It’s not every day that I get to stand in front of a group of people and say that “we’re here today because I won a bet.” But the terms of this particular wager were just too good to turn down. If, by some miracle, Nebraska had ended up beating BYU, I would have sent ten of America’s finest turkeys, from Norbest turkey farms in Sanpete County, to the Omaha Open Door Mission – a wonderful Gospel Rescue Mission in Omaha, Nebraska.
Because the Cougars were victorious over the Cornhuskers, Senator Ben Sasse agreed to buy ten delicious pork loins from Pillen Family Farms in Nebraska. But The Pillen Family has outdone us both. They drove all the way down from Nebraska and donated 200 pounds of pork loin to the Utah Food Bank.
Personally, this has always been a central teaching of my faith – that each of us has a duty “to feed the hungry, to clothe the naked, to provide for the widow, to dry up the tear of the orphan, to comfort the afflicted, whether in [my] church, or in any other, or in no church at all, wherever he finds them.” But you don’t have to share my faith or subscribe to any religion to see the humanity of serving those in need, the power of working together to solve common problems, and the fact that the pursuit of happiness is not an individual endeavor but a common journey.
In fact, the Utah Food Bank, and the people who work, volunteer, and donate here, represent Utah, and America, at their very best... free and independent individuals choosing to come together to pool their resources, their energy, and their talents to serve the least among them. This is what has always made America an exceptional nation, and Utah an exceptional state.