2013 August Workshop | Aug 3 & 4, 2013

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On August 3 and 4, fifteen students attended the Workshop coming from Canada, Japan, U.K., Florida, Colorado and local areas. The students enjoyed a variety of activities which included a casual group discussion on course topics. Rev. Jay Okamoto (Hawaii), Rev. James Martin (Canada), Rev. Henry Adams (BCA) and Rev. Kuwahara, JSCC Coordinator all attended the discussion. Services in the beautiful Kodo Hall were held and an outing to the Oakland Buddhist Church Obon for evening activity was an optional choice for the students. Other students watched the movie, “Streams of Light” a wonderful documentary about the history and development of the BCA. Special Guest Speaker, Prof. John Nelson of the University of San Francisco and distinguished author gave an insightful and inspirational lecture entitled “Experimental Buddhism: Innovation and Activism among Shinshu Priests in Contemporary Japan” in which he highlighted new and creative ideas being applied to current social problems by Japanese ministers. Rev. Jay Shingo Okamoto of the Hawaii Mission delivered an informative lecture on Jodo Shinshu terminology and the importance of understanding the sutras. Rev. James Martin of the Calgary Buddhist Church also participated in the program. Yasuko Tomoshi, Mary Beth Smith and Telma Alencastro received their Course Completion Certificates at the closing service. Asked whether the Workshop met expectations, students answered: “Absolutely, exceeded…enjoyed everything: open discussion, Q&A, dharma instruction, culture, laughs and FOOD –!! Wow! A huge thank you to all of the behind scenes volunteers as well as to Lisa and Yumi. Thank you for a wonderful “moment in time.” “Wonderful friendly staff & volunteers, open, honest discussion, Dr. Nelson is an excellent lecturer – thought provoking topic, reconnecting with Dharma friends from last year and meeting new ones.”