Conventions & Conferences

District or United Level

Every district in the state holds its membership meeting or BWA convention annually. It is usually hosted by BWA unit(s) on a rotating basis. These events are well attended since all members are invited to participate and much camaraderie is evident. The format is quite similar — a religious service, general membership meeting with a guest speaker and luncheon followed by a program. The afternoon program vary depending on the host unit(s), i.e. entertainment by representatives of each unit or a special program selected by the host.

See the calendar for dates of district membership meetings/conventions.

State Level

panelists wearing lei with projection screen behind
2014 State Conference, with then-president Janet Honda presiding

Every four years, the Hawaii Federation of Buddhist Women’s Associations holds a State Membership Conference. This is held the year preceding a World Convention. Since it is hosted by different districts in turn, in 2014, the Hawaii Island United BWA hosted the 12th State Membership Conference at Sheraton Kona Resort & Spa. The program consisted of services, Dharma speakers, workshops, and resolutions. New business items by Uniteds, Units, or even individuals are highly encouraged.

Show/hide past state conferences
12th State Conference
May 3-4, 2014
Big Island – Sheraton Kona Resort & Spa
Attendance: 200+

11th State Conference
May 15-16, 2010
Honolulu – Waikiki Sheraton Hotel
Attendance: 300

10th State Conference
April 29 – May 1, 2005
Oahu – Ala Moana Hotel

9th State Conference
Oct. 26-28, 2001
Maui – Outrigger Wailea

8th State Conference
Sept. 5-7, 1997
Kauai – Kauai Marriott Resort

7th State Conference
Oct. 15-17, 1993
Hawaii – Kona Surf Hotel

6th State Conference
Oct. 21-22, 1989
Honolulu – Sheraton Waikiki

5th State Conference
Oct. 26-27, 1985 Oahu – Ala Moana Americana Hotel
Attendance: 515

4th State Conference
Oct. 31 – Nov. 1, 1981 Maui – Royal Lahaina Hotel
Attendance: 403

3rd State Conference
Oct. 22-23, 1977 Hawaii – Hilo Lagoon Hotel
Attendance: 439

2nd State Conference
Oct. 20-21, 1973
Kauai – Lihue Hongwanji, Kauai Beach Boy Hotel
Attendance: 363

1st State Conference
Oct. 16-18, 1969
Honolulu – Hawaii Betsuin, Imamura Hall

World Level

two photos: 5 delegates from Kauai in lei, woman in white with western-style cowboy had
2015 World Convention in Calgary: Kauai delegation and Irene Nakamoto (White Hat Ceremony)

The first Buddhist Women’s World Convention was held in March 21-22, 1961 in Kyoto, Japan and is held once every four years at one of the five World districts (Japan, Hawaii, Buddhist Churches of America, Jodo Shinshu Buddhist Temples of Canada, and South America). Members in these Districts attend this Convention to share information, to unite in spirit and purpose, to strengthen our beliefs in Jodo Shinshu, and to promote world peace.

17th World Convention
Host: Japan
May 11-12, 2023
Kyoto, JAPAN
850th birthday of Shinran Shonin and the 800th anniversary of the Hongwanji

Show/hide past world conventions
16th World Convention
Host: Buddhist Churches of America
August 30 – September 1, 2019
San Francisco Marriott Marquis Hotel, San Francisco, California

Attendance:  1700 

Live the Nembutsu
YouTube play iconA video invitation
camera icon16th World Convention (San Francisco, 2019)
“Live the Nembutsu” talk by Carol Valentine
A few performance videos on the Videos page

15th World Convention
Host: Buddhist Churches of Canada
May 30-31, 2015
Calgary TELUS Convention Centre, Calgary, Alberta
Attendance: 2000
Embraced by the Oneness of Life

14th World Convention
Host: Japan
May 15-17, 2011
Kyoto Pulse Plaza, Kyoto
Attendance: 4,000
May Peace and Tranquility Prevail Throughout the World
camera icon photo gallery »

13th World Convention
Host: Hawaii
Sept. 1-3, 2006
Hawaii Convention Center, Honolulu
Attendance: 3500
Buddha’s Vow, My Aspiration:
May There Be Peace in the World and May the Buddha’s Teaching Spread
camera icon photo gallery »

12th World Convention
Host: South America
Oct. 8-10, 2002
Transamerica Expo Center, Sao Paulo, Brazil
Attendance: 2300
Awake to oneself being nurtured by compassion of Amida Buddha.
Be Grateful — In Gassho Together with My Child and Grandchild

11th World Convention
Host: Japan
April 10, 1998
Convention Center, Osaka
Attendance: 8654
A Life of Inspirational Gratitude — Pass it On; My Innovation

10th World Convention
Host: Buddhist Churches of America
Sept. 2-4, 1994
Hilton/Marriott Hotel Anaheim, CA
Attendance: 3432
Namu Amida Butsu, In Gassho the World is One

9th World Convention
Host: Buddhist Churches of Canada
May 31-June 2, 1990
Convention Center Vancouver, British Columbia
Attendance: 3000
Spread the Sound of the Nembutsu to the World, to Our Children and Grandchildren

8th World Convention
Host: Japan
Oct. 7-9, 1986
International Hall, Kyoto
Attendance: 3800
The Joy of Being Sustained Through the Nembutsu

7th World Convention
Host: Hawaii
July 23-25, 1982
Sheraton Waikiki Hotel, Honolulu
Attendance: 2200
Joining Hands with Others, Rejoice in the Nembutsu

6th World Convention
Host: South America
June 24-25, 1978
Anhembi Convention Hall Sao Paulo, Brazil
Attendance: 2500
To Be Given Life by the Nembutsu

5th World Convention
Host: Buddhist Churches of America
Aug. 29-31, 1974
Civic Center San Francisco, CA
Attendance: 3000
Discovering New Horizons

4th World Convention
Host: Japan
April 17-19, 1970
Osaka, Japan
Attendance: 2000
Listen Together, Build Together, a Peaceful World

3rd World Convention
Host: Hawaii
June 16-18, 1967
Hawaii Betsuin, Honolulu
Attendance: 1200
Grateful Service for a Better World

2nd World Convention
Host: Buddhist Churches of America
May 14-16, 1965
Waldorf Astoria Hotel, New York City, N.Y.
World Peace Through Compassion

1st World Convention
Host: Japan
March 21-22, 1961 | Kyoto, Japan
Attendance: 3700
Offering the Nembutsu to Societies Everywhere