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"Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen." (Hebrews 11:1) Not to worry: If ever there were someone not qualified to opine on matters biblical, 'twould be I. But the preceding verse is burned into my mind by virtue of its posting on the wall of the group cycling room at the Downtown YMCA - where another kind of burning also goes on - that of the calories implied by this article and all others past and future. It's also especially appropriate to the Leap of Faith Café, located in the basement of Travis Park United Methodist Church. Connie Marshall, the café's congenial owner/hostess/guiding light, abandoned her two popular Seasons Café and Bakery locations for a subterranean site, which, in spite of exposed limestone walls, track lighting, and displays of art (affecting portraits of homeless people comprise the current show), still seems very much the church basement it is - with long, communal tables covered with oilcloth. There is more at work here than marketing, and a certain amount of faith is required of the first-time diner; a sandwich board at the street level is the only overt indication of the café's location. It's the only evidence of things not (yet) seen. - Ron Bechtol


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