Monday, May 12, 2008

Earthquakes in Divers Places

From Mormon 8:29-32:
-Yea, it shall come in a day when there shall be heard of fires, and tempests, and vapors of smoke in foreign lands;
-And there shall also be heard of wars, rumors of wars, and earthquakes in divers places.
-Yea, it shall come in a day when there shall be great pollutions upon the face of the earth; there shall be murders, and robbing, and lying, and deceivings, and whoredoms, and all manner of abominations;
-Yea, it shall come in a day when there shall be churches built up that shall say: Come unto me, and for your money you shall be forgiven of your sins.
Bad things happen. Mother nature is a powerful force. Modern communication technologies make for instantaneous news about a devastating typhoon in Myanmar and earthquake in China as well as political strife in Lebanon, Bolivia, Yemen, Somalia, Sudan, Nigeria and Congo...the list goes on.

In almost all cases, we see the good mingle with the bad. In Myanmar, we see self-centered leaders controlling aid, directly prolonging and causing death and suffering. In China, like most of the developing world, buildings are constructed with poor oversight -- Tinkertoys ready to fall at just about any above-normal weather or earthquake.

Governments from all of the world, namely nations like the U.S., the U.K. and other developed nations, take an active roll at helping out -- money, food, supplies, doctors and disaster recovery specialists. The Red Cross, CARE and dozens of other humanitarian groups feed and care for thousands throughout the world in trying circumstances. The LDS Church also takes part in humanitarian service all over the world, often in association with other non-denominational foundations.

LDS Philanthropies allow people to make instantaneous contributions to general emergency response funds or specific funds like help for the Burmese. Once can imagine that there will a China earthquake fund and American (OK/MO) tornado fund shortly. Look back on every major disaster or problem from Hurricane Kartina to neonatal resuscitation training, the Church's ability and willingness to help is enormous.

Are these the signs of the times or just normal patterns? I'll leave that to the doctrinal speculators. What I do know is that disasters will occur and people will need help. It is our duty to help, regardless of politics and personal behaviour in the effected region.

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