“Person to Person, Please,” please

After reading the August issue of the New Era, I had to sit down immediately and write you concerning the readers’ theater “Person to Person, Please.” This was one of the best and most touching articles I’ve read in a long time. And to think that the youth wrote this! They are certainly to be commended.

Mrs. Gail Caldwell Hickory, North Carolina

Been touched

I have read and been touched by the article “Person to Person, Please.” This readers’ theater touched my heart not only with its message but even more with the thought of the prayer and dedication those young people gave to a cause so that others could grow and learn. Thank them for me please.

Mrs. Ellen Rowan Merced, California

The best article I ever read

“A Glimpse of Glory” in the July 1977 New Era was the best article I have ever read. It reminds me of the many youth conferences I attended before coming on a mission. The spirit of the conference can actually be felt by the reader, a sort of oneness with the youth of the conference. I also enjoyed the article “Cool, But Straight.” We have many missionaries who are the same—true to their principles without losing their cool.

Elders Jared Lay and Doyle Smith New Zealand Christchurch Mission

A glimpse of glory

This morning the sun was shining through the window as I read “A Glimpse of Glory” in the July New Era. Coming from an area where the Church is well established, I used to take it and its programs for granted, as I’m sure a lot of other youth do. But when I left the shelter and prosperity of the Church and came to the Atlantic Provinces to serve, I soon had a “glimpse of glory” as I observed the members struggling to better establish Zion in this portion of the vineyard. The opportunities I took for granted at home are still being worked for and created here so that there may be more opportunity for future members of the Church here in the Maritimes. Tears came to my eyes and gratitude filled my heart as I read about the LDS youth in Alaska. Their character, planning, work, and accomplishment are typical of those living out in the mission field. They’re to be commended for being a light and an example to the world and to those of us who may take the benefits and blessings of the gospel for granted. The Church is true and ordained of God. These youth in Alaska and all the youth of the Church are living witnesses of this.

Elder Ralph Christensen Canada Halifax Mission

The Reverend Mister Locke

In the July issue of the New Era I note that in President Tanner’s article “If They Will But Serve the God of the Land” he attributes the “Prayer for Our Country” to George Washington. I am not sure of the source of his information, but it is incorrect. Though commonly attributed to Washington, it was indeed written by the Reverend George Lyman Locke (died 1919).

According to the Oxford Commentary of the American Book of Common Prayer, the Reverend Mister Locke was 52 years the Rector of St. Michael’s Church, Bristol, Rhode Island. He composed the prayer at the instigation of the Reverend Doctor William Leed Huntington. It was admitted to the 1928 revision of the Book of Common Prayer. The commentator, Doctor Massey Shepherd, states in the articles (page 36 of the commentary) that “though it has a timeless ring of all true liturgical prayer, it reflects no less truly the expansive and turbulent era of our national history in which the prayer was composed: the rapid development of the West, the tremendous influx of foreign immigration, the rise of ‘big business,’ the violence attendant upon the organization of labor, the corruption and scandals in high places, and not least the emergence of the United States as a world power. … The concluding petitions of the prayer are redolent of the language and piety of the Psalter: Thanksgiving in prosperity and trust in times of adversity.”

I enjoy reading your magazine, and I trust you will not mind my bringing this correction to your attention.

Paul E. Bourne Rector, Saint Joseph’s Episcopal Church Queens Village, New York

Tissue Issue

It never fails. In every issue of the New Era there is a story that touches a tender spot in me and sets my tears rolling. You ought to send along a box of tissue every month. The New Era is a constant reminder, pointing out my responsibilities to the Lord and helping to keep me humble.

E. M. G. Aurora, Colorado

A plan fan

I am grateful for the June New Era on leadership. It has helped me to magnify my calling as a leader of the youth of Zion. Our ward is not extremely large, and we are often called to positions of leadership. The June New Era was just what I needed to help me fulfill my responsibilities. I am grateful for Elder Boyd K. Packer’s talk “It’s the Position That Counts” and also for Rex W. Allred’s article on personal time management. I now keep a planner in my Book of Mormon and write down everything I need to do.

Susan P. Griffiths Manchester, Lancaster, England

Shepherd and sheepherder

I have received the June New Era and feel compelled to protest some comments in “Sheep, Shepherds, and Sheepherders,” particularly the reference to a herder slouched asleep on his horse while several small dogs do the work, and the comparison of sheepherders with the shepherd in Munich, Germany. If the herder was indeed asleep, it was probably because he had been up all night, as often happens. And if the herder is at the head of the flock, who is to pick up the stragglers and the sheep that become lame or wander off from the main herd?

I believe that our Father in heaven has a special love for sheepherders, since they were the first to learn of the birth of his Son, and Brother Moss has made a thoughtless and inaccurate distinction between shepherds and sheepherders. He has managed to make the word sheepherder sound like a dirty word, meaning a person who is clumsy, cruel, and stupid. If he thinks that sheepherders do not know their sheep on an individual basis, then he does not know many successful sheepherders.

The sheep business is not one of the most profitable in this day, and for two years while our son was in the mission field, it was just as financially difficult for us as it is for most families. We were happy to make the necessary sacrifices, and are still happy to have done so, but it compounds my distress to have a Church magazine print such comments about the sheep business when many sheep ranchers and herders are generous with their time and energy when called upon by the Church.

I realize that Brother Moss’s comments were meant as an analogy, but I find them offensive, and I feel that an apology is in order to all those members of the Church who work with sheep and call themselves “sheepherders.”

Nedra R. Ence Kanarraville, Utah

The New Era thanks Sister Ence for her perspective and apologizes to her family and anyone else in the sheep business who might be offended by this article. As evidenced by the article “His Father’s Sheep” in the May 1977 issue, we have the highest regard for those in the sheep industry. Editor.

A Primary purpose

Thank you for the June leadership issue. I am second counselor in the Red Deer District Primary, and we had a leadership meeting planned for Saturday, June 4. On Wednesday, June 1, I still didn’t know what to discuss in my department, and I was getting panicky because of my responsibility of giving something worthwhile to leaders who would travel great distances. My prayers were truly answered when the mail came Wednesday with the New Era. I used most of the feature articles as well as the Puzzlement and Mormonad. Several sisters said it was just what they needed.

Verna J. Park Trochu, Alberta, Canada

Any other magazines

I guess the things that mean a great deal to me are sometimes the ones I take for granted. I never realized how important the Church magazines are to me until I didn’t have them. I missed an issue of both the New Era and the Ensign, and I wonder if Satan helped lose them along their path to me. I’m sure he doesn’t like these magazines. I’m grateful for the many hours I’ve spent reading them from cover to cover as the Spirit bore record to me and I cried tears of joy. Joseph Smith once said that a person could get closer to the Lord by reading the Book of Mormon than by reading any other book. I know it’s also true that a person can get closer to the Lord by reading the Church magazines than by reading any other magazines.

Miles Andrew Cook Hickory, North Carolina