Lahaina, HI 96767
A Shin Buddhist (Jodo Shinshu) temple. The founder of this sect is Shinran Shonin (1173-1262). Shin Buddhism is considered to be the most widely practiced branch of Mahayana Buddhism.
The forerunner of Lahaina Hongwanji Mission dates back to March 1904, but it did not come by easily. Rev. Tessan Funakura of Wailuku Hongwanji Mission was assigned the task of commuting 25 miles on horseback over the pali’s precarious mountain trail to Lahaina. He dutifully began the propagation of the Teachings of Shin Buddhism (Jodo Shinshu) in Lahaina town. In October of the same year, Rev. Kenyu Arai was dispatched to become the first resident minister of the Lahaina Hongwanji Mission, which found its beginning in the Mala District of Lahaina.
In May 1911, the present property located at 551 Wainee Street was purchased. By October 1912, the construction of the temple, minister’s residence, and school was completed. It was during the tenure of Rev. Shinri Sarashina (1924-1936) that the old temple was replaced, in 1933, by the temple as it exists today. The temple’s construction was a culmination of the mission’s 5-year financial plan.
Down through the years since its founding, the Lahaina Hongwanji Mission has become the focal point of worship. This worship and fellowship have been supported by social activities such as Holiday Seasons’ festivities, Bazaars, Obon Festivals, mochi-pounding, crafts, karaoke singing, monthly memorial services, seminars, Dharma School, and much more. The mission held commemorative events such as the 75th Anniversary Celebration, the 80th Anniversary celebration, and, in October of 2004, the Centennial Celebration. Lahaina Hongwanji has been a place where people gather to pause and reflect, to work and play.
The name of our congregation --- Hongwanji --- means the Temple of Amida’s Universal Vow. Hongwanji is also the name of the original temple founded by the descendants of Shinran Shonin (1173-1262). Although Buddhist teachings can be traced back to India, Hongwanji has its origin in 13th Century Japan, in the era of Shinran Shonin.
Phone: (808) 661-06408
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