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Archbishop Desmond Tutu Is “Mad About Mango”

by Colleen Scheck, senior producer

Last week, we somewhat subversively teased fans of our Facebook page with this status update:

"Krista and a few of us producers are off again for a face-to-face interview with one of the world’s greatest men. We’re keeping it a bit of a secret in consideration of his privacy during his respite, but video and audio are sure to come!"

Within minutes, we received many guesses, and it was Kim Connolly who correctly identified the mystery guest: Archbishop Desmond Tutu. We had the pleasure and honor of interviewing him while he was on retreat at the The Fetzer Institute in Kalamazoo, Michigan. We kept it quiet until now to respect his privacy until his departure.

Archbishop Desmond Tutu with Krista Tippett and a Bowl of Dried MangosArchbishop Desmond Tutu holds his gift of dried mango while speaking with Krista Tippett. (photo: Trent Gilliss)

As we prepared for this interview, I asked his assistant if the Archbishop had any preferences we should be aware of when he does interviews. She kindly indicated that he’s very flexible and added, “Should you wish to spoil him a bit, he is mad about dried mango.”

Krista Tippett Presents Archbishop Desmond Tutu with a Bowl of Dried Mangos(photo: Colleen Scheck)

So, when Krista sat down across from him to start the interview, the Archbishop spied the bowl of dried mango (unsulphurized!) next to her and commented on it, which you can hear in the audio clip above.

That humorous exchange began a sincere, reflective, and playful conversation between Krista and Desmond Tutu that we look forward to producing and sharing for the podcast and radio at the end of April — along with video of the complete, unedited interview.

(Full disclosure: The Fetzer Institute is an underwriter of Speaking of Faith.)

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