Unexpected Calling
August 2013

“Unexpected Calling,” New Era, Aug. 2013, 44

Unexpected Calling

young woman

Photographs courtesy of Hannah P.

Hannah P., a Laurel from Illinois, USA, thought she had a handle on what it means to accept and fulfill a calling. After all, she’d already served as Mia Maid class president and later as second counselor in the Laurel class presidency. But then she was given a ward calling she never expected: family history consultant.

“This came as a shock,” Hannah says. “This wasn’t a calling for a 16-year-old. It was a calling for older, wiser people!”

Shock notwithstanding, Hannah accepted the calling and rolled up her sleeves, so to speak. Soon she realized she really could make a difference. “It doesn’t matter what age you are. Anyone can do family history,” she says.

Hannah spends one evening a week at the local family history center working on FamilySearch (see FamilySearch.org) and teaching others to do the same. “Not only do I have the opportunity to feel the Spirit of Elijah myself,” she says, “but I can also help others feel it.” She loves helping people find a family name they’ve been trying to find for months. “They’re thrilled!” she says about such moments.

One of Hannah’s favorite experiences was helping a group of young men and young women learn how to do indexing. “It was amazing to see how fast they caught on,” she says. “It was just like Elder David A. Bednar teaches: our fingers are meant for so much more than texting and tweeting” (see “The Hearts of the Children Shall Turn,” Ensign, Nov. 2011, 24–27).