Celebrating Diversity – August 10 to 16

August 13 – Fravardeghan (thru August 22) (Zoroastrian) – Fravardeghan last ten days in preparation for Now Ruz for those who follow the Shenshai calendar.  Ancestors are memorailzied during this time.

August 13 – Obon (Japan) – It is celebrated in honour of their deceased ancestors, Japanese light lanterns and hold circular folk dances. Vietnamese call it Vu Lan.  Chinese name it Chung Yuan or Feast of Lonesome Souls where food is laid out and money is burnt for the souls.

August 13 – Chung Yuan Festival (China, Taiwan) – Known as Feast of Laterns by Japanese buddhists. Prayer services are held to remember their ancestors, food is offered to them, all houses are lit with lanterns floated down rivers or the sea to guide their spirits back to the other world.

August 13 – Vu Lan (Vietnam) – Known as Wandering Souls Day, offerings of food are prepared, shoes and dresses made of paper along with votive papers are burned in homes and pagodas for the dead and for the wandering souls who have no families.

August 14 – Janmashtami (Hinud) – Celebrates the birth of Lord Krishna and his rescue from potential death by the demon Kasna. Lord Krishna was  born in a prison, then carried by his father to another village where he was secretly exchanged with a cow herder’s daughter for his safety.

August 15 – Assumption (Christian) – This refers to Mary’s death and ascent to heaven and is celebrated by Catholic and Orthodox Churches.  Special mentions: Sicilian-Canadians hold an outdoor procession for the Madonna del Assunta, Polish-Canadians celebrate the Feast of the Mother of God of the herbs an early harvest festival, Armenian Orthodox bless the first grapes of the season, Ukrainians take flowers to the church to be blessed.

Source: www.multiculturalcalendars.com

Part of a posting series on multicultural events for 2009.

About Karen Farbridge

An unwavering change maker seeking a just, democratic and sustainable world.

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