My Welfare Responsibilities

I was browsing through the Gospel Topics on LDS.org and came across the entry for welfare. At the top of the page was this line:

Each member of the Church has two basic welfare responsibilities: to become self-reliant and to care for the poor and the needy.

I really like this statement. It is simple, short and direct yet covers the broad issues. The sentence is able to do that in part because it focuses on teaching principles (self reliance and charity) without trying to explain all of the implementation details. How these goals are attained will vary, decisions best made by individuals and families.

I’m reminded of the response Jesus gave as recorded in Matthew 22:37-40 to the question “Master, which is the great commandment in the law?”:

37 Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind.
38 This is the first and great commandment.
39 And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.
40 On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.

What are my welfare responsibilities? To make sure my family is self-reliant and find ways to care for the poor and the needy.

5 Comments

  1. I like that statement a lot. Especially with all of the heated debates dealing with welfare, the government, taxes, etc, I think the real important things get lost: our personal responsibility and focusing on that.

    I think I’m going to start worrying about how I personally am helping others rather than how everyone else is handling the situation. 🙂

  2. i agree with you, i think that is a great statement. Simple and clear, and all the people should have, without orders or religions, this kind of statements by themselves. As human persons we should take care for every one of us. great blog, Joseph, i’ll keep visiting!

  3. That really is a great way of putting it. Makes me feel less bad about being flat broke while I go to school.

  4. It’s certainly made me re-evaluate what I’m doing to help others and how I might be able to do more.

  5. Going to school, getting an education, that’s part of the self-reliance responsibility. Caring for the poor and needy isn’t always about money, providing service time helps as well. How each person and family does that is a decision best left to them.

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