Every February Shingon Shu Hawaii holds its Hoshi Matsuri service to bestow blessings for the rest of the year. “Hoshi” means star and “matsuri” means festival. The service includes the transformation of sacred items (i.e. altars/butsudan, altar pieces, prayer items, statues, charms/omamori, etc) by placing them in a sacred fire. Most of the items are from deceased family members of the congregation.
Our school has been a part of this ceremony for the past 17 years as the temple has entrusted us to be the fire keepers. Our responsibilities include the lighting of the sacred fire, receiving the sacred items from the congregation, sorting through them, and placing them in the sacred fire. The process is truly a practice of non-attachment as we sort through beautiful, one of a kind pieces that hold high sentimental and monetary value. This is done whilst the temple ministers and congregation pray inside the temple.
Our sincerest gratitude to Shingon Shu Hawaii for trusting and allowing us to be part of this ceremony. It is truly an honor.
Here are some photos from this years ceremony held on February, 12, 2017.