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Be the Light of Hope!

By Helen Izumi-Choi (SGI Canada Women's Leader) and Kate Greco (Vice SGI Canada Women's Leader), Toronto

Left: Calgary's Woodbine District. Right: Edmonton's Soaring Spirit District

Women in cities throughout SGI Canada gathered in high spirits at their annual general meetings during the month of May to encourage and empower one another. This year’s SGI Canada women’s group theme is “Be the Light of Hope,” inspired by SGI President Ikeda’s 2017 New Year’s message.

Striving to actualize this theme in their lives, every woman member has been challenging herself to be victorious based on Buddhist faith and practice. The highlight of these gatherings is always each woman’s story of her human revolution, shared from the heart. Listening to these brilliant experiences of profound transformation and triumph inspires many others to stand up with courage.

Left: Victoria's Salt Spring District. Right: Ottawa's Beechwood District

Kate Greco reports that in Central Region the meetings were held by district, and in some cases, by small groups. 

She also said that in her message to the women, SGI Canada Women's Leader Helen Izumi-Choi reminded us to connect our lives to our mentor’s personal encouragement, illuminating our lives with limitless hope and courage. Helen shared guidance of President Ikeda in which he encourages us to focus on changing ourselves rather than blaming others and that the light of our own human revolution will brighten the lives of those around us, spreading out through our community, the whole world, and into the future.

Great efforts were made to create meetings in which the participants could feel comfortable, learn about Buddhism and make new friends. Preparation included lots of chanting toward the success of the meetings, preparation of invitations, souvenirs and signs reflecting the theme, as well as home visits and rehearsals for performances. 

Many guests expressed their pleasant surprise at the positivity they experienced and expressed interest in continuing to be connected to SGI. She also praised the support of the youth and men's groups.

Left: Vancouver's Lotus Blossom District. Right: Winnipeg's Lotus District

Left: Glory District in Markham, ON. Right: Markham Sun District in Markham, ON

Left: Montreal's Snowdon District. Right: Quebec City's Hauteville District

At this year’s meetings, the strong resolve of SGI Canada women was tangible:  our mission is to become happy without fail and help others do the same. All the women across Canada were grateful for the opportunity to refresh their determination, and make a rousing new start for victory, together with SGI President Ikeda and Mrs. Ikeda, to realize the unprecedented, great expansion of our Canadian kosen-rufu movement toward November 18, 2018.