In the article entitled “Yes!” (January 1978), Melvin Leavitt wrote, “The air in Denver, Colorado, is clean and almost telescopic in its clarity, a fitting home for an outstanding group of Latter-day Saints who, thanks to the gospel, can literally ‘see forever.’” I’m afraid these Saints will have to use their spiritual eyes exclusively to accomplish that feat. On February 22, 1978, the EPA rated Denver and Los Angeles the two most hopelessly polluted and smoggy environmental disasters in the entire USA. The air in Denver is not clean and clear. It is brown, and it smells bad. And driving into the mountains west of Denver provides no escape. The automobile exhaust along the heavily traveled mountain highways is incredibly dense. Let’s dispel these myths about Colorado. She ain’t what she used to be.

Gary A. Clark Longmont, Colorado

In spite of prolonged questioning under torture, Brother Leavitt insists that the two days he spent in Colorado in February 1977 were exactly as he described them. Editor.

Sitting and reading

I have a boyfriend who is investigating the Church, and the fiction and articles in the New Era have helped him tremendously. We sit and read each issue together. He is now waiting for his mother’s consent to be baptized.

Tamara Bundy Sylmar, California

More forgiving

I am a 14-year-old Australian, and I think that the New Era has helped me to try to understand people better and to be more forgiving. It has changed my attitude toward life.

Jenny Thomas Brisbane, Australia

Dear John

With so many LDS missionaries in the field, Dear John letters have apparently become a thriving business. Elder Jay Toombs of the Florida Ft. Lauderdale Mission found a store that specializes in them.

Lee Ann Speth Logan, Utah

Not enough for a pizza anymore

Having recently returned from a mission in Italy, I was interested in the article on Mormon life “all’Italiana” (March New Era). The author portrayed well the spirit of the Italian way, but a few updates may be interesting. There are now four missions in Italy, and many hundreds of Italians have joined the Church since the time when there were the 4,200 Saints mentioned in the article. The members in Rome, who formerly had to spend hours on the bus to get to church, now have their choice of five branches and groups spread across the city.

The Sassari Branch Mutual is growing, though the two members mentioned in the article have moved onward. Annalisa married and emigrated to Canada, and Casimiro is now an elder preparing for a mission. Finally, due to inflation and devaluation, 250 lire are worth only about 30 cents, and not enough for a pizza anymore.

Mark Davis Orem, Utah

Ninety degrees of gray

The story “When White Shirts Turn Gray” in the December New Era sparked my companion and I to write a note of appreciation for the enjoyment the New Era brings to our missions. This story was something we could identify with easily, because as we read it, memories of the ninety degree-ninety percent humidity of Iowa summers flashed in our minds. The white shirts that turn gray during those months number more than just one or two, and the muggy weather seems to speed the process considerably. We’re proud to say, however, that our shirts are turning gray in a state that rings with the heritage of our pioneer forefathers. It is, as the nickname says, “a place to grow,” and we’re growing in the great Iowa Des Moines Mission.

Elders Bruce Fordham and Scott Swenson Iowa Des Moines Mission

Wendy the Philistine

As a past, present, and future reader of the New Era, I have enjoyed, do enjoy, and will enjoy reading it. However, in the January issue in the story “Ready or Not” by Janet Balmforth, I find a rather disappointing remark. Wendy says, “Who wants to listen to that guy up there screeching back and forth on that violin?” I hope the author intended that remark to show how uncultured Wendy was. I would contend that violins in the hands of any community concert artist would produce a sound of magnificent quality. I also hate to hear people “screeching” on the violin, but I enjoy going to community concerts to hear virtuosos send strains of beautiful music through the concert hall.

Nathan Parker Turlock, California

Keep on truckin’

The illustration accompanying “Asa’s Truck” in the March New Era is very good. I have seen Mitchial Lange’s artwork in galleries in northern Wyoming and really enjoy his work. I hope you will have more articles illustrated by him.

William E. Dusenberry Aurora, Colorado

Still alive in England

I think it’s time to write and say how much I appreciate the New Era. Every month I look at the addresses in Feedback to see if anyone from England has written, and usually the answer is no. So I want to let LDS youth all over the world know that we’re still alive in England! And we love the gospel. I’d like to say how much I enjoyed “The Way of an Eagle” in the November New Era. There are so many wonders of God’s creation that we don’t even know about, and it was great to see pictures of one of nature’s miracles. In closing, I suggest more articles about the General Authorities and their wives. Reading about the faith and determination of these good people serves as an inspiration to me.

Deborah L. Broome Harworth, Doncaster, South Yorkshire, England

The first step

I really enjoyed the February issue of the New Era. The article “Friendship Is the First Step” was really worth the time of reading.

B. Squires Trenton, New Jersey

How I started

I want to tell you how I started receiving the New Era. At the National Scout Jamboree last summer I met Dallen Fisher from Rupert, Idaho. I am not a Mormon, but he told me about the Church and invited me to a fireside service one Sunday evening. Ezra Taft Benson and Marion D. Hanks spoke at the fireside. Brother Hanks gave a marvelous sermon on love for our mothers. Since I do not know my natural parents, I was very emotional by the end of the talk. I started writing letters to Dallen Fisher, and he sent me a subscription to the New Era for my 18th birthday. Dallen Fisher means a great deal to me because if it weren’t for him, I wouldn’t have been so open-minded about the Church.

Howard S. Burgman Rock Springs, Wyoming

On time

I am an 18-year-old exchange student in Mexico, and I really have to thank you for the New Era. I always get it on time—in more ways than one, come to think of it, because it always answers a current problem or doubt.

Practically everything in the September issue held a special meaning for me. The Mormonad inspired me to share the gospel with some friends, especially some other exchange students who were starved for English reading material. Soon my New Era began making the rounds, closely followed by tracts and visits to the local LDS chapel.

Needless to say, October’s missionary issue really came in handy. One special friend has continued attending Church with me regularly and taken the missionary discussions.

November’s article “Self Denial” was extremely appropriate since it was a big temptation to spend Sunday afternoons going to parties or picnics with my friends instead of going to Church.

December’s issue taught me with new clarity what living the gospel means. It’s not something to be thought of once a year but an integral part of our lives. That issue really helped me through the Christmas season. I’ve thanked Heavenly Father hundreds of times for the New Era and my mother for the subscription she was inspired to send me here in Mexico.

Edna F. Guzman Saltillo, Coahuila, Mexico