Julius A. Goldwater’s career as a Buddhist priest at the Los Angeles Hompa Hongwanji Temple, 1934–1945, serves as a vehicle for identifying pre-war orthodoxy and tolerance for universalism and measures the LAHH’s shift to ethnic orthodoxy after the Nikkei return from wartime incarceration. The article traces Goldwater’s path to conversion, his service as a priest at LAHH, his wartime stewardship of the temple, and the temple’s lawsuit against him in the resettlement period. The trial also brought out issues of temple leadership, race, doctrinal differences, and finances.

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