(Compiled by Dennis B. Horne)
I had a
rather interesting meeting with L____ W____ who was one of the directors [in
the Welfare Department]. I told him I was greatly distressed with the treatment
we were giving to our Deseret Industries workers. It sometimes seemed to me
like we were in the business to make money, which was not the way it should be.
We talked over basic concepts, and before we were through, he reversed the
policy on cutting hours and furloughing some workers when sales were down. I
felt that we ought to keep our people busy regardless of how we were doing
financially—I still do.
sad thing happened in Welfare on the 24th. 'Two of our top men flew to an
eastern city and fired our area manger there for some stupid thing he had done
with Church funds. I was greatly distressed. Bishop Burke Peterson of the
Presiding Bishopric heard about it and spoke to me. Bishop Peterson met with
President Hinckley to talk about the situation. President Hinckley ruled
against firing the man and commented that what the manager had done was,
indeed, stupid, but that we should not fire good people for being stupid. So we
brought the man back on the job, transferred him to another place and let him
carry on for several more years as a valuable employee. I was very grateful for
the attitude of Bishop Peterson and President Hinckley.
Edwards had worked closely with the First Presidency for a number of years and
had been their personal financial advisor. He had also been the stake president
in New York City several years earlier. I knew him to be an exceptionally
important man. I had met him on several occasions so I felt we should make his
trip pleasant. His wife was the sister to Camilla Kimball (President Spencer W.
Kimball's wife) and was a lovely and delightful person. Their visit, which took
four days and much of our time, was well worth it. I drove them to see the
Waitomo caves and some other beautiful areas of New Zealand.
Brother and Sister Edwards' visit. They were both 80 years old, but were bright
and intelligent. A number of years ago, he had been hired by the First
Presidency to make an audit of the entire welfare program—why we were in it,
what we were doing, and so forth. His report was very negative and upset Harold
B. Lee, Henry D. Moyle, and Marion G. Romney, and me. If the Brethren had
followed his suggestions, we probably would have closed down the welfare
program. He was a financial man, and welfare was not making money. Anyway,
welfare survived, and I still had great respect and good feeling for this fine
man and his wife.