“Comment,” Ensign, June 1992, 79–80
Begin the Healing Process
My heart went out to the author of “A Refuge for the Oppressed” (January 1992). As a bishop, I talked with several women in similar situations. It is difficult for me to see how a father can betray the faith of one of his children. However, all the women I counseled longed for their father to come to them, sincerely acknowledging sorrow, so that the healing process may begin for both of them. Eternity is such a long time to carry the sorrows of childhood.
I pray this article may stir the souls of those who have been party to such activities, that they may make their activities a matter of prayer and that through repentance and confession, the healing process might begin.
Peter J. Dyson
Use of Church Magazines
I’ve enjoyed the Ensign over the years and have discovered an interesting way to use the magazines I’ve already read. This past month, I gave my used editions to a health club and found that people are really looking for good reading material that uplifts and builds. I just wanted to express my deep love for one of the greatest publications I’ve ever read.
Kelly K. Bergquist
Think and Refocus
Thank you for the wonderful articles about Christ. There are times when I feel pressured in my life. There is stress in my work as a special educator, in my service in the Church, and with my family. Decisions must be made daily, and they are often difficult ones.
But I have many blessings and I am learning more about Jesus. I was baptized four years ago and am realizing that by myself I will never be perfect. That doesn’t mean I give up. I need to trust and rely on Jesus more than I do now and realize that there is a reason he loves me. Thank you for helping me to think and refocus.
Laura Jean Washburn
Lake Mary, Florida
Hearts of Gold
With eagerness I read “Testimonies from the Inner City” (April 1992). I was born and raised in a Chicago suburb, and my heart has wept as I’ve seen the trials faced by many of our members in the inner city.
I taught home-study seminary for two years to youth faced with daily pressures to do drugs, join gangs, and engage in sexual perversions. I see these same kids at church every Sunday giving talks, listening to their teachers, and passing the sacrament. They have much to offer and have taught me much.
Thank you for recognizing members of the Church in all inner cities through your sensitive article. It’s a different world out there, much different than in Salt Lake City. But there are good people with hearts of gold desiring only to do all they can to return to their Father in Heaven. I have always been grateful to be a Latter-day Saint in Chicago! Thank you for your attention to some of Father’s finest.
Gina D. Focosi
Blessings from Heavenly Father
We are writing as members of the Russian Branch of the Church in Tallinn, Estonia. Our branch is very young—only one year and four months old. We have forty-four members at this writing, but our small community is constantly growing due to the energy and efforts of our missionaries.
The first Russian-speaking missionaries came to Tallinn in the fall of 1990. From them we learned about the Church and its doctrines. They had a most difficult but rewarding experience in setting up a new branch here. The missionaries have helped us to live as one family, and they became the very heart of our small community.
We are thankful for their teachers who made them so kind and helpful. Also we would like to express gratitude for their parents. The missionaries of our church are one of the blessings from our Heavenly Father.
Russian Branch Members
Love to Give
Thank you so much for “A Safe Haven” (April 1992). I have been a foster parent for two and one-half years. I recently “retired,” and Cari is the reason. She came to me right out of the hospital. It didn’t take long for me to decide I could not give her up. She became “adoptable” at the age of six months. After our fasting, prayer, and priesthood blessings, she officially became ours seven months later.
Foster parents do not need to be rich, married, or own their own homes. If you have love to give, you are needed.
Sandra K. Willeston
Kansas City, Missouri
Singleness No Misfortune
I am the Relief Society president in our stake singles branch and have spoken with many of the sisters in our branch, and elsewhere, about their concerns as single people in the Church.
Many of us feel that when others call us “single,” we are being segregated because of our marital status. The truth is that both married and single women struggle with feeling important, feeling attractive, and obtaining a formal education. It would be helpful for us to share experiences and possible solutions with each other. All people have something to offer regardless of their marital status.
We are aware, and appreciative, of the efforts made in our behalf. Many of us would like to find a companion. However, the facts exist: some single women may never marry or remarry. Our lives are not on hold because we are single. We are living productive lives and trying to use our time wisely, educating ourselves, and serving others. Keep in mind that being single is not a misfortune.
“What If …”
I am an inmate at the Utah State Prison. It pains me to realize that, at nineteen, I should be serving the Lord on a mission. I am serving, instead, a sentence for burglary. I have often thought about the “what ifs.” What if I had remained strong? What if I had listened? What if I had had goals?
Not long ago I started to ask myself another set of “what ifs”: What if I tried to be a servant of the Lord while in prison? What if … well, it was then that I picked up a copy of the March 1991 Ensign. In it I found an article entitled “In Prison, and Ye Came unto Me.” I was thrilled. The Lord knew I was here, and he loves me! It was as if I had gone back to the day of my baptism.
I am now working hard toward my release from prison and have been attending an institute class. I have rediscovered the Book of Mormon and have just finished reading it for the first time. I so hope to serve not only my debt to society, but to my Savior as well. There are so many great things happening in the Church today. I want to be a part of them.
Utah State Prison
Spotlight on Disabilities
As the mother of two “exceptional” children, I have been impressed by the increasing frequency of articles spotlighting the Church’s programs for members with physical and mental disabilities. I have also appreciated the efforts made by our General Authorities and others to offer words of encouragement and comfort to the disabled and their families. Although I feel much progress has been made in recognizing and reaching out to those who are “different,” it is still a challenge to be in that position.
Many of us are not fortunate to live in an area where our numbers are many. As such, there are no special Primaries or other individuals close by with whom we may compare our feelings in a gospel-centered context. We may be the only one with a child ready to leave Primary yet unable to comprehend the regular Sunday School or priesthood curriculum. It can be very lonely sometimes.
I have often thought how nice it would be to talk or correspond with others in the Church who must face the disappointment of having sons who may never have a missionary farewell or daughters who may be unable to attend seminary. While we parents understand that someday our loved ones will be made whole, we still feel a sense of loss and sadness while on this earth.
A Beautiful Magazine
I have been a subscriber to the Improvement Era and the Ensign for many years. The Ensign has improved and become a beautiful magazine, a leader for others to follow.
Family Home Evening Help
I truly appreciate the ideas found in the Ensign that help me plan and present family home evening. Please continue to include these to encourage members to share this special time together each week.
Mount Vernon, Washington