Journal September 22, 1963
September 22 (continued)—there to implement the division of our mission and the creation of the new Franco-Belgian Mission. President Petersen had returned to the States for an operation, and President Marion D. Hanks was going to preside at these conferences. And after the Belgian conferences, there would be a French Missions Literature Committee meeting in Nancy to decide where the Church’s French-language publications would henceforth be printed, including l’Étoile, [240] missionary tracts, books, and manuals. As I say, I knew about all this, and I was under the impression that it was all set up, and that I wouldn’t be directly involved.

Parenthetically, I need to add that President Moyle, Jr., who chairs the Literature Committee, has been much influenced by Elder Clayton, his inimitable Mission Editor. The latter is unquestionably a genius with printing issues, and he entertains grandiose ideas about the printing operation in Geneva. If he could have his way, even l’Étoile would be produced on Geneva’s offset presses, as well as all the other French-language publications of the Church. When President Petersen convened
President Marion D Hanks
a meeting in Paris of Presidents Hinckley, Moyle (Jr.), Edmunds, and van Slooten (of Netherlands) and their literature people [241] last month, Elder Clayton raised the question of the comparative cost of printing in Belgium [as we do now] and in Switzerland [as he’d like us to do]. He suggested energetically that the Church could save money by printing everything in Switzerland. Which we’d be glad to see, except for three big problems:

Humble self, evoking several Gallic stereotypes
(1) The Geneva brethren base their plans on the truly remarkable people they currently have there: President Moyle and Elder Clayton. No question: they could make it happen. But once their missions are over, who will succeed them?

(2) The idea of printing l’Étoile by offset makes me ill, and I’ll gladly make the point to anybody who cares. We’ve just put in place (under President Petersen’s direction) a system of cooperation with the Millennial Star under which we’ll be able to save a lot of money and to improve our content at the same time. If we went to offset, not only would the section be much less engaging, but also we’d have wasted all these efforts and the improvements they achieved.

(3) Brother Joe Deghaye, our printer at Liège, is a splendid man and a good member of the Church. He has just installed a new high-speed press that cost him 600,000 Belgian francs (about $12,000) for the sole purpose of responding to the Church’s needs. If we took our business away, it would ruin him.

Now, this famous Nancy meeting was called to come to a decision about these questions, by means [243] of a narrow comparison between the costs of printing in Belgium and in Switzerland. President Petersen’s unfortunate absence already deprived us of an important team member—President Hanks …More, next page…
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