Elizabeth (BETTY) Johnson is a major supporting character as matron of the ALL SAINTS’ Episcopal Church. She also serves as Adam’s surrogate grandmother, confessor and protector.
Betty marries Albert Johnson, a young divinity student she has known since childhood. Noted Tue, 27 May 2003 (15:44).
Betty meets Terence Reynolds, with whom she falls deeply in mutual, Platonic love.
Albert dies, leaving Betty feeling numb, but not devastated.
Betty has the strength of character and intelligence of Katherine Hepburn, with a lot more sweetness on the surface. I think she’s a little Katherine Hepburn crossed with Betty White.
Notes Sat, 19 July 2003 (11:53)
Betty says, I’ve never been a big fan of Dr. NEWTON– or his pills. They make you look and act like a zombie if you ask me. Perhaps this is where Betty discovers that Adam is taking sleeping pills, or Adam mentions that he is taking them after Betty finds him on the floor of the sanctuary.
Betty as Widower
Noted Mon, 21 Apr 2003 (22:37)
Betty is a widower when the story opens. Her husband, the Rev. Albert Johnson, has died not too long before the opening of Adam’s Fall, and perhaps Adam is around in time to perform the funeral service and comfort Betty, who has remained somewhat aloof from the congregation at All Saints’.
Betty as Church Mother
Noted Mon, 21 Apr 2003 (22:38)
Betty is the unofficial matron of all Saints’ Parish, and the unofficial surrogate mother / protector to Adam as a result.
It works out well for both Adam and Betty that their mother-son relationship is conceived with affectionate civility, but also with a great deal of respectful distance and strong boundaries.
Betty and Terence’s secret relationship
Added Mon, 21 Apr 2003 (22:40)
Betty and Terence have always had a flirtatious relationship, but Betty was too prudent to let it go any farther. Eventually, they develop a distant, deep, letter-writing friendship.