All of Us Together – Sunday, January 17, 2021

“A free society is a moral achievement,” wrote the late Rabbi Jonathan Sacks in a book published just months before his passing. Freedom does not come from economic policies or political power, he observed. It requires morality, which Rabbi Sacks defined as “a concern for the welfare of others, an active commitment to justice and compassion, a willingness to ask not just what is good for me but what is good for ‘all of us together.’ It is about ‘Us,’ not ‘Me’; about ‘We,’ not ‘I.’” 

Just as the COVID-19 pandemic has taught us to exercise an abundance of caution, we could also use an abundance of care and compassion during these troubling times. The world seems so polarized, so divided, and yet our desires to pull together can be stronger than the forces that pull us apart. And they must be, because we need each other. The problems our world faces today will not be solved by individuals or isolated groups. We face these problems together, and we will find solutions together. To do this, we need to talk with each other, listen to each other, respect differences, and acknowledge our shared humanity.  

 Sometimes we think complex problems require complex solutions. But the key to building a moral, compassionate society is surprisingly simple. It involves applying some ancient wisdom that is still relevant in our modern world: Love one another. Treat all with dignity. Share your blessings with the less fortunate. And give special attention to those who are sick in body and spirit. We “do these things,” Rabbi Sacks noted, “because, being human, we are bound by a covenant of human solidarity, whatever our color or culture, class or creed.” 

It’s true that living in a free society gives us some independence. But we still depend on each other. Preserving our freedom will require our cooperation and our compassion. Each of us plays a part in making our society moral—and free—by our habits of heart, thought, speech, and action. It is indeed “a moral achievement” to do what is good for all of us—together.

January 17, 2021 – All of Us Together
Broadcast Number 4,766

The Tabernacle Choir
Orchestra at Temple Square
Bells on Temple Square


Mack Wilberg

Bells Conductor
LeAnna Willmore

Guest Artist
Robert Sims

Richard Elliott

Lloyd Newell


Oh, Peter, Go Ring Them Bells
Spiritual; arr. Howard Helvey

My Good Lord Done Been Here
Spiritual; arr. Jacqueline B. Hairston; orchd. Paul Hamilton

This Little Light of Mine
Spiritual; arr. Mack Wilberg

Ride On, King Jesus
Spiritual; arr. David Kidwell

Deep River
Spiritual; arr. Hart Morris

Don’t You Let Nobody Turn You ’Round
Spiritual; arr. Lena J. McLin

Lift Every Voice and Sing
Rosamond Johnson; arr. Roland Carter