July 13-14— Obon honors the memory of relatives and friends who have passed away. Hatsubon Service will be held for families that have lost a loved one since the last obon on Saturday, July 13 at 3 pm. Obon Family Service will be held on Sunday, July 7th at 10:00 am. Guest speaker will be Bishop Daigaku Rumme from the Soto Zen Mission.
Obon comes from the story of Maudgalyana, a disciple of the Buddha, who sees his mother suffering in “hell”. Maudgalyana goes to the Buddha for advice and is instructed to make a gift (a vegetarian meal) to his fellow monks. He did so, and immediately his mother is saved from the miseries of hell. Overjoyed, he and his fellow monks clapped their hands and danced in joy. Obon, therefore, is an occasion for rejoicing in liberating others and ourselves from suffering.
Food booths will serve BBQ chicken teriyaki, chow mein, maki/inari sushi (Sat.) and chirashi rice (Sun), cold somen (Sat.) and unagi donburi (Sun.) and snow cones among the offerings. There will be game booths, martial arts demonstrations, vendors, silent auction, opportunity drawing, Bingo and exhibits including ikebana. Festivities begin at 4:00 and end at 9:00 on Saturday and 8:30 on Sunday.
Each evening, dancers from around the Southland gathered around the yagura and danced the traditional Obon Odori (dances). Dancing is scheduled to begin at 6:30 pm each evening. Obon odori is to dance for joy.
Taiko Performances are scheduled each evening during the dancing break (around 7:00 PM). Saturday will feature Matsuri Taiko on Saturday and Chikara Taiko on Sunday.
For more information, contact Reverend Rosenthal via email.