Why “I’ll Do Family History When I’m Retired” Doesn’t Cut It Anymore…

family historyFor years I’ve heard people say “No, I haven’t really done any family history. I always figured I’d wait until I was retired–when I’ll have more time…” or “This just isn’t the season for genealogy for me…but as soon as the children are all out of the house, then I’m sure I’ll work on my family history…”

Well everybody…time to see things a different way, and I’ll show you why…

This afternoon I was listening to a general conference address while I was preparing dinner. The address was “Roots and Branches” by Elder Quentin L. Cook from the April 2014 General Conference of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. There were two statements that caught my attention and kind of shattered the old idea that family history is an old person’s game:

The leadership of the Church has issued a clarion call to the rising generation to lead the way in the use of technology to experience the spirit of Elijah, to search out their ancestors, and to perform temple ordinances for them. Much of the heavy lifting in hastening the work of salvation for both the living and the dead will be done by you young people. (Cook, April 20014)

If family history used to be for “old people”, and now the “rising generation” and “young people” are being invited to participate, where does that leave 42-year old me? I think it leaves me with no excuse…

Here is the second quote from the talk:

In the 19 years since this prophetic statement, the acceleration of technology is almost unbelievable. A 36-year-old mother of young children recently exclaimed to me, “Just think—we have gone from microfilm readers in dedicated family history centers to sitting at my kitchen table with my computer doing family history after my children are finally asleep.” Brothers and sisters, family history centers are now in our homes. (Cook, April 2014)

quentin-l-cook-largeThere. There I am. I am that 36-year-old mother. Well, kind of. I have children. I have responsibilities. I have a calling and a job and a million other things to worry about. But, since I don’t have to a.) drive to Pennsylvania or Holland to find my ancestors (due, in large measure, to indexing efforts) or b.) drive down the the Family History Library (it is “now in our homes”) things have changed a little for me. And for you.

I can participate in the work of salvation for those family members who are deceased right now, today, from my home. I can play a part in hastening the work of salvation. It isn’t just for “old people” anymore…

Be Encouraging…



One thought on “Why “I’ll Do Family History When I’m Retired” Doesn’t Cut It Anymore…

  1. Damaris Fish

    I scrolled down to the bottom & started with the video. I watched twice! – The 2nd time paying closer attention trying to catch the family history angle…! Maybe the two adopted kittens were illustrative of human adoptions…. I watched to the bitter end – Stories of Rescue – send them to – Purina – Oh, it was an ad by Purina; I caught that the second time around. It was cute nevertheless. Good food for thought


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