Jain Society Of Central Florida - Anila Vijay Poonai Tirth
Derasar And History

Few Jain families migrated to Orlando in the late ’70s & early ’80s.

In 1981, Mrs. Laxmiben Zaveri and Mrs. Hansa Shah organized the first Jain Aarathana/Bhakti with at least seven Jain families participating. Each family took turns holding regularly scheduled Aradhana at their homes. The effort was expanded to teach children Jain religious principles and Stavan using material on hand.

In the mid 80’s several more families moved to the Orlando area. Under the leadership of Mr. Rajendra Mehta, a Stavan and religious teaching notebook was prepared using material that was available through JAINA.

In-home aradhana, pooja & children's activities continued till membership grew to more than 40-50 participants.

In 1986 official pathshala was started with several adults teaching Jain religion as well as the Gujarati language to make learning.

In 1991, Mr. Bhupendra Shah (President) held a feasibility study session that resulted in property acquisition in 1992 during Mr. Shashikant Shah’s tenure as the president. JSOCF by-Laws were adopted in 1994.

The community hall was added in 1998. The most modern Derasar was built in 2013 under the leadership of Mrs. Pravinaben Shah & Ketu Sheth. The exquisite structure of the new derasar is a traditional shikhar bandhi (Steeple and Dome) temple with an area of over 4600 square feet. The inside of the temple is done entirely with marble. The rang mandap is about 3200 square feet. Ghabharo (inner Sanctum) is about 300 square feet. Ghabharo has three sets of murties. In the middle, it has the presence of Shvetämbarpratimajis of Sri Mahavir Swami (our Mulnayak –21”) and two side pratimajis of ShriAdeshwar Swami and Shri Vimalnath Swami (both of 17”). On the left side, we have Digambarpratimajis of Shri Adeshwar Swami (21”) with Shri Mahavir Swami and Shri Chandraprabhu Swami (both 17”) on its side. On the right-hand side, we have Sri Simandhar Swami pratimaji (19”).

In 2022, with a generous donation from Dr. Vijay Poonai, a Jainology Central was added to the property.