Surprised by the Coffee Sisters

Earlier this month my middle son and I drove from Houston to Florida to meet up with my wife who had flown to Florida several weeks before to spend some time with a dear friend of ours who is battling brain cancer.  I was especially pleased that Christopher could come with me because he knew our friend when we lived in Costa Rica and as a small child he had played with her children.  One day while we were in the sweet community of Mount Dora, we went looking for a cup of coffee since the two of us often have coffee at his house when we are home in Houston.  My artist eye caught the attractive logo in the window of this small coffee shop and we went in.  Not only was the logo clever, the whole atmosphere of the shop was inviting including the lady that waited on us.  As we enjoyed the coffee we began to share the usual conversation regarding why we were in town and from whence we came.  Since we were the only patrons at that time and since both my son and I are “people persons” we began to share some personal details.  By this time there was another lady who appeared and we discovered that the two ladies were sisters.  At some point, I mentioned that I was a retired Episcopal priest and of course you know what happened next…they told us that they were members of the Episcopal Church and immediately began referring to me as “Father”!  I never felt comfortable with that title since I grew up in a congregation where the liturgical style was more like the Congregationalists than the traditional Episcopal congregation.  My bishop reminded me when I went for my interview to go to seminary that my home church was “lower than a snake’s belly” regarding the amount of ritual of which we partook!  As we talked, I shared with the sisters that I had written a book and they were excited to hear about it so I agreed to bring them a copy the next day.  The next day, my wife, Janet and I went out for coffee and I decided to take her back to the same place. As we entered the second day we were greeted with the following words, “So glad you came back; we talked about you all day yesterday!”We had a laugh and wondered what they had said in those twenty-four hours!   Of course we had another cup of coffee, more conversation and I signed their book!