Namu Amida Butsu
HERE IT IS—THE MONTH OF SEPTEMBER. Time passes by so quickly. When we think about the last 8 months, each of us had different kinds of experiences. Yes, life is just like the ocean—it’s not always calm and smooth. Let me share with you several highlights of our temple activities. Honpa Hongwanji Mission of Hawaii’s slogan is ”Awareness — Seek Opportunity.”
In the month of January, we had our Sokai (General Assembly) and New Year’s party. In the month of February, we had Scouts Sunday, BWA general assembly, and Spring Eitaikyo services. For the month of March, we had the Shigemi Okamoto Memorial Lectures and the Spring Ohigan services. The month of April brought us the Hanamatsuri and Infant Rites ceremony, along with the Graduation Banquet.
In the month of May, we had 4H Sunday, Gotan-e, and Mother’s Day special brunch, Maui Matsuri fundraising, Veteran’s Day special services, BWA World Convention in Canada, and Wailuku Hongwanji Ohana Tour #8 to Japan.
For the month of June, we had the Awards Sunday, Jr. YBA Sunday, and Father’s Day brunch. In the month of July, we held the BWA&;rsquo;s 110th Commemoration Anniversary and Board of Director’s Sunday. August brought us our annual Obon services, VIDSTA picnic, and Kunisaki grave memorial services, and this month we will observe Autumn Ohigan service and our major fundraiser, the Chow Fun booth at the Maui Fair.
Wow, we have had so many activities these past eight months. Through these activities and services we met a number of people and rejoiced in the happiness together. Meeting new friends,yes, this is our great opportunity for us to share the heart of Jodo Shinshu.
Participating in these activities and supporting these projects with your knowledge and skills are truly doing something good and will bring joy of gathering with each other. With these wonderful relationships, we are able to make our precious lives more meaningful and valuable.
I always see people’s smiles at the many temple activities and gatherings, and those smiles are truly expressing their joy of happiness. Can you imagine ”Someone holding a cup of coffee with a large laughter” .... How nice it is?
The Temple is the place where people gather together, support each other, and rejoice in the happiness with their wonderful smiles. Yes, these gatherings are great opportunities for all of us to share our true joy and happiness with each other.
Why do we invite others to these gatherings, regardless of races, cultures, language, and so on? Most important reason is for all of us to rejoice in the happiness.
In the teachings of the Buddha, it is said, ”An act to make another happy inspires the other to make still another happy, and so happiness is born from such an act. Thousands of candles can be lit from a single candle, and the life of the candle will not be shortened. Happiness never decreases by being shared.” Because of your kindness, dedication, and thoughtful mind, our Wailuku Hongwanji is continuously increasing new members. ”Seeking opportunity.” Yes, opportunities are always around us and to see this fact is all up to each one of us.
Let’s all extend our heart and hands and welcome our new friends to our services and activities and share our true guidance of the Nembutsu life.
Na Amida Butsu