Good morning. I would like to thank all of you for taking the time to attend the July Monthly Service here at Pearl Church and thank you for your kind and sincere offerings. I am sure God the Parent and Oyasama is really happy to see you all here today and to have performed the service with joy and in high spirits!
Last Monday on July 4th, we enjoyed the annual Tenrikyo Picnic at Kapiolani Park. Thank you for your hinokishin and participation.
We would like to observe a moment of silence for our departed friend and member of Pearl Church, the Late Mrs. Hilda Kono, who passed away on June 16, 2017. She was very devout in her faith and enjoyed coming to our monthly services. We will miss her support, her faith and her smiling face.
Don’t you think the climate has changed over the years?
- Compared to my childhood days, about 50 years ago, there are now more hot and muggy days than before. In those days, December through March had a lot of rain. There was so much rain that there weren’t many tourists during that time.
- In Japan, during the days around Oyasama’s birthday on April 18th, the cherry blossoms bloomed at this time about 20 – 30 years ago. But now it’s getting warmer earlier. So now they are blooming in the middle of March. Recently during my Jiba Pilgrimage in April the cherry blossoms are already gone.
- During this past 2 or 3 years we’ve been getting extremely high record breaking temperatures on the U.S. mainland such as Texas, Arizona and Nevada. In Hawaii also, we’re getting more days with temperatures 90 degrees or more.
- Most of you have probably heard of “King Tides” inundating our beaches in Honolulu. This has never happened before.
- In the South Pacific 5 islands have disappeared due to rising sea levels.
Human-caused global warming occurs when human activity introduces too much of certain types of gas into the atmosphere. Human activity is mostly burning fuels such as natural gas, gasoline, oil, coal, deforestation and animal agriculture. After carbon dioxide, methane is the second most common greenhouse gas, but methane has 86 times more impact in trapping radiation. It comes from mining, extracting and leaking of natural gas, animal agriculture such as raising cattle and the use of landfills. Animal agriculture accounts for 51% of global warming. From Cowspiracy documentary video.
The United Nations have recognized these causes and have met to agree on actions to be taken to reduce greenhouse gases in the Kyoto Accord and the Paris Agreement. Recently on June 1st of this year, the U.S. withdrew from the Paris Agreement.
Ｗe can look at the basic teachings such as in the Ofudesaki:
This universe is the body of God.
Ponder this in all matters. III: 40
Also in the Ofudesaki, XIII: 43
All of you throughout the world are brother and sisters.
There should be no one called an outsider.
God the Parent created us human beings to see us live a joyous life by helping each other. This is the purpose of creation.
The climate change has been making life difficult for the war refugees and the poor people on the planet. Refugees living in tents are exposed to extreme weather. Poor people living in extremely hot or extremely cold conditions are most likely to suffer or die.
People who live by farming or fishing are experiencing hardships caused by extreme weather and overfishing. Since the advanced nations that are releasing most of the greenhouse gases we among the advance nations should take more responsibility in reducing greenhouse gases. God has provided such a bountiful earth. However, we humans are polluting and damaging the environment which is causing droughts, wild forest fires and extreme abnormal weather. These are causing crisis situations in the world.
Pope Francis of the Catholic Church made a statement in regards to climate change. This is just a summary: “Caring for the environment is a matter of common and universal duty and responsibility especially in light the present ecological crisis. Every creature depends on the earth’s ecology that provides air, food, water and basic resources. These shared resources are easily exploited when we fail to recognize the interconnected nature of God’s creation. Since all beings are interdependent on the resources of the planet, common effort is required to preserve God’s gift to us.”
Due to the irresponsible use of the land, climate change is occurring and we need to take responsibility to reduce global warming.
What can we do to reduce global warming?
- Use resources wisely, such as water, electricity, gas and cars.
- Use eco bags instead of receiving the bags provided by the store.
- Turn off the water when brushing your teeth, soaping in the shower or washing your hands.
- Recycle cans and bottles
- Turn off the lights when leaving your room.
- Combine your car trips whenever possible to conserve fuel. Walk or use the bus when you can.
- Let’s go green by planting trees in your yard.
- Pull out the plug or turn off the power strip when not in use.
- Most importantly since animal agriculture accounts for 51% of global warming we should reduce or eliminate meat from our diet.
These small efforts done individually may not make an impact, but the combined effort of many people will definitely make a difference.
In the Anecdotes of Oyasama,
#138 YOU MUST TREASURE THINGS
While in jail, Oyasama had a scrap of writing paper brought in and She made twisted paper strings out of it. With it, She wove a net basket to carry a sake bottle. It was very strong and beautifully made. When She left the jail to return home, She gave it to Gisaburo Nakata, saying:
“You must treasure things. You must make good use of everything. Everything is a gift from God. Now, keep this as your family treasure.”
As you can see Oyasama believed in recycling and making good use of things. She said, “Everything is a gift from God.” I believe this means that we need to take care of the Earth and protect the Earth. Although some people don’t believe it, global warming is happening and we must take action to stop global warming regardless of what the government is doing. Perhaps what US President did in regards to withdrawing from the Paris Agreement is a wakeup call for everyone to pay attention this problem and do what we can to reduce global warming.
- The annual Tenrikyo Picnic was held last Tuesday at Kapiolani Park. For those who went, thank you for your hinokishin in preparation and clean up!
- Marika Higa will be serving as counselor for Kaigai Shohi which is the Overseas B & G Hinokishin Corps in Jiba this summer. We wish her a meaningful, fun and safe trip.
- The MHQ monthly service will be held this coming Sunday on July 16.
- The annual Tenrikyo bazaar is coming up on Sunday, August 27. And we’d like to ask for everyone’s support in selling presale scrips and prep hinokishin and helping at the bazaar.
- Everyone please welcome the three students for the Hawaii One-Month Spiritual Development Course from Mission HQ: Louise Akamine, Yukie Minami and Sean Rodan. Sean is Dan Rodan’s son.