Memorial Day Floating Lantern Ceremony

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Memorial Day is often seen as the perfect day to BBQ, eat, drink, and spend time with family and friends. Especially here in Hawaii with such beautiful beaches and loving aloha around us this is a great time to relax and enjoy ourselves. But Memorial Day is also a time where we remember all those we have lost in war, and loved ones who have passed as well. This day is marked in Hawaii with the new tradition of the Lantern Floating Ceremony. This local tradition began in 1999 and has grown to include over 5,000 lanterns and is featured in a live video stream that broadcasts around the world.

The idea for the Lantern Floating ceremony actually originated in 1970 with a simple but powerful prayer said by Shinso Ito’s late father at the Arizona Memorial. She reveres the prayer as one asking for world peace and also consoling the families who lost loved ones. Shinso Ito is today also called "Her Holiness" and has acquired the prestigious Buddhist master status for academic achievements and spiritual enlightenment. Today, the Lantern Floating Ceremony continues the message of that prayer where thousands can join together and share one commonality for being there: wanting to honor, remember, and thank those that came before them; and by doing that, we hope to have a brighter future with more understanding in our hearts.

For the Lantern Floating Ceremony to find its home in Hawaii is quite an honor as the ceremony and its message are beginning to spread across the nation. On September 21, Her Holiness will officiate the first Lantern Floating Ceremony at New York’s Central Park.

From our ohana to yours, we wish you a Happy Memorial Day and hope that you will join the Lantern Floating Ceremony and Her Holiness, Shinso Ito, on Monday May 27th from 6:00 PM-7:30 PM at Ala Moana Beach Park.

For more information on the upcoming Lantern Floating Ceremony please visit the website, http://www.lanternfloatinghawaii.com/.

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