A Message from Kahu Alan Akana

Art & Sharing

During our worship service on Sunday, I was surprised to receive a stunning red lehua lei made by Rose Tatiana Warken Ceballos in honor of my 25 years of watercoloring the flowers of Hawai`i nei! In the afternoon, I hosted an open house at the parsonage and invited the community to come and celebrate my work over the past quarter of a century. I am so grateful for those who provided live music and dancing, delicious treats, beautiful gifts, and hospitality. What began as a hobby when my son Palani was born in Honolulu (something to do while he napped) became a passion over the years. I had no idea that painting watercolors was something for which I had any talent. I was really just looking for an enjoyable way to pass the time.

As I reflect back over the past 25 years, there are a few lessons I have learned. First of all, I think that it is important to find something you really enjoy and do it on a regular basis. It doesn’t really matter what it is. There are very few things that bring me as much joy as watercoloring, and I am glad that I have spent time every year since Palani’s birth doing something so enjoyable. Secondly, I realize that I have become a better artist by practicing my art. Some people call it discipline. I call it making time for what you love. Whatever it is that you do, you will only get better at it when you practice it over the years. Thirdly, I have discovered that there is great joy to be found in the sharing of my gifts—joy for both me and the recipients. Whatever your gift is, think of a way to share it with others…and feel the joy expand!

When I interviewed to be the Kahu of Koloa Union Church five years ago this week, I shared with the Church Council my desire to continue watercoloring. I am forever grateful for their encouragement and also for the congregation’s support and affirmation as both a pastor and an artist. These have indeed been the five most enjoyable years of my life. Mahalo nui to all of you for making it so!

Aloha nui!

Kahu Alan Akana


Our Kahu (Pastor) offers a weekly message in church most Sundays during the year. Click HERE to see a video of a recent message from Sunday morning. You may see the Koloa Union Church YouTube channel to see many of his past messages and subscribe in order be notified when a new message is posted. Please share these videos with friends and invite them to church. Please feel free to “Like” any of the videos you see and share them on social media, such as Facebook, so that others will notice them.

“A Message from Kahu Alan Akana” is provided most weeks by the Kahu (Pastor) of Koloa Union Church, a congregation of the United Church of Christ (UCC), a member of the Kauai Association and Hawaii Conference.