Five Little Fish


Gordon B. Hinckley
From a September 2006 general Relief Society meeting address.

Five Little Fish

President Hinckley shows how good things can happen even when keeping a commandment is very hard.

As a young man recently returned from his mission, Rene found the girl he wanted to marry. They were happy, but very poor.

Then came a difficult time when their food and money ran out. It was a Saturday, and the cupboard was literally bare. Rene felt distraught that his young wife was hungry. He decided he had no other choice than to use their tithing money and go purchase food.

As he was leaving the house, his wife stopped him and asked him where he was going. He told her he was going to buy food. She asked him where he got the money. He told her that it was the tithing money. She said, “That is the Lord’s money—you will not use that to buy food.” He put the money back, and they went to bed hungry that night.

The next morning they had no breakfast, and they went to church fasting. Rene gave the tithing money to the bishop, but he was too proud to tell the bishop that they were in need.

After the meetings he and his wife left the chapel and started to walk home. They hadn’t gone very far when a new member called to them from his house. This man was a fisherman and told them he had more fish than he could use. He wrapped five little fish in a newspaper for them, and they thanked him. As they continued to walk home, they were stopped by another member who gave them tortillas; then someone else stopped them and gave them rice; another member saw them and gave them beans.

When they arrived home, they had enough food for two weeks. They were even more surprised when they unwrapped the package of fish and found two very large fish and not the five smaller ones they thought they had seen. They cut the fish in portions and stored it in their neighbor’s freezer.

They have repeatedly testified that never since then have they gone hungry.

Things to Think About

  1. 1.

    What would you do if you were hungry and the only money you had was for tithing?

  2. 2.

    Did the people who gave Rene and his wife food know they didn’t have food? If they didn’t, why do you think they gave them food?

  3. 3.

    What blessings did Rene and his wife receive because they paid tithing? What blessings have you received?

[illustrations] Illustrations by Brad Teare