“Comment,” Ensign, Apr. 1979, 74
I am not a member of your church, but about a year and a half ago my husband’s company transferred us to Salt Lake City from Alberta, Canada. I also found employment, and one day about a year ago I took a large thermos full of coffee to work with me.
During the break period I offered to share my coffee with the lady sitting next to me. She politely refused, saying that the church she belonged to had a code of health known as the Word of Wisdom, and coffee was a no-no.
Gradually I began asking questions about this religion, and I was surprised that this lady had answers to my questions. Each month after she had read her Ensign, she passed it on to me, and I found it very interesting reading. I began to go to church with her, and I must admit I was very surprised at what I saw and heard. That is the reason I write you.
I was terribly disappointed at the lack of reverence in your chapel. Don’t your people know just what and how much they have, so different and so much more truth than all the other churches? I was appalled and, yes, honestly disgusted at the noise and confusion during the service. Another thing that did not make a good impression on me was the boys who passed the sacrament—deacons, don’t you call them? Some were even dressed in jeans, all colors of shirts, open at the neck, no ties. Not a very impressive sight for someone who had been led to expect differently. My friend asked me what I thought when we came out of the chapel. I told her it was almost like coming out of a hockey game.
Last October when your general conference came, I was determined to have a close look at President Spencer W. Kimball, whom you say is the Lord’s living prophet on earth today. I guess I was fortunate, because while there were hundreds of people waiting outside the Tabernacle at 3:30 A.M., when the doors were opened I managed to squeeze into a seat on the front row of the balcony. I was very impressed with the remarks and vitality of President Kimball and the remarks of other speakers. But again, I couldn’t believe my eyes. When this man, your prophet, was speaking, people actually got up and walked out, to return again a few minutes later and disturb everyone in their seats a second time.
What a pity that the people who say they are members of the Church of Jesus Christ don’t even know how to revere his name.
Salt Lake City
I am a convict in the Oklahoma Prison System. I have been here eight years. The first seven were totally useless to me, but a little over a year ago, by chance, maybe by a guiding hand, I wrote a letter to a couple in Antioch, California. I had never met them; I only had their address. I really did not think I would get an answer. But over the last year I have heard from Fritz and Trudy Wilson regularly. I have received from them the Book of Mormon, the Ensign, and other Christian literature. I have received family photos, postcards, and well wishes.
I have read the Book of Mormon and it has struck me as no other book has, bringing me closer to our Heavenly Father. But what has really brought me close to God is the letters I receive from this brother and sister. In their letters I could actually feel their love and compassion for me.
In a few months I’ll be released, and Fritz arid Trudy Wilson have offered to help me get on my feet. I could hardly believe it. They have given me something to look forward to. They have given me peace of mind and peace with our Lord. Without them I might never have found myself.
After reading Louise Price Bell’s instructions for kindling cupcakes in the January Ensign, I felt I should share some added information. It is important not to use paraffin in these sawdust fire starters, as it burns too quickly and smokes badly. Candle wax is best.
Also, instead of cupcake liners, we use egg flats. They are easy to store, and when you want a fire, all you have to do is break off a section, place it under your charcoal or wood, and light it. No mess or smell, and no worry about the high flammability of liquid starters.
San Diego, California
As a former librarian at the Library of Congress, I saw many, many serial publications, and I want to tell you that very few surpassed the Ensign in format, layout, copy, and art. I am struck by the editorial excellence you have achieved in this publication. It is first rate!
Michael D. Sessions