COVID-19 / Novel Coronavirus Communications from Honpa Hongwanji

The Office of the Bishop has initiated a series of memos to district, temple, and affiliated organization leaders to provide guidance in making decisions about temple activities and procedures during the COVID-19 virus outbreak.

This page provides centralized access to the memos not only for temple leaders, but for all Hongwanji members and friends who wish to see what HQ is communicating regarding COVID-19. Memos are listed in reverse-chronological order (most recent first).

  • 03/24/2020: HHMH COVID-19 Memo 4
    Updates to directives and recommendations in light of stay-at-home and emergency orders for Oahu, Maui, and the state of Hawaii. Covers bedside and funeral services and minimum basic operations.

  • 03/17/2020: HHMH COVID-19 Memo 3
    New directives and recommendations from headquarters (a condensed, website version of what was sent to Hongwanji leaders and staff). See also a message from Bishop Matsumoto to accompany Memo 3.

  • 03/16/2020: April 5 HBC Buddha Day Service CANCELED. As a precautionary measure related to the COVID-19 virus, the Hawaii Buddhist Council has canceled the HBC Buddha Day Service on Sunday, April 5. Neither an in-person nor an online HBC Buddha Day Service will be offered. (Note that the Hongwanji State Ministers Association intends to present a simple online service at 10 a.m. on April 5.) This item was updated to reflect the cancellation of the online service as well.
  • 03/11/2020: HHMH COVID-19 Memo 2
    Suggestions for temples to consider for possible implementation and action.
  • 03/03/2020: HHMH COVID-19 Memo 1
    Introductory memo with best practices for limiting transmission of respiratory illnesses, links to agency resources, being prepared.

    Excerpt on guidelines for individuals:

    • Washing hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not readily available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol.
    • Washing hands before eating and after using the bathroom
    • Covering coughs or sneezes (with sleeve rather than hands)
    • Avoiding touching eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands
    • Avoiding close contact with people who are sick
    • Staying home when sick and seeing a doctor if experiencing a fever above 100°
    • Getting an updated flu vaccine

Additional Links and Resources

Let us go to the Buddha-Dharma for guidance to keep a balanced perspective. Do not let ignorance and fear overwhelm us and at the same time let us be very mindful of the interconnected and interrelatedness of all matters.
– Bishop Eric Matsumoto in Memo 1

COVID-19 "What You Need to Know" flyer (Hawaii DOH) thumbnail image

Click for full-size COVID-19: What You Need to Know flyer from the Hawaii State Department of Health (03/05/20).