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Charity is the pure love of Christ (Moroni 7:47), and is the essence of pure religion.
- And though I have the gift of prophecy, and understand all mysteries, and all knowledge; and though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, and have not charity, I am nothing.
- And though I bestow all my goods to feed the poor, and though I give my body to be burned, and have not charity, it profiteth me nothing. (1 Corinthians 13: 2-3)
Members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints accept the following definition of charity:
- And charity suffereth long, and is kind, and envieth not, and is not puffed up, seeketh not her own, is not easily provoked, thinketh no evil, and rejoiceth not in iniquity but rejoiceth in the truth, beareth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things. (Moroni 7:45)
Charity is not only developed as one dedicates his life to serving Christ, but it can also be received from Christ as a spiritual gift. This concept especially takes shape and is manifest when people in the Church receive callings. Bishops and relief society presidents report receiving the gift of charity when they are called. They feel an overwhelming love for the people they serve—all the people in the ward, not just the ones they know personally. The gift diminishes when the calling ends and someone else is called to serve in their place. Missionaries often have the same experience, feeling an all-encompassing love for the people in the region where they are called to serve.
The motto of the Relief Society, the women's organization within the Church, is "charity never faileth."
Alongside preaching the absolutely necessity of charity, the Church preaches a doctrine of self-reliance. Its many charitable programs  are oriented toward encouraging and assisting the needy to become self-reliant, which in turn enables them to provide charity to others.
The Church has a system of tithing to provide for the financial needs of the Church. Whereas the churches and synagogues of other faiths give public recognition for items donated for the construction of chapels and provision of pews and other accoutrement, the LDS Church does not. Donations are confidential, and no plaques or other recognition for donations are evident in the buildings.