Sunday, March 3, 2013

A Long Life Ceremony and Celebration


Thank you for inviting me to celebrate your parents’ birthdays, and marriage, and to witness a long-life ceremony for them.  I was particularly struck by the love and warmth that the members of your family expressed for their parents in their speech and direct veneration, including grandchildren.  The presence of the five monks including a very senior one showed the deep regard and respect that the temple has for you and your family and for its participation in its life.

Your father personally looked after my well-being on two occasions by insisting that I sit closer to the front of the temple and even two rows directly behind him and your mother.  He also personally insisted that I attend the very generous dinner and celebration that followed.  Your own encouragement to attend was also very heartwarming to me.  I felt very much a part of the occasion.

Your singing was an unexpected surprise. It was good even though I have little understanding of Vietnamese music or its songs. It was good to see all of your sisters and brother taking part in various ways too.

I enjoyed the dinner. Several things I had never eaten before and found very good.  That experience is to be cherished too.

Thank you again for inviting me to participate in this wonderful and warm Buddhist ceremony. I have a much better understanding of at least this aspect of Vietnamese culture.

Sincerely and with respect,


Gus Koehler, Ph.D., President
1545 University Ave., Sacramento, CA 95825
916-564-8683 (Cell: 716-1740)

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