Deities have given 40 years of good advice and healing
News of the power of the three temples on a Sau Mau Ping hillside has been spreading by word of mouth since their inception in 1964, says temple leader Wong Wah.
Mr Wong, 80, who witnessed the building of the temples - Tai Sing Temple, the Temple of Guan Yin and the Shing Wong Temple - said the location on Anderson Road in Sau Mau Ping, Kwun Tong, was decided by the gods.
'The deities passed the message to some veteran worshippers that they aimed to land in Sau Mau Ping to protect Hong Kong and Kowloon residents,' he said, adding that residents then raised money to build the three temples.
Mr Wong said the temples were renovated once every three years, but otherwise did not change much. Then in 2002, the government announced its plans to relocate the temples, which worried local residents.
While it is a ritual that worshippers pay tribute to the gods at the beginning and the middle of each Lunar month, many people, including those from outside Sau Mau Ping, go to the temples to seek assistance when they encounter difficulties.
About 50 people visit the temples daily, while more than 100 worshippers go there on the first day and middle of each month, Mr Wong said.
Each of the three temples has its own area of influence, according to Mr Wong.
'Tai Sing mainly helps people with bad luck and health problems, Guan Yin looks after romance matters as she is a lady, and Shing Wong, who is in charge of hell, handles cases in which people are haunted by evils,' he said.
Mr Wong, who teaches people to perform rituals, said he became involved in religion after his wife, who he suspected was haunted by evil spirits and acted irrationally, was healed by waters given to her by a temple leader about 40 years ago.
Among the hundreds of protesters yesterday was a couple from Tseung Kwan O, Hung Hin-lung and Hui Lai-kwan. They visit the temples at least twice a month even though they have moved out of Sau Man Ping.
Mr Hung said their visit to the temples in 2003 might have saved their lives.
'We planned to go to the mainland during the Ching Ming Festival in 2003. But the answer we got from the deities was 'no'. Two days later, the Sars outbreak occurred,' he said.