One of the major missions of our church, is to perform ordinance work for those who have passed on, but who never had a chance to receive the ordinances while living. Heavenly Father is a merciful God and loves all of His children. He could never deny one of His children exaltation simply because she never had the chance to be baptized. At the same time, all must be baptized (See Mark 16:16). Herein lies one of the reasons for our temples. We can perform those ordinances for our ancestors by proxy. But first we have to find them.
As much as I love genealogy and believe in the blessings of temple service, I have been busy. Between bearing children, raising a young family, home educating those little people, putting my husband through school and the myriad of other immediate tasks, I felt I couldn't do one more thing. I presented my dilemma to the Lord and received, through personal revelation, permission to forego family history work for a season. It was the lifting of a great burden. (I know this is not the rule for everyone with a young family and busy life. This was a very personal communication.)
Recently, I have begun feeling the prodding from the Holy Ghost that that temporary release was over. My youngest living child is now three. I am not expecting another. I'm kind of an old hat at home schooling (though it doesn't get easier, I'm better at it after all these years). My husband is nearly done with his university experience and I am no longer cleaning offices in the middle of the night.
Parenthetically, I am currently reading Winds of War about World War II. Did you know that 60 Million people died during that great war? We often talk about the 6 Million Jews who were killed and though they were killed in a horrific way, they were not the biggest casualty of the war. Russia lost (or purposely killed) over 23 Million alone. We have a lot of work to do!!
The other day, I watched this address by Elder David A Bednar. (He is one of the Apostles of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.) That was the final straw, so to speak.
- Register and learn to navigate my way around new.familysearch.org
- Transfer as much information as I have from paper and old computer files to the online family tree
- Verify the temple-ready status of my family
- Prepare the records for about ten ancestors for ordinance work
- Attend the temple once a month to personally see to the completion of the work for those ten people. (For those who have eyes to see, that is one session of initiatories, ten endowment sessions and one sealing session.)
- Teach my family
These are not magnificent goals, but, like the starfish story, it will be magnificent to those ten.