Welfare —

Welfare- a single word that carries so much meaning. Often understood to reflect a benevolent connection with all people – those in need and those in abundance, finding common ground. For decades used in this country to describe structures set in place to assist those who are poor and those with unique needs so they might have the basics for living; food, shelter, medial care and seek meaningful, productive lives. Of recent ‘welfare‘ has become a word filled with negative connotations. Used to posture opinion as our country prepares for a presidential election.

We risk so much when we turn our backs on one another. If we are not awake, society’s focus on the individual could wash our collective minds and hearts of the importance to care for one another. How tragic and dangerous.

Helen Keller knew so well the importance of interdependence. Her independence was directly impacted by her community’s support and encouragement. Her life was an example of welfare’s good and brought encouragement for generations to come. The well-being of one person ripples beyond to all people.

Welfare – we must hold this word carefully before us as we help to shape the future of our country and our lives. To allow its definition to be re-tooled for purposes of greed and prejudice is not an option.

Carry this word to your time of quiet, in prayer and meditation. May its seed take root and give us the needed strength to live by example. The welfare of all depends on each of us. Not as individuals but as a community shaped by our actions – actions that have ultimate effect on all.

Welfare – a word of compassion and empowerment. May we use it carefully and with sincerity.

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