Yesterday, I had an opportunity to attend the meeting at Kapaa Jodo Mission to decide my new assignment at Kapaa. Because Rev. Akiya needs to go back to Japan to take over his family temple in March, I will be assigned to serve both Koloa and Kapaa Jodo from the middle of March....until a new minister be assigned.
So I have seriously thought of future of both Koloa Jodo Mission and myself during the past month. Is it better for me to move to Kapaa? Or is it to stay as a minister of Koloa.
If I move there, I know I could get materially richer life such as better salary, better two-storied house, and better car (the temple just got a brand-new van), and so on. And it will be a good deal for Koloa Jodo Mission, too, because Koloa Jodo can save some payments to the minister. But I thought I could get more responsibilities and commitments, and heavy traffic jam at Kapaa, too! More committments mean more possible complaints and less free time. Also my children will need to change schools.
It is indeed a difficult decision for my family.
But I'm sooooooo glad...this time, my final decision was postponed until we'd get a new minister which will take time. We can continue to stay here at Koloa Jodo and serve as a temporarily part-time minister at Kapaa Jodo.
In addition, to my greatest surprise, I got a big raise in my allowance (Salary), thanks to the recommendation by Rev. Akiya and board members. I don't want to speak ill of Koloa Jodo, but my raise last time was way back in 2004! I was so grateful for their generous offers and I promised I would not betray their expectations.
On the way back to Koloa, I felt like I became already rich! So I called my wife to eat lunch at the Tip-Top restaurant.
And you know, what happened after eating good food?
A waitress told us, "somebody over there, will take care of your bill." We looked at them but all we saw were their backs and a lady we didn't know. We were very curious to find out who treat our lunch.
It was Mr. and Mrs. Silva who have been our long time temple friends! Also, Mrs. Silva is niece of our dedicated member, Mrs. Shimaoka. The lady we didn't know was his sister.
We were very touched by their kindness at the same time we recalled we experienced this kind of surprise treatments two times here before. Actually we forgot when, but still we are thankful to Mr. Ed Kawamura and Mr. Wesley Watanabe for the surprise treatments. Also we recalled we are very thankful for my friends, Ariel and Khenpo, Mr. and Mrs. Takaki, Mr. and Mrs. Hashisaka for their treatments so many times. I thought it's no wonder I gained so much weight.
Speaking of a surprise, I had an email from Dr. and Mrs. Kawane that their foundation, this year, too donated $5000 to Jodo Mission to support Koloa Jodo this year, too. Thank you very much.
None of them are our members but friends of mine, our temple and community!
Membership of Koloa Jodo Mission is very small, but we are tremendously grateful for having more supporters not only here but also various places in the United States.
It may mean.....will I get another surprise treatment at the restaurant from you in the future? (just kidding.)
Once again, thank you very much for your support.