Respect of the Aged Day, or Keiro-no-Hi, was established as a national holiday in Japan in 1966 to express respect for the elders in the community, to recognize and thank them for their contributions to society, to celebrate their long lives and offer special gifts to bring even more longevity to their lives. It was initially held every September 15th but since 2003 it has been held on the 3rd Monday of every September.
At Simpson United Methodist Church we celebrate Keiro-no-Hi in the fall. This year it was held on October 26th. A celebration luncheon was provided for those in the Simpson community that were 80 years of age or older. The ladies made baked salmon and an asian chicken salad and the congregation contributed special dishes to share.
The special gift this year was Manju, a Japanese dessert. The outside is made from sweetened rice powder or sweetened pounded rice and inside is a delicious filling of anko red bean paste made from boiled azuki beans and sugar or other similar bean paste. The children of the congregation and their Sunday School teacher folded many origami boxes and inside was placed a Manju and an individually wrapped green tea bag.
The congregation of Simpson UMC truly appreciate and respect their elders. We are especially thankful for their establishing the Simpson community so many years ago. All look forward to this celebration each year and we are grateful for the opportunity this particular mini festival allows in that all are able to reconnect and bond with each other on this special day.