2014 Annual General Meeting – Sunday 16th November 2014
Celebration of nearly 3,000 years since the establishment of the Buddha Dharma
Celebration of 793 Years since the establishment of the Nichiren Buddha Sect/School
Celebration of the 12th AGM of Nichiren Buddha Hokkeko Society®
Celebration of the 29th Anniversary of our Founder/Teacher, TMHenry
Meeting called to Order 12:30 PM following Regular Sunday Discovery Service,
we met at our Community VIMY Hall for this 12th Annual AGM.
Meeting Secretary appointed: Moved by Laurie C. that Janet Curley be recording Secretary Seconded by Geoffrey G. Passed, Janet accepts
Welcome, Opening Statements read by: Maria Hiles, a wonderful, wholesome pot lunch
was enjoyed. A toast to our 12th Annual AGM was presented by: Laurie C.
Board Members: Stan Skretting, Janet Curley, Laurie Chisholm, Henry Landry
Board Members Not in attendance: Kelly Robertson, Linda Nadworny
Members: Maria Hiles, Geoffrey Greenwood, Judith Greenwood
Guests: Sadie, Maria’s Granddaughter
Regards from: Linda Nadworny, Maureen Fleming, Danny St. Pierre, David Boothman, in Tacoma, Yoku in Peru, Frank Walsmley, in Vancouver
Vision/Mission of the Nichiren Buddha Hokkeko Society: Read by: Laurie C.
1 ] To educate all seekers in the philosophy of the Buddha’s peaceful teachings.
2] To offer educational, benevolent and spiritual community services through the Buddha-way of faith, practice, study and meditation.
3 ] To accept members into the Nichiren Buddha Hokkeko Society of Vancouver Island.
4 ] To be associated with the Head Temple of Nichiren Shu, in Japan and work in co- operation with the Nichiren Organization of North America
Member Experience shared by: Geoffrey Greenwood
Old Business: Reading of 2013 Annual Meeting, by Janet C.
There being no business arising from last years minutes meeting moved to 12th Annual Report.
Administrators 12th Annual Report: 2014 – The Year of Progress
Before moving on to my Business Report, Our Community Sangha, would like to present a couple of Certificates of Appreciation. Once again this year we have been very blessed, with the new building of Retreat Hut #3, by Alan and Karen Davidson, a Certificate and small Gift of Appreciation will to taken to them. The next is to Silver Donor Sponsors, Stan Stretting, with the passing of his mother Mary, and his wife Linda Nadworny. Silver donor Sponsors will have their donation marked by one of our Entrance Way, blossoming Japanese Cherry Trees. Thanks to Roger Godlington, for two wonderful Benches, to be placed on Mediation Walkways.
Our Community Buddha Society is a faith based Society whose goal is to assist all who seek spiritual sustain-ability and peaceful means in their life. This is achieved through weekly Buddha Discovery Services, Meditation Services, Annual Retreats, Study Groups, Life Skills Coaching, Personal Counselling, Hospice work, Home visitations, and local Community service work.
Our Community support includes: Life Skills Coaching at WarmLand House for the homeless. Our work with the Homeless this past year has included sharing meditation techniques, addictions and life skills Counselling, co-operation in the opening of a half way home project to assist those ready to move out of Warmland after an individual has worked at dealing with their Addictions and are ready to move out gently, find work and make their way back into the mainstream of life. Our educational materials were sent to Women’s Home/Shelters. With the closing of the Vancouver Island Youth Prison, our Counsellor will now be available if called upon to visit Youth at the Vancouver Burnaby Prison. We continue as a Member of Kinsol Trestle Foundation and continue to work actively we work with the Cowichan Valley Regional District, City of Duncan and North Cowichan District supporting the growth of Bike/Walking Trails for sustainable health and environmental ways of commuting. We are also looking into becoming “Road Stewards” from Gibbins to Menzies Road.
Our Teacher is Chaplain at the Cowichan Valley Hospital in Duncan, Victoria General and
Jubilee Hospitals in Victoria, BC. Our Counselling services are free to all who come to us
seeking to awaken to their holistic BE-ing; for people of all cultures, faiths and backgrounds. Our Buddhist goal to free people from their suffering and to share with them in their happiness.
Once again this year some members did personal walks for ALS, MS, and Cancer. During 2014 our Teacher, TMHenry did 9 Hospital visits, down from last years 28 visits. He also did 86 Home Visitations, 32 more than in 2013; offering Buddhist services, life skills coaching, helping the sick, assisting with Will preparations, assisting with family permanent residency Immigration, and making funeral arrangements as part of the Hospice work we offer. Henry was involved in four Suicides, two teenagers after the fact, helping the families cope and with two adults, that lead to counselling and continued life, with ongoing support. Once again the year was filled with lots of personal counselling with several people coming forward to ask for help and hospice work with three people.
Japan Temple Tour & Pilgrimage 2014
The big event of the year for four  members of our Community was the Pilgrimage to Japan to tour various Cities, Towns, and Buddhist Temples. This ten day life changing experience has been fully shared with all the members on our return and there is a Memory Board located at the Nichiren Peace Center for viewing. Also, “A Journey To Japan” will be shared with the general public at the Island Savings Community Centre on December 3rd. This will be hosted by Laurie Chisholm and TMHenry.
Board of Directors
We thank Laurie, Kelly, Stan, Linda, Janet and TMHenry for their dedication, suggestions
and active membership, whose present term is to 2016 with a three year term of Office. In our Society® every Board Member has equal rights. The Treasury being small continues to be looked after by our Administrator, TMHenry. Our Financial books are open to all at anytime. A short version is posted on our website with the Annual Report, with full copies going to Revenue Canada and BC Registry Services.
With our permanent land we are now continue to offer various Retreats, these include
the Annual Three Day, Buddha In the Park, and the Seven Day Tien Tai Mindfulness Retreat. There is the One Day Retreats held in Spring and Fall, A Day of Meditation and A Day with the Buddha’s, A Day with Nichiren. We offer Individual and Couples Retreats, based on personal needs. In 2014 we held one Individual Personal Retreat and a beautiful Four Day Couples Retreat that helped change lives for the better. In 2014 24 people attend the various Retreats, down from the previous years 36 people attending our retreats.
OnLine and Social Media
We continue for our daily online services, including educational information, daily meditation quotes, events scheduling and so much more, you are invited to bookmark and visit our website at www.VIRetreats.com We continue to be active with our Social Networking through Hootsuite, FaceBook, Twitter and Linked In. Our Weekly Buddha Blog, monthly Buddha’s Message, daily Tweets, and Facebook offerings reach over 200 people weekly. We have successfully added an OnLine Fund Raising website at www.begiving.ca / Charities / Nichiren Buddha Society. Thank you to those who have helped test out this new opportunity.
Over this past year I have attended two training sessions on Website development, the merging of Social Media and the coming of Mobile Media, which is expected to grow hugely as tablets and Mobile Smart phones replace, personal computers.
Fund Raising for 2014
As the year of progress meant so much new work on the land and with our buildings, I was
unable to find much time to do any serious outside Fund Raising, however we did manage to
raise $8000, for our Land Legacy, which has been used in helping pay down our Long Term
49, plus 49, 99 year Lease. We will complete payment of our deed in 2015, which will
enable us to begin to concentrate on our permanent Nichiren Buddha Temple building and completion of the second phase of our Teachers Cabin, Retreat Hut #1.
2014 FINANCIAL REPORT
Financial Report [ detailed FR is available online through Revenue Canada or by request ]
Member Donations $ 5,181.75 Business Donations $ 5,488.41
Total Expense $ 12,762.28 Donations: $ 10,670.16
SAD [ Supporting Anonymous Donations]: $ 2,092.12
Sub – Total Income: $ 12,762.28
Land Legacy FundDonations: 2014 Payments $8,004
49 Year Renewable Lease $40,000 Deposit $4,000
Payments to date: $ 36,007 Outstanding balance: $ 3,993
Total Income: $ 20,766.28
Moved by: Maria H. Seconded by: Geoffrey Greenwood
that the 2014 Administrators Financial Report be accepted. Passed UNAM
Nichiren Peace Center Efforts
As part of our ongoing efforts to become self sufficient as possible, we had the opportunity
to receive the donations for two Peach, two Pear, one Plum, and an early, a mid season and
a winter, Apple. An Opening of the Eyes Blessing of the Orchard was held with appreciation and gratitude. It will be two years before this young orchard produces and fruit, but we all look forward to sharing the wonderful bounty. With the donation of a small Kabota Tractor we were able to move a lot of dirt, filling in some of our “in progress” Meditation Pathways, rough out two new Meditation paths, and haul several yards of Top Soil, so that we will be able to initiate our Nichiren Community Garden Club in the Spring of 2015. Then late in the year we were given the frame works for a Greenhouse and we have successfully built a strong, professional 10 x 12 x 8 Greenhouse, enabling us to get an early start on seeding. Also, the first area for our “Berry Patch” was started and will be ready for planting of Strawberries, Blueberries, and Raspberries in the coming season. The big problem of course is that everything will have to be on a small scale until we raise the monies to get a Well put in place, in the meantime it means a lot of hauling of water from the beautiful Cowichan River.
As per our Long Term Lease agreement, we held two meetings with Kenyon/Wilson, Professional Land Surveyors, and Mr. Robin Kenyon, the company that has done the surveys on the properties we are located on. It was explained that on private Indian Land there are two factors, one is “possession” and two is the “surrendering” of the land. It was agreed that the survey has been started with the legal “pin” that divides Lot 3 – Lot 4 [our land] and Johnny Bear Road. We will work with landlady, Jacquie Leeming in future years to complete the dividing of the acreage into the various parcels including looking after the payment for the pins to complete the dividing line of our two acres.
In total during 2014 we had 248 Guests and 430 Members attend our Thursday Evening Meditation Services at Cowichan University campus and our Sunday Nichiren Discovery Services, our Retreats, and Study Sessions, including six Formal Buddhist Tea Ceremonies;
for a total of 678 people in attending our Nichiren-way.
This was 67 less Guests, 41 less attendance by members a total 108 less than in 2013.
Our core group remains small and dedicated with a few new persons researching their spirituality that will hopefully find our Community in line with their Heart-Minds and desire of spiritual purpose. In line with this in 2014, we accepted one new member with our beautiful Community Nichiren Buddhist Ceremony. In the past twenty years, 50 persons have stood with TMHenry and taken their Nichiren Community Vows.
Our pioneering journey includes many people of great Heart and Energy, some will not be able to enjoy our efforts, but you are here today and I deeply respect you. I cannot express in words my joy and thanks for all your efforts as we fulfil our Mission to relieve the suffering of all BE-ings searching for happiness and peace in their lives; here on our two acres that borders on the BC Heritage protected water shed of the Cowichan River, on this ancient land, we vow to protect!
Moved by: Stan S. Seconded by: Maria H. UNAM
“That 2015 be designated the Year of Generosity”
We welcome everyone to come for a Formal Tea Ceremony, come see this Peace Park, come participate in this exciting project for all people of all faiths, cultures and backgrounds even while we teach the Nichiren Buddha way to spiritual sustain-ability and peaceful means, in peoples lives.
We look forward to hopefully holding the Official Opening of our Nichiren Peace Center
in July of 2015; and the celebration of the 30th Anniversary of our Founder/Teacher/Messenger TMHenry at next years Annual General Meeting.
There being no further business, our Teacher/Messenger, TM Henry, read a reminder of what it means to be a Buddhist in our Times. This is from the doctrine of the 16th Chapter of the Lotus Sutra.
Now, we know that Gautama Shakyamuni the historical earthly Buddha declares that all humanity has a buddha nature, that has the capacity to become “awakened” aware and wise.
Therefore he shares that we should understand there is no dividing line between a Buddha and a person. This alone is a dramatic realization to meditate on. We are capable of communicating with the Light and Energy of our past, present and future. This should give us hope and the realization that we are capable of wisdom that knows no bounds. HL
Thank you for sharing this day together, I deeply respect you!
Board Member, Janet C then called that the 2014 Annual Meeting close in harmony
and unity. Second by: Judith Greenwood Passed UNAM
Thus It Has Been Shared, Respectfully, Henry Landry, Administrator, Founder,
Dharma Teacher, Author, Nichiren Buddha Hokkeko Society® of Vancouver Island.