December, Season of Advent 2023 Hui Baibala By Kahu Kaleo Patterson
In Mark 13:33 from the Gospel Lesson for the First Sunday in Advent: Beware, keep alert; for you do not know when the time will come. E ao ʻoukou, e makaʻala, a e pule; no ka mea, ʻaʻole ʻoukou i ʻike i kēlā wā.
In the Baibala we see the word "ao" for beware, "maka’ala" for keep alert, and "wā" for the time (kairos not chronos in the greek) that will come. This is an exciting Advent sentence to study the Greek, the English; but also the Baibala words that are selected; it can teach us much about the culture, language and indigenous Hawaiian theology. We can learn much from this one verse.
Hawai'i continues to be an active place where the revival and rediscovery of Native Hawaiian culture, language, and history continues to escalate and flourish in community, schools, the workplace, and government. This quickening outside of the "church" in the milieu of life, has out-distanced the ability and capacity of the leadership and programs of the Episcopal Churches of Hawai'i, and other Christian denominations and there has been a decline away from things Hawaiian.
The Ma Ka Moku project of 2015, a project funded by the National TEC Indigenous Ministries as a leadership development project, placed emphasis on the Hawaiian language, and renewed ability to embrace the culture, foster indigenous theological reflection, create a more central unifying element in the liturgy, worship, and formation needs of the Diocese; with the goal of reconnection with it's historic Native Hawaiian roots in Hawai'i, and relevancy to the people and community of the land.
This multi-discipline project that began in 2015, is based in the development of a systematic and methodical study of the Revised Common Lectionary - Sunday Gospel Readings in both English and Hawaiian and the selection of Hawaiian words and study in each Gospel lesson, this project in chronos time will by the end of Year B in 2024 this year completed three - three year cycles of the Revised Common Lectionary Gospels, emphasizing readings in both English and Hawaiian, and Hawaiian word selections and studies.
The hope now is to publish a working Hawaiian-English Three-Year Lectionary with selected Hawaiian words and definitions for each Gospel reading of each Sunday.
A sample Hui Baibala Study Set created for the month of December can be found HERE or click on the file download below. This format has been used and very useful over the last nine years in local parishes, 'Iolani Guild, Prison Ministries, and in specialized liturgical settings, formats, and forums. Thank you for your prayers and support. May the Christ who transcends and is every present in all cultures, languages, and histories be with us in this season of Advent, may it be a great Adventure for us all! The time has come!