Pukui interprets HELANI as meaning Sky/Heavens or Royal Chief. It can also mean “Revered One.” The original Helani Church was located on Ali’i Drive across from Kahalu’u Beach Park. The land was grated by King Kalakaua for school purposes in 1850. It is supposed that the Protestant Missionaries established the school and along with that conducted church school and regular church services, so Helani Church could have had its beginnings as early as 1853.
According to the meeting minutes of the Board of Hawaiian Missions the stone structure was completed and dedicated in 1853. It measured 65’ by 30’ and had a steeple and bell. It was constructed of stone below and imported timber above. The walls measured 30” in thickness with a plastered ceiling. Each of the long sides of the church had three windows. There were two doors at the west end and two windows on the east end. Some time after the stone structure deteriorated a wooden building was erected where services were held once each month until 1967. By 1908 the Helani Church Congregation had moved to its present site in Kahalu’u Mauka. Some of the materials from the stone church and wooden church were used in the construction of the present church and hall at Kahalu’u Mauka.
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