Mahalo Ke Akua Blog
Mahalo Ke Akua #wisdomwednesday - Today's @mahalo_keakua Post September 24, 2014 12:01
I know many people who are incredibly faithful and live pono every day, but do not go to a place of worship because they’ve been turned off by some institutions that don’t practice what they preach, or don’t spread messages of aloha or love… for a long time I felt the same way, had some negative church experiences, so found it better to connect with Akua through nature, or in the ocean, and that was what I considered “my church”.
My makuahine lives in Toronto Canada, and on one visit, I was touched by her church community – first, by the importance they placed on music, but what most surprised and touched me was the sermon which emphasized the importance of not judging others, and being welcoming to all people, even those who may be rejected by other church communities – this struck me because it opposed an image that I had about “the church” or certain religious institutions/communities. On following visits, I continued to be impressed with the sermons there that emphasized the values of love, forgiveness, unity and having a positive influence on others.
Since I travel frequently, my makuahine encouraged me to visit a different church on each trip – apparently there’s lore that says you should make a wish when you enter a new church, but looking back I realize that she wanted me to see that there are positive church communities out there, and some of the most enriching lessons and insights I’ve been blessed with have come from these travelling church visits!
On “Wisdom Wednesdays” I’ll try to share these inspiring nuggets of faith that align with Mahalo Ke Akua Brand.
A perfect example came from this past weekend, on a trip to Arizona – on Sunday morning I Googled the closest church to my hotel and ended up at ASU Arizona State University – it always interests me to see young adults celebrating their faith together.
During the sermon, the Priest told a story about a realtor couple he knew about 20 years ago. The wife was more successful than her husband, and one day she was accused of wrongdoing by the board, instead of standing behind her, her husband recused himself. He figured if she lost her license, he was successful enough that he could support their lifestyle, and he would then be seen as the provider. The wife was cleared of the accusations, but the personal damage had been done, the display of envy and pride eventually destroyed their marriage.
The Priest used this story as an example to explain that envy is truly damaging to our relationships with one another. He reminded us to rejoice with those who rejoice, because when we see others receive a blessings, we should know that there are many more blessings where that came from. The Priest then spoke about his upbringing in San Diego California, and how he would sit by the harbor and watch the boats, and when the tide would come in, all the boats would rise up together. He used this as an analogy for blessings, when God’s grace touches one, it touches all.
I just remember thinking, “one love, that’s unity” – and then I thought about that moment years ago when my makuahine told me to make a wish every time I entered a new church. After that sermon, I felt like “making a wish” was a selfish act… So instead of making a wish for me, I said a prayer for humanity – that we may all succeed in accomplishing unity – together.
CHARITY ANNOUNCEMENT August 26, 2014 18:25
Excited to announce the charity that MahaloKeAkuaBrand.com will be contributing to for the month of September 2014!
As part of our charitable mandate, we strive to bring awareness to interesting and relevant charities that our followers may not have heard of. As part of the selection process, we research charities that have cross-border or international impact, and research their financials to ensure the highest percentage of the donation goes directly to the cause.
For the month of September, to tie into the Back to School season, we looked into education related charities - see below for more info on this, and the other charities we've supported since our brand launch in May 2014.
First Book www.firstbook.org
“Access to New Books for Children in Need”
To date, First Book has distributed more than 100 million books and educational resources to programs and schools serving children from low-income families throughout the United States and Canada.
First Book is transforming the lives of children in need and elevating the quality of education by making new, high-quality books and digital resources available on an ongoing basis so that children in need don’t miss out.
First Book is determined to see that all children, regardless of their economic conditions, can achieve more in school and in life through access to an ongoing supply of new books.
They report that more than 70% of the children who participate in a First Book program increase their reading at home, and most teachers find that First Book participation increases kids desire to learn at school.
Aloha Toronto http://alohatoronto.com/
Inspired by Izzy and Danielle Paskowitz and their foundation Surfers Healing http://surfershealing.org, Aloha Toronto enhances the lives of kids with special needs, by providing Autistic children with alternative therapy through free SUP & Surf lessons. Bringing aloha, surf & Hawaiian culture to the shores of Toronto for families in the autism community that cannot travel to Surfers Healing US Camps.
May – August 2014
CARE International www.care-international.org
“Defending Dignity. Fighting Poverty.”
CARE is a leading humanitarian organization fighting global poverty by equipping impoverished communities with the proper resources to escape poverty. Improving basic education, preventing the spread of disease, increasing access to clean water and sanitation, expanding economic opportunity and protecting natural resources. They also deliver emergency aid to survivors of war and natural disasters, and help people rebuild their lives.
In the fiscal year 2013, CARE worked in 87 countries around the world, supporting 927 poverty-fighting development and humanitarian aid projects to reach more than 97 million people.