News of the Church


Elder Franklin D. Richards Eulogized

Elder Franklin D. Richards

Elder Franklin D. Richards of the First Quorum of the Seventy was eulogized by members of the First Presidency, the Council of the Twelve, the presidency of his quorum, and his family at funeral services in the Assembly Hall on Temple Square November 17.

He died at his home in Salt Lake City November 13. His funeral was held the same day he would have celebrated his eighty-seventh birthday.

President Gordon B. Hinckley, First Counselor in the First Presidency, conducted the funeral services. He spoke of having had “an impression, strong and vivid,” to call on Elder Richards to say a few words during last October general conference. He did so after consulting with President Benson, feeling impressed that this would be the last time Elder Richards would have the opportunity to bear his testimony to the Church.

“God bless his memory,” President Hinckley said, describing Elder Richards as a man “qualified as a lawyer, respected as a government administrator, admired and emulated as a teacher of eternal truth.”

President Thomas S. Monson, Second Counselor in the First Presidency, said, “Franklin D. Richards was … a giant, placed among men by his creator,” and added, “He truly lived his own philosophy and practiced gospel principles in his daily life.”

“He was a man of enthusiasm,” said Elder Marvin J. Ashton of the Council of the Twelve, adding that Elder Richards lived by two guiding principles: “What is right, and what is best.”

Elder Richard G. Scott spoke about Elder Richards’ personal plan for success: “Plan, simplify, be strong.”

Franklin D. Richards, Jr., a son, spoke of the love and gentle wisdom of his father and of the wonderful example Elder Richards was to his family.

Elder Richards served as a General Authority for twenty-seven years, after being called as an Assistant to the Council of the Twelve on 8 October 1960. He was named a member of the Presidency of the First Quorum of the Seventy when it was organized 1 October 1976, and he served in that capacity until 1 October 1983. He served as president of the Washington (D.C.) Temple from October 1983 to January 1986.

Among his many accomplishments was a six-part missionary teaching program he introduced that was so successful it was later used throughout the Church.

Franklin Dewey Richards was born 17 November 1900 in Ogden, Utah, to Charles C. and Louisa Letitia Peery Richards. His paternal grandfather, Franklin D. Richards, was a member of the Council of the Twelve from 1849 to 1899.

Franklin Richards graduated from Weber Academy, then served in the Eastern States Mission from 1920–1922. There, he served as president of the Brooklyn, New York, and Boston, Massachusetts, districts.

In 1923 he received his LL.B. degree from the University of Utah. That same year he married Helen Kearnes of Salt Lake City in the Salt Lake Temple.

He practiced law in Utah until 1934, when he was named first Utah director of the Federal Housing Administration. He was appointed national commissioner of the FHA, with offices in Washington, D.C., in 1947. After resigning that position in 1952, he engaged in the mortgage banking business in Washington, D.C.; New York City; and Salt Lake City.

When Elder Richards was sustained as a General Authority, he was presiding over the Northwestern States Mission. Prior to that call, he had served as stake mission president, stake Sunday School board member, and chairman of a ward genealogical committee.

Elder Richards is survived by his wife; two sons—Franklin D. Richards, Jr., and David Kearnes Richards; two daughters—Louise (Mrs. Robert L. Judd, Jr.) and Nancy Helen (Mrs. Robert J. Clark); fourteen grandchildren; and fifteen great-grandchildren.

President Benson Recovering from Mild Heart Attack

President Ezra Taft Benson is feeling well and enjoying daily improvement in his health as he recovers from a recent mild heart attack.

He entered LDS Hospital in Salt Lake City the morning of October 15 because of pain. Diagnostic tests confirmed that he had suffered a mild heart attack.

Since being released from the hospital October 24, President Benson has continued to recover under the care of his attending physician. He is expected to resume his normal duties within several weeks of his release.

He has met regularly since early November with his Counselors in the First Presidency on matters of general Church administration. Members of the Quorum of the Twelve also visit him regularly.

The Church leader expressed “great appreciation for the tenderness and concern” shared with him and his family in cards and letters from friends worldwide.

President Howard W. Hunter Honored by Scottish Clan

President Howard W. Hunter, Acting President of the Council of the Twelve, was honored on October 20 by the Clan Hunter of Scotland.

The honor came in recognition of President Hunter’s “inestimable contributions … to the work of genealogy and the advancement of family life,” according to Charles Hunter, clan administrator. Mr. Hunter is the heir who will become hereditary World Chief of Clan Hunter and the thirtieth Laird of Hunterston, ancestral home of the clan.

President Hunter was also cited for “his great example of humanitarian service and love for all mankind.” Charles Hunter referred to him as “one of the noblest scions of a noble race, and one of the greatest Hunters of them all.”

The clan’s presentation, made at a Salt Lake City luncheon, also commemorated President Hunter’s eightieth birthday, which was November 14. Elder David B. Haight of the Council of the Twelve conducted the luncheon. Elder Bernard P. Brockbank, emeritus member of the First Quorum of the Seventy and president of the Church’s first mission in Scotland, was also present.

Mr. Hunter presented President Hunter with a framed certificate recognizing him as a life member of the Clan Hunter and signed by The Much Honored Neil Avlmer Hunter, The Hunter, Chief of the Clan.

President Hunter was also presented a tartan and a framed silk-screen print of a painting of Hunterston Castle, which is located on the west coast of Scotland.

Responding, President Hunter said that although he had never lived in Scotland, “Many of us feel that it is our homeland.” His grandfather emigrated from Scotland in 1860.

[photo] President Howard W. Hunter, right, receives a painting of Hunterston Castle from Charles Hunter.

Temple Engineers Meet in Seminar

The first-ever seminar for temple engineers, held in Salt Lake City October 26 to November 6, was attended by engineers from all of the Church’s forty-one operating temples.

Elder James E. Faust, of the Council of the Twelve, and Elder Robert L. Simpson, of the First Quorum of the Seventy and a Managing Director of the Temple Department, were among those who spoke at the seminar.

Elder Faust told the engineers that they were engaged in a spiritual, as well as a mechanical, ministry. Noting that the great temples of ancient times required very simple maintenance, he said, “You brethren have to deal with computers and technology and understand how the technology works.”

He added that since today’s temple maintenance work is so complex, “If you have a problem … you can fix it better if you have the companionship of the Holy Spirit; I am sure of that.”

Elder Simpson told the temple engineers that to be “the caretakers of the house of the Lord, to see that things are in proper order, is a rare privilege. It is a sacred calling.”

Temple engineers are responsible for the heating, air-conditioning, and electrical systems in the temples and for landscaping and grooming the grounds.

Church Museum Announces Winners in Churchwide Art Competition

Winners in a Churchwide fine arts competition sponsored by the Museum of Church History and Art were announced November 6.

That same day, an exhibit of paintings and sculptures by Latter-day Saint artists from thirteen nations was opened to the public.

The awards were presented by Elder Dean L. Larsen, a member of the Presidency of the First Quorum of the Seventy and Executive Director of the Church Historical Department.

Cash Prizes and Purchase Awards

Cash prizes were awarded for eight paintings and one piece of sculpture. Six of the prizewinning pieces and two other entries were given purchase awards. The award money was provided by an anonymous donor.

First prize of $3,000 went to Steven L. Neal, Pendleton, Oregon, for an oil painting, Lehi’s Dream.

Second prize of $2,000 was awarded to Pino Drago, Frankfurt, Federal Republic of Germany. His work was titled Monday, 24 June 1844, 4:15 A.M.: Beyond the Events (a study of Joseph Smith).

Shauna Clinger, Salt Lake City, Utah, received the $1,000 third prize for That They Which See Not Might See.

Merit awards of $500 each were presented to Frank Magleby, Provo, Utah, for Benbow Farm Pond; Laura Lee Stay, Provo, Utah, for her sculpture titled Reverence; Antonio Madrid Hendricks, Panama City, Panama, for The Battle of Gog and Magog; David Hoeft, Beaverton, Oregon, for The Price of Potter’s Field; Walter Rane, Newtown, Connecticut, for Mother and Child; and Al Rounds, Salt Lake City, Utah, for Herefordshire Beacon.

Purchased for the museum collection were the oil paintings by Drago, Hendricks, Hoeft, and Magleby; the watercolor by Rounds; and the bronze sculpture by Stay. Two other entries, Great Are the Promises unto the Isles of the Sea, by Laurie Schnoebelen, Alta Loma, California; and Looking at Sarah, by Lee Udall Bennion, Spring City, Utah, also received purchase awards.

Other entries purchased by the museum are paintings by Wilson Ong, Hayward, California; Del Parson, Rexburg, Idaho; Clark Kelley Price, Thayne, Wyoming; and Kimbal Warren, Pleasant Grove, Utah; and a graphite drawing by Judith Campion, Seattle, Washington.

Winners will be featured in the February and March 1988 issues of the Ensign.

Artworks to Be Displayed through February 15

More than 170 works of art, including the award-winning paintings and sculpture, will be exhibited at the museum through February 15. The pieces displayed were selected from 1,031 entries.

Included in the exhibition are works by artists from seventeen states in the United States, two provinces of Canada, and from Australia, Brazil, Chile, England, Italy, Mexico, Panama, Peru, the Philippines, Venezuela, and West Germany.

The exhibit includes abstract as well as representational art created by both amateur and professional artists. On display are twenty pieces of sculpture; mixed media art; paintings in oil, acrylic, and watercolor; and works in pencil, ink, and charcoal.

The ministry of the Savior is one of the dominant themes of the exhibit, while the most popular subject from Church history is of the westward trek and settlement of the Saints. Family scenes are another popular subject.

“Theme was an essential part of the competition,” Brother Leonard said. “The jury was looking for art with religious or historical messages that mean something to Latter-day Saints.”

The museum is located at 45 North West Temple Street in Salt Lake City. Admission is free. Hours are 9:00 A.M. to 9:00 P.M. Monday through Friday, and 10:00 A.M. to 7:00 P.M. on Saturdays, Sundays, and holidays.

[photos] Winning art from a recent Churchwide competition is now on display in the Museum of Church History and Art.

A Conversation about the Church Employment System

Being out of work can cause serious problems that affect every member of your family. Church members who face this problem can find help through the Church’s employment system. To learn how people can use this service, the Ensign spoke with Clarence Bishop, manager of the employment division of the Welfare Services Department.

Q: Exactly what is the employment system of the Church?

A: The Church’s employment system combines the efforts of individual members, local priesthood leaders, ward and stake employment specialists, and Church employment centers to help people who are out of work find jobs. It also encourages people in low-paying jobs to upgrade their employment.

Q: How does this work?

A: The primary responsibility for securing adequate employment rests with the individual. People can receive help in finding a job from priesthood and Relief Society leaders, who coordinate their efforts through a ward welfare services committee. A ward employment specialist may be called to assist the priesthood and Relief Society leaders.

Job openings and other employment information are obtained from sign-up sheets passed around during quorum and Relief Society meetings on Sunday. After the meetings, a counselor in the bishopric calls committee members together for five or ten minutes to discuss the information they have gathered. Specific assignments regarding members’ needs can then be made.

Q: Do ward leaders have resources other than the information from the sign-up sheets that are passed around?

A: Yes, the ward employment specialist keeps a list of all employed members of the ward showing where they work and what kind of work they do. When members ask employment specialists for job leads, the specialists can refer to the list to see which companies are represented. They can call ward members to see if their companies have job openings, or if the members know of other openings.

When suitable employment leads are not available within the ward, the need is forwarded to the stake employment specialist, who can draw upon resources in other wards of the stake. If a search at this level proves unsuccessful, the person can be referred to a Church employment center.

Q: Do all stake employment specialists have access to employment centers?

A: Most do, and the number of centers is continually expanding. The Church now has eighty-six employment centers located throughout the United States and Canada, and a few in South America and England.

Q: What is the function of Church employment centers?

A: The primary purpose of these centers is to help local priesthood leaders and employment specialists meet the employment needs of their people. The centers extend the reach of employment assistance beyond ward and stake boundaries.

Q: How does a person take advantage of these services?

A: When members have done all they can on their own and still need help finding employment, they should visit with quorum or Relief Society leaders. Leaders may call upon the ward employment specialist for help. Depending on their circumstances, members may be referred to the stake employment specialist and, if necessary, to an employment center. Whenever possible, employment problems should be solved locally, within the ward or stake.

Q: Do you help people find employment at all levels?

A: Yes—although most candidates with above-average qualifications are successful in finding their own employment. As part of the welfare program of the Church, our primary responsibility is to the poor and the needy—those who have real difficulty in finding a job. We also help people who are not able to hold a job become job-ready, and we provide them with the support they need to enter the competitive job market.

Q: How does this program help the underemployed?

A: There are many people in the Church who are underemployed and want to upgrade their employment. Members in this situation also have access to the jobs that are available through the system.

The Church employment program offers no formal career-training programs, but we work hand in hand with Deseret Industries and other community resources to provide job training to people who need it. This temporary on-the-job training can provide people with the experience they need to land and keep a job.

The ward employment specialist can also identify resources in the community that will help people gain better skills for improved employment. These resources include community colleges and training programs that will evaluate skills and abilities and offer career guidance.

Q: How successful is the system?

A: In 1986, 41,851 people in the U.S. and Canada found employment through the system. Of these, nearly 10 percent were not members of the Church. Nonmembers hear of the service through neighbors and friends. Such Christian service helps both our neighbors and the Church.

Q: Do Church employment centers compete with other agencies, specifically private employment agencies?

A: They don’t really duplicate community efforts. The majority of our candidates lack the training or experience that would make them easy to place. Private agencies usually don’t consider taking on such candidates, and state employment agencies have a lot to do. We don’t compete with other agencies; we work with them very closely.

Q: What does the future hold for the Church employment system?

A: We hope to focus more on prevention of unemployment or underemployment than on current job needs. We also anticipate doing more with rehabilitating disabled and hard-to-place individuals.

The Church will soon distribute a set of specialized self-help materials that people can use to learn skills that will help them find a job more effectively.

It is amazing how the stress that comes from unemployment can damage one’s self-esteem. A large percentage of the problems that require a bishop’s counseling stem from financial problems resulting from unemployment or underemployment. A real burden is lifted from bishops as members are helped to be fully and adequately employed.

[photo] Clarence Bishop, manager of the Employment Division of the Welfare Services Department. (Photography by Philip S. Shurtleff.)

Policies and Announcements

1988 Focus for Primary

During 1988, Church members will be studying the Book of Mormon. Primary curriculum will also focus on the Book of Mormon, culminating in a children’s sacrament meeting presentation at the end of the year titled “The Book of Mormon: A Witness of Jesus Christ.”

According to Primary General President Dwan J. Young, children will learn faith-promoting stories about Book of Mormon prophets and events by participating in sharing time and class presentations, activity days, and service projects. Children will learn new songs, including five new verses to the familiar song, “Book of Mormon Stories.” In one suggested activity, children will reenact Lehi’s journey to the promised land.

Sharing-time presentations might also include writing feelings about the scriptures in personal records (journals) and then abridging these records.

Parents and Primary leaders should work together to help children better understand the Book of Mormon by identifying important gospel principles in these scriptures. Families who read the Book of Mormon together will increase their children’s understanding of what they learn at Primary.

LDS Scene

London—Young Single Adults held a fall party in London’s Battersea Park for several hundred sick and terminally ill children. The children were brought from hospitals throughout Britain by “Dreams Come True,” an organization dedicated to fulfilling the wishes of very sick children.

Clowns, tightrope walkers, and other entertainers performed free of charge, and many sports and entertainment celebrities appeared. Some of the children had the chance to try hot-air ballooning and other activities. Candy and toys were presented to each child at the end of the day.

The party, a part of the 150th anniversary of the Church in Britain, was organized by members of the Britannia First Ward, Britain’s only singles ward. More than two hundred Young Single Adults from London and other areas of Britain worked to make the event a success.

Rexburg, Idaho—A total of 7,370 students enrolled in Ricks College for the 1987 fall term. This includes 6,208 full-time students and 1,162 part-time students, an increase of 439 over the fall 1986 enrollment. The increase is the second-highest in the school’s history, topped only by the increase of 539 students in 1984 following a 20-percent decrease in tuition that year. Except for Rhode Island, all states of the union are represented in the Ricks’ student body; 321 foreign students from 42 different countries also attend the school. All but 87 of Ricks’ students are LDS.

Los Altos, California—Venessa Bergman, 15, a Mia Maid in the Los Altos Third Ward in Los Altos, California, recently broke the world record for her age group diving from the one-meter springboard. She also placed fourth in platform diving. In late August, Venessa won the three-meter springboard competition at the U.S. Junior National Diving Championships held in Irvine, California.

Appointments

Mission President

Erlend D. Peterson, a native of St. George, Utah, has been called to preside over the Norway Oslo Mission following the death of President Jay Ross Hyer. Until his call, President Peterson was associate dean and registrar for graduate and undergraduate admissions and records at Brigham Young University. He has served as a stake president, a bishop, and a Missionary Training Center branch president. His wife, Colleen Dawn Keith Peterson, will assist him in his new assignment.

The Church Reaches Black Township in South Africa

“Wake up, Miriam!” said Albert Thanzie, shaking his wife. “Wake up. I saw it!”

“Saw what?” she sleepily asked.

“In my dream I saw the church we’ve been trying to find! It was so real! I know exactly what it looks like!”

Albert and his family, residents of Ennerdale, a black township in South Africa, had been searching for a church that would satisfy their spiritual needs. They had attended several nearby churches, but had not found one they felt comfortable joining.

Discouraged, Albert had organized a Bible study group that met on Sundays in his home. And he continued to pray that God would guide him to the right church.

Several days after his dream, Albert and his friend, Steven Mkonza, broadened their search to Johannesburg, a city of two million people, to look for the church Albert had seen. The search seemed hopeless. Then, one Sunday, tired and disheartened, they rounded a corner. In front of them stood the church Albert had seen in his dreams!

Albert uttered a prayer of thanksgiving and hurried closer. There on the church’s wall was its name: “The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.”

It was late afternoon, and the church was closed. But Albert and Steven returned another Sunday, arriving during services. They met Elder and Sister Blaine Lundquist, a couple from Scottsdale, Arizona, assigned to the South Africa Johannesburg Mission.

The Lundquists asked to visit with the Thanzie family the next evening to explain the doctrines of the Church. Albert readily agreed. Everything he had seen and heard at the worship services seemed right and natural; he had the distinct feeling that he was on familiar ground.

When the Lundquists drove up to the Thanzie home for their appointment, they saw Albert run out the back door. A few minutes later he returned with seventeen people. All were eager to hear about the restored gospel.

In the following months, several missionaries gave discussions to many eager listeners at the Thanzie home. During a typical evening, two elders would be teaching the discussions in one room with the help of Albert and Miriam’s eighteen-year-old son, Johannes, who would translate English into Zulu. In a second room, more investigators would be taught by two elders speaking Afrikaans, while in the kitchen two women would be receiving the gospel message in English from a missionary couple. At the same time, the Lundquists would be teaching the Thanzies in the living room.

On Sundays, additional spiritual sustenance was provided the hungry investigators by Bishop Royston Pritchard and members of the Vereeniging Ward, fifteen miles south of Ennerdale. The stake mission president transported the investigators to meetings in his van.

Within a few weeks, arrangements were made with the local authorities to rent classrooms in an Ennerdale elementary school each Sunday. With the approval of the Johannesburg South Africa Stake presidency, the Ennerdale group was established as a satellite of the Vereeniging Ward. Now, each Sunday morning, a member of the bishopric arrives at the school with enough members and missionaries to hold a sacrament meeting and auxiliary meetings.

In June 1987, three months after Albert’s dream, he, Miriam, and six other Ennerdale residents were baptized and confirmed. The four men baptized received the Aaronic Priesthood. Two more men were baptized, confirmed, and ordained priests in July, including Manual Solomon, who was baptized by Albert’s friend, Steven Mkonza.

The future is bright for the Ennerdale Saints. Relief Society homemaking meetings are held monthly, and a home teaching program is strengthening the members. The Vereeniging Ward leaders are providing leadership training, support, and—most important—love.

Approximately forty investigators are receiving the missionary discussions, and the average attendance at Sunday services is thirty-six and climbing. The projected growth has caused stake leaders to consider including Ennerdale in the 1988 building program.

Correspondent: Kenneth R. Shepherd. Elder Shepherd and his wife, Charlotte, of Woodland Hills, California, are serving a full-time mission in the South Africa Johannesburg Mission.

[photo] Members in Ennerdale, South Africa, with missionaries. The new branch was formed after two residents of the township discovered the Church in Johannesburg.

Update: Circulation of Church Magazines

In a time when magazine circulation internationally is on a decline, the circulation of Church magazines has increased significantly during the past five years. The most impressive growth, reflecting the thirst for gospel messages in many lands, was shown in the circulation of the twenty non-English publications that make up the Church’s International Magazines. The average monthly circulation of the International Magazines has grown from 94,386 in 1983 to 157,439 in 1987—an increase of 63,053, or 66.8 percent.

During that same period, the Ensign increased its monthly circulation average by 72,410, or 14.9 percent; the Friend’s circulation average grew by 22,751, or 12.4 percent; and the New Era’s average monthly circulation rose by 16,346, or 10.4 percent.

Ensign Circulation

1987

557,348

1986

504,141

1985

488,767

1984

490,882

1983

484,938

New Era Circulation

1987

173,967

1986

165,683

1985

159,311

1984

163,412

1983

157,621

Friend Circulation

1987

205,845

1986

196,043

1985

188,503

1984

192,421

1983

183,094

International Magazines Circulation

1987

157,439

1986

120,796

1985

108,178

1984

112,869

1983

94,386