Why is genealogy so important?
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“Why is genealogy so important?” New Era, July 1971, 16–17

“Why is genealogy so important?”

Answer/Elder Theodore M. Burton

Genealogy per se is only important to the Latter-day Saint as a tool for accomplishing something vastly more important. We believe that we are literally spirit children of our Father in heaven and that eternal family relationships can and do exist. We believe that families can be bound together, not just for this life only, but for all eternity.

We gather the records of our families as far back as we can trace them in order to verify these family relationships. This is genealogy. Then we go to the temple and there tie or seal these individuals together into eternal family relationships by performing the saving ordinances of the priesthood that God has prescribed.

The sole purposes of genealogical and temple work are to perpetuate family life throughout eternity and to gather our family members together as resurrected glorified beings into the presence of our Heavenly Father, whom we love, honor, and revere.

Genealogy as a practical research tool, therefore, is important as a means of accomplishing the far greater purpose of tying or sealing together all those who are willing and qualified into the one great family of God, the Eternal Father, through Jesus Christ, his Only Begotten Son. That is why genealogy is so important.