speaking of collars. . .A few days ago, I posted a test poll buried a few inches down in the blog as to how often one might wear one's clergy collar. For responses--four "nevers," two "all day, including errands" and two "business only." (Last time I checked the poll results anyway.)
I am an all day out and about collar person, mostly, and so is my husband. I wasn't on today, however, so when we went out to dinner this evening, he was the only one in collar (evening meeting).
We order, food arrives, etc.
Server: (to husband) Are you a preacher or something?
Husband: Yes, and so is my wife (husband gets major brownie points always on that)
Server: Where are you a preacher?
Husband tells him where the church is.
Server: So you're Christian. (We nod). I'm Catholic. (He walks away).
When he returns, he asks my husband:
How long have you been doing this?
Husband: Five years.
Server: How did you decide to do that?
Oh, husband and I exchange glances. He doesn't know what he's asking. Doesn't he know about THE STORY? The pages on file in diocesan offices somewhere? The personal history, the spiritual autobiography, discernment committee reports, candidacy reviews. Surely he doesn't want THE STORY.
Husband: That's a long story. I thought about it in 1992, went to seminary in 1997.
Server: You just decided to do it.
Husband: Well, it's more than that. The community is involved, (here we both try to explain the ordination process in five words or less and are surprisingly unsuccessful).
Server: I just don't think I could do that. For one thing, I'm Catholic, you know, priests can't get married.
Husband: Well, you see, I'm an Episcopal priest. Like my wife (more brownie points). She's an Episcopal priest, too.
Server: Really? How long?
Me: Five years.
Server: Wow, I just don't think I could do that. (Walks away, shaking his head).
The thing is, though, if he's curious enough to ask, and his comment is "I couldn't do that," don't you think he's been thinking about it?