The Home Is the New Family History Center
By Laraine Swenson, Relief Society general board
“Family will sacrifice their time to be together to do the work, and it feels like heaven.” —Sister Lori Chapman, Mt. Logan Utah Stake
During a recent stake conference, President Paul Champlin, a counselor in the Mt. Logan Utah Stake presidency, described how he responded to instruction to identify his ancestral family members and provide temple ordinances for them. He and his wife, Lori, applied this directive in their own family.
In making a brief search in the online new FamilySearch, President Champlin was able to locate the name of an ancestor whose work had not yet been done. His daughter Lyndsay took the name to the temple to perform the baptism. He promised another daughter, Kamie, that he would continue his family history work so that she could also have the opportunity to be baptized for her own ancestors.
Soon afterward, the Champlin family participated in a family home evening with each member at a computer where they could search out ancestors for themselves. Within the brief time allotted to the task, they had all individually found names for whom work was not yet completed.
Speaking of family history work, Sister Lori Champlin said, “It’s pretty contagious. It was exciting to find one name, and if I could find one name, maybe I could find more.”
Kamie was searching for family names to take to the temple for baptisms with her ward Young Women. “It was very exciting,” Sister Champlin said, “for her to find 55 names in an hour. It is really fun to take names that are in your own line.
“It was not only exciting that I could do family history work without being overwhelmed, but that so many names from my extended family tree could be found quickly,” Sister Champlin added. “It was wonderful to go several times with immediate family and then again with extended family to do endowments and sealings. One day we had about 40 family members together in the temple. Family will sacrifice their time to be together to do the work, and it feels like heaven. We were also able to send names to our extended family that live further away and were not able to come when we went together. That way they could also join in the spirit of the work.”
There was a feeling of unity within the family, no matter the distance. Since that time, the Champlin family has located and performed ordinances for over 350 relatives.
“I was so surprised at how many names we were able to find,” Lyndsay said of their work together. “I really loved doing the baptisms with my whole family. My brother, who had just returned from his mission, performed the baptisms, and my father did the confirmations. It was a real spiritual experience for our family, and it testified to me of eternal families.”