Economic Administration

When Jesus blessed and brake the few loaves and fishes and fed a multitude with what had seemed sufficient for the needs of only a small family, he did much more than simply to satisfy the hunger of those who had assembled to hear him expound the word of God. Through this marvelous act of divine multiplication he taught them that God was able to supply their needs even to the uttermost, and in doing this he plainly recognized that they believed their hunger could be relieved only through the eating of food such as they were accustomed to. He did not attempt to satisfy them by telling them not to give way to their sense of hunger, but he actually supplied them with the food which they craved, and in such abundance that they were unable to consume it all. Furthermore, he taught them a lesson in economy which in modern times has too oft been unheeded, when he bade the disciples "gather up the fragments that remain, that nothing be lost."

That the world is now urgently in need of a greater supply of food than it has on hand is one of the strongest beliefs of mankind today, and that this condition cannot be relieved except by the actual production of a greater quantity of foodstuffs, together with the elimination of all wastage of food, is likewise strongly impressed on the minds of all. Mrs. Eddy writes on page 254 of Science and Health, "To stop eating, drinking, or being clothed materially before the spiritual facts of existence are gained step by step, is not legitimate." Christian Scientists will recognize, therefore, that until they have completely demonstrated as did Christ Jesus that "man shall not live by bread alone," it is incumbent upon them to do their share toward meeting their own needs and the needs of their fellow men by making the best possible use of what food is now available.

Webster defines economy as "thrifty and careful administration; management without loss or waste; as, a housekeeper accustomed to economy, but not to parsimony." He also defines the word economize as "to manage with economy; to use with prudence or frugality. . . . To utilize to the best advantage." It is in the sense of these definitions that the people of the United States are now urged by the President to practise economy in their daily living. Out of the abundance of their supply it is said that the wastage of food in American families is appalling, and that in normal times the cost of living has been largely increased by the uneconomic methods of both distributer and consumer.

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Drafting for Service
July 21, 1917

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