The scripture passage "As ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me" (Matthew 25:40) takes on special meaning as humanitarian endeavors are highlighted.
[PIANO] Tonight the scripture passages "As ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me" and "Remember in all things the poor and the needy" take on special meaning as we review highlights of humanitarian endeavors during the past year.
In 2007 the Church responded to major earthquakes in 5 countries, massive fires in 6 countries, hunger and famine in 18 countries, flooding and severe storms in 34 countries. In total the Church and its members responded to 170 major events--nearly one every two days for the entire year.
It was a busy year with many opportunities to serve. When Church representatives in Findlay, Ohio, presented a donation to the local Red Cross chapter, a passerby spotted them in their yellow Mormon Helping Hands T-shirts. She walked in and held up her camera phone with a picture of four Helping Hands and exclaimed, "They just saved my home!" Then she hugged everyone in sight.
A shipment of food was delivered to a local food bank. When it arrived, the manager had a startled look on his face and said, "How did you know? I just gave out my last loaf of bread and planned to lock the doors. How did you know?"
We express our deep appreciation to the many individuals who are the good Samaritans of today. Our volunteer observed, "The things you do for yourself are gone when you are gone. The things that you do for others remain as your legacy."
May we press forward to lighten the load of neighbors, encourage and assist the downtrodden, open our purses to assist the poor, and extend our helping hands. I bear witness of the divinity of the Lord Jesus Christ and His gospel and pray that we may continue to enjoy the blessings of true discipleship as we quietly reach out to others. In the name of Jesus Christ, amen.