SALT LAKE CITY – Pres. Donald Trump visited the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints’ Welfare Square while briefly in Utah Monday.
He met with LDS church leaders including President Henry B. Eyring of the Church’s First Presidency; President Russell M. Nelson of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles; Bishop Gérald Caussé of the Presiding Bishopric; and Sister Jean B. Bingham, Relief Society general president.
Pres. Trump toured the bishops’ storehouse and Deseret Bakery to learn more about the church’s self-reliance programs.
“We’re here in a place where we have food and materials that we give to the poor,” President Eyring said. “This is simply an example of what we do across the world, the idea being that we think we have an obligation to God to look out for the people who, without our aid, have tragedy in their lives, be it poverty or hunger.”
While meeting volunteers at the bakery, Pres. Trump said, “This is very exciting for me. The job you’ve done is beyond anything you could think of — taking care of people the way you take care of people and the respect that you have all over the world.”
The LDS church said resources at Welfare Square come from member donations.
The church also owns farms, ranches, orchards and lands that supply the raw materials, officials said.
President Eyring and President Nelson expressed their appreciation to Pres. Trump for the efforts by his administration to protect religious freedom.
President Eyring gave the president a Christus statue before he left for the Utah State Capitol.
According to the LDS church, “In a long-standing tradition, many United States presidents have visited with Church leaders in Utah, beginning in 1875 when Ulysses S. Grant met with Church President Brigham Young and other Latter-day Saint leaders. U.S. presidents who have visited Church leaders in Utah in the past 70 years include presidents Harry S. Truman, John F. Kennedy, Lyndon B. Johnson, Richard M. Nixon, Gerald Ford, Jimmy Carter, Ronald Reagan, George H. W. Bush, George W. Bush and Barack Obama.”