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The Hearts of the Children

Last Sunday I attended our Stake Standards Night. This is an annual meeting for all youth ages 12-18, and their parents. My husband and I suggested, encouraged and then finally dragged all three of our boys to the meeting. Our stake has issued a challenge to the youth that each of them take 5 family names to the temple this year. We have approximately 500 youth in our stake so that would be 2500 names ready for temple work. They also challenged our youth to collectively index 1,000,000 names during 2012. It seems like a huge task, but when broken down it would only take each young man or young woman 6 minutes per day to do their part. 

Last November in General Conference, Elder David A. Bednar spoke directly to the young men and women of the church about their role in the work of Family History. He said:

 “My beloved young brothers and sisters, family history is not simply an interesting program or activity sponsored by the Church; rather, it is a vital part of the work of salvation and exaltation. You have been prepared for this day and to build up the kingdom of God. You are here upon the earth now to assist in this glorious work.” 

I’m excited to teach my boys about their family history and help them learn how to index names in Family Search. I don’t feel like I will be starting from scratch since many relatives on both sides of our family have a love for genealogy and have spent countless hours gathering information and compiling it into books. One night, I came to my 16 year olds bedroom to tell him goodnight. Upon opening the door, I saw him sprawled across his bed, his face buried in a book. Reading is not a contact sport and therefore, not something he readily enjoys. My curiosity got the best of me and I walked in to take a look at what had him so captivated. Imagine my surprise when he held up “The Simpson Family of County Durham” a hefty 682 page collection of family history stories compiled by a dutiful historian on my husband’s side of the family. He proceeded to share with me some of the stories he had read and the names of family members dating back hundreds of years. After the shock wore off, I began to realize that he really had an interest in Family History. I feel like it’s my duty as his mother to share the spirit of Elijah with him and teach him about his heritage. I’m so grateful for the months and years of research that has already been done for our family, but I know there is much to do. 

I look forward to attending Roots Tech this week so I can learn more about Family History and the technology available, and know better how to encourage my boys to help further the work. 

I love what Elder Bednar said at the end of his talk:

“It is no coincidence that FamilySearch and other tools have come forth at a time when young people are so familiar with a wide range of information and communication technologies. Your fingers have been trained to text and tweet to accelerate and advance the work of the Lord—not just to communicate quickly with your friends.” 

Judging by the number of texts that come and go from each of their phones on a monthly basis, I’m confident that my boys are more than ready to begin.


Veronica is the lucky mom of 5 great kids who keep her busy with their games, practices, and other activities.  She and her husband Kevin recently celebrated 19 years of marital chaos bliss and are looking forward to at least fifty more.

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