“Widows and Orphans Shall Be Provided for, as Also the Poor”

Doctrine and Covenants 83:1–6

1 Verily, thus saith the Lord, in addition to the laws of the church concerning women and children, those who belong to the church, who have lost their husbands or fathers:
2 Women have claim on their husbands for their maintenance, until their husbands are taken; and if they are not found transgressors they shall have fellowship in the church.
3 And if they are not faithful they shall not have fellowship in the church; yet they may remain upon their inheritances according to the laws of the land.
4 All children have claim upon their parents for their maintenance until they are of age.
5 And after that, they have claim upon the church, or in other words upon the Lord’s storehouse, if their parents have not wherewith to give them inheritances.
6 And the storehouse shall be kept by the consecrations of the church; and widows and orphans shall be provided for, as also the poor. Amen.

President Joseph Fielding Smith wrote:

“On [April 30, 1832, the Prophet Joseph Smith] returned to [Independence, Missouri,] and again sat in council with the brethren, and on that occasion the Lord gave him further light in relation to the claim of children on the parents, and also the claim of widows upon the Church. All faithful members were to be cared for when in need, but the transgressors were not to have fellowship in the Church. . . . The storehouse was to be kept by the consecration of the Church, and ‘widows and orphans shall be provided for, as also the poor. Amen’ [D&C 83:1–6].”

(Church History and Modern Revelation, 2 vols. [1953], 1:323.)

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