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Comments about ‘LDS billionaire, BYU graduate shares success story’

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Published: Friday, Aug. 8 2014 5:00 a.m. MDT

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Malihini
Northern, UT

Why is it that the church, and many of it's members, is so infatuated with the wealthy people and/or the celebrities, i.e., the recent book and marketing efforts of Elder Archeletta. I mean, do you have to be wealthy to be a good member of the church? Is Steve Young and John Huntsman a better, more worthy member of the church because they became famous and wealthy, i.e., blessed with riches? Was David Archeletta a better missionary than others because he can sing?

I just don't understand what the point of these types of articles is. Spencer W. Kimball once gave a talk comparing the Israelite answer of, "we will have our king" that was given to Samuel in comparison to modern day members of the church. It seems that we must have our Kings as well. We must have our famous people, we must revere our wealthy people and we must attribute adoration as the world does, by outward appearances. Yes, "we will have our king" just as the world has theirs.

Danite
Salt Lake City, UT

My concern is not that this brother is wealthy, my concern is that this article is found in a Faith section of a publication. I'm stunned that we take the accumulation of wealth and connected it to things of "Faith". They do not mix, they cannot mix, and we when we try to mix them, we are fooling ourselves.

If this was about this brothers consecration and giving to those in need that would be acceptable in the Faith section, however, I understood this article to be highlighting his accumulation of wealth and not much more. I'm not judging him nor am I jealous of him, but I guess I am judging all of the Saints that read articles like this and say "wow, neat-o, he must be blessed".

JoeCapitalist2
Orem, UT

There are a couple ways to get rich.

Some get that way by working hard together with a great bunch of people who share a common goal; building value with great products and/or services; and sharing the rewards that come with that success. The reward may not be equal, but everyone's contribution is valued and loyalty between both owners and workers is strong.

Others get that way by always chasing the cheapest and quickest alternative to fill an immediate need. Loyalty means little where workers never stay long and jobs are outsourced whenever an opportunity presents itself.

There are plenty of examples of each. Those who see a big problem with "income inequality" seem to think that all capitalists belong in the second category. In an effort to right all the wrongs they see, leftists are using the power of government to try and thwart businesses from gaining too much wealth and power and "exploit workers".

Unfortunately, this also creates an environment where it is becoming harder and harder for someone in the first category to build a successful business that can be very beneficial to everyone involved.

Osgrath
Provo, UT

Malihini found a message in this article that widely differed from what I found. I was enlightened and edified by a story of how a young, disadvantaged man created a successful and abundant life for himself by applying valid and true principles of material success while remaining loyal to his spiritual beliefs and dedication to God. Had the story been simply young, poor man with a family gets a college education, it would have been good. But it goes far beyond that. It became, young, poor man gets a BYU education, enters the corporate world, discovers a good way to serve humanity, it goes well for him, he remains solid in his faith and values and worth emulating.

I guess Malihini sees the world much different than I do. I will be sharing this story with my 15-year-old son.

As for Danite, I also seem to have found a who lot of spiritual and faith value in the story than he did, as well. I do like to remain positive.

rickdoctor
Chandler, AZ

I am with Hugh Nibley = brilliant man. The trick is to make money HONESTLY -- the 'trick' is that most people use their own definition of 'honestly', with total rationalizations of every kind imaginable. Every time I think I have heard them all, a new one is spoken right in front of me. And usually by someone I had considered basically 'honest' -- go figure. We make excuses for what we do and think, usually AFTER-THE-FACT! We do not, as we ought, measure what we do and think by the Sermon on the Mount's teachings. It is too simple for most. I was reminded this week from Chapter 16 of Teachings of JFS -- that the Sermon on the Mount is a simple test for whether we will enter into the presence of the Lord -- live it and we will. Disregard any part of it, and we lose out -- as JFS says, we cannot pick and choose which parts of the Gospel we obey. Personally, I see making money at the expense of others = dishonest, making money on money produces no service or product = dishonest; making money for evil purposes = dishonest; making money while disregarding priorities = dishonest;

DanB
Portland, OR

When we went to pick up our son in 2000 from his mission in Brazil, we visited several towns where he had labored and met many wonderful people.

During our time there, our son explained that many of the returned Brazilian missionaries were going inactive because after their missions, they returned to a life without hope of escaping the extreme poverty that many had come from.

One of the towns we visited was Vitoria. We went to church there and met the LDS Bishop and later had lunch with his family. He was very young (probably late 20's early 30's). They were obviously doing very well financially as compared to some of the other great families we met on our trip.

Carlos Martins had been his Bishop or Stake President (can't remember which). When this young man got off of his mission, Martins basically set him up in business with the Vitoria Wizard franchise. Obviously it had been a financial blessing in his life and his family's life.

Not sure how many others he helped out, but this Bishop had nothing but praise for Martins.

mattwend
IDAHO FALLS, ID

It is interesting to see the political comments with this story. Once again, Democrats and Republicans can use their typical talking points to completely miss the reality that every last one of us is where we are today not because of our own intelligence, skill, or work ethic. We are where we are wholly and completely because of the blessings of a loving Heavenly Father. Yes, we can choose to use the intelligence, skills and work ethics we have, but we were given those as blessings. Isn't it sad to see someone lacking in work ethic? That is so limiting for individuals! We know there is a wide range of differences in levels of intelligence, and some people obtain greater skills than others based on their life experiences and efforts. Regardless, we are all beggars, and we have all been blessed. I am not wealthy, as is the subject of this story. It doesn't matter! Happiness comes from making good choices and doing the best we can. I believe this story will be great for Monday's FHE.

cjb
Bountiful, UT

Danite

Your judgement of him is inappropriate. There is no evidence given here that he got his money dishonestly or otherwise inapropriately such as neglecting his family in the pursuit of wealth. For you to manufacture such an assumption is the kind of judgement of others that the scriptures teach is wrong.

FDRfan
Sugar City, ID

If only I had a good work ethic.

Mike Richards
South Jordan, Utah

Hugh Nibley was not a "poor" man. He had vast wealth, but he used it to further the work of the Lord. Carlos Martins is not a "poor" man. He has used his wealth to help others and he has accepted responsibilities in the LDS Church that require a huge time commitment.

The Lord is not a "poor" man. He uses his "wealth" to bless the lives of each of us. He charges nothing for the air we breathe, for the sunshine and moisture that enables us to grow our food, for the opportunities that we have in life to better ourselves so that we can assist others to become better.

In our economic society, wealth is necessary before we have adequate ability to help others. Digging with our hands in the soil is less effective than using a shovel. Using a shovel is less effective than using a tractor. The man with a tractor can benefit many more people than the man who has no tools.

The Lord blesses those whose hearts are pure and whose intentions include helping others. People of many faiths have been blessed financially and they have blessed many others.

let's roll
LEHI, UT

Wow folks, perhaps we should all take a deep breath, take this article at face value, smile and pick fewer nits.

It's noteworthy when anyone rises from a humble background to be a billionaire. This billionaire happens to be a member of the Church. Newspapers write about things people find noteworthy, No one need believe that notoriety places anyone above another. I certainly don't think so and I don't assume others do.

I suspect if this same article was in the Finance section some folks would feel compelled to question why it wasn't in the Faith section since the article mentions this man's membership, his mission and his prayers.

The article reports on a newsworthy aspect of the life of a man who shares my faith. I found it uplifting, the same way I find articles about folks who use their faith to overcome adversity or unite their family to be uplifting. I suppose if I looked hard enough I could have found something to criticize about it...choosing to do so, however, seems counterproductive.

Utes Fan
Salt Lake City, UT

I am as conservative as they come, but I do not think it is inappropriate or judgemental to quote Hugh Nibley, or even the Savior when questions of wealth arise. They are fair questions. And, the disparity in incomes between the rich and poor is a valid concern. Granted, these disucssions are often polluted with personal political opinions and unfair accusations such as "you're just jealous" or "you're being judgmental".

God has wealth to give - some receive more than others. That doesn't bother me. It is also that God has given some pretty stict warnings about the pursuit of wealth - probably because so few can pursue it with His purposes in mind. What is really "the love of money"? What did the Savior mean when he introduced the warning about the camel and the eye of the needle? Or the D&C warning about "it is not given to one man to posess that which is above another"? Fair questions.

Don't ignore fair questions and discussions just because of a mind-set that wealth isn't wrong - sometimes it is, sometimes it isn't. I want to have those discussions.

Strong Man
Eau Claire, WI

Just a little strange to me that he changed his middle name to Wizard. Not sure I quite follow that but he sure seems to be doing a lot of good out there though, which is very admirable.

marxist
Salt Lake City, UT

Some people are driven to accumulate. Most of us are not. Those of us who are not should not feel inferior to those so inclined.

marxist
Salt Lake City, UT

I don't begrudge anyone their wealth as it stands. But this does nourish the irritating assumption among LDS that a church member's wealth is a direct consequence of their virtue - i.e. the more worthy the richer, the less worthy the poorer. This is what we assume in this culture.

Uteology
East Salt Lake City, Utah

JayTee
Sandy, UT

"You didn't build that!" -- Barack Obama

-----------------

Exaggerate much by taking words out of context?

The president's remark was made in the context of his belief that wealthy citizens should pay higher taxes to serve the public good:

"There are a lot of wealthy, successful Americans who agree with me—because they want to give something back. They know they didn't—look, if you've been successful, you didn't get there on your own... If you were successful, somebody along the line gave you some help. There was a great teacher somewhere in your life. Somebody helped to create this unbelievable American system that we have that allowed you to thrive. Somebody invested in roads and bridges. If you've got a business—you didn't build that. Somebody else made that happen."

plexippus
Parowan, UT

I know the man. As a missionary, I served in his ward for 7 months. His twins nearly died in a car accident just prior to my arrival. He was also the stake president. I have nothing but glowing words for this man. Even with all his trials and responsibilities, he went on splits with me EVERY Thursday for 7 months. We ate lunch at his house every Monday for 7 months. He bought homes for those that were in need. Every new member of the church was given a subscription to Liahona and every inactive member was also given a subscription, paid for by Carlos Martins. On Christmas Eve, his wife, Vania, dropped off hundreds of dollars of food at our door. The stories go on and on.

You may say what you want about riches, but this man was and still is today the greatest man I've ever personally known.

Just an Observer
Salt Lake City, UT

I would like to make as much money as I possibly can, in balance with everything else I need to do. If I have a certain amount, I know that I can live perpetually on the interest. Beyond that, the interest or income that can be generated on amounts beyond what I need for the reasonable needs and conservative desires of myself and my family can be used to bless others. As much as I would prefer for the world not to be money-based, it is. So if, by my efforts, I can generate more than I need, I will then be in the position to do for some others what they currently cannot. I hope I get into that position, and I wish there were more people with that mindset in the world.

Dr. Lynn
Tullahoma, TN

Thanks be to God for using this brother to help others. God bless him for what he is doing.

JoeCapitalist2
Orem, UT

It doesn't matter if the Lord has blessed you with ten thousand dollars, a million dollars, or a billion dollars. You have a stewardship over that money and a responsibility to use it wisely to bless your family, your community, and even strangers.

Some here believe that no matter how much you have, you don't deserve it and it should be taxed away from you so that someone else gets to decide how it will be used.

Sure, some people completely neglect their stewardship and use all their wealth for personal comfort and aggrandizement; but it is uplifting to hear a story like this where someone who is blessed with a lot of money is trying their best to have it also bless as many others as possible.

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