Serving Your Ancestors in the Temple

What does the First Presidency letter on family history and temple work mean for you?

Think about how important it is to you to be sealed to your family forever.

Now imagine millions of other people, many of them your ancestors, who have the same desire, yet died without hearing about the gospel of Jesus Christ. 

“When members of the Church find the names of their ancestors and take those names to the temple for ordinance work, the temple experience can be greatly enriched. —The First Presidency

Recently, the First Presidency sent a letter encouraging youth and young single adults to take the names of those ancestors with them when they go to the temple rather than relying on the temple to provide names for them.

“When members of the Church find the names of their ancestors and take those names to the temple for ordinance work, the temple experience can be greatly enriched,” the First Presidency said.

Why Temple Work?

In order to return to our Heavenly Father and live forever with our families, we must be baptized and confirmed, receive the ordinances of the temple, and be sealed together forever as families.

Our ancestors who didn’t have the chance to learn the gospel of Jesus Christ during their mortal lives are taught the gospel in the spirit world. Those who have accepted the gospel may receive those ordinances through us when we go to the temple.

Performing these ordinances for our family members is a way to bind us to our ancestors and share in their joy.

How to Get Started

Family history work consists of three basic steps:

  1. We identify our ancestors.
  2. We find out which ancestors need temple ordinances performed.
  3. We make certain that the ordinances are performed for them.

Find out how you can get started by visiting the Getting Started page or the Youth and Family History pages.

Identifying our ancestors means finding out their names. If you can’t find that information at home or from relatives, visiting FamilySearch.org or your local family history center can help.

Many of our ancestors in the spirit world who have accepted the gospel are anxious to receive their temple ordinances. We should perform their work as soon as we identify them. If you need help, your ward or branch family history consultant can help find out if your ancestor’s work has already been performed.

Always Be Worthy

We should prepare ourselves now and remain worthy to receive a temple recommend so we can help our ancestors as soon as possible.

Once you have a temple recommend, attend the temple as often as possible to provide saving ordinances for your ancestors who are waiting.

You can help bring your family together forever.

Help Others

Help with the Church’s indexing program. Indexing makes information on others’ ancestors easier for them to find.

Share Your Experience

Have you ever performed temple ordinances in behalf of your ancestors? Share your testimony of family history work by clicking on Share your experience below.

More Information

Click here to see the First Presidency letter from October 8, 2012.