Yozen (Jan van der Elsen) and Kakua (Agnes van der Elsen), teachers at the Gloucester Shingon Buddhist Centre attended the launch ceremony for the Symbolic Doves of Peace at Peace Mala HQ on 30th April 2015.
They announced that they would be leaving for Japan in the late summer or early autumn for two years further training at their mother temple and would be taking Dove No. 14 with them. In the meantime the dove would return to their centre on Gloucester and rest on the main shrine.
During the summer, they kindly arranged for one of their Japanese sangha members to translate the little explanatory booklet that accompanies each Peace Mala bracelet into the Japanese language. They would be taking a supply of Peace Mala bracelets to give as gifts.
At the end of September 2015, Peace Mala Symbolic Peace Dove No.14 landed at Yugasan Rendaiji one of the greatest Shingon Buddhist temples in Japan. Yozen and Kakua presented the dove to Vice-Abbot Zoju-san when they arrived for their two years study. They also gave her a Peace Mala bracelet to wear. She expressed instant approval of the message and vision of Peace Mala, said she loved the symbolic bracelet and now wears it with pride.
Symbolic Peace Dove 14 stayed at Yugasan Rendaiji Temple for a while, before her journey continued in Japan. Yugasan Rendaiji Temple is in Kojimayuga near Kurashiki in Okayama Prefecture.
On 16th November we were informed that Dove No.14 has left Yugasan Rendaiji temple and had travelled with Vice-Abbot Zoju-san to Koya-san, the main temple of Shingon Buddhism. It is said that over a million pilgrims travel to Koya-san every year. Saint Kukai (774-835) established a monastic retreat here in 816. Koya-san is situated south of Osaka in the heart of the Kii Peninsula.
At Koya-san the symbolic peace dove was handed over to a lady who will fly it to Hong-Kong in Southern China. Peace Dove No.8 is also travelling to Hong Kong. We hope that it will be possible for them to meet.
It is hoped that both doves will raise awareness of the Peace Mala global project for world peace wherever they travel.