There is debate among scholars over who deserves credit for the expression “Charity begins at home.” Some say the Roman playwright Terence first coined the phrase around 160 B.C. Others argue it was instead 17th century British physician Sir Thomas Browne.
Regardless of who penned the phrase first, the sentiment remains the same; you have to take care of you and yours before you can take care of others. However, I tend to agree more with a popular Scottish proverb that took the idea a step further saying, “Charity begins at home but it shouldn’t end there.” And it’s that notion of extending charity beyond our homes and into our communities that I’d like to talk about.
Right now our state and nation face an unprecedented fiscal crisis. From layoffs to foreclosures to bankruptcy, our economy and confidence in the future have suffered a serious blow. We see the effects of these hard times not just in our own lives but all around us; a neighbor falls into foreclosure, a friend takes a pay-cut, a colleague is laid off.
Times are indeed tough and no doubt, many of you are consumed with the financial stress in your own homes. But consumed with our own challenges as we may be, never has our interconnectedness been more critical and profound. As a result, I hope we can answer the call to reach out to one another any way we can. The
If donating money is not feasible, why not start a new tradition of service and charity in your own homes? Follow the lead of the
Senator Michael McLachlan
The State of Connecticut
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