Comments about ‘Recalling the Mormon who tried to save Anne Frank’

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Published: Monday, Feb. 27 2012 11:00 a.m. MST

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Kearns, UT

this is really interesting. Walker needs to expand this article and give way more information.

Dirty Hippee
Bountiful, UT

Headline is mis-leading

South Jordan, UT

Great article. Thank you for sharing it, and telling the younger generation things they weren't around for. I have never heard that story before.

Jeanie b.
Orem, UT

Thank you for reporting this.

We LDS people try our best to do what is right. Like many other people sometimes we go too far. It's nice to see appropriate good acts reported as well as the overly zealous ones.

Lafayette, IN

That a good man tried to save the life of 20,000 Jewish kids is quite a story. Thank you to Deseret News for sharing this.

Layton, UT

This article points out an interesting aside about the tendency of the world to use the Jews as a political tool, but seldom do they really render any substantial help--even with their well-meaning faith. It reminds me of a Book of Mormon quote, 2 Nephi 29:5-6

4 But thus saith the Lord God: O fools, they shall have a Bible; and it shall proceed forth from the Jews, mine ancient covenant people. And what thank they the Jews for the Bible which they receive from them? Yea, what do the Gentiles mean? Do they remember the travails, and the labors, and the pains of the Jews, and their diligence unto me, in bringing forth salvation unto the Gentiles?

5 O ye Gentiles, have ye remembered the Jews, mine ancient covenant people? Nay; but ye have cursed them, and have hated them, and have not sought to recover them. But behold, I will return all these things upon your own heads; for I the Lord have not forgotten my people.

6 Thou fool, that shall say: A Bible, we have got a Bible, and we need no more Bible. Have ye obtained a Bible save it were by the Jews?


2 Democratic Senators from the State of Utah? Those must have been better days.


Very misleading title but I'm used to that here on Des news. So indirectly a mormon tried helping Anne Frank but to have the titles say "Recalling the morning who tried to save Anne Frank" as if he was there and personally knew who she was ... that's just plain lying.

Other than that I think this is very good and interesting article and a far cry from the old "all other churches are an abomination" thinking. Nice to see that the discrimination was already on a downhill slope in the 40's.

Salt Lake City, UT

what on Earth...what does this have to do with the current kerfuffle regarding the unauthorized baptistism of Anne Frank approximately 9 times after an agreement was struck with the Jewish Community not to do so...

A voice of Reason
Salt Lake City, UT

There is a great principle in this article and sadly I think most people will look past that. It isn't that a couple men tried to push good principles on society. It is that while much of the world stands by and watches things happen, much of the world attacks a faith for practicing a ceremony causing no harm to anyone (even quite the opposite), and so on... that the reality is that good motivations and people will the intent to help others can do a lot for us and have and will- ultimately that the rest of everyone else complaining is just getting in the way.

This article was about reflecting back on helping hands instead of judging the far fewer numbers within the church who make mistakes. You either are working to help or you are not. Rather than people get offended, dispute fine points, or otherwise- we should simply learn this simple lesson. Helping others is the right thing to do. Trying to change that picture to look different doesn't change this reality and doesn't bring happiness to anyone.


And the headline wasn't misleading, it wasn't enough to make a full judgement. It was enough to get you to read the article. If you read the article and found a lie, then address it. Otherwise, take the message, grow up, and move on.

Maricopa, AZ

Voice of reason, once again, your comments put things in a calm, reasonable prospective.
I'm always interested in reading what people think and feel about a large variety of subjects.
It just sickens me to see so many unwarranted and uneccesary attacks on people and religions.

Thank you for always bringing a respectful, intelligent opinion to these forums.


"A Voice of Reason - And the headline wasn't misleading"

To whom? You didn't open it expecting to hear about a 1940's Mormon who personally was trying to save Anne Frank by name?

You, my friend, have excellent insight in Des News articles!

Richland, WA

Elbert Thomas had served as a Mormon missionary in Japan in the 1920s, and he prevailed on the Roosevelt War Department to not drop firebomobs on the ancient Japanese capital of Kyoto, which had no significant war industries and whose destructious would only stiffen the resolve of Japan to not surrender.

One of the reasons this ties into the story of Senator Thomas successfully pressuring FDR to admit Jewish refugees into the US is through another man, named Chiune Sugihara, who was Japanese consul in Kaunas, Lithuania, at the beginning of World War II. Sugihara worked feverishly to give a couple thousand transit visas to Jewish refugees so they could travel through the USSR to Japan. His own government did not appreciate his action, and he was unable to return to Japan for years after World War II, being held by Soviet forces. While many of the Jewish families were able to make it to other parts of Asia, many rode out the rest of the war in Kyoto.

So when Senator Thomas saved Kyoto from firebombing, he was unknowingly also protecting hundreds of Jewish refugees who were saved, ironically, by Germany's Axis ally, Japan.

layton, UT

RE: A voice of Reason: the reality is that good motivations and people will the intent to help others can do a lot for us and have and will- ultimately that the rest of everyone else complaining is just getting in the way.
Cornelia "Corrie" ten Boom was a Dutch Christian, who with her father and other family members helped many Jews escape the Nazi Holocaust during World War II. Her family was arrested due to an informant in 1944, When a clerical error allowed her to be released from a Nazi concentration camp one week before all women prisoners her age were executed.
Corrie continued to live with a remarkable reliance on God, just as her family had as they hid Jews from Nazi terror. Generations of ten Booms held Christian prayer meetings for Israel for 100 years prior to World War II.

Pastor Dietrict Bonhoeffer raised the first and virtually only voice for church resistance to Hitler's persecution of Jews, declaring that the(Christian) church must not simply ,bandage the victims under the wheel, but jam the spoke in the wheel itself.
he said a short prayer and then climbed the few steps to the gallows, brave and composed. His death ensued after a few seconds. In the almost fifty years that I worked as a[ a German] doctor, I have hardly ever seen a man die so entirely submissive to the will of God. Two of many.

Sandy, UT

So... "The Mormon who tried to save Anne Frank" didn't ever have anything to do with Anne Frank? The article is perfectly fine without misleading the readers to think that this guy had anything to do with Anne Frank. You could even have said "Recalling the Mormon who tried to save holocaust victims like Anne Frank". That allows you to bring in the little snippet about recent stories related to Anne Frank without misleading the reader into thinking that this story is about Anne Frank.

I get frustrated by this type of thing because it seems many times like journalists think they need to trick me into reading a story about someone not as well known by pretending they had some kind of connection to a famous person that I might be interested in. Its insulting to my intelligence and I don't like it.

That said, many other do not feel the same way. That's fine for you, but don't try and minimize the way other people feel just because you don't feel the same way.

A voice of Reason
Salt Lake City, UT


I have my share of poorly worded or heated comments on here, but thanks. We all know that being respectful is the right thing to do. Sometimes it can be hard. But the more I learn, the more willing I personally am to look at articles like this with praise rather than having any sort of disagreement. I just read in 3 Nephi 11 where Christ gives Nephi the authority and power to baptize and immediately explains that it is wisdom that people should be baptized and have no disputations. After reading that, I certainly comment on here with a very different attitude than I would have otherwise. "Disputation avoidance" and 'looking for agreement rather than disagreement' should be a caption at the top of every comment section. Anyway, thanks again.


I simply read it differently. I've had my share of 'headline issues' where I believed they were poorly worded. I've even successfully had one changed as of now. (at least it was after I addressed it and on the point I raised concern with)

How I read it- 'Mormon tried to save Anne Frank'. This at first seemed very specific and direct. On that, I would agree with you. I then was curious what it was referred to and read of someone trying to save Jewish children in general. This, while an indirect attempt to help others- is inclusive of Anne Frank. For that reason, I understood the headline more clearly, as we all did. While using Anne Frank as a specific example is a logical appeal to people's emotional connection to her story- it is no less appropriate than the emotional appeals people use to make claims against a religious people for practicing something that, as stated before, causes no harm to anyone (again, and is only trying to help others). I'm not saying you don't have valid reasons. I'm only saying that to me, it isn't a lie. I believe we all know this and understand the point. There are headlines that have major implications with their wording, and as this isn't one of them- the indirect use of Anne Frank's story only serves to illustrate a point we can all benefit from. While nearly every headline could be reworded to please someone, I believe the author used this one fairly.


The title of this article firmly places DesNews in the supermarket rag category with the likes of the National Enquirer. The title serves no purpose other than getting people riled up.

If you cannot make your point without conjecture and hyperbole, you are not a credible news source.

Either that, or you have no faith in your readership.

Gregg Weber

Are these unauthorized baptisms mistakes or are there people who want to embarrass the church?

Sorry Charlie!

@ A voice of Reason: Since the point of the article is that a Mormon made an effort to save Jewish Refugee children "like the Frank family" a more honest title would have been "Recalling the Mormon who tried to save Jewish children".

Since Anne Frank was never in a refugee camp, passage of the proposed bill would have done nothing to save her - although it may have saved others.

And you are correct - doing the right thing and helping others is a good value. Dishonoring your belief system in order to do so, not such a good thing.

It would be nice if, instead of excusing the actions of those who broke their covenants with your Church, more members of your Church would honor their covenants and support your Church leadership.

A voice of Reason
Salt Lake City, UT

Sorry Charlie!,

"Since Anne Frank was never in a refugee camp"

That's a pretty good point. I still think using such a recognized example is appropriate when it's for this well-intended use, and in appealing to how strongly people feel about this issue. Only because without such an emotional tie, a lot of people may ignore it. Many people are upset about the actions of the few here. Showing an example of great work which was directed to victims of a similar nature to Anne Frank, is simply a method of convincing more people to come to a true principle- looking at help, in order to forgive, in order to find mutual peace and move forward. If the test of time has others looking back at this article, I would rather people focus on that principle than disputes over the wording of a headline, as despite the accusations around that headline- it certainly can serve a valid purpose in spreading a good message.

The Book of Mormon may reveal flaws in its authors, but the lessons learned from them can still be true independent of that fact. It's doctrines have always proven true according to my experiences. A missionary may make a mistake, say something wrong, and leave the church- but the book and its message remain unaffected by such things.

I don't know if you meant me, but I don't excuse what mistakes some have made. I do feel that because it is now addressed adequately, dwelling on faults and mistakes is negative and destroys others rather than builds them up in progress. My belief in justice excuses nothing. My knowledge that we are all imperfect means not judging others while I am not perfect myself. My belief in mercy means that if I can be forgiven, so can they. All those together mean, help others, forgive others, move forward. This article promotes that, while those questioning the motivations behind the headline are missing this point.

We can only listen or talk. All I'm really saying is this says something good and we can all benefit from listening to it.

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