Church sending coronavirus aid to China

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A worker at the Bishops’ Central Storehouse of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Salt Lake City loads supplies that will go to China to assist with the coronavirus outbreak, Wednesday, January 29, 2020. (The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints)

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is sending supplies to China to help with the recent outbreak of coronavirus, according to a news release published on Jan. 29.

President Russell M. Nelson asked a few long-time friends in China what type of aid is needed to help China combat the disease. He learned from these friends of a need for protective equipment at the Children’s Medical Center in Shanghai where supplies are low because of the coronavirus outbreak in Wuhan. The Church will partner with Project HOPE to help distribute needed supplies, including 220,000 respirator masks, 870 pairs of protective goggles and more than 6,500 pairs of protective coveralls.

“A plane from Salt Lake is being chartered to transport supplies from the Church’s Bishops’ Central Storehouse in Salt Lake City,” said the Church in a news release. A second shipment will be sent from the Church’s storehouse in Atlanta.

Latter-day Saint volunteers plan on assisting in the receipt and distribution of the supplies to those in need in Shanghai.

President Nelson also posted across his social media platforms about the Church’s efforts to help China.

“I have had associations with the good people of China for decades,” President Nelson said. “These are our dear brothers and sisters and we feel privileged to be able to offer some small measure of help. We pray for them, and know God will bless them.”

Rachel Yu Liu, a BYU professor of Chinese, said the Church’s announcement was great news for the Chinese people.

“It (the Church’s donation) is an action motivated from love and human care regardless of national, political or religious boundaries,” Yu Liu said. “The humanitarian action this time from the Church not only provides medical supplies but moreover it carries hope, love and support for Chinese people. It means so much to them.”

She added that the donation comes at a critical time as China battles the virus.

“This is the biggest challenging moment for Chinese people and the country in recent decades,” Yu Liu said. “People are fighting not for anything else but their lives. It is a moment that will be remembered for generations.”

Rita Cortez — the managing director of the BYU Chinese and Arabic Flagship Center — said she thinks it is amazing how the Church can help in these types of crises.

“I’m grateful that so many good members give of their means so that the Church can bless our brothers and sisters all over the world and, now particularly, in China,” Cortez said. “I have been to China several times and have always been impressed with the good people who live there. This is a tragic situation for that country and to see our Church leaders take this action is very heartwarming.”

Boxes at the bishops’ storehouse in Atlanta are prepared for shipment to China following a coronavirus outbreak. (The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints)
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