Inspired Words on an Inspired Program
“The prophetic welfare plan is not merely an interesting footnote in the history of the Church. The principles upon which it is based define who we are as a people. It is the essence of who we are as individual disciples of our Savior and Exemplar, Jesus the Christ.” —Bishop H. David Burton, Presiding Bishop of the Church
Several addresses during the 181st Annual General Conference of the Church were dedicated to the commemoration of the Church’s welfare program, now in its 75th year.
Below are excerpts from those speakers’ talks that focused on the welfare program and welfare principles set forth by the Lord to help His children help themselves.
President Thomas S. Monson
President of The Church of Jesus Christ of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints
“I declare that the welfare program of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is inspired of Almighty God.”
See and hear President Monson’s talk, “The Holy Temple—a Beacon to the World,” here.
President Henry B. Eyring
First Counselor in the First Presidency
“Great temporal needs of the children of Heavenly Father have come again in our time as they have and as they will in all times. The principles at the foundation of the Church welfare program are not for only one time or one place. They are for all times and all places.”
“[The Lord] has invited and commanded us to participate in His work to lift up those in need. We make a covenant to do that in the waters of baptism and in the holy temples of God. We renew the covenant on Sundays when we partake of the sacrament.”
Watch President Eyring deliver his talk, “Opportunities to Do Good,” or read it here.
Bishop H. David Burton
“The prophetic welfare plan is not merely an interesting footnote in the history of the Church. The principles upon which it is based define who we are as a people. It is the essence of who we are as individual disciples of our Savior and Exemplar, Jesus the Christ.”
“This sacred work is not only to benefit and bless those who suffer or are in need. As sons and daughters of God, we cannot inherit the full measure of eternal life without being fully invested in caring for each other while we are here on earth. It is in the benevolent practice of sacrifice and giving of ourselves to others that we learn the celestial principles of sacrifice and consecration.”
“This is the sacred work the Savior expects from His disciples. It is the work He loved when He walked the earth. It is the work I know we would find Him doing were He here among us today.
Bishop Burton’s talk, “The Sanctifying Work of Welfare,” is available for viewing or reading here.
Silvia H. Allred
First Counselor in the Relief Society General Presidency
“Men and women of the Church participate jointly today in bringing relief to those in need. Priesthood holders provide essential support for those needing spiritual guidance and help. Inspired home teachers bless lives and provide the blessings of the gospel to every family unit. In addition, they lend their strength and talents in other ways such as helping a family in need of home repairs, in helping a family move, or in helping a brother find needed employment.
“Relief Society presidents visit homes to assess the needs for a bishop. Inspired visiting teachers watch over and care for sisters and families. They are often the first response in times of immediate need. Relief Society sisters provide meals, render compassionate service, and give constant support during times of trial.”
“When love becomes the guiding principle in our care for others, our service to them becomes the gospel in action. It is the gospel in its finest moment. It is pure religion.”