Free Laulau Served at Holy Ghost Feast in Kula

June 4, 2014, 11:00 AM HST · Updated June 4, 1:26 PM
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By Vanessa Wolf

The Holy Ghost Catholic Church where the feast is held. Image courtesy Wikipedia.

The Holy Ghost Catholic Church where the feast is held. Image courtesy Wikipedia.

Though separated by half a globe and more than a century from the original Portuguese tradition, Hawaii’s Portuguese-Americans have kept their heritage alive by passing customs down from generation to generation.

One such tradition is the Feast of the Holy Ghost.

Originating several centuries ago in the Azores, it commemorates Isabel, the sixth Queen of Portugal and her piety and devotion to the Roman Catholic Church and its people.

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Local Portuguese have been celebrating this feast since immigrating to Hawaii to work in the sugar cane fields in the late 1800s.

As a result, a free laulau meal will be served at the annual Holy Ghost Feast this Saturday, June 7 from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. and again on Sunday, June 8 from 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the Holy Ghost Mission.

The historic octagonal church is located at 4300 Lower Kula Road in Waiakoa.

The shape of the Kula church, built by the Portuguese who settled there in the 19th century, is said to represent the eight-sided crown of the queen.

Mass will be celebrated on Saturday at 5 p.m. and on Sunday at 9:30 a.m., each followed by a procession led by the Holy Ghost Feast Queen.

Along with the meal, the annual event includes a livestock auction, a live auction, entertainment, games, a bouncing castle for children, baked goods, a farmers’ market, jams and jellies, flowers and plants, crafts and other food for sale.

The live auction begins at 6 p.m. Saturday and continues at 11 a.m. Sunday.

Auction items include golf, hotel stays, restaurants, boat excursions, health and beauty gift certificates, home-made baked goods and more.

The Holy Ghost Feast, held every Pentecost weekend, is the main fundraiser for the parish, which includes Our Lady Queen of Angels Church in Keokea and St. James the Less Mission in Ulupalakua.

Parking is available at the community center and the Maui Bus “Kula Villager” stops at the Holy Ghost Church.

The event is free to the public.

For more information call 808-878-1261.

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