Continuing Home

The ongoing saga of a Continuing Anglican church home, as seen by a member of the laity.

Friday, February 29, 2008

Selah again

For all I've enjoyed a few days being home, I head out to Europe in the morning, returning mid-week. It looks like we'll have our baptisms shortly before Easter, so stay tuned.

Friday, February 22, 2008

Home again and catching up...

It was a LONG journey home yesterday, taking off from India shortly after 2 AM (local time), with two 10+ hour flights and one 5 hour flight, returning home at 10 PM the same day, 33-1/2 hours in transit. (On the first flight it was interesting to watch the hours-long dawn as the sun slowly caught up to us.)

While I was away the parish held our Annual Parish Meeting. As yet I know nothing about it, other than the Vestry was reduced to a more reasonable size, Barbara was one of the two elected, and that a new budget was approved.

Sunday, February 17, 2008

A visit to St. Mark's Cathedral

Thanks to various circumstances, I almost did not make it to St. Mark's Cathedral this morning for the 7 AM service. As it was, I dashed in right at 7 AM through the warming humid air while the bell was ringing to announce the service and the processional hymn began. I had been so rushed after the overtime phone-call from home that I even forgot my glasses, which made following the service a bit difficult.

Unlike Christ Church, Vienna, the service here was different; the liturgy had been modernized and shortened, though the prayer book noted the latter for this service. Still, it was recognizable and a few of the prayers/creed were mostly the same.

The people were nice, overcoming my usual discomfort of being the obvious outsider (since business was to ensure soon after I wore my business suit, and I was evidently the only non-Indian present). And I have to say, they had quite a good turnout for an early Sunday morning service!

The hymnal was interesting -- like this item before, they had only the words and not the music. Curious.

Later in the day I had time free to walk about this corner of Bangalore, and see and shoot the state High Court and Legislature buildings, giant buildings in which our state capitol could be lost just in their janitors' closets.

On the way, I noticed something interesting -- on the western terminus of Mahatma Gandhi Road (aka "MG Road") St. Mark's had an LED rotating signboard with a message, here John 16:2, followed by the text.

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

It's a boy!

Arrived in India last night, went online this morning... and learned the Miller's baby had arrived. Welcome, Rudy Elwyn!

Tuesday, February 12, 2008


I'm off... back later.

Friday, February 08, 2008

Anglican Bangalore

were the search terms for which Dogpile brought up what might be the answer to the conundrum in the previous posting. It shortly led me to Discover Bangalore which, among the perhaps slightly inflated prose (a one-day visit doesn't tell one much), has a great photo gallery of its red-painted high court and unpainted legislative buildings, plus some other photos that bring back memories. I wanted to post the rotating gallery, but don't know about copyrights, etc., so you'll have to click through to see them. (Those little yellow and black vehicles? Three-wheeled economy taxis.) Is Bangalore one of those cities you could fall in love with? I think it possible. Did I mention that it bills itself as India's "Silicon Valley"?

But anyway, that page led me a bit further on my search for the Anglican church in India, to St. Mark's Cathedral... and lo and behold, it's no more (and possibly quite a bit less) than 300 meters from my hotel -- closer than St. Thomas Fifth Avenue, New York, was from hotel there last month. It's apparently the oldest Anglican church in Bangalore, has an active website, appears to conduct services in English (with a Sunday schedule I should be able to meet).

Just received my passport this afternoon from the visa office with a brand-new 10-year business visa for India.

Thursday, February 07, 2008

Back to Bangalore

As noted in the previous entry, I leave next week for 10 days away on a visit to Bangalore (India's "Silicon Valley"), which I visited for a day in my previous trip to India two years ago. Except for the long transits getting to India and back, I'm looking forward to this -- even though it's going to be pretty much just work while I'm there. But when discussing this at the Shrove Tuesday supper, Fr. Daniel thought I should check out a local Church of India, and Ranjit concurred.

So I did, except it's the Church of South India there, but I found they had a church in Bangalore,and it's only two kilometers down Mahatma Gandhi Road from my hotel.

So I thought I might be able to attend a service there. But they do not appear to have a website, and all there is online is a history of the church (this web page appears to be posted at several locations online). And reading that, it appears that several congregations now worship there, the largest a group of Christians with services in Tamil. Maybe I can find out after I arrive.

But there are also places to revisit (this time with camera!) within close walking distance, including the settings for the state's impressive red-painted high court and legislative buildings. To this American, somewhat familiar with our state capitol campus, the sheer size of these state buildings is humbling -- you could lose our entire campus in this building! But then again the state of Karnataka has 10 times the population of Washington State.

Tuesday, February 05, 2008

Super Shrove Tuesday

Okay. Maybe it wasn't Super, that appellation belonging to that other Tuesday today, but it was great.

During the coffee hour Sunday it was evident that Shrove Tuesday was coming soon. Master Chef Gordon (one of our several Master Chefs, including Drew and Ranjit) was digging in the closet for the cookware for the pancakes, and pancake mix and maple syrup were appearing on the counter. (And we have to have good maple syrup -- we have some discriminating New Englanders in our congregation.)

I showed up early in order to lend a hand if needed, but it was evident from the parking lot alone that they weren't short-handed inside.

Everything was already set up to go, and I saw we had a new addition to the traditional Shrove Tuesday team of Gordon and D.J.: Bob was wearing the traditional "newest cook" chef's hat, which is his until the next "newest cook" is drafted. D.J. wanted me to be sure I got a picture of Bob in the hat -- I doubt this was what he had in mind, but this is what was in my camera when I got home.

That picture was taken fairly early on. Not long after, many more of the smaller children arrived, accompanied by their parents, and the hall became pretty lively.

Still, the turnout was a bit lower this year. There's apparently a crunch on at Microsoft and out of all our Microsofties only Ranjit and Drew made it. But it was worth it to be there.

In chatting with Ranjit, it turns out my hotel in Bangalore might be close to a family member's house, on M.G. Road. I am headed there in a week; I dread the long flights but Bangalore in February is delightful, quite different from Seattle's dismal grey winter days here. Think Santa Barbara in springtime. And maybe as with St. Thomas Fifth Avenue, New York, last month Fr. Daniel's suggestion that I might attend Mass there will bear out. Especially if there is an early service. It might be close by, I see there is a church on M.G. Road.

I only hope they conduct their service in English, as I speak no Kannada (the language of Karnataka, the state of which Bangalore is the capital). On the other hand, I'm guessing I could follow a traditional Anglican service anywhere, even if I didn't know the language.

Update: Ash Wednesday services: 10:00am, 4:30pm and 7:00p

Monday, February 04, 2008

"God so loved the world..."

I confess, I just about lost it (in Internet lingo ROTFLOL, for "Rolling On The Floor Laughing Out Loud") when reading this afternoon Fr. Daniel's weekly and much-appreciated "e-mail newsletter" to the parish, titled "This Week at Saint Bartholomew's", reminding us of coming events, service schedules, announcements and celebrations, needs and a little bit of church-related humor.

To really appreciate what was so funny to me, understand that my day job for the past dozen years is very involved with (technical) committees, to the degree that today I am on the executive board of two international committees and one European committee. (Last year when I rolled off the position of Senior Warden, I also resigned from the executive of a North American committee, a replacement having been duped found.)

And today an e-mail arrived advising that I had just been elected to another industrial society committee. I had expressed vague interest when asked (several times over the past couple of years), but no application had been submitted! Seems maybe a committee somewhere got some signals crossed. The work is quite important but the position is not high profile; I will have to confer with my employer.

So having been so involved with committees for so long and understanding how they operate, this photo really made me laugh. I just might slip it into the "meeting documents" folder during the next meeting of the committee I chair. I find a little humor sometimes helps get them moving forward constructively.

Sunday, February 03, 2008

Quinquagesima: "Charity" Sunday

Quinquagesima features one of my favorite Epistles, for all that it's always been a difficult one for me to read out loud. It starts off simple enough, "Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, and have not charity, I am become as sounding brass..." and winds up with the well-known "And now abideth faith, hope, charity, these three; but the greatest of these is charity." (I quite agree with Fr. Daniel's sermon: the modern translations that change "charity" into the catchall English word "love" miss the point, or hide it amongst the other meanings the latter word adds.)

But a little study, more than I have put on it in the past, starting last evening shows it to be in sections: "If I have not charity (I have nothing)," then "Charity is/is not", then the "Charity never faileth, other things will because they are incomplete ('in part') to be replaced by the perfect (complete)," then to the ending. And that provided a guide to emphasis when reading so that hopefully it was understood by the congregation this morning.

"Charity" seemed to show up everywhere this morning: in the prayer before procession, the Collect, the Epistle and Fr. Daniel's sermon. Or maybe I was just more sensitive to it.