Honpa Hongwanji Mission of Hawaii is the umbrella organization for Jodo Shinshu Buddhism in the islands. We provide a two-way connection between the head temple in Kyoto, Japan (the Nishi Hongwanji) and temples and organizations in Hawaii.

Shinran Shonin statue with lei

Statue of Shinran Shonin, founder of Jodo Shinshu Buddhism

The Hawaii mission is one of four large Honpa Hongwanji missions around the world. The others cover the mainland U.S. (Buddhist Chuches of America), South America, and Canada. There also are temples in Europe, Australia, Mexico, Taiwan, and Kenya.

Established in 1889, Honpa Hongwanji Mission of Hawaii soon became a spiritual and cultural center of Japanese immigrant life, growing into one of Hawaii’s most influential religious communities. Today we offer Jodo Shinshu Buddhist spiritual growth, learning, and service to the community through temples, schools, volunteers, and charitable organizations across the state of Hawaii.

A staff of six and a board made up of temple leaders from across the islands support the Bishop and guide the Mission. The Bishop and four staff comprise the Office of the Bishop, with offices on a temple campus shared with the Hawaii Betsuin temple and Pacific Buddhist Academy. Two staff direct and support the Office of Buddhist Education and Buddhist Study Center near the University of Hawaii Manoa campus.

See also
Organizational FAQ (Frequently-asked Questions)
Board of Directors

Honpa Hongwanji Mission of Hawaii New Year's card 2016

The Bishop and President with Mission staff. In the front row, Bishop Eric Matsumoto is in the center, with Rev. Kevin Kuniyuki, Buddhist Study Center Director (left), and Mission President Pieper Toyama (right). From left to right in the back row are Jamie Lyn Itokazu, Assistant to the Buddhist Study Center Director; Dianne Sumida, Administrative Assistant; Rev. Toshiyuki Umitani, Executive Assistant to the Bishop; Arthur Nakagawa, Business Manager; and Yoshiko Umitani, Secretary.


Honpa Hongwanji Mission of Hawaii shares the living teachings of Jodo Shinshu Buddhism so that all beings may enjoy lives of harmony, peace, and gratitude.