Sunday, September 21, 2014


Last night I had dinner with one of my closest friends among the purple siblinghood, Prince Singh of Rochester. This HOB has not been the occasion of my customary bourbon bacchanal. But Prince helped me put away some of the double oaked Woodford Reserve that I’d brought all the way from San Francisco for the occasion.

Today began with Holy Eucharist at Good Sheppard, Taipei. It was a lovely bilingual (English/ Mandarin) service celebrated with solemnity and grace. We sang Cwm Rhondda. There is something about Asian voices singing a Welsh hymn, especially in Mandarin. The depth of faith in this congregation was palpable. Somehow seeing the same structure of the Eucharist observed in Taipei that most Episcopal Churches observe in the United States was beautiful in its unity, and reinforced for me why it is such profound thing to practice the spirituality of common prayer instead of reworking the liturgy to express what we personally happen to be feeling at the moment. See

After Eucharist, we had dinner in the courtyard. I sat and conversed with Keith and Suzie Whitmore of Atlanta. I told them the stories of the last attempted cross burning in Macon and how Sr. Megan Rice is now doing time for exposing the security vulnerabilities of our nuclear arsenal. They were a great audience, and told me things of much more practical importance, like how hard it is to get tickets to Packers games.

The afternoon session put bishops and spouses together to discuss the spiritual lessons of this whole Asian experience. Some of us who had been skeptical about it have become believers.

Then came the Fireside Chat. Sorry folks, that part is confidential. But I can tell you it was all good. No plots to subvert the faith or undermine the laity.

As darkness fell, the tropical storm arrived with impressive winds and drenching rains. I had the good fortune to dine with Bishop Katharine and her husband Dick. We talked of nutrition and recipes. We told stories of colorful characters in Nevada. We learned a lot from each other and I felt my life made better by knowing these good, funny, and brilliant people.

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