Do you believe in angels? In other words, do you believe we’re contacted by angels here on this earth?

Hebrews 13:2 says this: Be not forgetful to entertain strangers: for thereby some have entertained angels unawares.

Let me tell you my angel story.

The Beginning

Many years ago, our little family of four moved from the midwest to Orlando, Florida. At the time, we had a two-year-old daughter and I was pregnant with our unborn son. Previous to this time, I was a busy career woman, and being a stay-at-home mom making the adjustment from workplace hustle and bustle—was not going well. In fact, I was quite shaken by incredible loneliness and deafening quiet.

One day, I folded clothes and listened in to a radio program about making friends. The speaker’s words, If you want a friend, you must show yourself friendly, went straight to my heart, and I made some mental notes to try this out. Little did I know my test was fast approaching.

First Meeting 

Soon after, our family began attending a very large mega church in Orlando, Florida. During the Sunday church service, we’d sing a song or two, then shake hands with those in the closest pews.

With this this in mind, one crisp autumn morning I turned around and squeezed the hand of a petite lady with graying hair and twinkling eyes. We exchanged the usual greetings and handshakes.

Welcome. Good to see you.”

Hello. Nice to see you, too. Thank you for coming.”

As soon as greetings were over, we turned around, sang another song, and the service went on as usual up until the last prayer. As visions of buffets danced in our heads, the crowd stampeded for the doors.

One of the last to leave, I gathered up my Bible, purse, and sweater. However, before exiting the pew, a hand touched my arm. Whirling around, I locked eyes with the twinkling blue ones of the woman I’d greeted earlier.

She extended her hand and a smile and said, “You know, ten seconds really isn’t long enough to get to know a person.”

That’s true,” I said, “It’s not much time at all…,” as I glanced around at the empty sanctuary, searching for my family.

Fixing her gaze on me, she said, “I’d like to introduce myself. I’m Sue. What is your name?”

Hi, I’m Penelope. Nice to meet you, Sue.”

Have you been attending here long?” she asked.

No, we only just started coming actually—how about you?”

We just moved here. My husband moves about frequently for his job.” Grinning, she said, “It looks like we’re both new.”

Immediately, Show yourself friendly, came to mind.

As we spoke, I caught sight of my husband waiting and gesturing at the double doors. However, I ignored him. Instead, I blurted out, “Would you like to come over to my house for lunch one day? Then we can talk longer.”

She beamed. “That would be nice. I’d love that.” Sue grabbed both my hands in her soft warm ones.

How about Tuesday?” she asked. Putting me completely at ease, I agreed.

She said, “What if I bring a dish, you make something, and we’ll put them together. That way, it won’t be too hard on either one of us.”

“Okay….” I dropped my items back onto the pew. ….”if I can find a piece of paper in this mess, I’ll give you our address,” as I dug through my purse.

During my time of digging, she waited patiently. “Is that your husband?” She nodded toward the door.

“Yep, that’s him…getting hungrier by the second,” I said, chuckling.

I’m really looking forward to seeing more of you. I’ll be over at noon.” With a final smile and wave, Sue walked up the aisle and out the church doors.

I waved, gathered up my stuff and excitement bubbled up. Hosting a friend in my home! Someone I could carry on a conversation with over the age of two.

Dashing up up the aisle to meet my husband, he asked who I was talking with. “I don’t know. I just met her, and she’s coming to lunch!” Surprisingly, his eyebrows lifted, but he said not a word.

The Lunch

Tuesday dawned bright and breezy, and Sue arrived clutching her dish of pasta salad. I whipped up some tuna sandwiches for us—and my daughter, Molly, joined us. It was no feast, but still perfect.

We ate and talked, and my curiosity again got the best of me. I asked, “Sue, what does your husband do for work?”

She didn’t offer much more, but repeated the same words, “He does a lot of contract work—we never stay in one place very long.”

Surely, I thought, She’ll be here for a little while, and we can be good friends.

In due time, lunch was over and we hugged at the door, said goodbye, and promised to meet up again soon. Since there was some pasta left over, she left her blue cornflower Corelle dish at my house, and I promised to wash it and bring it to church the next Sunday.

the corelle angel - a short story

Sunday arrived, and I searched the pews for my new friend. She didn’t show up that Sunday, or the next, or the next. In fact, I never saw or heard from her again. Not only did she disappear without a word, but she left her dish behind.

These days, when I prepare dinner with Sue’s Corning Ware dish—the one with blue cornflowers matching her eyes—my heart warms at the memory of an angel. At the time, she was truly the perfect one sent to me when I most needed a friend, the sweet lady with twinkling blue eyes.

My Corelle Angel.




Penelope Silvers is a freelance writer, author,
and radio host of Penelope’s Book Chat on Blog
Talk Radio. She lives simply and sanely on Florida’s
beautiful nature coast.

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