Hilo Hooganji Mission, at 457 Manono St. at the corner of Manono and Piilani, will hold its O-Bon celebration on Saturday. O-Bon and Hatsu-bon (first O-Bon service commemorating those who passed during the previous 12 months) services will begin at 6 p.m.
The annual Bon dance will start at 7:30 p.m. The O-Bon ritual has become modernized through the years. It remains a time for paying respect to the departed so they continue to rest in peace, but today, the Bon dance gives participants an opportunity to joyously remember loved ones and to reaffirm relationships with family, friends and community.
“Hilo Hooganji’s Bon dance is eagerly anticipated each season. Participants start lining up well in advance of the start time to make sure they get their share of the ono food, baked goods and other snacks that are available in the food tent and in the concession areas,” said Hooganji spokeswoman Amy Miwa.
On Sunday at 7 p.m., the Hooganji will hold its annual Toro-nagashi (floating lantern ceremony) at the Wailoa Small Boat Ramp.
“This service sends off the departed to Nirvana. The lanterns symbolize the departed crossing the river and traveling to the Pure Land/Nirvana,” explained Miwa. The public is welcome to attend both services. For more information, please call Bishop Sohko Kuki at 935-8331.