My name is Elder Terry McKenna, and I am a missionary serving in the New Zealand Christchurch Mission. I noticed in the August 1986 Feedback section of the New Era a letter from a young lady in Northern Ireland. I too am from that country and was very pleased to see someone from there in the New Era. I have been on my mission for nine months now, and I will return to Northern Ireland after my mission is over. One thing in Louise’s letter that struck me was that she attends a school where there are only five active Latter-day Saints out of nearly 2,000 students. I too attended a school and college where there were very few LDS associates. At one time I was the only one out of about 1500. It is a challenge but a rewarding one.
While on my mission I have met many young men and women from America and New Zealand who have attended schools with 80–90 percent LDS enrollment. They even see their teachers at church! For me this is very hard to imagine, but it sounds idyllic! However, I also realize that these young people face as big a challenge as we do in Ireland, and that there are also other youth throughout the world who face similar and even greater challenges as members of the Church.
Louise’s letter prompted me to ask if you would do an article on the youth in Northern Ireland. I notice that past New Eras have included such articles on youth throughout the world. Not only would an article on this beautiful land give your readers greater insight, but it would be a big support for the youth at home, especially with the unrest that exists there.
Elder Terry McKenna
New Zealand Christchurch Mission
How could you print a “fat” joke (Sept. 1986)? We as “Saints” need to learn the lesson of “Love thy neighbor as thyself.” If we loved our neighbor we would not be poking fun at the way he or she looks. Jokes about the way a person looks are cruel and inexcusable. They also reinforce the idea that it’s okay to make fun of the way people look. I for one detest and abhor jokes of this caliber, and I wonder how many young people were hurt by this joke, especially as the New Era is a Church-supported magazine.
Los Angeles, California
I would like to tell you how much the New Era has helped me since I’ve been getting it each month. Each article has strengthened my testimony so much. One article I really enjoyed was “You’re in Our Prayers” in the August 1986 issue. I have a very dear friend who’s on a mission. This story has given me so much comfort to know that as long as I pray for him, it’ll help in his missionary work. I know that this is where the Lord wants him. Thanks so much for that special story.
I’m 13 and I’ve been reading the New Era for about one year now. I was really excited when I read in the September 1986 issue about the new poster-size Mormonads. I have them up in my room, and looking at them every day helps me to become a better person.
My favorite articles in the September issue were “Kelly,” “A Father’s Voice,” and “Passages from India” about Santosh. It was really interesting. I can’t believe how much schooling he takes. I don’t think I’d be able to handle it.
Well, I just wrote to tell you how much I enjoy reading the New Era every month. It’s a great inspiration and light to my life. Thanks so much for this great magazine.
Gig Harbor, Washington
Ever since I became a member of the Church I have loved to read the New Era and the Ensign. But then I could only read them when I could borrow a copy from the members of the Church. Now on my mission I always have the chance to read the Church magazines. I came across a story in the April 1984 New Era called “The Happiest 18 Months.” I love the story very much. It gave me inspiration to work hard and inspired me to set important goals—to obey Christ’s teachings, follow his example, and pray always to have charity in my heart. I learned also to set goals that could help me understand the nature of my work. Love is very important, and it must be developed and must be shared.
Sister Towena Cantago
Philippines Cebu Mission
I have just turned 12, and I have started reading the New Era, old and new issues, and I am very pleased with all the lessons I have been learning. A few days ago I read “My Brother” by Kirk Sheldon Wilkinson in the April 1982 issue. As I read through it, I felt tears welling up in my eyes, and when I had nearly finished, I had tears streaming down my face. “My Brother” taught me a lesson—be kind to my sisters. I am truly thankful for it.
But I have one complaint. Over the last few years, you have been featuring mainly American and Asian stories, and I have seen very few Australian stories. How come? As I live in Sydney, I’m positively sure that the Sydney youth would be DELIGHTED to see something about Australia. One last thing. Can anyone submit stories to be published?
Ermington, N.S.W., Australia
Anyone who wishes may submit an article to the New Era. Each year we publish many unsolicited articles. Of course, because of the volume of submissions, we can publish only a small percentage of those we receive. Please include a self-addressed stamped envelope for the return of your manuscript in case we can’t use it. Editor.