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Kalaupapa Sunday

Fourth Sunday in January

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About Kalaupapa

On January 6, 1866, the first of an estimated 8,000 people diagnosed with Hansen's Disease (leprosy)—90 percent of whom were Hawaiian—were exiled to Moloka‘i's remote Kalaupapa Peninsula.

Hansen's Disease was one of the many diseases introduced to Hawai‘i's population by foreigners who came to the islands in the 19th century. The Native Hawaiian population, which had no immunity to these diseases, had been decimated.


A strict law was enforced to prevent the spread of Hansen's Disease, but while aiming to protect, thousands were banished and isolated.


The people of Kalawao worked hard from the very beginning to build their own community. Having nothing much apart from their faith in God, they established a church (one of many) the very first year. Siloama Church—the Church of the Healing Spring—gave residents a refuge in God.

The quarantine law was lifted over a century later in 1969, but many patients chose to remain in Kalaupapa. For many it was the only home they ever knew. Just a handful of patients remain today.




Adjourned with a Prayer chronicles the Kana’ana Hou-Siloama Church’s history through meeting minutes taken from 1866 to 1928. Cost: $20 (plus shipping)
Click HERE to view order form to purchase through the Hawai‘i Conference office.

Kalaupapa: A Collective Memory presents the story of Kalaupapa as told by its people, preserving their place in history and keeping Kalaupapa sacred.

Ili Na Ho‘omana‘o o Kalaupapa: Casting Remembrances of Kalaupapa presents a continuous history of Kalaupapa, from the first people sent to this remote peninsula with Hansen's Disease to modern day residents and families who carry on its legacy.
Cost: $24.95


At the 191st ‘Aha Pae’āina in 2013, delegates passed a resolution to establish Kalaupapa Sunday. Kalaupapa Sunday is a time to remember, commemorate and honor all the patients of Kalaupapa, many of whom came from or had connections to our families and churches.


It is suggested that Kalaupapa Sunday be held on the fourth Sunday of every January (or any other Sunday of the year that is appropriate for each individual church) to commemorate the landing of the first people exiled to the Kalaupapa peninsula in January 1866.


To contribute resources or share how your church commemorated Kalaupapa Sunday, please contact


The following resources have been compiled for Kalaupapa Sunday and are available for churches to use:



Kalaupapa has much to teach us. The following devotionals were written by visitors to Kalaupapa who share about their experiences there with applications to our daily lives:

  1. Carrying Is Caring

  2. Do Good and Do it Now

  3. E Noho Mālie

  4. Equipped For Service


  6. Ho‘omanawanui

  7. I Got Your Back

  8. Keep Going

  9. No Need to Be Afraid

  10. Our God is an AWESOME God

  11. Paulele ‘Ana I Ke Akua

  12. Pōmaikaʻi

  13. A Time of Reflection That Leads To Restoration

  14. Rejoice and Do Good

  15. Teamwork Makes the Dream Work

"Hoʻomaʻemaʻe Mai Iaʻu"

Listen to this hīmeni performed by Kahu Kaunaloa Boshard especially for Kalaupapa Sunday. View lyrics

January 2022 | Kahu Kalani Wong recollects his experiences (over the span of 20 years) visiting Kalaupapa—what he’s come to know as a place of hope and resilience; a place to learn about acceptance and celebrate the diversity of life.


“I thought it might have been a place of despair, a place where people were sent to die. But really I see it as a place of hope, I see it as a place of resilience, because that’s what the people are. They’re a model of resilience, making a life in the settlement where everyone does whatever they can to make it into a living and thriving community.”

January 2021 | Kalani Brady, a member of Central Union Church, has served patients in Kalaupapa, Moloka‘i for nearly two decades. In this video he shares a brief history of Kalaupapa, how he came to serve there, stories of his experience with the patients, and how we can respect and honor them going forward.

View HCUCC's Kalaupapa YouTube playlist for videos


Ka ‘Ohana O Kalaupapa was established in August, 2003, as a nonprofit organization dedicated to promoting the value and dignity of every individual who was exiled to the Kalaupapa peninsula beginning in 1866.


  • Waiola Church virtual worship service for Kalaupapa Sunday (2021)

  • "Lessons from Kalaupapa" sermon by Rev. Alan Akana of Kōloa Union Church (2021) Alan talks about his dad's great-uncle, Hoomana Kaapuiki, who died there in 1909, and about the role of the Congregational Church, which established a congregation at the settlement the very first year the patients arrived. Furthermore, Alan mentions a remarkable yet little known discovery that happened years later.


150th Anniversary - Service of Commemoration and Remembrance
(2016; 150th anniversary of the first patients sent to Kalaupapa)
Commemorates the first twelve sent on January 6, 1866, and remembers those who came afterwards. It can stand alone as a memorial service or be incorporated into a Sunday worship service.

100th Anniversary of Kana‘ana Hou Church Building

On September 29, 2015, the members and friends of Kana‘ana Hou-Siloama Church celebrated the 100th anniversary of the building of the sanctuary. View the order of worship and remarks offered by Kahu Richard Miller, licensed minister of Kana‘ana Hou-Siloama Church.

Sermon texts

An Order of Worship


Ka ‘Ohana O Kalaupapa (December 2015 Newsletter)

Kalaupapa Memorial Brochure


Kana‘ana Hou Boys Chorus & Kana‘ana Hou Choir (recorded in 1952)

Audio A1

Audio A5

Audio A9

Audio A13

Audio A2

Audio A6

Audio A10

Audio A3

Audio A7

Audio A11

Audio A4

Audio A8

Audio A12

St. Francis of Assisi Church Choir (recorded in 1952)

Audio B1

Audio B5

Audio B2

Audio B6

Audio B3

Audio B7

Audio B4

Audio B8

All recordings are courtesy of Nancy Chang Talino. For a written description of the recordings, click HERE.

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