Happy New Year!  Actually, New Fiscal Year 2022!  We’ve already had the New School Year 2021-2022!  And Happy New Year 2022 is right around the corner.  No wonder I get so confused!  Yes, our fiscal year is November through October.  All of the annual fiscal numbers for 2021 (Nov 2020 through Oct 2021) are being prepared and reviewed.  This includes our membership numbers that are reported to the BCA annually.  As I mentioned last month, please take a moment to review your own membership pledges.  We have improved the options available to you to renew your membership.  We hope that these changes will simplify the procedure for you!

It has been unfortunate that the pandemic has kept everyone away from the temple and surrounding grounds.  Not only because of the loss of direct interpersonal contact, but you have missed watching the amazing transformation of the grounds surrounding the Hondo, office and front of the Dharma School building!  A very dedicated group of volunteers has taken it upon themselves to improve and expand upon the Japanese gardens in those areas.  They also added some wooden benches next to the entrance to the Hondo….perfect for waiting for the service to begin!  This amazing group of volunteers was led by Stan Kawamata and included Dave Pascual, Ted Hashiguchi, Al Hironaga, Mike Mori and many of the Troop 611 Boy Scouts and leaders!  This has been a huge project funded by donations and can/bottle recycling monies!  A huge thanks to all (I hope that I have not left anyone off the list)!

Speaking of thanks….I would like to extend a huge thank you to Sally Idemoto.  After 40 years of service to the Dharma, she is stepping down as the editor of our monthly newsletter.  Through her tireless efforts, we have continued to receive the messages from our ministers and remained informed of the activities surrounding us here at the Betsuin.  

So we continue to see change all around us…new landscaping, new Dharma newsletter, new fiscal year!  It also appears that we are seeing some improvement in the pandemic situation with increased vaccinations, mask wearing and social distancing.  We are starting to see some relaxation of the occupancy rules for the church.  Things are definitely heading in the right direction, so let’s not let our guard down now!

In Gassho,