A Season for Family History

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“A Season for Family History,” Ensign, October 2016, 78

Latter-day Saint Voices

A Season for Family History

Latter-Day Saint Voices

Illustration by Wilson Ong

As a mother of two young daughters, I have often made the excuse that I cannot participate in some of the things that I would like to because it is simply not my “season” to do so. One of those things was family history work.

Though I had participated in indexing as an enjoyable Sabbath activity in the past, I found myself making excuses that I had neither the time nor the knowledge to embrace my family history work at the time.

My heart changed early one morning a few months ago as I sat in the temple. As I reviewed the names of the deceased on the temple cards, praying that they would accept the temple ordinances performed for them, I thought to myself, “Wouldn’t it be nice if these were my own family members? I’d like to do the work for them.” The Spirit confirmed to me that if these were my desires, then the Lord would help me do my family history work, specifically on the Sabbath day. He could help me find the time and the knowledge to accomplish His purposes.

That Sunday, I went home and logged onto FamilySearch.org. Tears immediately flooded my eyes as I saw the names of my ancestors. My connection to them became stronger. What added to my love for them were the personal photographs and documents, recently added by my grandmother, making my family members come to life even more for me. I felt joy in involving my two-year-old, who learned to identify pictures of her great-grandfather and great-great-grandmother, calling them by name. I felt the way that President Russell M. Nelson, President of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, described: “The Sabbath provides a wonderful opportunity to strengthen family ties. After all, God wants each of us, as His children, to return to Him as endowed Saints, sealed in the temple as families, to our ancestors, and to our posterity” (“The Sabbath Is a Delight,” Ensign, May 2015, 130).

Since that initial experience, I have continued to participate in family history work on the Sabbath day. I have been blessed to do temple work for some of my deceased family members. A particular blessing has been learning about my relatives and gaining a closer relationship with my grandparents who are not members of our faith. It has strengthened my resolve to keep my covenants and endure to the end so that I may be a strong link in my eternal family.

Though there is still much work to be done, I am grateful to my Heavenly Father for increasing my capacity so that I can participate in His work, especially on His day. For me, the Sabbath is truly a delight.