I was scared of her. She was a powerhouse. She was strong and she was opinionated and I knew, if she perceived this was wrong, wrong, wrong... well, I'd have a very uncomfortable situation on my hands.
So the day "The Letter" went out I went to D's house. It was near the end of a long day, in which I'd been visiting elders, pillars, staff members, etc. D. was sick... she'd been struggling with cancer since early 2007. Still, she was able to attend church, and she was formidable. I loved her and I was scared of her.
At about 4 in the afternoon I dropped by. We chit-chatted for a bit. Finally, I said, "D., has your mail arrived yet?" She said, "No, it should be here any minute. Why?" I could tell that her radar was up. The night before, when I'd met with the session, some of them had let me know that they were relieved the letter was not a letter of resignation (!). D. seemed to "go there" as well. I said, "D, I sent a letter to the congregation. This is what it says." And I told her.
Her response was immediate. "That's no one's business but your own. People act like this is a brand new thing, but it's been going on for thousands of years. Michelangelo! The Emperor Hadrian! I had two teachers in my elementary school who lived together in the same house. Maybe they were in a committed relationship! You're a good pastor. That's all that matters to me."
We buried D. yesterday. This memory is one of the treasures she left me.