first Sunday

First Sunday Family Service

Joy kicked off her Dharma Talk about interconnectedness by leading the congregation in the Baby Shark Dance, the YouTube phenomenon with over 1.7 billion views. She closed with the question, “Can you imagine if Buddhism spread like Baby Shark did?”

For our First Sunday family activities, we made paper-strip pumpkins and mixed up a batch of colorful slime.

"First Sunday" Family Service

Today’s Dharma Message was given by Prudence, who shared a story about a gumyocho, a two-headed bird.

One head was named Karuda and the other Upakaruda. The heads had differing desires, which often caused conflicts between Karuda and Upakaruda.

One day, Karuda feasted until he could eat no more, while Upakaruda slept. When Upakaruda woke, he found he couldn’t enjoy the food since their stomach was stuffed from Karuda’s feasting.

Feeling resentful, Upakaruda ate poisonous fruits, hoping to punish Karuda. As expected, when Karuda woke, the poison kicked in and he died. Of course, because they shared the same body, the poison that killed Karuda soon after killed Upakaruda.

Before dying, Upakaruda realized the interconnectedness of his life and Karuda’s. By harming one, they both suffered.

After the service, we celebrated August and September birthdays. After refreshments, we had our First Sunday activity (postponed from earlier in the month due to our 50th Anniversary celebration), assembling paper plate doves to hang on our Peace Day tree.

First Sunday Family Service

Bob Nishita's Dharma message for today's First Sunday Family Service was about judgement. We often judge others based on how we see things from our point of view. When you point at someone, three fingers are pointing right back at you.

Bob also talked to us about being different. All of us are different and that's a good thing. Can you imagine if all of us were the same? We'd be arguing and agreeing with ourselves!

After celebrating July birthdays and refreshments, today's First Sunday family activity was making shaving cream and glue ice cream cones.

We celebrated July birthdays

Rev. Noriaki Sumi visited us today. Rev. Sumi was Kailua Hongwanji's minister from 1985 to 1987. From left to right: Rev. Kuniyuki, Rev. Sumi, Keiji Kukino, Rev. Sumikawa

First Sunday Family Service

Dr. Michael Jaffe gave today's Dharma Talk, "The Science of Happiness." He shared photos of the people of Bhutan, which measures the level of happiness of its people. Happiness is a core philosophy of the Buddhist nation, which measures and tracks its Gross National Happiness.

We celebrated June birthday and, after today's service, we decorated hand-shaped cards for Father's Day as our First Sunday craft activity.

Sunday Family Service

Today’s Dharma message was given by Rev. Bert Sumikawa.  His message was regarding Mother’s Day.

Rev. Sumikawa said there are a number of Sutras that express reverence towards one’s mother and about the mother-child relationships.  He drew memories of his own relationship with his mother.  While he was young, she seemed strict and would occasionally scold him.  But, she would do things that he would later realize she did those things because of her love for him.  

He recalled that he was participating in a 5th grade May Day program and he needed to wear a white shirt which he didn’t have.  He didn’t tell told his mother until the night before.  Although she scolded him for telling her so late, she bought material and supplies that night and he woke up the next morning and found a brand new shirt for him.  She reminded him again to not wait until the last minute to tell her he needed something.

After the service, we celebrated birthdays for the month of May.  Because there was no service last Sunday, we did the First Sunday Activities today – Mother’s Day flowers and yarn leis.

First Sunday Family Service

Joy gave us a picture-book summary of the Oscar-winning movie Coco. Many of the events of the  film from Disney/Pixar takes place around the Mexican holiday Día de Muertos, or The Day of the Dead, which is a time for families to remember family members have died. Joy described the parallels to the Buddhist Obon, where we celebrate and honor the spirits of one's ancestors.

After the service, we celebrated Hanamatsuri (flower festival) by making flowers out of recycled plastic bottles and paper, as well as dyeing eggs in colorful shades of spring.

Happy Birthday to our April birthdays!

First Sunday Family Service

We welcomed (back) Rev. Bert Sumikawa to Kailua Hongwanji Mission for his first family service as our resident minister. Rev. Sumikawa most recently was the resident minister of Mo’ili’ili Hongwanji Mission. For his first Dharma Talk, Rev. Sumikawa shared his journey from growing up in Pearl City and Kailua, to becoming a pediatric dentist, and, after retiring from his dentist practice, becoming a Shin Buddhist minister. Read more about Rev. Sumikawa in the March newsletter.

After the service and refreshments, members of all ages participated in a First Sunday craft activity. We used bleeding tissue paper to create colorful spring artwork, each one individual and unique.

We celebrated our March birthdays. Happy birthday!

First Sunday Family Service

For today's Dharma Talk, Rev. Kuniyuki reviewed a fundamental teaching of Jodo Shinshu Buddhism, the Four Noble Truths.

  1. Life is suffering (dukkha) 
  2. Suffering is caused by greed, anger (aversion), and ignorance (not knowing)
  3. Stopping suffering can be achieved by eliminating greed, anger, and ignorance
  4. The way to eliminate greed, anger, and ignorance is the Eightfold Path

After the service, the sangha participated in First Sunday Family Activities. This month, members young and young-at-heart enjoyed a variety of Valentine's Day-themed crafts including valentine visors and heart-shaped pillows. 

We celebrated February birthdays. Happy birthday!

First Sunday Family Service

Rev. Kevin Kuniyuki of the Buddhist Study Center has been temporarily assigned as overseer minister of Kailua Hongwanji Mission during the months of January and February 2018. Welcome Rev. Kuniyuki!

For today's Dharma message, Rev. Kuniyuki shared the story of how and why he became a Shin Buddhist minister. Over the next couple of months, Rev. Kuniyuki's Dharma messages will cover the Four Noble Truths and the Eightfold Path.

Members with birthday in January were recognized and celebrated. Happy birthday!

Following the service and refreshments, we participated in a couple of First Sunday craft activities. We painted "Year of the Dog" posters, which were put on display in the temple. We also made fire-breathing dragons using toilet paper rolls and streamers.

First Sunday Family Service

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Prudence spoke about Bodhi Day, explaining so the children (and adults) could understand why we observe Bodhi Day. She based her talk on the book “Prince Siddharta.” Pictures projected on the wall added to her talk and captured the attention of all. 

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