While here in the USA, this is a holiday specifically dedicated to honoring our fathers, in many other cultures, such a tradition of paternal respect is a daily commitment (as it should be).
So, it is of no surprise that when DOCTOR STRANGE (a man raised in the West, but given a new life, a new start in the ancient East,) speaks to (or of) his mentor, the ANCIENT ONE - while he ALWAYS refers to him as "MASTER" he also speaks of him as his FATHER.
The respect, care and love that each of these men feel for each other is palpable.
Take this single selection from one of their shared adventures... (Strange Tales #124)...
Thus Stephen Strange journeys to the ancient past, but alas the candle's light which serves as a beacon for his return is extinguished, causing his mentor to think him lost forever.
However, all hope need not be lost for... his son returns to him!
The concern for the younger mystic before his departure, and then the absolute despair and sorrow when it is thought that Strange was forever lost... only to give way to the exultation and heart-lifting gladness when his "son" returns is a hallmark of their relationship.
Certainly, the Ancient One has ever called Stephen Strange "My Son", but whenever Dr. Strange lets go of the formality of his mentor's title of "Master" he speaks endearingly of his as "...more than a father."
Teacher, protector, more than a father... for isn't that what a true father is?
More on the tender and tight-knit bond between these two men can be found in comic-afficionado Colin Smith's long-running Sequart article on the Mystic Masters (which helped inspire this very post) [HERE].
But what of Eugene Strange, the paternal parent that actually sired Stephen Strange?
That is a post for another day...