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New Year’s celebrated for departed family members

Date Posted: 2002-03-08

The New Year’s Day of the afterlife, known as Juurokunichi, was celebrated in Okinawa on Feb. 27, which is Jan. 16 according to the lunar calendar. Okinawans gathered with relatives at the graves of deceased family members or in front of the family Buddhist altar, praying for the repose of their souls. A 68-year-old woman from Miyako Island was observed on the coast at Naha with her family, joining her hands in prayer. She was not able to go home to Miyako since flights to the outer islands were fully booked Feb. 26-27 despite an increased number of planes departing from Naha.

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