A lot of people ask me why Mormons store food. The church asks each of its families to have on-hand as many emergency supplies as they can. Is this because Mormons think the world is coming to an end, or that there is going to be some global catastrophe in the immediate future that they need to plan for?
No- our emergency preparedness is not because we believe that the “end is near”, like the proverbial cardboard-sign-doom-sayer might imagine. What you have to understand is that the Mormon church is global in scope- there are over 13 million Mormons all over the world. Our emergency preparedness supplies are designed to help us get through common hard times in our lives that might come, and to help other people do the same.
For example- imagine there is a family living in the South Pacific, a region that is troubled by significant earthquakes. By keeping some extra essentials around, the families there might not worry as much, and when something does happen, they would have what they need.
Now consider an example closer to home: Anytown, USA. Most Americans live on the edge of their budget, barely paying their bills. When “disaster” strikes it might be something as simple as losing a job or having a car break down. When you store a little extra food, you can create a barrier against these sorts of problems. Imagine being able to spend your grocery budget on that car repair, and still being able to eat.
Of course, Mormons aren’t the only ones who store food- since Y2k, many have decided that they want to have some extra stored up for whatever life might throw at them. This is an excellent idea for anyone of any faith. You never know when it might come in handy!