(This link will open in a new window)Lo Pan, the Patron Saint of Chinese Builders and Constructors, is believed to be born in 507 B.C. in the state of Lu (now Shangdong Province). He was famous and respected for being the genius builder, carpenter and inventor in ancient China. Regarded as the Master of all constructors, Lo Pan is worshipped by the practitioners of construction and three trades, namely carpentry, masonry and the trade of plastering.
Worshipping of Lo Pan became popular among constructors in Ming and Qing Dynasties. Temples of Lo Pan were built in various provinces in China, such as Beijing, Suzhou and Guangzhou. The Lo Pan Temple in Hong Kong, which is the only temple in Hong Kong dedicated to the worship of Lo Pan, was erected in Ching Lin Terrace, Kennedy Town in 1884 (i.e. the tenth year of the Guangxu reign).
Four deities are worshipped in the Lo Pan Temple. The main deity, Lo Pan, is seated in the main hall. To the left of Lo Pan is the Deity of Wealth and to the right is the Deity of Matrimony. The Deity of Earth is seated to the right of the door of the first hall.
The birthday of Lo Pan, also called the Birthday of the Master (Si Fu Festival), is celebrated on the thirteenth day of the sixth month of the lunar calendar every year among practitioners of construction. It reflects the idea of esteeming one's teacher and cherishing one's discipline which is intrinsic to Chinese mentality.
Lo Pan Temple is a two-hall structure built on a platform. The roof with glazed tiles are supported by its "Five Famous Mountains Paying Tribute to Heaven" gable walls, which are very distinctive amongst local Chinese traditional architecture. There is a screening door, dong chung, in the front hall. The floor-to-ceiling height of this temple is almost double-storey. The temple followed the topography of the site, making the rear hall a few steps higher than the front hall. Apart from the distinguished gable walls, other decorative features like ceramic figurines, mural paintings, plastered reliefs and sculptures adorn all over the ridges, and the interior and exterior walls of the Lo Pan Temple.
＊Please click on the relevant parts of the photo below to appreciate the above-mentioned architectural features of the Lo Pan Temple: