Kailua-Kona Big Island
The steeple of the Mokuaikaua Church reaches toward heaven amid the tourist shops and restaurants on Ali'i Drive, a testament to the industriousness and belief of Hawai'i's first Christian missionaries.
Construction of the church began in 1820 with the blessing of King Liholiho, the late King Kamehameha's son and was completed in 1837. After his father's death and before the missionaries' arrival, Liholiho had abolished the strict kapu system and was dismantling the old temples. Having already been familiar with Christianity, which was originally brought to the islands in the 1700s with Capt. James Cook, the Hawaiian people were open to learning about the faith.
The church was constructed using o'hia trees from Mt. Hualalai, stones from demolished temples and coral. The stone archway that leads from the street to the church is made of lava stone. The church is open daily from 7:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Admission is free and tours are available.
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