Church in a coffee shop

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I hear her talking from across the coffee shop. I’ve seen her there before, circled close to the same group of older gentlemen clutching coffee cups. They come here often to talk about the latest headlines, their medical problems, the grandkids, and, occasionally, their faith. As a serial eavesdropper, my ears fine-tune to the tenor of their conversation, and I listen in.

Sometimes their conversation turns to the topic of church, more specifically their problems with it as an institution. This particular morning, my ears perk up when the talk turns from the New York Times to the local church. The woman speaks up, explaining her discomfort with attending services because people ask her too many questions about her choices. “I have more fuzzy feelings here, with you, than I do…

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