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You’ll notice seven big changes in the Friend magazine, beginning in January.
The friend is now printed on crayon-friendly paper. Beginning with the January issue, you’ll notice a thicker, textured paper that’s great for coloring and paper-and-pencil activities. The old glossy paper was not easy to color on.
Expanded Preteen Section
The “For Older Kids” section has been redesigned and expanded from four pages to eight. This section will have stories and features relevant to preteens. It will cover gospel topics like profanity, pornography, drug use, technology, and mental health.
“Share a Heart!” Invitation
The Friend invites children to fill the world with love—and then send in cutout hearts telling about their experiences. This invitation echoes President Thomas S. Monson’s plea: “May we begin now, this very day, to show love to all of God’s children” (Ensign, May 2014, 94). Each month the magazine will publish a photo story featuring “Friends with Heart”—children around world who serve and show kindness.
Monthly CTR Stories
To support the 2017 Primary sharing time theme, “Choose the Right,” the Friend will publish a monthly CTR story that teaches a principle from My Gospel Standards, along with a CTR challenge card. Kids can cut out the cards and complete challenges to apply protective and empowering gospel truths in their daily lives.
Scripture Reading Chart
The January Friend has a reading chart to help families read from the Doctrine and Covenants, which they will be studying in Primary and Sunday School. Families can mark their progress by filling in sections of the illustrations on pages 24-25.
Church History Figures
Each month, the Friend will include a Church history figure that families and Primary teachers can use to tell Church history stories.
“Friend Connection” Page in the Ensign
To help parents and families even more, the Ensign will contain a monthly “FriendConnection” page. Parents will find help for using that month’s Friend to talk to children about challenging issues such as pornography, family conflict, gender issues, bullies, and good language.
You can access the Friend magazine online at friend.lds.org.