Christmas Service in Hawaii

Christmas Day we went to church. Greenery and candles lined the pews and walls, along with native antherium, ti leaves and weaved palm fronds. We sat in a pew and faced the high altar, waiting for the service to begin. At 10:30, the bells in the chapel rang joyous tunes. Still facing the front, we waited for the choir to enter in front of us, but we heard another sound. A conch shell called parishioners to enter the church. A conch shell. Only in Hawaii. But wait….
during the Prayers Of The People, the priest from Tennessee, prayed for King Kamehameha IV and Queen Emma. And the choir sang the Queen’s Prayer – in Hawaiian!

The Queen’s Prayer translated to English:
Your loving mercy is as high as heaven and your truth so perfect. I live imprisoned in sorrow; you are my light; your glory, my support. Behold not with malevolence the sins of humankind, but forgive and cleanse.
And so, O Lord, protect us beneath your wings and let peace be our portion now and forever more.

Honolulu City Lights

Here are photos from Honolulu City Lights, put on by the City and County of Honolulu at Honolulu Hale. There is so much more than what I’ve posted here, but this gives you an idea of the color and lights that surround City Hall and adorn the interior.

The lobby was filled with rows of Christmas trees, each decorated by a different city/county department, such as Office of Emergency Services which had a “Be Prepared” tree, complete with a can of Spam hung as an ornament.

Mark, our friend “Jake”, and I wandered the lobby and inhaled the smell of fresh pine trees. “It finally feels like Christmas,” we remarked.

I may go back again before the season is over.

Christmas In Hawaii

I wondered how Hawaiians would decorate for Christmas. Would Santa come in a canoe rather than down the chimney? (Yes, he does. In Waikiki, at least.)

Here are photos of Christmas decorations I’ve taken all around the island. Look closely, you’ll see ukeleles in wreaths and Santa’s workshop isn’t run by elves. The Menehune help Santa with the toys on Oahu.

I was surprised to find the manger scene at the Kahala Mall.

The real Oahu decorations are at Honolulu City Lights. I haven’t made it down there yet, but I will and I’ll share photos when I do.