My goodness, January 2020 has already passed and we should start thinking and preparing for Obon.  I don’t want to alarm you but it is only six months away.  It takes a lot of preparation and planning to ensure our Obon is as successful as all the previous Obon.  Ken Kamei has stepped up as chair of the Obon Committee.

This sounds like fun.  Lantern Walk Proposal, a City of San Jose request: Laura Kim from the Office of Women’s Policy (OWP) and Women’s Equality 2020 Leadership Council (WE2020) have planned a partnership with the community of Japantown for the 2020 WE2020 Lantern Walk Event to be held on Oct. 6, 2020.  The Betsuin facilities was requested by the group which includes the gym, MPR and kitchen.  Participants will make lanterns and walk a short distance through Japantown and proceed to City Hall, a one-mile walk.  There will not be any cost to the Betsuin.  The Betsuin will be allowed to make food to sellGet your walking shoes on and be ready to make your own lantern and take it for a walk to City Hall.  More details will be forthcoming from the City.

Please mark your date for “2020 FILMS OF REMEMBRANCE” – to be screened at the Betsuin Annex on Saturday, Feb. 23, 2020 from 11:00am:

  1. a) “A day-long showcase of films commemorating the wartime incarceration of Japanese

Americans in American concentration camps during World War II.”

  1. b) Joint venture to benefit Betsuin’s Generation II campaign and Nichi Bei Foundation.

Please choose the session you wish to attend or choose all the session for a reduced price.

During Hoonko Service, did you see the new practice for performing the service?  Rinban performed the new ritual flawlessly.  I hope one of these days, the ministers explain what the new ceremony is trying to convey.  This was the first time I saw a new gong being used.  Mikame Sensei taught Rinban proper etiquette in this type of ritual.  Rev. Yugo Fujita who is the Salinas minister was our guest speaker.  The Betsuin Choir sang “Mirai Yosouzu” and “Listen to Amida With Your Heart”.  They sang a lovely rendition of the songs.  On the same day, the New Year’s Luncheon was held.  There were about 150-200 people joining in the festivities.  The whole celebration was topped off with Rinban leading the shakuhachi ensemble.

This year the FDSTL (Federated Dharma School Teacher’s League) Conference will be held in Southern California near Knott’s Berry Farm.  The exact number of teacher’s attending from San Jose is yet to be finalized.  The teachers will learn new ways of connecting with the students to further their Dharma School education.

BWA is holding their “Grateful Garment Project” project which helps clothes individuals who were victims of domestic violence must surrender their clothes as evidence.  This project will run till March 31, 2020.  Also, Botamochi/Chirashi fundraiser by BWA will be held on February 15th.  Don’t forget to get your tickets for this event.  All the BWA ladies are more than happy to sell you a ticket or two.

Finally, as many of you may have heard, there has been more trespassing and threats made to our office staff and ministers by email and in person.  Please be aware of your surroundings and try to travel in pairs whenever possible.  We have gentlemen waiting and willing to walk you to your car or destination.


In Gassho,

Ed Nodohara