
    I was wondering why in India the widows are abandoned?
    It did not make sense why they would be abandoned in India.
    Maybe I am just unaware of this problem that may happen all over the world.
    Master is holding all of us sparrows in his warm loving hand.
    How comforting that thought is.
    And we help him by loving all the lonely people we meet, helping how we can.
    Have a happy blessed day with God and Guru.

  7. Pranam Ji

    Jai Guru, Blessed are, Master’s Devotees ,Thanks to Ananda Sanga for carrying forward Masters Gift of Love and compassion. Aum.

    With Gratitude
    R Sundararajan

  8. Dear Nayaswami Devi, WOW and O.M.G. Thank you for sharing yet again this “beyond words” of God’s unending miracles and what a a beautiful, heart-renching story of the dear soul and by Master Yogananda in such a wondrous way, link -by -link enabling others to be of service. Awesome in every aspect. Thank you and Jyotish – for your tireless part. Joy to all.

    1. Dear Nayaswamis Devi and Jyotish, I realise my comments are rather long so with respect, I will make them shorter. I just get so overwhelmed n tearful. Namaste

  9. What a beautiful and inspirational story, Devi. Just what I needed to read first thing this morning. What a wonderful mission for the PYPCT and a blessing for those they serve! I would love to visit this sacred place. Jai guru!

  10. Dear Devi,
    Reading about the widow beside the road brought tears of gratitude to my eyes for Yogananda’s presence to those suffering and in need who have the karma to see him! Such a blessing to learn about the compassionate work being done to help widows there. As we focus on the Light, it expands everywhere.
    In Divine Mother’s love,

  11. Dear Nataswami Devi, Thank you for sharing this article of Gods unending miraculous help in such equally miraculous ways for the dear old soul and unnnacountable multitudes. How wonderful that beloved Master Yogananda is ever used in such ways. How can we fail to be humbled but hugely inspired to do our part to whatever degree were enabled. Never forgetting the works that you and Jyotish do. God Bless and Joy to all

  12. Simply touched through the heart! So inspired to hear the work of these great souls who care for these widows and unfortunate. So comforted to know Master is still pulling devotee’s through his ray.

    Aum Guru ji

  13. Love and Gratitude to Manjunath Kini and all his team members who are doing service to the mankind. Blessed is the ailing widow who was personally directed to the Trust by none other than Paramhansa Yogananda himself. I only wish I see him and he bless me too. May God be always with you all to carry on the great work.

  14. Dear Nayaswami Devi Ji,

    Blessed to read the incident of the mother being helped by Master. Thank you for sharing

    Jai Guru

    In Master’s Service

  15. Me and my team at Vrindavan are grateful to all our Gurubhais who have been supporting this work in several ways. Special thanks to Nayaswami Jyotish ji, Nayaswami Devi ji and Nayaswami Dhyana ji for infusing us with the divine energy and help us stay in-tune with Yogananda ji.
    Aum Guru

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