14 September 2014

SAN FRANCISCO / Buddha arrives in the Mission / German Lutheran church now serves growing Asian community

Inside an old German Lutheran church in San Francisco, Chinese nuns sit on the glossy wooden floors, wearing headphones, listening to Buddhist mantras on portable CD players. Gone are the pews and the church piano, but the organ pipes and stained glass windows remain -- a backdrop to giant Buddha statues at the Hua Zang Si temple, which opened its doors this week in the Mission District. The Buddhist temple reflects the changing demographics of this working- class Latino neighborhood, and of the Bay Area.