Last CallPosted: July 30, 2009
In church circles, people are always nattering on about “community.” And it’s true that Jesus doesn’t call us into isolation but into community (hence the group of disciples). As much as church leaders try to foster community — and write book after book on how to do so– it’s only truly authentic when it arises organically. At the center of this of course, must be the risen Christ.
But true community comes in many forms. Over the past five years I’ve found it at a small, local coffee shop in Tarrytown. For me, Coffee Labs Roasters has been the perfect storm: fabulous coffee hand-roasted on the premises; dog-friendly (Delilah always accompanies me); earth-friendly and fair-trade; smart, friendly, and highly competent baristas; a wonderful regular clientele that includes writers, artists, and poets; and an environment so conducive to writing that I’ve literally written hundreds of sermons, countless articles, and a book.
Credit goes to owners Mike Love and Alicia Killegrew whose vision and community involvement have made Coffee Labs what it is. And as I sit here on moving day drinking my final cup of CL coffee (a medium-bodied Kenya Wachuri) and staying out of the way of the movers, I’m full of gratitude for this particular community. I will miss it tremendously. Yes, I’ll be back to visit on occasion but I’ll miss my Thursday morning sermon writing ritual — complete with the good coffee, good company, and good vibes. The bar is very high for any coffee shops on the South Shore of Boston.
For my last will and testament, I bequeath the role of Coffee Labs chaplain to the Rev. Nora Smith. Nora is a former seminarian from my parish in Briarcliff, current priest in the diocese of New York, fellow Coffee Labs devotee, and newly called rector of St. Barnabas in Irvington. She has promised to keep my seat warm.
Now it’s back to the house and the seven guys loading the truck. Thanks to Bryna for letting me grab that last cup of coffee and say goodbye to folks here! Hopefully I’ll remember to bring her that Cool Cap…