Religious Affairs

Preaching Taoism

First Incense Offering on Lunar New Year

There is a folk custom of making the first incense offering at the beginning of the Lunar New Year. When the Lunar New Year comes, worshippers come to the temple to offer the first incense of the year to the gods as Lunar New Year's Eve transitions to the morning of the first day of the Lunar New Year to express their devout intentions. The first offering symbolizes the greatest share of luck and is a lucky omen. Being the first to offer incense in the Lunar New Year is also a prayer for everything to go well in the New Year.

On the Eve of the Lunar New Year every year, the Yuen holds a blessing ceremony to Master Wong Tai Sin and recites scripture. As midnight approaches, the presiding Taoist priest leads the worshippers to make the first incense offering accompanied by the playing of drums and bells. A prayer is made for the peace and prosperity of Hong Kong, the affluence of the people, and protection against diseases and calamities.

At the same time, the Yuen extends the opening hours of the temple to open all night, so that worshippers can make the first incense offering on the day. Prayers are made to Master Wong Tai Sin for success in all ventures in the New Year, as well as blessings and wisdom.