About Rissho Kosei-kai
Rissho Kosei-kai was established on March 5, 1938 by Nikkyo Niwano and Myoko Naganuma. Nikkyo Niwano choose to spread the teachings of the Lotus Sutra as the perfect way in which to save people both physically and spiritually. Two of its teachings suited his innermost feelings exactly: the way of compassion of the bodhisattva (helping others and serving all people in the world) and the ability of the lay believer both to save and be saved.
By 1941, membership reached one thousand and the construction of a separate headquarters began. It was completed in May 1942. During this time Founder Niwano and Cofounder Naganuma devoted themselves full-time to their religious activities.
Reverend Naganuma devoted all her remaining years disseminating the Lotus Sutra. She worked tirelessly providing guidance to members until September 10, 1957, when she passed away.
In 1958, Founder Niwano moved actively into a new phase of Rissho Kosei-kai. The first step was the affirmation of the focus of devotion, the Great Benevolent Teacher and Lord, Shakyamuni, the Eternal Buddha. Another important step taken, was educating the members by guiding them to study the Lotus Sutra and to apply its teachings in practical ways in their daily lives.
Rissho Kosei-kai Hawaii Buddhist Church
1951 – Mrs. Tomoko Ozaki was initiated into Rissho Kosei-kai by her former schoolteacher in Japan, Mr. Kanshichi Suzuki. She had become the first member to join RKK outside of Japan. Mrs. Ozaki and her husband Susumu, worked as coffee farmers and began spreading the teachings to their family, neighbors, friends and fellow coffee farmers during the work day. Thus began the Kona Chapter of Rissho Kosei-kai. By spreading the teachings Mrs. Ozaki was able to initiate charter members on Maui and Oahu during the following year.
1958 – Hawaii is first recognized by Founder Niwano as the first overseas congregation of Rissho Kosei-kai. Hoza guidance
and services are conducted in members homes while the membership grows.
Mrs Kazue Yukawa (right) of Japan is selected district leader for Hawaii.
1969 – Rissho Kosei-kai Hawaii is officially recognized as a branch by RKK Japan. Mrs. Tomoko Ozaki is assigned the duty as the first reverend for Rissho Kosei-kai Hawaii. Making her the first American born minister of Rissho Kosei-kai.
1970 – Rissho Kosei-kai Maui is officially recognized as a branch of RKK Hawaii with the creation of the Maui Hoza Center in Mrs. Jane Taguchi’s home.
1972 – RKK Hawaii opens it’s first church in Pearl City, HI and founder Niwano enshrines the Statue of the Eternal Buddha Shakyamuni.
1976 – Reverend Nobukazu Masuda becomes reverend of the Hawaii branches when Rev. Tomoko Ozaki retires
1984 – Reverend Masuda and his family return to Japan.
Reverend Yoshiaki Yamamoto is assigned as the third minister of the Hawaii Churches.
1994 – Reverend Yamamoto and his family return to Japan.
Reverend Mitsuyuki Okada is assigned as the fourth minister of the Hawaii Churches.
1994 – RKK Hawaii completes the construction of the Kailua Kona church.
1999 – Reverend Okada and his family return to Japan.
Reverend Masayuki Idei is appointed as the fifth minister of the Hawaii Churches.
2001 – Mrs. Dorothy Tagawa and her Family donate their home and property in Wailuku, Maui for the RKK Maui Dharma Center.
2004 – Reverend Idei and his family return to Japan.
Reverend Hiroyasu Hosoyama is appointed as the sixth minister of the Hawaii churches
2010 – Reverend Hosoyama and his family return to Japan.
Reverend Seiji Hironaka is appointed as the seventh minister of the Hawaii churches
2015 – Reverend Seiji Hironaka returns to Japan.
Reverend Laura Meya is promoted from Oahu Japanese Group Leader to reverend and is appointed as eighth minister to the Hawaii churches.