This year’s Tenrikyo Hinokishin Day was observed at 1,440 locations throughout Japan on April 29, which is a national holiday called “Greenery Day,” as well as at scores of locations in overseas countries, mostly on weekends in April and May. While hinokishin refers to daily actions that express one’s gratitude for the gift of life and one’s joy at being alive, this annual event is intended to provide people living in the same community with a special opportunity to combine their efforts in an outpouring of joy, thus enabling them to strengthen their mutual ties and make a contribution to their local communities at the same time.
In the Philippines, 42 people in Santa Rosa City picked up litter on the shores of Laguna de Bay, the largest lake in the country, on April 19, while 76 people in Quezon City, located in Metro Manila, pulled weeds in Quezon Memorial Park on May 10. In Taiwan, 96 people in Kaohsiung cleaned Jen Ai Park on May 3, which was the largest turnout for the 11 Taiwanese venues conducted until that day. In Hong Kong, 38 people pulled weeds at Ma On Shan Country Park on April 26.
In the United Kingdom, 33 people picked up litter in London’s Hyde Park on April 26. Besides wearing matching T-shirts, they had prepared leaflets explaining what hinokishin is. In France, six people cleaned a street and square nearby the Tenrikyo fellowship in Lyon on May 2. In the Netherlands, six people in the Hague pulled weeds and picked up litter in Scheveningen Park on May 9.
In Hawaii, 137 people on Oahu Island cleaned Honolulu Zoo on May 2, 24 people on Maui Island cleaned Kanaha Beach Park on April 19, and 10 people on Kauai Island cleaned a Japanese cemetery in Kapaa on May 9. On the Big Island, six people in Kohala cleaned Old Airport Park on May 10, and seven people in Kona cleaned Kona Memorial Park on May 3.
In the United States, 17 participants cleaned Lee District Park in Alexandria, Virginia, on May 10. In New York, 75 people gathered at New York Center in Flushing on May 3, where they cleaned the center’s new sanctuary instead of the scheduled outdoor cleaning activity due to rain, and 13 people participated in the center’s annual blood donation hinokishin at a local hospital on the same day.
In Brazil, Hinokishin Day had already been held at 26 venues by May 3, with a total participation of 1,803 people. For the most part, they cleaned public facilities, welfare institutions, and parks. In Colombia, participants in Cali cleaned the Pance River, which is about a 15-minute drive from the Mission Center in Colombia, on April 26. In Paraguay, 25 followers in Yguazú cleaned a local sports field on April 19.
In Australia, Hinokishin Day activities were conducted in Brisbane and Melbourne on May 17, and in Sydney and the Gold Coast on May 24. In New Zealand, participants did hinokishin at Bastion Point in Auckland on May 23. Also in the Oceania region, Hinokishin Day was observed on April 25 for the first time in Papua New Guinea. More than 200 people in the nation’s capital, Port Moresby, cleaned Ela Beach, where they managed to collect approximately four tons of litter in two hours.