So let me just say that church was not nearly as bad as my wife and I had prepped for. Sometimes bracing for the worst is the best inoculation for the well meaning but often insensitive remarks of fellow members zealously defending the family. If we had played the testimony drinking game, we would only have taken one small gulp from our sippy cup.
There was a brief announcement about President Packer's passing. I have to admit I have mixed feelings about President Packer. I love his talk "The Shield of Faith." I was a missionary when he gave this address. I remember listening to it and being filled with a desire to have a family of my own. For that I am and will ever be eternally grateful. But then I got home from my mission and learned of his earlier talk excusing an elder for punching his companion for being gay. Surely the Lord would not encourage such behavior. Why hold this up as an example for all to see?
Third hour included the Bishop's reading of "the letter." It wasn't the letter itself I feared; I worried about our congregation's right-wing crazies taking the opportunity to "discuss" how the world is going to hell in a hand basket (though I'm sure it will be a very pretty basket... probably a nice picnic basket with a lovely blanket for our last meal before the fire and brimstone. S'mores anyone?) Luckily the Bishop's call for questions met with complete silence for 10 seconds and the meeting was adjourned. Other than being a bit awkward, it was rather a non-event. The real throw-down comes next month when the Teachings for Our Times topic is Elder Perry's "Why Marriage and Family Matter." I may have to be sick that week.