Kaiser Clinic Expands to Better Serve the Kāne`ohe Community
The recent groundbreaking blessing for a major renovation of Kaiser Permanente’s Ko`olau Clinic in Kāne`ohe, commenced with Kahu Silva welcoming the many guests including Kaiser’s top executives, with a traditional oli ho`okipa (welcome chant) and sharing a few words about the significance of the ancient Hawaiian blessing. Following his pule kahea (invocation) asking blessings of the `āina (land), Kahu proceeded to the kahua (foundation site) with the participants and performed 3 very sacred ancient Hawaiian blessing prayers to consecrate the land, to empower the ‘o’o (ancient Hawaiian digging stick) and finally to “strike” the mound of earth and turn the soil for the official groundbreaking. Kahu has also blessed the Kaiser Hilo Clinic.
In old Hawai`i, farmers used the `o`o stick to turn over soil and shrubs. The 4 to 5 ft. long pole was made of hard wood including kauila, `ulei, alahe`e, or uhiuhi with a diameter comfortable enough for holding in the hand. It had a flat point or flat blade at one end which was effective in digging shallow or deep holes and trenches and breaking layers of earth in preparation for planting.