My Welfare Responsibilities

I was browsing through the Gospel Topics on 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.