Wat Sumang Khasaram (วัดสุมังคลาราม) was the home of revered monk Luang Pu Bu Kittiyano (หลวงปู่บู่ กิตฺติญาโณ). Before his death in 2017, Luang Pu Bu was said to have performed many miracles, and his likeness was placed on coins and amulets that worshipers purchased for good luck and safety. You will see a gold statue of Luang Pu Bu on the temple grounds and a cement coffin which holds his ashes. Currently, a memorial Chedi museum is being built to honor the beloved monk, which will hold relics from his life.
Wat Sumang Khasaram is a wonderful example of how small, rural Sakon Nakhon temples can hold great surprises. The assembly hall (Viharn) on the temple grounds looks quite ordinary, almost like a rural schoolhouse building, with blue pillars in front of the entrance. But upon entering the building, one is awestruck by a gigantic gold sculpture of the Buddha, in front of which is another statue of Luang Pu Bu.
Wat Sumang Khasaram is located on a dirt road a few kilometers behind Ban Non Noodle Shop in Tambon Phang Khwang, about 20 minutes from Sakon Nakhon city. The temple grounds cover several acres, including a pond, with a few sacred statues placed about, including a white fat Buddha sculpture. The fat Buddha is holding a white bowl in one hand (symbolizing the monk's life), and a gold bowl in the other hand (symbolizing abundance and prosperity), as well as gold beads (symbolizing pearls of wisdom). To see a great example of a laughing fat Buddha statue, visit Tham Thoeng Nak Nimit Priest's Camp, which is only about a 15 minute drive away.
Wat Sumang Khasaram provides plenty of area within the grounds, and around the temple, to have a lovely walk through the Sakon Nakhon countryside. For those who enjoy rural walks, we would suggest walking 550 meters to the forest temple Wat Pa Phang Khwang Tai, which provides an opportunity for a serene walk in the woods.