“New Book on the Story of Church Welfare,” Ensign, Dec. 1995, 71
Pure Religion: The Story of Church Welfare since 1930, a book written under the direction of the First Presidency, is now available for Church members.
“The first eight chapters are historical,” explains author Glen L. Rudd, a former member of the Seventy. “Then there are chapters that explain how the welfare program works today and how welfare principles work. There’s a chapter on responding to worldwide disasters, a chapter of prophetic quotations about welfare from the Brethren, and a chapter that shares stories of people whose lives have been changed by the Church welfare program.”
Brother Rudd, who served as the manager of the Salt Lake Regional Bishops’ Storehouse (Welfare Square) for twenty-five years and worked on the General Welfare Committee, received a letter from the First Presidency asking him to accumulate significant information relevant to the Church Welfare System prior to his being released as a member of the Seventy in October 1992. He’s spent the last three years organizing information he’d gathered through years of experience. “This book is the result,” he says.
“The book informs members of the progress we’ve made as a church,” Brother Rudd continues. “We started [the welfare program] humbly in the 1930s, and through the years we’ve grown until we have resources today to extend out beyond our own needs.”
The foreword, written by President Thomas S. Monson, First Counselor in the First Presidency, reads in part: “At long last the epic history of the Welfare Program has been compiled and written. … Pure Religion will be fascinating reading for all Church leaders and members and will be a treasured addition to every personal library. It will also inspire the thinking and efforts of Latter-day Saints around the world as they consider the admonition from the Apostle James: ‘Pure religion and undefiled before God and the Father is this, To visit the fatherless and widows in their affliction, and to keep himself unspotted from the world’ (James 1:27).”
The book, item #35247, costs seven U.S. dollars at the Salt Lake Distribution Center.