Our Readers Write
December 1971

“Our Readers Write,” Ensign, Dec. 1971, 150

Our Readers Write

Not Brixham Harbour


We were disappointed to find a mistake in the [September] cover note regarding a photograph on the back cover. Brixham Harbour was a favorite resort of ours, and it is very definitely a coastal town in Devonshire in the south of England. Also, the Mayflower did not sail from Brixham Harbour but from Plymouth Hoe, situated a few miles south of Brixham.

Georgina and David Fisher
Inglewood, California

Missionary Tool


I wish to add my praise to that which you have already received for the tremendous magazines you are producing. As a soldier stationed in Vietnam, I find the Ensign to be a great missionary tool as well as a source of strength for old and new members.

I thank you for your efforts. I only wish the magazine could be larger and that every serviceman could receive a monthly copy.

Richard H. Whaley
U.S. Army, Vietnam

On Advertising


In letters to the editor I noticed that people were asking why advertisements were omitted from the Ensign. I had also wondered about this, but I have just had a sad experience with an insurance company that I think answers the question. It was not the company advertised in the Improvement Era, but a company recommended by the one advertised, as it did not serve the area in which I reside.

I am sure that no matter how careful you try to be, a few dishonest advertisers are bound to creep in. I remember that in the early days of the Church, people who invested money in banks that failed blamed the Church. I know that you have made a wise choice to leave advertising out of the Ensign; it is like viewing a movie on television without commercials.

Thank you for many moments of enjoyable reading.

Mrs. Nona Bassett
Merced, California

Questions on Nutrition


I have two questions for Dr. Hansen regarding nutrition [September, p. 78].

Can a modern-day family receive all the required nutrients from food available in the supermarket? Or is it necessary to supplement that food with vitamins, minerals, etc.?

If it is necessary or desirable to use food supplements, are the widely sold synthetic or chemical vitamins as nutritious and usable as the recently introduced “natural” vitamins?

We have several friends who are sold on the need for food supplements. I think the only way to supplement is via natural vitamins. I cannot believe that if a woman will shop and cook wisely that she cannot find everything necessary in the family’s diet.

If I am wrong, I would sincerely like to know it.

R. D. Harrison, Jr.
Riverside, California

Watch for Dr. Hansen’s responses to your questions in future issues of the Ensign.

Travel Companion


My wife and I are the only members of the Church in this small southwest Louisiana town. We drive forty-six miles (one way) to attend our Church meetings. Needless to say, the inspiring and beautifully arranged Ensign is a delightful companion as we travel. The Sabbath morning is an especially meaningful time to read the words of peace and love. May our Father’s blessings continue with you in this divine work.

Ronald W. Browning
Eunice, Louisiana

From West Australia


As I am a recent convert to the Church, the magazines have been a constant help and inspiration to me. Many of the articles have brought new hope and understanding; many have brought tears to my eyes. One such article was about a young deaf boy who wanted to become a missionary [“And the Deaf Shall Hear,” Ensign, January, p. 31]. This was especially close to me as my parents are both deaf and dumb. My family is from Capetown, South Africa, and they are also converts to the Church.

My brother, who is nearly seventeen years old, also wants to be a missionary, and I often think how wonderful it would be if he could serve his mission in that deaf community in California.

I hope to leave for America in nine months via South Africa. There are so many things I want to do, things I want to see, and friends I want to visit, but almost above all I would like to meet that young missionary and his family.

Thank you so much for our Church magazines. Without them I think I would be a little lost and lonely.

Miss Suzanne M. Baldwin
Perth, West Australia

President Taylor’s Views


August’s “Classics in Mormon Thought” [page 18] was very helpful and stimulating. While John Taylor’s views on government have been of interest to me for some time, this particular article helped me to study and organize some specific ideas and references along the same lines.

If it would be in good taste, I would like to share some of these additional Church references with any interested reader. They are all recorded statements on some phase of government and religion by President John Taylor.

I will just list most of them without comment for the student or the reader to consider for himself.

From the Journal of Discourses: vol. 9, p. 340; vol. 15, pp. 175–76, 212, 268; vol. 18, p. 137; vol. 20, p. 350; vol. 21, pp. 8, 31–32; vol. 22, pp. 142–43; vol. 23, pp. 53, 63, 65, 239, 263–66; vol. 26, pp. 39, 348–50.

Two other sources seem worthwhile: History of the Church, vol. 6, p. 214, and John Taylor’s Gospel Kingdom, p. 310.

Some members of the Church seem to be unaware that on several occasions President Taylor mentioned the Prophet Joseph Smith’s statement about the U.S. Constitution and the possible role of the elders of Israel in upholding it.

Even fewer members seem to be aware of the following two statements and their possible implications:

“Besides the preaching of the Gospel, we have another mission, namely, the perpetuation of the free agency of man and the maintenance of liberty, freedom, and the rights of man.” (JD, vol. 23, p. 63.)

“… as we have progressed the mist has been removed, and in relation to these matters, the Elders of Israel begin to understand that they have something to do with the world politically as well as religiously, that it is as much their duty to study correct political principles as well as religious, and to seek to know and comprehend the social and political interest of man, and to learn and be able to teach that which would be best calculated to promote the interests of the world.” (JD, vol. 9, p. 340.)

Thanks for your contribution in publishing President Taylor’s wise counsel. Perhaps some of these “classic” statements I have listed could also be published.

Bruce M. Gerschler
Burbank, California