After reading the letter “I wish I had a friend” in the September New Era, I can’t help but make this reply: I don’t know if I know you. But I hope I don’t because I would never want to do to anyone what was done to you by the teenagers in your ward. However, it does happen, and I hope someday you will find forgiveness in your heart for them.
My mother had a similar experience occur in her life, and because of that and other reasons she is now inactive. I miss having my parents active in the church, but I know that my emptiness cannot compare with the emptiness they must feel from not being a part of the gospel. I can testify of the change that has occurred in their lives since they became inactive. I pray constantly for their return to the Church, and I know many people who would be glad to be a friend to them and welcome them back if they were willing to come. (I would be the first, in fact!)
I am telling you this because I would like to be your friend and welcome you back if you would like me to. I love the gospel and I would be lost without it, as I’m sure you would be. Please come back.
It’s Sunday afternoon, and I’m reading some of the stories in the April 1986 New Era. I was very much impressed with the one entitled “Letters from a Loving Brother.” It was an excellent story that gave me an extra special feeling all over! I read through the other articles, and they’re just as great! I especially enjoyed the song “No Ordinary Man.” It’s beautiful. The New Era has helped me with recent problems, and I want you to know how much I enjoy receiving this magazine each month. I hope others like me will let you know of the great impression it has made on them.
How can I ever say thank you? The New Era is truly inspirational. It’s nice to know someone cares about the youth enough to publish a whole magazine! There is nothing better than to sit down on Sunday or when I’m depressed and read the New Era. It’s the best medicine around.
I was touched by “A Father’s Voice” in the September 1986 issue. My father died three years ago when I was 14. That’s the kind of life he led, and I’m glad I listened. He always served the Lord with enthusiasm, and his example was great. A big thanks!
I wish I could get in touch with the person whose letter was published in the September 1986 feedback section under the title “I wish I had a friend.” I had a very similar experience in my lifetime. When I was nine years old we moved from a ward where I had wonderful friends to a ward 30 miles away from my old one. I never fit in with the large crowd of kids my age in my new ward. I struggled along for nine years, never really quitting, but sometimes attending Mutual and Sunday School only half of the time.
But I consider myself a survivor. When I moved away to attend college I made a new beginning, and I did my best to be the “Marcy” in my student ward. I sought out those who sat alone or seemed shy, and I tried to be a friend to them. By doing this, I built up my own confidence and again found myself confident around anyone in our ward.
My story has a happy ending. I have since married in the temple and have had three children. If I could make contact with the writer of “I wish I had a friend,” maybe we could compare experiences and learn from each other and perhaps bring about a happy ending for this story, too.
I am a convert who has been reconverted and uplifted by you who write the letters to the editor that appear in Feedback. You’ve expressed feelings and testimonies about God, gospel doctrines, etc. Time and again I am encouraged and strengthened by your comments. I love and appreciate you and your efforts to be the best possible. I wish I could meet you personally.
Lt. Cloward says in the August 1986 Feedback section that at age 34 he comes back for more of the New Era. I’m 66, and I suppose I’ll still be coming back for more when I’m 80 or 90. I hope he is too.
Yuba City, California
I’m a convert to the Church, and I remember well the New Eras the elders brought to our house for my daughters to read when we were investigating the Church. I’m now serving as a full-time missionary in Michigan. I enjoy transfers because each new apartment has back issues of the Church publications. I’m in a position now to share the New Era with families that we teach.
I need to tell you how much I enjoyed “The Swing” in the February 1986 New Era. Stories like that are encouraging and uplifting. I’ve lived in the hospital off and on for two and a half years. I’ve been out one year this month. Depression about overcame me. My family would come and sit with me by the hour and read the Church publications to me. My health had gotten to the point that I needed to give some of what someone took time to give to me—the gospel.
My mission is about to come to an end. My health won’t let me finish at this time. But when I’m strong I’ll come back out and work again. Thank you, Sharon Bradley, for “The Swing.”
Sister Carnie Freeman
Michigan Lansing Mission