The measure of a poem

I was so surprised at reading Brother C. L. Anderson’s letter in the February issue’s Feedback that I immediately dug out my November New Era and reread the poem “The Measure of a Man.” I do not feel that the author was trying to suggest that the Church or any other organization start such “reactionary and anti-intellectual” practices as book burning. I do feel, however, that the author had a very important message that he was trying to relay to all of us, i.e., that man is more than a vital statistic, a measure of height, weight, or pulse. If this is all that the textbooks say, then of what use are they?

Greg Wilcox Mountain Home, Arkansas

“The Currant Bush”

I want to thank you for including the story of the currant bush by Hugh B. Brown in the January New Era. The day that I received the New Era I was really down in spirit. It seemed that everything possible had been going wrong in my life. But after reading “The Currant Bush” I have been able to look at my difficulties differently. I know that the Lord loves me and wants the best for me. Thank you.

Renee Billings Freiberg, Germany

Cheer up

The New Era is so fantastic—I can’t tell you how much it helps me when I read it. If ever I need any help or a little cheering up, I can always come to the New Era.

Jenny Reese Rancho Cordova, California

Note from Mexico

We want to express our appreciation for the New Era. The February issue was especially well-done. The whole magazine—poetry, personal experiences, articles, and fiction—was excellent.

This is a difficult and testing period in our lives, and we appreciate the help the New Era gives us. Keep up the good work!

The Mexico West Mission office staff and others Hermosillo, Sonora, México

Oops

In the Q and A section of your March issue I was identified as an Assistant Professor of Sociology at Washington State University. I am an Associate Professor of Child Development and Family Relations at Brigham Young University.

Darwin L. Thomas Provo, Utah

February

The February issue of the New Era was very special to me. The article entitled “Hold Hands with God” really touched my heart. “Cyrano de Cybernet” was very good also. Thanks for such a beautiful magazine.

Kathleen Goodwin San Luis Obispo, California

Help, fun, growth

Many times a person searches for a guide and example in his life to help him find the true meaning of happiness and spiritual growth. The New Era provides me this guide and example in so many ways. It has been especially helpful on my mission. I grow closer to God and an understanding of my purpose here each time I read it. I would encourage everyone to read it and find the help, fun, and spiritual growth that is waiting for them there.

Elder Mark D. Warren Germany North Mission

“Hold Hands with God”

Thank you for the story about Cindy Abbott, “Hold Hands with God.” Our little three-year-old son is also such a child. His brain was damaged in some way, and he has difficulties both with his body and his mind. But he is an unusually sunny, loving little boy, and we too feel he is very special in God’s eyes. We appreciate the strength and beauty of Cindy’s story and think again what a great blessing the resurrection will be.

Evan and Janet Stoddard Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

I felt such a loving spirit when I read “Hold Hands with God” by Verna W. Holt, February issue. I read it right before Primary, so I used it as a spiritual thought in prayer meeting. There wasn’t a dry eye in the room.

What other group could have enjoyed it as much as the Primary sisters before teaching the Lord’s children? I truly enjoy the personal experiences of the Saints. One of the best ways to learn the Lord’s wonderful love is by the experiences of others. Thank you so much.

Nanette J. Walborn Chagrin Falls, Ohio

“Having Been Born of Goodly Parents”

I really liked the article “Having Been Born of Goodly Parents” by President S. Dilworth Young. I think it presented a very special message and was a great tribute to the Prophet. I also liked the articles “Learning to Be a Norwegian Housewife” and “Yellow Butterfly Love.” The New Era in my home has really helped me strengthen my testimony. I love the poetry and photos as well as the articles.

Debra Marcum Tetonia, Idaho

Rembrandt to the rescue

In my English literature class I was assigned a term paper, and I couldn’t decide on a topic. When I got my February New Era in the mail and saw the article “Rembrandt: The New Testament as Personal Experience,” all my problems were over. I knew I had to write on this great Christian painter. One thing that really impressed me is the way he put himself into his biblical paintings to try to relive the experiences. Thanks for the New Era. It gives me monthly support and is a real problem solver.

Suzn Tiede Gallup, New Mexico

Single Girl

Thank you so much for “Journal Excerpts from a Single Girl.” Since I fit into this category, the title caught my eye immediately. I was deeply impressed by the beautiful thoughts expressed. Carol Clark must be a sincere, spiritual person. It’s reassuring to know that I’m not alone in my sometimes impatient quest for “the white knight à la white charger.” I hadn’t realized that other women in my position also wonder, “What is wrong with these men? Don’t they recognize quality when they see it?”

I have realized that I too must dedicate myself to “be the right person.” Thank you.

Sidni Jones Murray, Utah

Looking at darkness in a new light

The article by Randal S. Chase on music was really good. I, too, like both rock and classical. I was puzzled, however, by his statement that well-lighted public halls are preferable to those more dimly lit. The fact is that all theatrical and musical events use darkness to promote concentration. Who would go to a brightly lighted theater?

The article also raises a question about good lyrics. One danger overlooked by most people is that of the indoctrination of superficiality. While some youth music is in poor taste, I see little spiritual uplift in most popular music that adults listen to (much of it is mindless “cocktail music”). Also, many people seem to approve of all the trash on the top forty, which, though it doesn’t violate moral standards, is lyrically and musically mediocre. I see a subtle influence here that promotes mundanity and aspirituality.

Scott S. Smith Thousand Oaks, California

All music not created equal

The article “For What It’s Worth” in the February New Era, though emphasizing the importance of music and its influence on our lives, was, I believe, misleading in one respect. You express the idea that one form of music is not particularly better than another, as music is a personal thing. This is simply not true. Some forms of music have a higher purpose than others and are, therefore, more uplifting to the soul. First comes sacred music that praises God, such as the hymns and great oratorios. Then come the great classics that are ennobling to the spirit, leading one to greater heights in thought. Then comes recreational music, ranging from easy listening through jazz, country, folk, and rock. They all have their purpose, but some forms are more ennobling than others.

Dean F. Mansfield Jr.