Toronto Buddha’s Light Children Joyfully Celebrate Halloween
On October 29th, the Fo Guang Shan (FGS) Temple of Toronto Chinese School and Children’s English Dharma Class co-hosted a Halloween celebration with the theme of “Promoting Three Acts of Goodness, No Tricks.” The event was an opportunity to educate kids about the importance of practicing the Three Acts of Goodness while promoting the virtues of truthfulness, kindness, and beauty.
Around 60 children dressed up and paraded through the Temple as their favourite characters. Starting from the Dining Hall, the children brought auspicious greetings and joy to volunteers and devotees stationed in the Buddha’s Light bookstore, offices, reception and Water Drop Tea House. The children learned the importance of giving joy while happily receiving candies.
Teachers from both the Chinese school and Children’s English Dharma Class skillfully used the fun-filled atmosphere of the occasion as a learning opportunity. The Chinese School teaching team delivered aspecially crafted lesson on Chinese expressions related to the theme of Halloween. The students sang the “Three Acts of Goodness Song” along with the teachers as well as learning phrases related to Halloween and courteous greetings in Chinese.
The true spirit of “giving” was illustrated to the student through animation and stories, inspiring the children to develop the habit of sharing. The Children English Dharma Class students learned all about Buddhist etiquette. They paid sincere respect to Buddha with bows before embarking on the parade. All children showcased their creativity and light heartedness by decorating their candy bags with appreciation and gratitude. Every bag featured the uniqueness and creativity of the children such as multi-eyed spiders and jack-o’-lanterns, just to name a few.
The children’s costumes were eye-catching and adorable. The girls dressed up as Snow White, little pumpkins, a purple witch, and a black angel, while the boys donned outfits ranging from Super Mario, and Spider-Man, to robots, and more. The teachers also joined the fun, wearing various costumes to jovialize the atmosphere, creating a colourful and vibrant scene filled with joy and energy.
After lining up in the Dining Hall, the children proceeded to various locations to collect candies. Venerable Chueh Fan, the Abbess, personally distributed candies in front of the office. Devotees and volunteers at various points enthusiastically handed out candies, graciously accepting the children’s expressions of gratitude such as “Auspicious Blessings,” “Thank you”. As they passed through the Main Shrine, the students also performed a sincere homage to the Buddha.
Upon returning to the classroom, the children’s faces lit up with joy as they eagerly shared their Halloween harvest with friends, expressing their intention to share the candies with their families when they returned home.