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Future of Rinzai Zen Mission Needs Consideration
There is currently an ongoing study concerning the rejuvenation and expansion of Baldwin Beach Park by the County of Maui. It involves all of the former cane fields that surround Rinzai Zen Mission which places our temple in the middle of this new development. I am one of 12 advisory committee members exploring this expansion project which will have a great impact on the future of our temple at its present location. Some of the concerns I have presented to the committee are in regards to the construction and development phases and how the usage of the surrounding property will affect our programs such as Obon, funerals, and other temple activities.
With the inevitable changes that will be occurring at the park, the flooding conditions that have been restricting our access to the temple grounds, and rising sea levels, our membership needs to consider the future of Rinzai Zen Mission. Please also keep in mind that for many years now, we have been fortunate to have had the very generous financial support of Reverend Seiya Chisaka and the Myoshinji Temple of Japan and the tireless hard work of Reverend Yamaguchi in upkeeping and repairing the temple, its outer buildings, and grounds. We need to realize this cannot continue forever, and it would not be fair to place this burden on the next generation.
There is no timeline for the County’s project as the study has just begun. However, the current situation presents the perfect opportunity for us to enter into discussions with the County on how we can integrate our wishes for our temple’s continued success with its park expansion. A chance like this will not present itself again.
A general membership meeting will be scheduled in the near future to discuss this matter, and we look forward to hearing your thoughts and opinions. I will keep you updated as information becomes available.
Alan Nago, president