A Liberal Mormon View of Workers and Zion
By Warner Woodworth, BYU Professor Emeritus
Today’s currents of economic malaise have long been the concerns of who seek a healthy economy and social justice. The LDS standard works are filled with admonishments to empower the downtrodden and remember that “the labourer is worthy of his reward” (I Tim. 5:17). Recent battles such as the Occupy Wall Street movement, Mitt Romney’s denigration of the 47 percent, the uproar over inequality, and low minimum wages illustrate these issues. Other damages against workers include corporate downsizing, exorbitant CEO pay, decline of middle class jobs, offshore manufacturing, flat wage structures, high unemployment rates, and so forth.
Mormonism addresses each of these concerns. Our alliance with society’s have-nots should begin with appreciation of the fact that Jesus Himself was a blue-collar worker, a low-paid carpenter engaged in manual labor. In today’s vernacular, we would say he’d be a trade union member and card-carrying member of the Democratic Party. In other words, he would probably be a Liberal.Read more
April: Jesus is my Example
Family Home Evening: Jesus is my Example
John 8:12 “I am the light of the world: he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life.”
Suggested Song: Teach Me to Walk in the Light (Hymn 304, CS p. 177)
What is an Example?
Play “Do as I do”. Each member of the family takes a turn as leader. The leader stands in front of the others and performs an action, like clapping, touching his nose, winking, or saying something. The rest of the group imitates his actions. Parents or the ones conducting the family home evening may want to be leader after the others have had a turn so they can introduce a few examples of reverent behavior for others to follow.
Discuss the idea of using Jesus as our example.
- Mark 10: 13-16 He loved the little children
- Mark 6: 53-56, 7:31-35 He helped the sick and those in need
- John 4: 6-10 He was kind
- John 8: 32 He taught the importance of truth
For the teenagers and adults:
“Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these,”
Roger sat at the dinner table, tired but happy. He had spent his entire Saturday at the university library studying for exams. His roommates had all gone out on dates or to the football game, but Roger stayed in, determined to keep his high grade point average. He had finally finished all his studies, and was beginning to prepare his Gospel Doctrine lesson about following the example of Christ for the next morning.
When the doorbell rang, Roger reacted with a frown. “Who would be coming here on a Saturday night?”
When he opened the door he found an unshaven, scraggly dressed man about forty years old. The man’s breath smelled of tobacco and liquor. “I just drove into town,” the man said, “and my car stopped right here in the middle of your street.” The man explained how he hadn't eaten all day and that his friend had a son attending the university whom he wanted to find. “Could you spare me a bite to eat, and then help me find out what’s wrong with my car? You could probably help me find my friend’s son too, couldn't you?”
Roger tried to think of an excuse. There were several other houses on the street in which families, not students, lived. They probably had more food. They probably didn't have to worry about teaching a Sunday School lessons and weren't as tired as he was tonight. Besides, this guy might even ask to stay the night. What would his roommates think if they came home to this man in their apartment?
On the other hand…Roger did know something about cars…
- What would you do if you were Roger?
- What would the Lord have you do? Why?
- Read Matthew 25: 31-46 and discuss.
Challenge: Find ways to care for others in the next week. Write them down and discuss them. What can we do to help those we don’t see every day? What good can we do to help those we may never meet?