Kailua Hongwanji Has New Temple In Place


After years of hurdles and expenses, the congregation at Kailua Hongwanji Mission dedicated its new temple Feb. 22. “The dedication ceremony was similar to a blessing service,” said Rev. David Nakamoto, “involving those who made contributions to its development, former ministers who have served Kailua Hongwanji and the current Hongwanji organization leadership.”

Nakamoto also noted that an open house is planned for April.

The temple was established in 1968 and is a Buddhist temple of the Jodo Shinshu sect. Members have wanted to replace the previous building, built in the 1940s, for many years because it was inaccessible to the handicapped.

In 2004, longtime members Tadaso and Dorothy Ono bequeathed a large portion of their assets to the congregation, so after several years of preparation, construction began in February 2013.

Still located at 268 A Kuulei Road, the new building is said to be fully accessible to all, including people with special needs. It is intended to house senior day-care services, Buddhist educational programs and serve as a meeting place for temple services and activities.

After spending the $1.5 million projected, the Kailua mission still needs to raise $400,000, which is needed to complete construction with air conditioning, kitchen appliances, security system, sound systems and furnishing such as the altar and other equipment to fully operate its programs.

Supporters are welcome to mail their checks to Kailua Hongwanji, 30-D Maluniu Ave., Kailua, HI 96734.