March Madness…Welcome to the big Dance

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With the NCAA Basketball tournament winding down, we’re finally down to the Final Four teams. It’s been a crazy run and I hope a few of your teams are still in it. This year, I picked Michigan to win it all and so far so good. As I was watching all the games, the announcers and coaches had a common message, ”Play hard today, like there’s no tomorrow!!” It made me think of Sensei Sakamoto’s Dharma message at a recent funeral, to live every day to the fullest. The players shouldn’t worry about who they are playing next or who they beat yesterday and need to live in the moment, for they cannot predict what will happen next. They definitely can affect it and if they play at 100%, then they will have no regrets regardless of the outcome. Its funny how the Dhama messages and Buddha’s teaching can sneak into your everyday life

I wanted to follow up on the BCA National Council Mtg that I mentioned in last month’s Dharma newsletter. Rinban and Rev Sakamoto, Joyce Iwasaki and I just got back from the BCA national council mtg and it was a very good meeting. It was well run and we even finished a little early. We passed the 2014-15 BCA budget and it was a balanced one. The BCA will figure out their revenue and expenditures of all their programs and they typically spend more than they raise. The difference will then be split by all the BCA members and this becomes our annual membership dues. The good news is our dues only went up by $1.30 to 107.25 and was due to a smaller membership vs larger expenditures. Good job to the BCA. FYI-$107.25 comes right off the top of the annual dues each SJBC member pays. For example, if you pay the avg rate of $60/month or $720 a year, $107.25 goes to the BCA and the rest stays at the SJBC.

Next year’s National Council mtg will have a new and improved look and feel. After we finished the basic business items, there will be breakout sessions for folks to attend and share/discuss issues or things that work at their churches. We did a brainstorming session at the end of this year’s meeting and came up with potential topics. They are Membership, Minister Affairs, Technology/social media, Communications, Buddhist Education and financial management. I think this is a great change, as we only get everyone together once a year. We also realized that we are all facing the same challenges. Some of the Coast District presidents got together and thought it would be a good idea to start discussions now and am looking forward to start this up.

Last month I gave out my email so folks can ask questions, I haven’t rec’d any and hope this means the Church and Board are communicating all the right things…..but I don’t think that the case Please feel free to drop me a line or questions.

Thanks for reading.

In Gassho,