What a delightful Christmas issue the Ensign was, and what a delightful way to spread the gospel through the beautiful painting of Gethsemane. I decided to order a painting for each of our children, and then the thought struck me, why not order one for each of my wonderful neighbors and some special friends! Thanks for the joy you have given us this Christmas—and for such a small price.
Sister Ethel Wagner
I want to tell you how excited I am about the new Gospel-in-Art program. I feel that it is a wonderful idea. I have seen and enjoyed many outstanding Latter-day Saint works of art, both at BYU and in the pages of the Church magazines. I have wished they could be made available to the members of the Church. I would like to suggest a couple of works of art that I would love to see offered in the program. They are some of William Whitaker’s paintings featured in the first issue of the Ensign, and are of the day the Church was organized. I enjoy tremendously reading the Ensign, and am grateful for the inspiring and uplifting articles that you publish. It is well worth your efforts.
Bonnie Oscarson St. Louis, Missouri
Like-minded readers will be interested to know that beginning with the March issue, the inside back cover of the Ensign will feature a reproduction of an outstanding Latter-day Saint work of art, photography, architecture, and charts and diagrams that typify the “Mormon View.”
I’m looking forward to displaying the print of Gethsemane in our home. The Gospel-in-Art idea is beautiful and one which many of us don’t think of ourselves.
Dennis R. Doty Beaverton, Oregon
Readers who missed the announcement in the December issue will wish to know that a beautiful 16″ x 20″ full color painting of Christ in Gethsemane is available for $1.00 per print. Send to Art Print, Church Magazines, 50 East North Temple Street, Salt Lake City, Utah 84150.
The Church is urging us to get acquainted with using storage items for everyday cooking. Though this idea is excellent, most recipes are for breads, cookies, cakes, etc. It would be very helpful each month to feature one main dish recipe using storage items—especially wheat. The following is an example:
Jan’s Wheat Casserole
1. Cook 1 cup whole wheat until tender—about one hour (cover pan with lid). Drain if necessary.
2. Fry 1/2 pound ground beef; drain.
3. Line casserole dish with corn chips. Layer as follows: cooked whole wheat, half of 15 oz. can tomato sauce, ground beef, half of 15 oz. can tomato sauce.
4. Top with grated cheese and bake at 325 degrees for 20–25 minutes.
Makes at least three servings.
Last New Year’s day, I made a resolution to read religious material at least 15 minutes a day. Being an average reader, I didn’t expect it to pay big dividends. It did! In the last 11 months, I have read over 2,000 pages of scriptures and books. It would be hard to find a more joyful and fulfilling New Year’s resolution than this has been!
Jan Dickson Saugus, California
Leprosy 4,000 Years ago
I enjoyed reading the November Ensign and found especially interesting the question, “Why was there so much leprosy during Old Testament and New Testament times? It seems to be everywhere mentioned in the scriptures.” The discussion was good, and I believe the following quotation from Dr. Robert William Palmer of the Department of Pathology, Louisiana State University School of Medicine, may shed more light:
“Was the biblical identification of leprosy valid? Certainly not. Individuals with leprosy have cutaneous nodules, absent portions of digits and anesthetic macules. There was no means by which the relationship between these manifestations could have been known. Probably their diagnosis was 50% correct, and the other 50% consisted of cutaneous nodules of neurofibromatosis, Raynaud’s phenomena, skin tuberculosis, and psoriasis. It is tragic to think of the non-lepers being stoned or isolated together with the lepers.”
Gary Symkoviak New Orleans, Louisiana
I want to know the correct title of the Church. Is the word “the” an official part of the Church’s title?
Harold Sorensen Phoenix, Arizona
The official name of the Church is The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. In D&C 115:4, the Lord revealed to Joseph Smith the official name of the restored church: “For thus shall my church be called in the last days, even The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.” The article “The” is part of the title.
Me and the Ensign
I have just subscribed to the Ensign for this next year. In the past I have just bought the issues I thought were the most outstanding, but as of late they have all been so outstanding that I have decided I want one every month. There are four main reasons why I enjoy the Ensign:
1. You pick a major topic and structure the whole magazine around it; for instance, the October issue was all about the Old Testament.
2. The authors who write the articles seem to be specialists in the areas they are writing about.
3. The articles are full of information. They are all interesting and informative—I always learn a great deal from them.
4. The articles are all so varied. There is everything from a message from the First Presidency to a lighter side with good clean Mormon jokes.
It is really great that members of the Church have magazines to read that are of such high quality and so uplifting. Thank you for doing such a service.
Patsy Blatter Provo, Utah
In response to your four points, readers may appreciate the following comments:
1. We publish a “theme” issue three or four times a year. Plans for 1974: May and November will be the special General Conference issues, which is a low-key way of announcing that readers will have the addresses of General Conference mailed to them about two weeks following General Conference. The July 1974 issue will be a special issue on the Washington, D.C., Temple. Each September through 1980, we will feature a special issue on a volume of scripture, in harmony with the correlated Church program of that year. Other issues may have theme elements: June issue—how to make the summer productive and memorable; August—a section on the Church in Scandinavia and some articles on the international Church. Sometime in the fall, an issue will come with a special section on teaching or leadership in the home and Church. Thus, not all issues are “theme” issues—but they provide a good balance for readers’ tastes.
2. Glad you noticed. Where expertise is needed or appropriate, we hope to have Latter-day Saint experts respond. That means, however, that if we are talking about raising children, then every Latter-day Saint parent may also be an expert, may share his or her ideas and experiences. There are many other areas where Latter-day Saints in general may contribute to the Ensign: for example, sharing personal faith-promoting experiences. (In this area, everyone is an expert!)
3. We’re glad you feel this way. The role of the Ensign is to serve as another witness of the Savior and his gospel. Its primary purpose is not to entertain but to edify, teach, uplift, and share good and wholesome ideas.
4. We hope you’ll send some in.
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