Counseling center to hold open house
A counseling agency sensitive to the spiritual orientation of its clients will hold an open house Thursday to introduce its programs to religious leaders and organizations.
The former Samaritan Counseling Center will officially adopt a new name at the celebration from 5 to 7 p.m. at its offices at First United Methodist Church, 1020 S. Beretania St.
The name, Counseling & Spiritual Care Center of Hawaii, was chosen to reflect its interfaith character, said the Rev. Jonipher Kwong, executive director. "'Samaritan' has a Christian connotation; it doesn't have resonance with the Buddhist, Jewish or Muslim religions. We also wanted to indicate that we give more than counseling. Our goal is to be there for pastors and congregation needs, as well as our families and individual clients."
The agency was organized in 1989 with the participation of Catholic, Protestant, Jewish and Buddhist advisers. It has conducted classes on topics such as parent-child problem-solving and marriage preparation, and has provided clergy and lay leaders with workshops on managing conflicts within a congregation, ministering in cases of sexual abuse, and other topics.
The counseling service also has offices at Central Union Church, Honpa Hongwanji Hawaii, Unity Church of Hawaii, Windward United Church of Christ and Our Lady of Sorrows Church in Wahiawa.
Learn about Buddhism in series of lectures
An educational series of lectures for people curious about Buddhism will open Feb. 7 at the Pacific Buddhist Academy at Honpa Hongwanji Mission, 1727 Pali Highway.
The Hawaii Association of International Buddhists will sponsor the series, titled "Exploring Buddhist. Got Questions?" which will feature speakers from different branches and organizations of the religion. The speakers will respond to audience questions.
The Rev. Alan Urasaki, chaplain at the Federal Detention Center, and the Rev. Eshin Matsumoto, minister of Palolo Kannonji Temple, will lead the discussion on Buddhist teachings at 7 p.m. Feb. 7.
A Feb. 21 session will focus on practices, discussed by Dr. Thanh Huynh, a leader of Vipassana meditation, and Lisa Waikalani, a practitioner at the Kagyu Thegchen Ling Tibetan Buddhist Center.
A March 7 discussion will explore Buddhism in society with the Rev. Yoshiaki Fujitani, president of the Buddhist Promotion Society, and Joanne Tachibana of SGI International as speakers.
Sessions are free and open to the public.
Program explores efforts at world peace
Links between efforts for global peace and the inner peace sought by Christians and Buddhists will be explored in a program next Saturday at Chaminade University.
Ruben L.F. Habito, author of "Healing Breath: Zen for Christians and Buddhists in a Wounded World," will be the guest speaker. He is associate dean of the Southern Methodist University Perkins School of Theology and a professor of world religions and spirituality.
The program from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the university's Ching Conference Center is free and open to the public. It is presented as the "First Annual Peace Program in Honor of David W. Chappell," named for the late University of Hawaii professor who co-founded the Society for Buddhist-Christian Studies. The event will include the following:
» Response to Habito's lecture will be presented by a panel including UH professor Roger Ames, Chaminade professor Pierre Asselin and Tracey Wiltgen of the Mediation Center of the Pacific, moderated by Glenn Paige of the Center for Global Nonviolence.
» Student essays on "Creating Peace Across the Boundaries," prepared by teams of mixed ethnic and religious backgrounds, will be presented.
» A 1 p.m. panel on "Action for Peace and Non-killing" will feature an interfaith group of female clergy and female leaders, moderated by Alice Tucker of Temple Emanu-El.
Monday is the deadline for reservations to be made for a free lunch. Call Poranee Natadescha-Sponsel at 735-4822.