JAPAN: 'Keiro' Rojin no hi – September 20

JAPAN:  ‘Keiro’ Rojin no hi


September 20


This national holiday was established in 1966 as a day to respect the elderly and celebrate long life.


Originally held on September 15,

it originated as a renaming of Old Folks’ Day (Rojin no hi).



In 2003, it was changed to the third Monday of September,

 in accordance with the Happy Monday!



Japanese people traditionally wear red on their 60th birthday because 60 years is one cycle on the Chinese calendar and after 60, it is said that you become a baby again.

Babies in Japan are called “aka-chan” or “red one.” 

Respect for the Aged Day, called keiro no hi, is not quite like “Grandparent’s Day” in the U.S. It is far more serious. Neighborhoods will have volunteers distribute free “obento” boxed lunches to elderly people in the neighborhood and smaller villages will hold keirokai shows where the younger people and school children prepare dances and songs for a special keirokai ceremony. The elderly attendees are also treated to lunch, tea, and sweets after the performance.


As Japan’s nation grays and people get older and older, some of these traditions may change, however. On the small island of 700 people where I live, the keirokai ceremony used to be held for those 60 years old and over.



But with so many people over the age of 60 now,


the qualifying age to attend the keirokai has steadily increased, and is now 65.


A Celebration of Women

sends our blessings to all the Women of our World

celebrating this day.


Celebrate Life! 




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