DEAR ABBY: Our small church choir has a talented volunteer director. His wife, "Martha," is an energetic and animated soprano who has a reasonably good voice in her range.
Unfortunately, Martha sings louder than all of the other choir members, and she ends many songs by trying to reach a final high note. The problem is her high notes are often flat and sound more like a cat's scream. No one likes it.
The congregation is held hostage to Martha's screams because they're afraid of losing her husband's free directing services. How can we convince Martha to cut out the high notes? -- COVERING OUR EARS ON THE WEST COAST
DEAR COVERING: Because Martha's improvisations are distracting the congregation -- which I assume is larger than the choir -- your spiritual leader should have a private chat with the director and explain that "the congregation" would prefer the choir perform the hymns exactly as they are written. It should get the message across without being personally offensive. And it's not as if you're all asking that his wife not perform, just that she tone it down.