Getting started Finding Your Family
To begin with just use pen and paper, contact all the living relatives you know and write all the names, dates and places of family members who are alive or within living memory and enter the information into the My Family booklet, either online or a hard copy.
After that use the search tools available in FamilySearch and before long you will have a tree extending up and branching out through times past.
Ancient Prophecy fulfilled - April 3rd 2016
180 years ago this Sunday 3rd April 2016, a remarkable event occured. It was an event prophecied in the the last verses of the Old Testament. In the newly completed temple in Kirtland Ohio, on 3rd April 1836 the ancient prophet Elijah appeared to two men, Joseph Smith and Oliver Cowdery. This is the record of the event as recorded in the Doctrine and Covenants Section 110
'13 After this vision had closed, another great and glorious vision burst upon us; for Elijah the prophet, who was taken to heaven without tasting death, stood before us, and said:
14 Behold, the time has fully come, which was spoken of by the mouth of Malachi—testifying that he [Elijah] should be sent, before the great and dreadful day of the Lord come—
15 To turn the hearts of the fathers to the children, and the children to the fathers, lest the whole earth be smitten with a curse—
16 Therefore, the keys of this dispensation are committed into your hands'
Since that day the hearts of millions have been turned to their ancestors, tracing their roots, their families of the past. One year after this event, on 1st July 1837, Civil Registration began in England and Wales, other nations followed suit making tracing generations easier for descendents to identify their progenitors.
In 1838 Samuel Morse first demonstrated a practical telecommunications system heralding the start of the age we now live in where anyone from anywhere can search databases containing billions of names.
But genealogy to millions is more than just a hobby, it is the means of identifying family and then having families bound together by the keys of authority that Elijah restored, so that family relationships will continue beyond the grave.
Temples and Family History
God has commanded His people to build temples. In the temple we make sacred covenants and are endowed with, or are given, a gift of power and knowledge from on high. This power helps us in our daily lives and enables us to build God’s kingdom. In the temple we can also be married for time and eternity, thus making it possible for families to be together forever in God’s presence. After at least one year of membership, worthy adults may be eligible to receive from their bishop a recommend to receive their own endowment. After receiving their endowments, married couples may be sealed or married for eternity.
The Savior loves all people and desires their salvation. Yet millions of people have died without having any opportunity to hear the message of the restored gospel of Jesus Christ or receive saving ordinances. Through His loving grace and mercy the Lord makes salvation possible for everyone who did not have the opportunity to receive, understand, and obey the gospel during their mortal lives. The gospel is preached to these deceased people in the spirit world. Members of the Church on earth perform the saving ordinances in behalf of their deceased ancestors and others. Deceased persons living in the spirit world have the opportunity to accept or reject the gospel and the ordinances performed in their behalf.
For this reason, Church members search for information about their ancestors. They complete pedigree charts and family group records and submit the names of deceased relatives who need to have saving ordinances performed on their behalf in sacred temples. This is family history work. Worthy members ages 12 and over, including new members, may receive from their bishop a recommend to perform baptisms for the dead. (Preach My Gospel)