Tacoma Buddhist Church Event Honors Ancestors

July 12, 2009

Author: Joseph Turner

Source: The News Tribune


Once a week for the past seven months, a dozen members of the Tacoma Fuji Taiko group met in the basement of their Buddhist temple to practice with their bachi sticks and taiko drums so they could perform three songs to honor their ancestors.

They did so on Saturday.

“We just formed in January and we wanted to perform just for this,” Bobby Yatsuuye, the group’s leader, said of the annual Bon Odori celebration at the Tacoma Hongwanji Buddhist Church on the hillside overlooking downtown Tacoma.

“It’s been going on for hundreds and hundreds of years” in India and Japan, said The Rev. Kosho Yukawa. And similar ceremonies have been held for nearly 100 years at the Tacoma temple, which was established in 1915.