October 1974

“Comment,” Ensign, Oct. 1974, 76


Canning Fish

I noticed in your June magazine that Sister Goodell cans her fish at 10 pounds pressure for 40 minutes. I thought it took longer than that to can fish properly.

Lucy Bannion
Ogden, Utah

The Utah State Agricultural Extension Service reports that most canning companies recommend pressuring fish for 100 minutes for complete safety. The problem is not spoilage, but the fact that botulism, Type E, a very deadly toxin produced by a bacteria that fish pick up in some water, can grow in a sealed jar. Dr. Von T. Mendenhall, Utah State University Department of Nutrition and Food Sciences, adds the information that the Code of Federal Regulations requires that smoked fish reach an internal temperature of 180 degrees F. or above for 30 minutes during smoking, and that the internal temperature after smoking should not exceed 38 degrees F. This temperature is the maximum allowed in commercial factories during the brining process as well. Dr. Mendenhall also adds that salt petre (potassium nitrate) will help prevent the growth of botulism in smoked fish but that its use has not been allowed by the Food and Drug Administration.

For Elderly Eyes

I have been going to write for some time relative to black lettering on colored paper. This is difficult for older people. We oldsters love reading but we prefer black and white. When the eyes get a bit dim, it is not so enjoyable to try and read colored pages. Many of my friends my age feel the same as I do and they have asked me to call this to your attention.

Mrs. Ida Wood
Taber, Alberta, Canada

Virginia Family Unity Month

The value of the Church’s family home evening program is being publicly recognized by many government and civic leaders.

A case in point was the recent endorsement by Governor Mills E. Godwin, Jr., of Family Unity Month sponsored by local Latter-day Saint leaders in Virginia. However, in reporting the governor’s support of the program, the Ensign (June 1974, p. 64) erroneously stated that Governor Godwin had referred to the family home evening program in his inaugural address. However, he was, and is, vitally concerned with strengthening the family unit.

This concern was reflected throughout the state of Virginia as community leaders responded to Governor Godwin’s endorsement with endorsements of their own, and local service groups conducted programs built around family unity. In South Dakota, after being introduced by missionaries to the family home evening concept, Governor Richard F. Kneip signed an executive proclamation urging the citizens of that state to set aside one night a week for family togetherness. Said the governor: “This night should be used to develop greater love within the bounds of the individual homes within our state. By participating in this special night we can better understand the needs of our families.”

Latter-day Saints throughout the country are being featured in local newspaper articles and editorials that highlight the family home evening concept, and even The Long Island Catholic, one of the largest Catholic newspapers in the United States, recently carried an article on the growth of the Church and noted the “strong family influence,” including a “family home evening … once a week.”

The Editors

Beautiful Artwork

My partner, who is a nonmember, and I are inspired continually by the beautiful and very professional artwork which appears in the Ensign. Being commercial artists, we are delighted with the contemporary approach which William Whitaker, Richard Hull, Dale Kilbourn, and others have applied to this magazine. It is very fitting, since all things belong to the Lord, that our magazines have the best graphic talent available designing them. Hats off to the talented art staff of the Ensign.

Merle H. Graffam
Palm Desert, California

Andrew Jenson

You probably already know that a typographical error resulted in Andrew Jackson being credited with authoring the History of the Scandinavian Mission instead of Andrew Jenson. (July Ensign, p. 46.) Brother Jenson was an outstanding Scandinavian Mormon immigrant and made significant contributions to Church history.

Richard Jensen
Church Historical Department

Disciplining Children

Relative to the articles on discipline (April), I wish I could find the original piece from which I remember the phrase: “Most babies can adjust themselves to their parents’ handling. …” I believe that most children can adjust themselves to their parents’ methods of discipline within the extremes of all reasoning or all physical punishment.

I believe that our Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ set the example for us with regard to discipline: sometimes no reasons are given for commandments; sometimes reasons are given; sometimes swift penalties follow breaking the commandments; sometimes no apparent penalties follow.

The reason we obey the commandments of the Lord is not because of the penalties or blessings which may follow, but because we trust the Lord has given us the commandments for our benefit and protection, whether we understand the reason for the commandment or not. I am trying to follow the Lord’s example. I am trying to teach my children that they can trust me when I tell them something. When my three-year-old asks for a piece of pumpkin when I am peeling it for supper, I tell him, “It doesn’t taste nice raw, but you may have some if you want it.” He takes it and sees that I was right, and learns (I hope) that I tell the truth. But, when he was old enough to open the gate but not old enough to understand why he must not run in the road, he got a spanking every time he was found outside the gate. I used to watch him go out and wait until he was about to go into the road and then bring him inside and swat him soundly. Now he knows not to go and is getting old enough to understand some reasons why. He doesn’t go for the right reason—that it is dangerous. He will trust me (I hope) when it comes to more major issues in which he is commanded and given no reason.

If we can teach our children to trust us, then I believe we have won a major battle.

I remember an incident in our home when I was a teenager. I desperately wanted to go somewhere, and had been given reasons for my parents’ refusal. In the end my dad said, “You may go, if that is your choice, but you go without my blessing.” I didn’t go. But that method worked because I trusted my dad.

I can remember my mother saying, “I gave you the choice to make and you have made the wrong choice. Obviously you are not yet able to make that decision for yourself. This is what you must do.” And that worked because I trusted my mom.

We had a young teenager staying with us for a month and in that time she did something deceitful and my husband said to her: “You are a big girl now, and you know that was wrong. You must punish yourself.” She was very thorough in her self-punishment. But she trusted and loved us.

I believe that:

1) Parents must present a united front to their children and sort out their discipline disagreements in private;

2) Firmness and consistency must be practiced with children with plenty of fairness to temper them;

3) Parents must be imaginative in their discipline and not follow the herd. After all, they are individuals, and so are their children;

4) Most important, parents must study and pray and attend to their church duties so that they will be worthy to have the promptings of the Spirit to guide them.

No other success in life will compensate for failure in teaching our children to recognize correct principles and govern themselves accordingly.

Vicky Payne
Transvaal, South Africa