Remembering Sensei Michael


To Temples, board members, members and friends,

Reverend Michael Hayashi entered the Pure Land at 2:50 pm CST Dec 4, 2015. His family was by his side and he passed away peacefully while listening to one of his favorite songs "Dust to Dust" by The Civil Wars.


Sensei Michael was admitted to the Winnipeg Health Sciences Centre on November 21st. As it became apparent that he had incurable stomach cancer, his wife Kiyomi and their family, his aunts and uncles, sister and mother and many friends came to comfort him. Koden (donation to the family as an offering of condolences and to assist with expenses). Those who would like to help the family with expenses during this time may make a contribution through this service.
The Jodo Shinshu Buddhist Temples of Canada is working with the Vancouver Buddhist Temple to provide this vehicle. Please note that contributions do not qualify for CRA Tax receipts.

The JSBTC has consulted with the family on how we can convey messages of support and how to help with the many expenses the family faces.

Loving Thoughts and Financial Gratitude 

1. By mail addressed to: 

Kiyomi Hayashi and family c/o JSBTC 
220 Jackson Ave
Vancouver B.C. V6A 3B3

Cheques should be payable to: Kiyomi Hayashi
Please include your name, address or email in your message.

2. At your local Jodo Shinshu Buddhist Temple:

Temples will accept sealed envelopes containing cards and cheques marked with your name and address. Please avoid using cash however if this is necessary, include your name and address.

3. Click on the green button to send a donation by credit card (in Canada and abroad):


The service costs approximately $0.60 plus 5.5% of the transaction amount. The family will receive the net amount. This service may be available on other temple websites as well. This method will be available at least until January 1, 2016 and may be extended further.

Please note that financial support of this nature does not qualify for CRA tax receipts

On behalf of the JSBTC and Bishop Tatsuya Aoki,

Trudy Gahlinger, JSBTC Secretary

Renovations Completed


After a summer of renovations and holidays, close to 100 people attended the September Memorial service and barbeque kicking off the 70th anniversary season of the Manitoba Buddhist Temple.

Sensei Michael Hayashi led the ceremony. During his dharma talk, he admitted to being overwhelmed by the work completed by volunteers throughout the summer.

At the end of the service, all the volunteers were individually named and applauded. Among them was Colleen Pilawski who volunteered her interior design skills to the project. She was asked to speak on how she chose the colours for the hondo. Her “attention to details” was an important asset throughout the process.

Following the service, members and guests were invited to celebrate the achievement at a backyard barbeque that featured “Japadogs” and “Yakiniku” burgers on the menu.

Temple President, Harvey Kaita remarked, “There was a feeling of oneness in the temple. Thank you for working so hard to make this special day become a reality.”

This was just the start of a very busy year. Many more events are planned throughout the 70th anniversary season, including the gathering of Jodo Shinshu Buddhist Temples Of Canada Annual General Meeting in April 2016.

We hope that you visit often and make an effort to volunteer. Much more can be achieved through the power of oneness.

Monshu warms hearts


The 25th Monshu of the Nishi Hongwanji Temple, his Eminence Sennyo Shonin (Otani Kojun) made a special journey to our Temple.

Otani Kojun is the spiritual leader of our sect of buddhism and a direct descendent of the founder of Jodo Shinshu, Shinran Shonin.

It was a very proud day at the Temple, though the weather was rainy and dreary, our inside surroundings were warm and festive with 45+ attendees. We enjoyed the Gomonshu-sama’s Dharma message which was given in Japanese and English. He was a very approachable person and there was time for him to chat with the members individually.

A huge thank you to the volunteers most of whom also serve on the Board whose contribution resulted in a successful heartfelt day!

It was a memorable event and one that will be cherished always.

Monshu Visit to Winnipeg


Obon Memory Lanterns

Obon Memory Lanterns Poster

Fall Bazaar 2014

Its one of our biggest fundraising events of the year and once again it was a big success. The Manitoba Buddhist Temple’s 2014 Fall Bazaar was held on Sunday, October 19th.


As usual, many arrived early, then lined up waiting for the doors to open. For some, it’s an opportunity to have some home-made Japanese food. For others, it’s a chance to catch up with old friends.


This year, a special table was set up promoting the 2015 World Women’s Buddhist Convention, to be held in Calgary in 2015. Karma Kupcakes were served in exchange for a donation.


The Fall Bazaar features a sit-down serving of udon noodle soup, served with chicken and satsumage (Japanese fishcake). The traditional Japanese meal has been served at the temple as a fundraiser for decades.


We’d like to thank everyone who came out to enjoy the wonderful food. But, a special thanks goes out to all the volunteers who gave their time and effort to help.


Months of planning and many days of work go into this day, so, we thought we would let you see some of the behind-the-scenes preparations.

If you didn’t make it, make sure you come to our Cherry Blossom fundraiser in April 2015.

Health and the Human Spirit

Sensei Ulrich is proud to be part of the team that worked on this spiritual health plan for the Manitoba provincial government. Read the release below:

The Manitoba government has released Health and the Human Spirit, the province’s new spiritual health-care strategic plan, Healthy Living, Seniors and Consumer Affairs Minister Jim Rondeau announced today (Sept. 20) at the opening of the Hospice & Palliative Care Manitoba conference in Winnipeg.

“Our new, four-year strategic plan, the first of its kind in Canada, enhances awareness and gives direction for spiritual health care in Manitoba,” said Rondeau. “It will promote opportunities for Manitobans to experience spiritual health through better awareness, understanding and healing.”

The new plan was informed by a spiritual health-care strategic planning session involving a wide range of community and professional stakeholders, spiritual care providers, volunteers, counsellors, physicians, psychiatrists, policy analysts and individuals who have experienced spiritual care in a health-care context, the minister said. Research has shown that higher levels of spiritual well-being, along with a sense of inner meaning and inner peace, are associated with better health outcomes, lower levels of depression and anxiety, and a better quality of life.

“Manitoba has been a leader in Canada in consistently supporting the development of spiritual care as part of overall health care,” said Health Minister Theresa Oswald. “We now have seven spiritual health-care co-ordinators across the province to help connect patients and families with the spiritual supports they need, a unique-in-Canada provincial spiritual health-care co-ordinator and legislation that enshrines the special role of faith-based organizations in our health-care system.”

“Manitoba has taken an important step forward with the release of this plan,” said Fr. Vince Herner, chair, Manitoba Multi-faith Council. “It sets out a vision and goals for Manitoba and recognizes the increasing awareness that spirituality is an important part of human wellness.”

The ministers noted a four-year work plan is currently under development and will enable implementation of the spiritual health-care plan. The plan will build on previous accomplishments in spiritual health care including a province-wide spiritual health-care volunteer education course, titled The Spirit of Caring, core competencies for spiritual health-care practitioners and the incorporation of traditional Aboriginal healing space at a number of health facilities across the province.


Obon Cemetery Visiting

Obon is an opportunity for us to reflect upon the innumerable causes and conditions that continue to influence our lives and those benefits we have received from the countless lives of others. It is a time to express our gratitude and appreciation for being given those conditions to live this life. So, it is with this understanding that we visit the graves of our loved ones and attend memorial services.

Our visitation to the cemetery and conducting memorial services is no more than an expression of the gratitude that arises when we embrace the Truth of those causes and conditions of our life

Manitoba Buddhist Temple Cemetery Visitation Schedule
Sunday, July 8, 2012

All services conducted by Rev. Fredrich Ulrich

9:00am Brookside Cemetery
-at the burial site of Mrs. I. Okano

10:00am Chapel Lawn Memorial Gardens
-at the burial site of Mrs. S. Miyahara

11:00am Waverley Memorial Gardens
-at the niche of Endo Family

11:30am Thomson “In The Park” Cemetery
-at the burial site of Nakano Family

12:00pm St. Vital Cemetery
-at the burial site of Saito Family

12:30pm Glen Lawn Memorial Gardens
-at the niche of Mr. Y. Tsutsumi

1:00pm Green Acres Memorial Gardens
-at the burial site of Watanabe Family

1:30pm Elmwood Cemetery
-at the burial site of Mrs. Y Takaki

2:15pm Glen Eden Memorial Gardens
-at the niche of Takeshita Family

4:00pm Obon Service
-Manitoba Buddhist Temple

Manitoba Hosts the JSBTC

By all accounts, the Jodo Shinshu Buddhist Temples of Canada annual general meeting was a big success. Forty-five delegates from all across Canada congregated in Winnipeg from April 26 – 29 for this annual event. The out of town included representatives from the Hamilton, Toronto, Winnipeg, Lethbridge, Calgary, Kamloops, Kelowna, Steveston and Vancouver.

The Delta Winnipeg Hotel was the main meeting site. The Ministers Association met on April 26th. The JSBTC Board, Women’s Federation and Minsters Association, and pre-AGM meetings were held on April 27th. Later that evening, the delegates were transported by a school bus to the Manitoba Japanese Canadian Cultural Centre where they dined a wonderfully prepared Japanese meal. The AGM and BCCWF meetings were held on April 28th that was followed by a reception at the hotel attended by 75 guests.

A continental breakfast prepared by the Dharma School parents and the Tsuito Hoyo and Closing Service were held on April 29th. Approximately 150 people were in attendance. Jim Hisanaga chaired the service and Sensei Ulrich led us through most of the program.

Socho Grant Ikuta delivered a humorous Dharma talk in both English and Japanese and then installed the newly elected JSBTC Board of Directors. Everyone then went downstairs for a potluck lunch that was prepared by several members.

Based on the feedback I have received, we should be very proud to have hosted a successful fun filled event. Many of the delegates approached me to say what a wonderful job we did and for the wonderful hospitality they received. I believe we truly lived up to the phrase “Friendly Manitoba” on our license plates.

In Gassho,

Harvey Kaita
JSBTC AGM Coordinator


Hanamatsuri 2012


2012 JSBTC Annual General Meeting

Jodo Shinshu Buddhist Temples of Canada
2012 Annual General Meeting
April 26 – 29, 2012
Delta Winnipeg Hotel/Manitoba Buddhist Temple

Thursday, April 26
2:00 – 5:00 Ministers’ Association Meeting - Manitoba Buddhist Temple

Friday, April 27
7:00 Breakfast Buffet (no host) - Blaze Restaurant
8:30 – 9:00 Morning Service - Campaign B
9:00 – 3:00 Directors’ Meeting - Campaign B
12:00 – 1:00 Lunch Buffet (no host) - Blaze Restaurant
1:00 – 3:00 Delegate Registration
2:00 – 5:00 Ministers’ Association Meeting - Westminster Room
2:00 – 5:00 Pre-AGM Meeting (Directors & Delegates) - Campaign B
5:30 – 7:30 Dinner (no host) - Japanese Cultural Centre
8:00 – 10:00 Women’s Federation Meeting - Strathcona Room
8:00-10:00 Pre-AGM Meeting (Directors & Delegates) - Campaign B

Saturday, April 28
7:00 Breakfast Buffet (no host) - Blaze Restaurant
8:30 – 9:00 Morning Service - Manitoba Suite
9:00 – 4:00 JSBTC AGM - Campaign B
9:00 – 4:00 Women’s Federation AGM - Campaign B
12:00 – 1:00 Lunch Buffet (MBT host) - Campaign B
6:00 – 9:00 Dinner

Sunday, April 29
9:00 Continental Breakfast (delegates) - Manitoba Buddhist Temple
10:30 – 12:00 Tsuito Hoyo, Closing Service - Manitoba Buddhist Temple
12:00 – 1:30 Lunch - Manitoba Buddhist Temple

Delta Hotel - 350 St. Mary Avenue
(204) 942-0551

Healing of Two Great Faiths

You may remember the Buddhist statues destroyed by the fundamentalist Taliban army in 2001. Many around the world were horrified that these ancient monuments were attacked. And while that event was not long ago, the incident is part of a long history that has seen these two faiths clash for centuries.

In an effort to bring peace to these two communities, the Manitoba Buddhist Temple invited members of the Muslim community to an interfaith service on Sunday, November 27, 2011.

Hammad Ahmad represented the Winnipeg Ahmadiyya Muslim community. He spoke on how the Buddha was not any different from other prophets of God, that have appeared throughout the world. And that the fundamental beliefs of Buddhism are at one with the rest of the other world faiths.

It is hoped the service will initiate a healing movement between the two faiths of Islam and Buddhism and help to promote a mutual understanding and respect between the followers of the faiths.


Jeff Wilson in Winnipeg

Our weekend with Jeff Wilson was a resounding success! Whenever our temple has a special guest like Jeff Wilson I am always amazed at the work that goes behind the scenes.

The planning for Jeff’s visit began over one year ago. Finally, he had an open weekend in June of 2011. We had to worry about promotion and advertisement. Luckily, the late, Dr. Leslie Kawamura promised to have the Living Dharma Centre in Toronto help our temple with Jeff’s travel and accommodations. Our temple Board had to meet to iron out the details of the visit such as the fundraiser lunch, the cleaning of the temple and temple grounds, transportation, clean-up after the event and meals for our guest. Then there was the matter of how to plan the service for Sunday as well as the format for the Saturday evening lecture. Posters were designed and distributed and notices in the Winnipeg Free Press were arranged. Sections of our wonderful website were devoted to Jeff’s arrival. These were some of the activities required for Jeff’s visit. Many people, who prefer to remain unnamed, worked diligently behind the scenes to prepare for this important visit.

Then Saturday and Sunday arrived. We were privileged to hear two remarkable presentations. They were remarkable because our guest Jeff Wilson was a top-notch scholar who was able to relate the basics of our wonderful Nembutsu teaching in clear down-to-earth language. To be able to do well in both worlds - the academic and the world of the average temple member - is a genuine gift. It is nice to know that our tradition has academic respectability. It is touching to know that we who live outside the walls of a university can understand and live this important teaching of the Nembutsu.

On Sunday, June 12, Jeff talked about three hallmarks of Shinran’s teachings: Relax, Trust and Thank. I could never do justice to his talk. It was the kind of presentation that requires being-there, with Jeff himself present. So to paraphrase:

Relax, because our Nembutsu teaching gives us permission to be ourselves just as we are in the flow of our natural lives. Amida’s Vow to bring spiritual fulfillment to all beings is just for us. Flowing beneath the events of our daily lives is a warm nurturing presence—even in the most difficult of times.

Trust is not only found in the Vows of Amida but also in the Sangha, our community. Finding true words worthy of trust, a community of trust and people to trust is a deep need for all of us. When we cannot have them, life seems a joyless affair, scary even. We find these things in the Buddha, Dharma Sangha and in the Nembutsu.

Thank, gratitude is also found when we become aware of all the causes and conditions that support us.

It is really a great privilege to arrive at a place in our journey of life where we can relax, find something worthy of trust and give expression to our gratitude. Please read his book, "Buddhism of the Heart" for further explanations. I am sure everyone there would have their own story about Jeff’s visit. Please reflect on his words and feel free to share your experiences with each other.

I am always proud of our community. Our ability to work in a relaxed friendly manner with trust and gratitude is an amazing feature of our experience together. Remember how we close our chanting? “Together we all share the truth of this Dharma, which gives rise to Bodhi mind (bodaishin) and birth in true serene joy.” How true, how true.

In deepest gratitude.

Sensei Ulrich

Buddhism of the Heart

Discover how Shin Buddhism may have become the religion “best adapted to life in North America.”

Learn how your life can be full of grace, despite blind ambitions and foolish passions, by just entrusting ourselves to the compassion that exists in our interdependent universe.

Saturday, June 11th, 7:00pm at the Manitoba Buddhist Temple, 39 Tecumseh Street.
Admission is free. Donations accepted.

Jeff Wilson is an Assistant Professor of Religious Studies and East Asian Studies at Renison University College at the University of Waterloo. He is also the founder of the “Buddhism in the West” program unit at the American Academy of Religion and author of numerous books and articles on the development of Buddhism in North America. His most recent books include: Mourning the Unborn Dead: A Buddhist Ritual Comes to America (Oxford University Press 2009) and Buddhism of the Heart: Reflections on Shin Buddhism and Inner Togetherness (Wisdom Publications 2009). His next book, with University of North Carolina Press, will examine Buddhism in the American South.

Poster for Japan

Yasuko Akiyama is a Japanese woman living in London. She was haunted and moved by the recent disasters in Japan, and decided to undertake a fundraiser for the people who were hurt and displaced by the tsunami, quake, and nuclear disaster.

She along with several others around the world, including Manitoba's Sensei Ulrich, translated Miyazawa Kenji's beautiful poem "Unbeaten By Rain" into English. She then produced a beautiful poster with a lovely typographic treatment of the poem. She's selling the poster as a fundraiser for £20, with all net proceeds go to Ashinaga, a 40-year-old Tokyo nonprofit that provides "education-focused financial and emotional support to children who have a parent/guardian with a serious disability, or who have lost one or both parents/guardians due to illness, accident, disaster, or suicide."


Unbeaten by Rain

"Unbeaten by Rain" is arguably the most memorized and quoted modern poem in Japan. It often hangs in schools or homes. Both intensely lyrical and permeated with a sophisticated scientific understanding of the universe, Kenji Miyazawa's poem is a testimony to his deep love of humanity and nature. And now, it is also a fitting tribute to people of Japan.

Kenji Miyazawa (1896-1933) is widely viewed as Japan's greatest poet of the 20th century. He was born and lived in Iwate Prefecture, which suffered severe damage in Great East Japan Earthquake.

We have featured this poem on our website for many years and we have recently updated the translation upon request, so that it will be used on a poster as a fundraising tool for earthquake relief.

It turns out, we are not the only ones who have made the connection to Miyazawa's poem to the tragedy in Japan.

Actor, Ken Watanabe has recited the poem as a tribute to the people of Japan. But thats not all. He has also created a web site that hopes to heal Japan and bring a smile back to the people. He calls it Kizuna311. Kizuna means “bonds” or “ties” and 311 is for March 11th, the date of the earthquake and tsunami.

To overcome this painful catastrophe, we must find a way to unite and find our Kizuna among people. We decided to create a video library showing the power and benefits from voluntary work efforts. We wish to deliver the message of hope to the victims and kindle a light in each one's heart.

We understand that each medium has its role. We would like to show a different point of view from what the mass media reports everyday. Our hope is that our message will show the uplifting efforts we Japanese are making to come together and help one another rebuild our lives after the earthquake and tsunami. We believe that this message inspires the power of Kizuna among the victims of these tragedies, and demonstrates our Kizuna to the world.


Leader in Buddhist Studies Dies

Dr. Leslie Kawamura — one of the titans of modern Buddhist Studies, Professor of Religious Studies and Holder of the Numata Chair in Buddhist Studies at the University of Calgary – has died.

Even in his final days, Rev. Leslie Kawamura expressed his desire for the growth and flourishing of Jodo Shinshu Buddhism. He was determined to be in Winnipeg for our Hanamatsuri service. Sadly, Rev. Kawamura became ill and passed away in March 9, 2011.

Rev. Kawamura championed and supported new ideas. He leaves the Jodo Shinshu Buddhist Temples of Canada - Living Dharma Centre having put in place a minister in training, a new youth retreat program, Jodo Shinshu Correspondence Course graduates, a library of video lectures, the Manning Park Retreat, Dharma School programs, lay minister training and other ongoing programs and relationships within our community and with the broader spiritual community. 

He will be greatly missed.


Japan Earthquake

For more than two terrifying, seemingly endless minutes, the most powerful earthquake ever recorded in Japan shook apart homes and buildings.

Then came a devastating tsunami that slammed into northeastern Japan and killed hundreds of people. The violent wall of water swept away houses, cars and ships. Fires burned out of control. The magnitude of the devastation and flooding is extensive. Now, over 10,000 people are feared dead.

Nuclear explosions and the chance of meltdown burden the earthquake-stricken country.

In Canada, many members of the Manitoba Buddhist Temple still have friends and family that live in Japan. Our sect of Buddhism originated in Japan over 800 years ago. We continue to have a very close relationship with the country where Jodo Shinshu Buddhism began. To be able to help is a privilege. It is now time to show compassion and help the people of Japan.

Speaking at the Sunday service following the earthquake, the Minister of the Manitoba Buddhist Temple, Sensei Fredrich Ulrich told the congregation,

“The best part of ourselves is each other. It’s the compassion we show after a tragic event like this that shows just how close the we and the other really are.”

Donations can be made to the Manitoba Buddhist Temple. The funds will be consolidated and directed to Canadian aid groups such as the Canadian Red Cross. Tax receipts will be made available for any donation over $10.00.

Charter for Compassion

On Wednesday, March 16, 2011, the Manitoba Buddhist Temple welcomed multi-faith groups from around Winnipeg to learn more about Karen Armstrong's "Charter for Compassion."

In 2008, Karen Armstrong won a prize to make her dream of a charter for compassion a reality. The Charter was crafted by people of different faiths from all over the world. It wanted to change toe conversation so that compassion becomes a key word in private and public discourse, making it clear that any ideology that breeds hatred or contempt, be it religious or secular, has failed the test of our time.

The night featured a video from Buddhist Tenzin Robert Thurman, guest speakers and shared conversation from the different multi-faiths in attendance.

Guest speakers included Sensei Fredrich Ulrich of the Manitoba Buddhist Temple, Bllquis Khan, and Rev. Angie Desrochers-Emond

Thanks to Lynda Trono for her good work organizing this event.

Now, more than ever, the time is right for the world to focus on compassion.


Introduction to Tibetan Buddhism


An informal poll was taken last fall at the Manitoba Buddhist Temple. Many people requested an interest in meditation.

While meditation is not a Jodo Shinshu tradition, it has become something that North Americans have shown an interest in practising.

During regular Sunday services, we now sometimes spend a third or more of our service in meditation. It is a good practise to prepare for the ceremony and to listen to the dharma.

As Buddhism evolves in North America, meditating may become a regular practise in the temple. Stay tuned.

In the meantime, here is a segment of the PBS program, "The Buddha" that explores meditation.

It's wrong to cheapen Eastern religions

Sensei Ulrich is quoted in a recent article in the Winnipeg Free Press. Other notable names and blog roll members include Rod Meade Sperry of the Worst Horse and Scott Mitchell from the Institute of Buddhist Studies.

Although it seems that Mitchell does not recall doing an interview for the article.

Buddha statue at Wat Muang in Angthong, Thailand, for Macha Bucha Day ceremonies.

Here is an excerpt from the article:

Have you heard about the Buddha Bar?

According to an ad in the Free Press, people who patronize Winnipeg's newest drinking establishment can expect to find "chic interiors" and "exotic electronic beats" to go along with the usual cocktail, beer and wine specials.

Winnipeg's Buddha Bar is just one more example of what has come to be called "Dharma Burgers," a phrase made popular by Rod Meade Sperry of the Buddhist pop and culture website The Worst Horse. According to Perry, it refers to "any example of Buddhist ideas or imagery in the marketing or production of (usually non-Buddhist) services and consumables."

How do Buddhists feel about "Dharma Burgers"-- seeing their religion used to sell stuff? I posed that question to Sensei Fredrich Ulrich of the Manitoba Buddhist Temple. "Most Buddhists don't relish them, but seldom take offence," he says.

He did draw the line a few years ago when Victoria's Secret introduced a "Buddha bikini," with an image of a Buddha-like figure on the crotch.
"Using the Buddha to sell erotic garments is a misuse of the Buddha image," Ulrich states.

As for all the other "Dharma Burgers," Ulrich is resigned to seeing more businesses using his religion to make money. "As Buddhism becomes more popular, such things will become more numerous," he says.


Sensei Ulrich on Discovering Buddhism

The JoyTV program, "Discovering Buddhism" introduced viewers to the teachings of the Buddha. The 18 part, half-hour program was produced in 2009. The main participant was Sensei Fredrich Ulrich of the Manitoba Buddhist Temple.

In this clip, host, Tim Smith asks Sensei Ulrich to explain why some may choose to not think of Buddhism as a religion but more of a teaching.

Rev. Ulrich's rich knowledge of history and art provided viewers with a unique perspective on the historical Buddha. He describes the symbolism in the statues that often represent Amida Buddha.

Check your local TV listings to see when the series will air again. Unfortunately, JoyTV is only seen in B.C. and Manitoba.


Jenny's Poem

"We wish the torch of the Buddha-Dharma lit in the City of Winnipeg is never extinguished"

Jenny Setsuko Nishimura was the wife of Rev. Hideo Nishimura, the first minister of the Manitoba Buddhist Temple. She would have celebrated her 100th birthday in June 2009. Even with her passing into nirvana earlier in the year, her life continues to resonate in our hearts because of her selfless service.

Jenny's poem was discovered by her niece, Tomoko Tatsumi. Bishop Orai Fujikawa graciously wrote the kanji and it now hangs in the hondo as a reminder... to care and celebrate life in our temple.


Opening Night

In September, Sensei Ulrich was invited to introduce the documentary, Burma VJ at Winnipeg's Cinematheque Theatre. Here are some photos from opening night.

Poster in the lobby

Sensei Ulrich introduces the film with a brief history of Buddhism and politics in Myanmar

Sensei Ulrich meets with the audience after the film

The Manitoba Buddhist Temple is grateful that the Winnipeg Film Group invited us to participate and hope to continue working together on future projects.


Roy's Florist

Summary only available when permalinks are enabled.

Hope and Healing

Summary only available when permalinks are enabled.

Jenny Setsuko Nishimura

Summary only available when permalinks are enabled.

Gala Dinner

Summary only available when permalinks are enabled.

Birth of the Buddha Celebration

Join us for a celebration of the birth of the Buddha! The event takes place at the St. Norbert Arts Centre on Sunday May 31 starting at 7:00pm. The program includes a Parade of Lanterns, spiritual dance and music and features a Dharma Talk by Sensei Ulrich.

How to Cook Your Life

Filmmaker Doris Dörrie turns her attention to Buddhism and that age-old saying, you are what you eat. In How To Cook Your Life, Dörrie enlists the help of the charismatic Zen Master Edward Espe Brown to explain the guiding principles of Zen Buddhism as they apply to the preparation of food as well as life itself. “How a person goes about dealing with the ingredients for his meals” explains Dörrie “says a lot about him. How To Cook Your Life teaches us to be attentive in our everyday dealings with the most mundane things and also open our eyes to one of the most beautiful occupations: cooking.”

Now playing until February 27 at the Winnipeg Cinematheque Theatre

Kind Words from Dr. Kawamura


As one of the projects of the Living Dharma Center, I have proposed to visit all temples in the Buddhist Churches of Canada and survey Dharma School and Youth programs. I began my visitations with the Manitoba Buddhist Temple in Winnipeg on February 17, 2008.

The resident Minister (Sensei) is Fred Ulrich and he has done a wonderful job of taking the temple into the society. As a consequence, many people who are interested in the Buddha-dharma (teachings of the Enlightened Siddhartha) have visited the temple and some have become new members to the temple. Others have volunteered to help at “soup kitchens” and other inter-religious groups. Those members who have been with the temple for many years, and some who have been there from the very beginning, contribute to the advancement and development of the temple by contributing financial assistance as well as being attentive to the various needs of the temple.

On this visit, I was invited to attend the Sunday service attended by many people both old and new. I met a lady whose visit to the temple was for the first time, and I was pleased to see that she was accepted into the sangha and was taking part in the events of the day just in the manner that those who were there for a longer period.

The service itself was very impressive in that it was not centered around the Sensei only, but members (both children and adults) led the sangha in various aspects – leading in the Trisarana, leading in the incense offering, reading of the Juseige in English prior to the chanting of it led by Sensei Ulrich. I was invited to give a Dharma talk to the children, to the Japanese speaking adults, and then to the English speaking adults.

A gift from a Dharma Class Student

Visitation to the Dharma school class was done during the adult meditation session. During my visit, many good ideas of how the LDC could gain from and contribute to the Manitoba Buddhist Temple Dharma Classes were exchanged These ideas will be compiled and circulated among the temples so that exchange of ideas can take place.

During the “pot luck” lunch, an opportunity was provided to share the intent, structure, and wish of the LDC for each person’s participation in its work.

Lunch is served

Sensei Ulrich meets a visitor

A sample brochure of the LDC was distributed to those in attendance. This brochure is a “work in progress” in that it contains some information about the structure and working of the LDC, but hopefully it will prompt comments from the members of the BCC at large so that when the brochure reaches its more mature state, it will contain the information that responds to the members’ wishes.

Origami practise

The brochure is in such an infantile stage that some of the Winnipeg members had to practice “origami” (the art of paper folding) to get into shape for handing out.

Watch for more from my next visits:
February 23 - West Coast Temples
March 16 - Southern Alberta Temple
Calgary, Interior BC and East Coast temples are still pending.

Dr. Leslie Kawamura
February 17, 2008


Faith in the City

courtesy Winnipeg Free Press

The Interfaith tour began on Thursday, January 17 at our own Manitoba Buddhist Temple. The turnout was overwhelming. Over 200 people filled the temple to observe how a Buddhist service is performed. The enthusiastic crowd showed a genuine interest by participating in the meditation and chanting exercises.

The series is organized by the Winnipeg Free Press "Faith Columnist", Brenda Suderman. She describes the tour as "prying open our comfort zones, experiencing each other at worship, prayer and other rituals, and learning just a bit more about ourselves and our neighbours in the process." She wrote in her column following the session:

Last Thursday night, more than 150 people packed the 60-year-old Buddhist Church near the Health Sciences Centre for an introduction to Buddhism, the first stop on a six-session interfaith course co-sponsored by the University of Winnipeg and the Manitoba Interfaith Council. That enthusiastic response astounded organizers, and proves to (Sensei) Ulrich that people are convinced of the need for interfaith dialogue and co-operation.

"You're here because there's a grassroots interest in this, it's a lay movement," the former Methodist minister turned Buddhist sensei told the audience during the three hours of chanting, singing, explanations, and questions. "In a pluralistic, multi-faith society, we end up with pluralistic, multi-faith individuals."

Sensei Ulrich enjoyed sharing this vision of a more multi-faith community. He told the audience that sometimes lay people are ahead of the clergy and religious leaders because they are already living the multi-faith experience in their own families. He said that many families are already dealing with religious issues that often come in mixed racial marriages.


Introducton to Buddhism

The Manitoba Buddhist Temple is offering an introductory course on Buddhism. The course will be held at the temple on four alternate Thursday evenings from 7:00-9:00pm.

Feb. 7 - Basic Introduction to Buddhism
Feb. 21 - Buddhist Psychology of Mind and Meditation
March 6 - Three Buddhist Meditations
March 20 - Meditation Practice and Sharing Circle

Donations gratefully accepted. This is an interfaith, non-evangelical presentation by Fredrich Ulrich, Sensei. Parking behind the temple accessed by the back lane to the north of the temple, in the community, and in the HSC parking lot on the SE corner of Notre Dame and Tecumseh, as provided by a gracious agreement with the HSC for evening special events only.

Where is God? CBC Series

CBC Radio and are exploring the question "Where is God today?" Commentators, religious thinkers and ordinary Canadians give their thoughts. Among the particpants is our own Sensei Ulrich. He was interviewed about how he came to become a Jodo Shinshu Minister and was featured in a photo slideshow.
WATCH THE SLIDESHOW (Sensei Ulrich is the fourth person presented)...

Also in the series is Bonnie Tittaferrante from Thunder Bay. Bonnie is the Lay Leader of the Jodo Shinshu Buddhists of Thunder Bay. Here is part of the essay she wrote for CBC.CA:

Following the Path in a Northern Town
Gold, red, mahogany and marble Buddhas from various sects fill my home. But a single statue of my Buddha, Amida, graces the home shrine (butsudan), his fit physical features a mixture of many races. He stands with one hand upward and one reaching down to me. After chanting and readings of the Dharma (Teachings), the welcoming smell of sandalwood incense permeates my home, as it does Jodo Shinshu temples and homes worldwide. Once a predominately ethnic Japanese-based sect, Jodo Shinshu Buddhism (also called Shin) is slowly growing among those of non-Japanese descent.

Bombers have fan in the Dalai Lama

November 10, Winnipeg Free Press
By Joe Paraskevas

The Winnipeg Blue Bombers have received all the inspiration they should need to win their playoff game Sunday. The Dalai Lama, one of the world's holiest figures, has emerged as a surprise Big Blue booster. "Victory to the Blue Bombers," he scribbled in Tibetan with a black Sharpie marker on some Winnipeg Blue Bomber equipment, adding his name to the lore of this city's Grey Cup-seeking CFL team.

Allan Nimmo/Special to the Winnipeg Free Press

The Bombers play the Montreal Alouettes in the East Division semifinal in Winnipeg on Sunday. The exiled Tibetan leader signed the helmet and an official CFL football as he flew to Ottawa two weeks ago.

Meditation Question

A recent e-mail:


I was wondering if you teach meditation to beginners? Where would I go for this, and when would I come if so. Thank you.

We do some meditation in our Sunday Services. I also teach meditation on a biweekly basis for five meetings. That is coming to an end on Nov 8. If you want to drop by at 7pm then to observe that would be ok. The same is true for our Sunday services at 10:30am. some are formal and others are informal, still some are geared to meditation. There are also many groups in the city.

A word of advice:

1. There are many types of meditation. Choose a group and a teacher that suits you and your needs. Don't be afraid to change a few times until you are getting the work you need.

2. Meditation is so popular now that everyone is getting into the act. some teachers are borrowing extensively from Buddhism but do not give credit where credit is due. Other jump on the bandwagon and really don't know what they are doing. There is now money to be made, books to sell, and reputations to have; all at a great price.

3. To use Buddhist meditation is to have Buddhist experiences: awareness of the universal experience of suffering, universal compassion, relativity of all our identity scenarios, oneness with emptiness, moral and ethical groundedness, nirvana (end of ignorance, hatred and greed). Many people are not ready to face these and want a kind of feel-good escapism. They want to borrow status from their teacher and gain a spiritual superiority. This can be very misleading and waste years of effort.

Buddha Smiles
Sensei Ulrich

Birthday Celebration

On October 27th the elders enjoyed a delicious meal at the month end luncheon followed by cake in celebration of Mr. Hisao Kondo’s 90th birthday. Also in attendance for this joyous occasion was his wife Kay and daughters Shirley Teranishi and Brenda Marks.

Makes a Great Bodhi Day Gift!

Makes a Great Bodhi Day Gift!
The Buddhist Churches of Canada calendar is on sale soon. Makes sure to get one for you, your friends, and your family.
This is a preview of the Manitoba Buddhist Temple page. Proceeds go to the BCC Sustaining Fund and the Manitoba Buddhist Temple.

Blessings of the Buddhas

Since it began in March 2001, more than two million people has seen the Relic Tour. This collection of historical Buddhist artifacts comes to Winnipeg on October 27 & 28 at the Hai Hoi Temple at 650 Burrows Avenue. Admission is free.

The exhibition contains more than 500 tiny pieces from at least seven collections of supposed remains of the historical Buddha, as well as another 500 pieces from 29 famous Buddhist saints and disciples ranging from ancient times to the present.

Relics of Shakyamuni, the historical Buddha who lived 2,500 years ago

The tour, organized by a Santa Cruz-based Tibetan monk, Lama Zopa Rimpoche, began in 2001 and was intended to end with the relics being enshrined in the heart portion of a huge, 500-foot-tall statue of Maitreya Buddha devoted to "loving kindness" in Kushinagar, India, where Buddha discarded the last of his earthly coils. This collection of holy relics will tour the world for public display until construction of the Maitreya Buddha statue has been completed. Until then, it is Rinpoche's wish that as many people as possible around the world be given the chance to receive the blessings of Maitreya Buddha and the holy relics.

The Maitreya Project has been controversial. Villagers and farmers are worried about being displaced by the giant statue. The project has also been accused of being materialistic.

Maitreya is the name of the expected next Buddha, and the tour and yet-to-be funded, $200-million statue are part of the Maitreya Project.

Shaku of Wondrous Grace

Yoshimaru Abe was an immigrant who came to Canada from Japan in 1927. He would live the ultimate Japanese-Canadian experience. Facing discrimination during the war and then experiencing hardship while trying to rebuild a life for his family, he was still able to maintain his culture and identity.

Now, a book has been released honouring Yoshimaru Abe. It's called "Shaku of Wondrous Grace: Through the Garden of Yoshimaru Abe" and it introduces us to a man who lived "creatively and simply" while having faith in Buddhism.

"Throughout his life, it was his strong belief in his Buddhist faith, and the grace of his living that enabled Yoshimaru to not only survive, but to flourish as a uniquely accomplished and caring individual." -excerpt from the book, "Shaku of Wondrous Grace"

Book signing by the authors at the Manitoba Japanese Cultural Centre

The book is written by Art Miki, Henry Kojima and Sylvia Jansen. It contains many photos from his life. As well as, many of the sketches that Abe drew and kept.

Sensei Ulrich believes Abe lived his life by the Universal Vow, I refuse to enter Nirvana until all other beings have entered first, before me. In the book, Sensei explains that the irony of this belief is by refusing salvation for oneself alone, one is saved. This is the grace that Abe-san lived in.

In 2006, when Yoshimaru Abe died, he received his Buddhist name from Sensei Ulrich. And now, that name is the title of the book, "Shaku of Wondrous Grace."

BCC Day - October 28, 2007

As we celebrate the achievements of the past year, I would like to thank you, our ministers, members and friends for your extraordinary support of the Buddhist Churches of Canada (BCC).

At the 2007 BCC Annual General Meeting in Calgary, a commitment of $55 per member assessment fee was ratified by the member temples. These commitments are essential for the sustained health of our organization to support many of the programs which otherwise would become the responsibility of individual temples. However, the temple assessment fees are usually not sufficient to meet the demands of today’s rising costs and inflation. Each year, BCC is faced with a deficit.

The Buddhist Churches of Canada established BCC Day with the hope that all temples would observe the day with a service. It was felt that a Sunday in October would be the most appropriate as it commemorates the founding of Jodo Shinshu in Canada in 1905. Envelopes for the BCC Day konshi are distributed to temple members preferably through the monthly newsletters or at the temple itself.

This unrestricted fund enables the BCC to assign funding to areas essential for the propagation of Jodo Shinshu in Canada. This important fund offers BCC the flexibility to address its most pressing needs, while at the same time allows for the chance to participate in unscheduled opportunities as they arise.

In the year 2006, the fund received $11,170.94 and we are most grateful to the many donors who contributed to our success. In 2007, we can top the $15,000 or even more if all of our ministers, members and friends participate with the BCC Service Day konshi.

Your support in this initiative plays a major role in sustaining a healthy and vibrant religious institution. Each one of you makes a lasting difference. On behalf of the Ministers and Directors of BCC, thank you for your confidence and continual support.

In gassho,

Jim Hisanaga, President

First Slurpee

Not sure many of you know this, but Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada is the Slurpee capital of the world. We have retained the title for eight years in a row. Besides sales of over 8,000 drinks per store, per month, a spokesperson for 7-11 says one of the reasons for the Winnipeg winning the title is, where else would someone be drinking a Slurpee in -40'C weather.

7-Eleven began selling Slurpees, then called Icees, in its stores in the United States in 1965. Despite its history in North America, this eighteenth-generation Jodo Shinshu priest recently had his first one. Socho Koshin Ogui Sensei has been a resident of the United States since 1962, but he he seems to be enjoying his first Slurpee.


Socho Ogui became minister of the Cleveland Buddhist Temple in 1977 and of the Midwest Buddhist Temple in Chicago in 1992. In 2004, he was appointed Socho (Bishop) of the Buddhist Churches of America and has been instrumental in the ongoing revitalization and outreach efforts of that organization. THe is the author of "Zen Shin Talks", and now lives in San Francisco.

For an interesting article on Socho Ogui's view on Jodo Shinshu and meditation, read this recent article from tricycle Magazine.

Construction Zone

If you haven't heard already, the Health Sciences Centre Hospital is putting up a new 1200 stall parkade beside our temple.

They took all the trees
Put 'em in a tree museum
And they charged the people
A dollar and a half just to see 'em

For us, it will mean a new address. Our front street will become Tecumseh Street, instead of Winnipeg Avenue. To accommodate a drop-off point and special events parking, there will be a small road built to the east of the temple garage, running south to what was Winnipeg Avenue. Eventually, there will also be a signal light placed at the corner of Tecumseh and Notre Dame. The project is scheduled for completion in September 2008.

Don't it always seem to go
That you dont know what youve got
Till its gone
They paved paradise
And put up a parking lot

And while there will be more traffic and we may lose some sunshine, it will clean up the area a bit. Beyond all that, I'm sorry, I just can't get that song out of my head every-time I walk by the construction site. With respect to Joni Mitchell.

Instead of a sod turning, Health Sciences Centre will be hosting a "Mother Earth event" for the parkade. It will take place Friday, June 8th at 9:00 am. The public is invited.