Gratitude for Family—Present and Past

Emily H., age 15 Arizona, USA

I’m so grateful for my family, and that includes my ancestors. One way I like to show gratitude for all of my family is by doing family history work.

This all started with my Personal Progress project for Individual Worth, value experience 6. I wanted to learn how to do family history work. At first I began with indexing and then tried looking for names on FamilySearch.org. It was so cool to start finding names of my own ancestors. Recently, I went to the temple with several names I’d found. I was able to do the baptisms and the confirmations. I loved it! The whole experience reminded me of my own baptism. It made me feel good to imagine that my ancestors were watching and that they were excited to have their ordinances done.

I’ve done temple baptisms before, but doing my own family names brought a whole new meaning to the names and ordinances for me.

After the baptisms were complete, I then sent the names to other family members to complete the remaining ordinances. My aunt and uncle have done 12 names so far. Sometimes I even babysit for them so they can go to the temple together.

At first I used to do family history research mostly on Sundays, but lately I’ve been squeezing it in during the week whenever I can. My grandfather is a convert to the Church and the only member in his family, so there’s a lot of opportunity to do temple ordinances for my ancestors on that side. I’m excited to research and work on their names as I hear stories about them from my grandfather.

I’m so thankful to have a loving family, and I know my ancestors are a big part of that family. I’m glad I can do this sacred work for them.

Watch video tutorials to learn how to do your family history.

Read more stories about youth who are showing their gratitude by the way they live.