She is currently working towards completing her PhD on the development of Pure Land Sutras in 1st century CE at the Graduate Theological Union in Berkeley, California. She completed her Kyoshi certification in Kyoto in 2012.
She and her husband David have a young son named Atticus.
Rev. Yanko joins Rev. Tomofumi Fujii at the Toronto Buddhist Church.
Almost simultaneously, Rev. Michael Hayashi leaves Toronto and transfers to Winnipeg, Manitoba.
Like many Japanese-Canadians, he grew up in a Jodo Shinshu Buddhist home. His grandfather, with whom he lived, was the lay-minister at the Thunder Bay Buddhist Church. This connection would become the roots for his future.
In 1992, Rev. Hayashi attended Lakehead University receiving an Honours Bachelors of Arts (English) and Education (Ontario Teacher’s Certificate).
With the encouragement of his family, Rev. Hayashi went to Kyoto, Japan to study at Ryokoku University in 1997 where he received a Master of Arts in Jodo Shinshu Theology. Rev. Hayashi has been a minister at several Canadian temples in his career.
Both ministers are excited for the challenge and the opportunity. If you are a member of either congregation, please lend them your full support.
Annual meetings of the JSBTC
The Jodo Shinshu Buddhist
Temples of Canada would like to thank Bishop Grant
Ikuta and his family for the sacrifices they have made
during his two year leadership where we saw many
developments including amongst others, the support of
the World Women's Buddhist Convention 2015 in Calgary
and the placement of Christina Yanko as a resident
minister of Toronto Buddhist Church.
The National Board thanks the Steveston Buddhist Temple (SBT) for their support and accommodation in allowing Reverend Grant Ikuta to serve his past term as the shared Bishop and Temple minister.
Minister from across Canada meet at the Buddhist Temples of Southern Alberta
We are in deep gratitude to
incoming Bishop-elect Tatsuya Aoki and to the Vancouver
Buddhist Temple for their agreement to host the shared
bishop position for the next two years. In choosing a
new bishop to serve the dual role of temple minister
and bishop, the JSBTC Director's Handbook provides a
process to ensure that the nominee is capable and
willing, that the host temple is willing to endure
unforeseen sacrifices and that the nominee will be
supported by the serving ministers in Canada.
At the AGM, the National Board put forward Reverend Aoki as the single minister that meets this criteria. This process requires a lot of agility, coordination, conflict resolution, contemplation and self-reflection for everyone involved. While there is an effort to be as transparent as possible, there is no doubt that private matters become important in a decision and must remain confidential.
Newly-elected Members of the Board of Directors of the JSBTC
The new board is keen to
avoid conflicts of interest and regrets that we were
unable to follow the delegates' guidance to select a
President that is not from the same temple as the
Bishop-elect. As a member of the past board and witness
to the process, I thank and congratulate the new
Minister Association Chair, Reverend Fujii and
past-President Dave Ohori for their integrity,
perseverance, diligence and resolve in working
successfully with the Ministers, the National board and
the temples involved.
On behalf of the National Board of the JSBTC, I express sincere appreciation to the Buddhist Temple of Southern Alberta family for their hosting of the AGM, pre and post AGM events and to the delegates, retiring directors and officers, retiring MA Chair for their contributions and leadership.
I look forward to everyone working together to make Jodo Shinshu Buddhism accessible for all Canadians.
Living in the dharma with hands together…
President, Jodo Shinshu Buddhist Temples of Canada
Bishop Ikuta (Socho) from
Steveston, British Columbia, presided over our Official
Opening Ceremony/Hanamatsuri and April Shotsuki service
of the Hamilton Buddhist Temple at the
Hamilton Canadian Japanese Cultural Centre at 45
Hempstead Drive, Hamilton on Sunday, April
Fujii Sensei, our resident minister and Roy Kusano, the president of the Toronto Buddhist Church, also attended, along with other members of the Toronto Buddhist Church. It was a full house! A new Buddha statue was also shown for the first time at the service. Thank you to the Toronto Buddhist Church for loaning this beautiful statue to us.
After the service, there was plenty of Japanese food prepared by the women Hamilton Buddhist Temple members. Thank you to them. It was totemo oishi! Thank you to Chris Hourmouzis for all his work in preparing the new room.
Thank you for attending this wonderful event and starting us off on the right foot, at our new temple location!
Several Canadians gathered
in Kyoto, Japan for a once-in-a-lifetime experience
from May 12-18, 2011.
On May 15, 2011, they joined Jodo Shinshu followers from around the world in commemorating Shinran Shonin's 750th Memorial Service at the Nishi Hongwanji in Kyoto, Japan.
The group was led by Bishop Grant Ikuta of the Jodo Shinshu Buddhist Temples of Canada, Rev. Tomofumi Fujii of the Toronto Buddhist Church and Rev. Yasuhiro Miyakawa of the Kelowna Buddhist Temple.
READ MORE AND SEE PHOTOS AT THE HONGWANJI-HA INTERNATIONAL CENTRE...
Saturday's Annual General Meeting
The Toronto Buddhist Church
was honoured to have hosted the 2011 Annual General
Meeting of the Jodo Shinshu Buddhist Temples of Canada
from April 29-May 1, 2011. The weekend event provided
many challenges for the delegates to address and
resolve. The solutions will allow the organization to
proceed with renewed and re-energized vigour in walking
the path of the Dharma.
Rev. Grant Ikuta becomes the first Canadian-born Socho or Bishop (Head Minister). He follows his father, Reverend Susumu Kyojo Ikuta who became the Bishop in 1998. Socho Grant Ikuta will also continue to serve his congregation at the Steveston Buddhist Temple in Vancouver.
Newly-elected Bishop, Grant Ikuta (front row, middle)
President, David Ohori and Board of Directors for 2011
Choir for the delegation to Shinran 750th Memorial in Kyoto
Thanks to our hosts for providing a home, away from home in which you could still feel and share in the embrace of Amida. We look forward to meeting our Dharma friends again in Winnipeg next year.
Twenty-six delegates represented Canada at the convention led by Socho Grant Ikuta and Rev. Tomofumi Fuji of the Toronto Buddhist Temple. The Canadian delegation sang two songs: “Namu Amida Butsu” and “I Believe” (the theme song from the Vancouver Winter Olympics).
World Buddhist Women’s Convention in Kyoto, Japan, 2011
2011 Canadian delegation
Flag passed from the Japan Chapter President to representatives of Canada.
Southern Alberta Buddhist Choir performs
Engaged Buddhism was the
theme of the 2010 Alberta Buddhist Conference. A theme
that continued into the weekend, as Sensei James Martin
and the Calgary Buddhist Temple hosted the 32nd edition
of this annual event.
The volunteer committee coordinated the conference to coincide with the Calgary Buddhist Film Series and the Alberta District's 750th Shinran Shonin Memorial Commemoration on October 29-31, 2010.
The gathering attracted over one-thousand people, including thirty delegates from Lethbridge. Ten people participated in the Sarana Affirmation Ceremony led by Socho Orai Fujikawa of the Jodo Shinshu Buddhist Temples of Canada.
Guests included Dr. Leslie Kawamura of the University of Calgary and Living Dharma Centre, and Sensei Susumu Ikuta (ret.).
The program opened with a discussion on theme of "Engaged Buddhism" led by Sensei Fredrich Ulrich of the Manitoba Buddhist Temple. Other speakers included Sensei Yasuo Izumi of the Buddhist Temple of Southern Alberta, Rod Burylo, of the Calgary Buddhist Temple, and Tracey Pickup of Thich Nhat Hanh's 'Order of Inter-being'. Mr. Burylo, an internationally known speaker, delivered an interactive session on Ethical Investing, while Ms. Pickup continued on the conference topic of Engaged Buddhism.
Sensei Fredrich Ulrich of Winnipeg opened the conference.
Guest speaker Rod Burylo of Calgary
The Southern Alberta
Buddhist Choir performed at the Saturday evening
banquet and again for the Sunday service. One of their
songs was "May Peace Prevail" with words written by
Mrs. Carrie Kawamoto of Mililani Hongwanji. The
composition was chosen as the winning entry in the
Shinran Shonin's 750th Memorial Gatha Lyrics Contest.
The words reflect an affirmation of peace in everyday
life, and were set to music by Professor Takeo Kudo of
the University of Hawaii Music Department. The
inspirational lyrics were included in a commemorative
booklet, edited by Susan Huntley and was given to all
attendees as a keepsake of the occasion.
Attending Ministers from across Canada
Thanks to the organizing committee and all the volunteers
Organizing Chairperson, Ken
Madden summarized, "The success is measured in the
weekend's support of our vision: 'To set in motion a
way of living, learning and teaching a life of joy and
gratitude through Jodo Shinshu Buddhism.' In reflection
of this Vision, I believe that we 'cast seeds of
dharma' to even more people than ever before!"
The Calgary Buddhist Temple would like to thank the Calgary Public Library for their generous support of the Buddhist Film Series. They also realize that this event is not possible without the help of all the volunteers who gave their time and skills.
Photos courtesy of L. Tsukishima