Friday, January 11, 2013 | Latest audio lessons → VOA Learning English
Prayers for Nature at 'Surf City' Beach
Surfers are out early most mornings to catch the waves at Huntington Beach, about an hour south of Los Angeles. They call this area "Surf City." For Tom Morey, surfing is a passion, and a way of life.
TOM MOREY: "Surfing to me is creation's most succinct metaphor, best metaphor, for how to live your life. Surf your life." Once a year, the surfers meet to talk about their love of the ocean at a worship service, called "Blessing of the Waves." The service is open to people of all beliefs. A Muslim leads an Islamic prayer. Someone else blows a traditional Jewish ram's horn called a shofar. Maneck Bhujwala, a Zoroastrian, reads a prayer in the ancient Avestan language.
MANECK BHUJWALA: "So we have actually prayers for all the major elements of nature, including the water." A group of immigrants from the nation of Tonga sang. Two Roman Catholic clergymen also were there. After the service, 87 year old Christian Mondor went surfing.
CHRISTIAN MONDOR: "It takes a lot of skill, but it's a wonderful feeling when you're moving with the ocean, especially when you get to stand up and ride it wherever you want. But, just to be in the water is such an invigorating experience. And, it's great to be back, all wet again." There is much to be thankful for, says Dean Torrence. He was part of the 1960s singing group "Jan and Dean." They helped to popularize surf music with songs like "Surf City."
DEAN TORRENCE: "Sand, the ocean, the blue sky, the weather. I mean, what could be better? I'm very, very, very blessed to be here in a place that we call Surf City." I'm June Simms.