Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Things I learned so far in Beijing

1. It takes a whole lot of faith to cross the street when no one stops for pedestrians.

2. Non-smoking area? What's that?

3. When it comes to clothing fashion, anything matches.

4. The Clean Air Act, pollution control, clean water act, etc. are all great policies. I've forgotten what a blue sky looks likes because it's always smogged over here.

I've been trying to find a local church to attend, and I'm having some difficulty. There are several large Catholic and Protestant churches in Beijing, but they're all huge and not quite our style. I guess we've gotten really used to smaller churches. Being govenment-sanctioned, they also require that all attendees to be foreign nationals -- no Chinese citizens allowed. However, I have met a few people who are openly Christian. They all attend smaller house churches all over the city. One says that her house church congregation has over 300 members, and they meet in small groups at members' houses on a rotational basis. I'm not sure if they'd let us join them for Sunday worship or if that's not allowed. I guess it could also be kind of awkward. I found that even when discussing a shared topic such as Christianity, I'm not familiar with a lot of the relevant vocabulary. So attending one of these house churches, where services are completely in Chinese, would be an interesting and challenging experience.

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