Summarized by Donna Williams
Church advises members to maintain a year's supply of food
Toledo OH Blade 21Aug99 C7
By Judy Tarjanyi: Blade Religion Editor
This article focuses on Church advice to members to "Be prepared...
long before talk of a Y2K crisis was woven through the mainstream
media" Mentioning both 72 hour kits and recommendations of a year's
supply, the author notes:
"Organized in 1830, the Mormon church developed its own welfare
services plan in 1936 urging members and their families to become
self-reliant in such areas as financial and resource management and
home food and clothing supplies. When individuals or families do not
have enough of their own resources, the church promises to provide
aid, but leaders emphasize that their aim is to help people help
The church continues to recommend to its members that they avoid debt
and save during times of plenty for times of need and that they
maintain a year's supply of food, clothing, and fuel. Members also
are encouraged to plant gardens, to sew, and to can, freeze, and dry
In addition, the welfare services plan includes a system of regularly
checking on every family in the church to make sure their needs are
The article uses the ability to respond quickly to the recent tornado
in Salt Lake as well as an interview with a local member to
illustrate its points.
Then it quotes Michael Purdy, the church's media relations manager,
who explains that the Mormon habit of being ready for anything goes
back 100 years. "It's an attitude of preparedness for any type of
situation that might arise. It could be loss of a job, natural
disaster, any type of emergency situation."
Noting that the church's preparedness guidelines have nothing to do
with Y2K or the end of the world, he says, "It's really just a
directive to be prepared for whatever life might bring my way," and
explains that the church's history as a pioneer people and a
persecuted minority likely gave rise to the self-sufficiency goals.
"We are very self-reliant and have been taught to be that way."