Before the day of solemnization happened, on the morning of May 14, 2023, all Volunteers gathered together in preparing and setting up the place where the celebration will be held. While the other group of Volunteers and Scholars are practicing, they will do the parades of offering ceremony and sign language performance by the Tzu Chi Scholars.
Traditionally, Buddha Day is celebrated every second Sunday of May. Tzu Chi Foundation- Bohol celebrates Buddha Day to commemorate the life, wisdom, and enlightenment of our Buddha. The celebration for this year, May 14, 2023, is fully featured with the 3-in-1 Big Celebrations of Buddha Day, Mother’s Day, and the 57th Tzu Chi Global Anniversary.
The ceremony was held at the Cultural Center in the City of Tagbilaran, Bohol, and participated by Volunteers from Manila and Taiwan, Volunteer Staff, Local Volunteers of Bohol, Tzu Chi Bohol Scholars with their parents, Guests, and beneficiaries from various parts of Bohol Province with the of total 383 participants. With 15 Commissioners/Faith corp, 3 Training Commissioner (Peixun), 47 Apprentice Volunteer (Jianxi), 207 Tzu Chi Bohol Scholars, 74 Parents/Guests, 19 Happy Volunteer of Bohol, 18 Volunteer Staff of Bohol.
Before starting the program, the Tzu Chi Youth of Bohol perform a sign language Love in the World and Spirit of Great Love to make the crowd delighted.
For the third time around, Tzu Chi Bohol once again conducted the 3-in-1 Celebration, first-time big event that happened after the pandemic last 2019-2020. A simple yet solemn ritual, was happened to offer a prayer for purifying the hearts and minds of the people so that they can partake in the enlightenment of the Buddha. Bro. James Chua showed his gratitude, and joy message that once again it was ensued in the Bohol Region.
Bro. James Chua uttered, “Today we attend the Buddha Day Celebration in Bohol, I’m thankful that there are lot of parents who joined in this kind of event. I am also thankful to my fellow Brothers and Sisters, I hope everyone have a nice experience joining in this event and I also hope that Bohol will continue for the next years to come.”
The ceremony started with the Master of the Ceremony, by welcoming all the participants with joy that gathered together to celebrate the threefold event. This celebration is another way for Tzu Chi Foundation in expressing gratitude to Buddha.
The program also highlighted the Mother’s Day Celebration for all the mothers, featured with appreciation to our parents by the washing of feet. Participated with the 36 Scholars, together with their mothers and offer some flowers to show love and respect to their parents.
Tzu Chi scholar’s mother, Arlyn Pamugas expressed her thoughts after her child (Tzu Chi Scholar) washed her feet.
“I’m the mother of Job Austin Pamugas a Tzu Chi Scholar and also a medical beneficiary, last when he has cancer in the blood (leukemia) and he needs to undergo chemo with the help of Tzu Chi, up until now that he is one of the scholars and I’m very thankful to Tzu Chi for all the help. For the event today, I really feel the love of a child to his mother, my son, Job gave back the love and I feel it so happy. Today’s event, Job together with the other scholars, he washed my feet and I feel his sincere love of a child to the mother. It’s because of Tzu Chi Foundation it gave us strength in our relationship, as son and mother love. To all mother’s out there, family and child I hope that you’ll feel what I feel today. Thank you, Tzu Chi Foundation”, she said
From a far land of Mabini, Lucia Cuniado mother of the Tzu Chi Scholar also express her joyful feeling.
“It is my first time attending these 57th Anniversary, Buddha Day, and Mother’s Day Celebration. I can’t imagine what I feel today, that it’s my first time experience my daughter washed and clean my feet. I’m very overwhelmed to what Tzu Chi Foundation held an event like this.”
Starting the ceremony for Buddha Bathing, everyone participated in the flowers and candle offering. The offerings play a major role in the ceremony as each offering signifies enlightenment and virtue. Scented water cleanses our hearts and minds, while the flowers represent acceptance of good karma and the candles itself symbolize wisdom.
Joseline Rama a Local volunteers from Matabao, Tubigon, Bohol expresses a message in joining the big event for the first time.
“This is my first time joining the big event of Buddha Day, Mother’s Day and Tzu Chi Day of Tzu Chi Foundation, I’m really happy being here today even if we are far from the City I’m willing to be here to join this event,” she said
Buddha Day was also celebrated this year, the Tzu Chi volunteers from Manila and Bohol, together with Tzu Chi Bohol Scholars celebrate this big spiritual event and cultivation. In doing so, Buddha is the great awakened one who guides us in the direction of wisdom and great compassion.