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O‘ahu has elaborate Peace Day activities planned

HONOLULU — Across cultures and centuries, bells have called people to church, children to school, store clerks to counters and spirits to quiet attention.

On Wednesday, Sept. 21 at 9 a.m., hundreds of bells from Hawai‘i and around the world will ring in celebration of Peace Day.

Ring Your Bell for Peace Day was created in 2020 as a type of joyful gathering online, via Zoom and Facebook Live, to compensate for public-health restrictions. Last year’s event engaged some 1,700 bell-ringers from the mainland, Canada and Japan. This year, Ukraine will be included, as Honoka‘a Hongwanji Buddhist Temple on Hawai‘i Island has been assisting five Ukrainian families, one of whom recently moved to Hilo.

Anyone, anywhere is invited to join in, as a group or individual. Register here: All that’s needed is a phone or computer and a bell. Past events have included a chorus of bells of all sizes, from tiny jingle bells to Tibetan meditation bowls, giant temple bells and even water glasses.

On O‘ahu, the opening ceremony will include the pu, conch, and oli, chant, presented by Saint Louis School, and a Muslim invocation, beginning at 8:30 a.m.

Then Bishop Eric Matsumoto will lead a minute of silence, honoring all those who have sacrificed for the achievement of peace. At 9:01, bells will ring out from temples, churches, schools, individual homes and community organizations for five minutes. The interfaith event closes with a benediction by Temple Emanuel.

Sept. 21 has been the International Day of Peace since it was established by the United Nations in 1981. It is also Peace Day in the state, thanks to members of the Hawai‘i Federation of Junior Young Buddhist Associations, who presented a resolution to the state Legislature in 2007, which enacted House Bill 342, a law making Sept. 21 Peace Day in Hawai‘i.

The Peace Committee of Honpa Hongwanji Mission of Hawai‘i acknowledges co-sponsors including the United Nations Associations of Hawai‘i-Honolulu, University of Hawai‘i at Manoa and KTUH radio station.

Anyone interested in participating is encouraged to sign up by email at, by calling 808-291-6151 or visiting

— The Garden Island
Source: The Garden Island

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