A place, almost anyplace, can be turned into a very special place if there are very special people with a dream, a heart for compassion and gratitude, and a will, determination and tenacity to carry out their common goal. So it was in Palo Alto, too, that a very special place evolved over a period of 90 years. Special services descriptions:
● Bodhi Day Service – Commemorating the Enlightenment (Bodhi) of Sakyamuni Buddha. Usually observed on December 8th.
● Children's Day - Dharma service honoring the temple children. This is a service including the former Hinamatsuri (Girl's Day) and Tango no Sekku (Boy's Day). An Infant blessing ceremony (Hatsumairi/Shosanshiki), affirming newborns born during the past year, will also be held at this time.
● Eshinniko Service – Commemorating the contributions of Shinran Shonin's wife, Eshinni.
● Gotan E: Shinran Shonin Day – Commemorating the birth of Shinran Shonin (May 21, 1173), founder of our Jodo Shinshu Sect.
● Hanamatsuri – Celebration of the birth of Prince Siddhartha who upon attaining Enlightenment became known as Sakyamuni Buddha. Usually observed on April 8th.
● Hatsubon Service – First year memorial honoring deceased members who have passed on since the previous Obon.
● Ho-Onko Service – Gathering to commemorate the death (January 16, 1262) of Shinran Shonin and to express appreciation for his life and teachings.
● Joya E Service – New Year's Eve Service.
● Kakushinniko Service – Commemorating the contributions of Shinran Shonin's daughter, Kakushinni.
● Nirvana Day (Nehan E) –Observing Sakyamuni Buddha's death as his entrance into Great Nirvana. Usually observed on February 15th.
● Obon Service – Annual summer service offering Buddha's life of awakening for all being through our expression of gratitude for those who passed, including one's ancestors.
● Ohigan Services – Held during the vernal and autumnal equinoxes. During these two seasons of balance, the meaning of the Buddhist goal of the Other Shore of Nirvana is emphasized.
● Shusho E Service – New Year's Day service to commemorate the New Year.
● So-Cho Ki – (Past) Bishops' Memorial Service.