R 042
2023 -- H 5152
Enacted 01/19/2023

H O U S E   R E S O L U T I O N

Introduced By: Representatives Kennedy, Shekarchi, Blazejewski, Fenton-Fung, Chippendale, Handy, Edwards, Azzinaro, Carson, and Cortvriend

Date Introduced: January 19, 2023

     WHEREAS, The most important and popular of festivals, the date of the Lunar New
Year celebration is fixed traditionally according to the lunar calendar as the second new moon
after the winter solstice; and
     WHEREAS, Lunar New Year is celebrated by more than 20 percent of the world. This
year the celebration falls on January 22, 2023; and
     WHEREAS, No one is certain how far back the New Year celebrations go in history.
Their religious background involves clearing away the bad luck of the old year and beginning
anew. It was also believed that the various god-like spirits had to report on the past year to the
ruler of heaven, the Jade Emperor. Many still open the celebrations by burning a paper image of
Tsao Wang, the hearth god, thus sending him on his way one week before the new year; and
     WHEREAS, Usually on the day before the Lunar New Year's Eve, men pay ceremonial
visits to friends and associates, wishing them luck. On the last day of the year, final preparations
are made for the family's New Year's Eve feast, the highlight of the celebration. Before the meal,
all doors are sealed with strips of paper to prevent the entrance of evil, and no one may enter or
leave until these are removed shortly before dawn. After the meal, gifts are exchanged and, at
midnight, solemn greetings and family ceremonies take place; and
     WHEREAS, Traditionally, the festivities last 16 days until the Lantern Festival, a time
for parades of elaborate paper lanterns and street dances by dragons or lions. New Year is also a
time for giving alms to the poor and for eating special lucky foods; and
     WHEREAS, Each lunar year is popularly known by one of the 12 animals of the Chinese
Zodiac. These names provide a ready reference because each is used only once in 12 years. This
year will be celebrated as "The Year of the Rabbit"; now, therefore, be it
     RESOLVED, That this House of Representatives of the State of Rhode Island hereby
recognizes the celebration of the Lunar New Year--"The Year of the Rabbit." This House also
wishes to extend its deepest respect and appreciation to the Rhode Island Asian community for all
that it has contributed to the rich diversity of Rhode Island culture. The closeness of the
traditional Asian family, its dynamic work ethic, and its innumerable endowments to literature
and the performing arts inspire us all; and be it further
     RESOLVED, That the Secretary of State be and hereby is authorized and directed to
transmit a duly certified copy of this resolution to the Rhode Island Association of Chinese