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August 2021 Message From President Of The Board Of Kelowna Buddhist Temple

    Welcome everyone to our new website. On behalf of the members and Directors of the Kelowna Buddhist Temple, I would like to congratulate Chad Kohalyk and Rainer Mehl who, with the assistance of Reverend Grant Ikuta from Steveston Temple and Reverend Naoki Hirano, our new resident minister, created this beautiful link between our Temple and your digital worlds.

    Thank you to everyone who are wearing their masks, continually disinfecting surfaces, maintaining distances and have got or are getting their two COVID-19 vaccines…. Thank you for being part of the solution, not the problem. I am happy to report that many of our members have already received both shots of the vaccine.

    We were very excited to have our Obon service on July 25, 2021 in our Temple. Reverend Naoki Hirano brought his wife and mother from Richmond and officiated services at the Kelowna Cemetery and in our Temple. Since our Temple is closed in August and some services were missed during the pandemic, we combined our Hatsubon (for August 2019 to July 2021), Obon (2021) and Shotsuki (for July and August). It was very heart-warming to once again see so many people attending service in our Temple. Sadly, during the service, we recognized the passing of Morio Tahara, Barney Kitaura, Tomiko Tamaki, Jack Hatanaka, Jim Nishi, Jack Tahara, Shirley Yamaoka, Chiyoko Tanaka, Roy Kawamoto, Amy Ueda, Shigeko Kurahashi and Tim Tahara. Unfortunately, we are not yet able to have tea or a meal together downstairs, but the Board is already starting to make plans for activities, fundraisers and services in the near future.

    During this time of Temple closure, our Temple Board has continued to meet monthly via Zoom. Alan Yamaoka, Jack Yamaoka, as well as many Board members, and their friends and families have worked hard to maintain our Temple and grounds. Thanks to the leadership and hard work of Ken Yamada and Rick Suzuki, we have now converted our front and side lawn areas to a beautiful Zen garden.

    We would at this time like to express our gratitude to our wonderful Temple members. Despite the Temple being closed for so long, we have continued to receive generous donations from our Sangha. This has enabled us to keep our Temple going, despite the lack of Temple fund-raisers. Our most heart-felt thank-you to all of you who have given so much during this difficult time.

    In addition, I would like to thank the following members, who have recently left the Temple Board, for all their years of hard work and dedication: Herb Tanaka, Alan Yamaoka, Jack Yamaoka and Barb Yamaoka. Our Temple Board now only in desperate need of more members…please contact our present board members if you are interested.

    In closing, I would like to wish you all Health, Happiness and Serenity in these trying times.

    In Gassho

    Pegi Hayashi Uyeyama

    President, Kelowna Buddhist Temple