Craft fairs and choirs ring in holiday season
The holiday season goes into full swing in island churches with craft fairs and concerts planned for next weekend.
» The annual Christmas Craft Fair next Saturday at St. Ann Church in Kaneohe will offer decorated Christmas wreaths and craft items for sale, food booths and musical entertainment. It will last from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. in the church grounds at 46-129 Haiku Road.
» St. Andrew's Cathedral at Queen Emma Square will open its annual craft fair at 11:30 a.m. Dec. 3. Anglican prayer chaplets will be sold, and several craft booths will be open. Proceeds will go to the Episcopal Relief and Development office.
» The St. Andrew's Cathedral choir and organist Arlan Sunnarborg will present Advent lessons and carols in their evensong concert at 7:30 p.m. Dec. 3. It is free and open to the public.
» A Kailua Community Sing-along at 5:30 p.m. Dec. 3 will give the audience the opportunity to join choristers in singing Handel's "Messiah." The free concert is at Christ Church Uniting, 1300 Kailua Road.
Buddhism professor to speak on Bodhi Day
A nationally known author of books and articles on Buddhist beliefs will speak in Honolulu next weekend at events celebrating the beginnings of Buddhism.
Luis O. Gomez, professor of Buddhist studies at the University of Michigan, will speak on "Hope and Desirelessness in Mahayana Buddhism" in a free public lecture at 1 p.m. next Saturday at the Buddhist Study Center, 1436 University Ave.
Gomez will also be the featured speaker at the Hawaii Buddhist Council's Bodhi Day Service Dec. 3. His topic will be "From Slumber to Awakening: Shakyamuni's Enlightenment." Several island Buddhist temples will participate in the 9 a.m. service at the Higashi Hongwanji Mission of Hawaii, 1685 Alaneo St. It is open to the public.
Buddhists around the world celebrate Bodhi Day, marking the occasion 2,500 years ago when Shakyamuni Buddha achieved enlightenment. According to legend, the young nobleman who founded the Buddhist philosophy was seated beneath a bo or bodhi tree when meditation led him to the state of perfect mental clarity.
Gomez is the author of "The Land of Bliss," a translation of Sanskrit sutras -- Buddhist texts -- published by the University of Hawaii Press. He is also an adjunct professor of psychology at the University of Michigan.