“Just to see the way everything works out [at Welfare Square] and how the organizational aspect of it, the voluntary aspect of it — it is so impressive and something that I think every religious tradition — and not even faith communities, but everyone — should participate in, and we can learn a lot from the LDS community in this way," Saba Soomekh said after touring the Church's welfare operations and an LDS temple.
Many of the Jewish delegation who visited with Church leaders and toured the newly renovated Jordan River Temple noted the similarities between the temple and their own religion. Sister Bingham reminds us, “The way to reach out to people of other faiths is to look for the things that we have in common and appreciate them. Yes, there are always things that are different, but even those things can be interesting when you find out more about a particular person. In a one-on-one conversation you find there are many things that you enjoy and that you can really actually love about another person.”
For Saba Soomekh, a Jewish leader from California, seeing firsthand The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints’ welfare and temple operations is a way of practicing what she preaches to her university religious studies students.
To help them deepen their understanding of other faiths, she asks students to visit mosques, synagogues and other worship spaces.
“It is so important to learn about other faiths, especially in the time that we're living in today where there is so much misunderstanding and so much animosity,” she continued. “It is so important to really truly understand what people believe, how it's not a threat to you and how you could work to better [the] community.”