Hawaii peace bell ceremony

Izumo Taisha in Hawaii was founded in 1906 and for the past 27 years has hosted a Hiroshima bell ringing ceremony. The bell was donated by the city of Hiroshima, which is twinned with Honolulu. Though it is a Buddhist-style bell, it’s housed in front of the splendid Izumo Taisha in Honolulu.

In the Youtube video of the ceremony, Ray Tsuchiyama introduces the shrine and Shinto in general. We learn that the shrine was shut down in WW2, returned to the Japanese-American community in 1961, and that it is now thriving. However, it’s worth noting that before WW2 there were ten other Izumo Taisha shrines dotted around Hawaii, and the video features the only one to have survived.

The first nine minutes consist of Shinto-related matters, then the video turns for the second part to the interfaith ceremony. Representatives of Shinto, Buddhism, Christianity, Judaism and the native Hawaiian religion are all included in the ecumenical event. (Our thanks to Ray Tsuchiyama for providing the link to this important and inclusive example of overseas Shinto.)

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