LDS Highlights at RootsTech 2018, Part 1

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LDS Highlights from RootsTech 2018 -- Boundless GenealogyFor Mormons, or members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, a passion for genealogy goes beyond a desire to learn where we came from. Finding our ancestors is an important part of our doctrine… we believe that we must all be linked through the generations from us back to Adam and that the family unit is the basic unit of God’s kingdom. Learn more about these beliefs here.  During the RootsTech conference, several leaders from the Church spoke or gave interviews. Here are some important take-aways from their words.

LDS Highlights at RootsTech 2018, Part 1

In this first part, I will share some notes from the Leadership Training session at RootsTech:

Dale G Renlund, of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles

“We invite all new converts and new 12-year-olds to discover and gather their families and become active participants in the plan of salvation.
  1. Involve 11-year-old children in family history work, and encourage them to qualify for a limited use Temple recommend when they turn 12 years old.

  2. Involve every new convert, who is 12 years old and older, in family history work, and obtain a limited use [Temple] recommend.

  3. Encourage new 12-year-old members and new converts to perform proxy baptisms and confirmations in the temple, whenever and wherever possible.”

Bradley D Foster, of the Quorum of the Seventy, and Executive Director of the Family History Department

Elder Foster spoke of temple and family history consultants ministering to individuals they work with one by one like the Savior did. He also invited us to view three new training videos available at

Joy D Jones, General Primary President and member of Temple and Family History Executive Council

“Children love to learn about their ancestors. Family stories can teach them important lessons and help them develop a foundation of strength they can draw from throughout their lives.”
“Working with children [in family history] might require different methods than working with adults, but I promise you that it is worth the effort and the necessary adaptations and creativity. Plus, it can be fun!”

Donald L. Hallstrom, of the Quorum of the Seventy, and Executive Director of the Priesthood and Family Department

Boys and girls now attend a priesthood and temple preparation class at age 11 to help them learn about these important concepts.

“We must not teach these concepts —our identity, God’s plan, the power of the priesthood, family history, and temple service— as independent, but all have elevated meaning and purpose when understood as one eternal round.”

Ideally a whole family works together on the family history and temple portions of the work. However, if you cannot accomplish this ideal right now, just do your best and do what you can.

Patrick Kearon, of the Presidency of Quorum of the Seventy

Elder Kearon’s first experience with family history as a new convert was very administrative: records, genealogy jargon, and he left that experience very uninterested. A few years later, a friend said tell me about your family history, what you already know. They had a wonderful conversation where Elder Kearon could share those things he loves most about his ancestors and share photos with his friend. He said of the experience: “My soul was stirred and there were connections.”

He said when we approach people to help them for the first time, we need to go at it without “a technical download,” but trying to help them feel in their heart the connection that is already there.

Brent H Nielson, of the Quorum of the Seventy, and Executive Director of the Missionary Department

Missionary work and family history and temple work is truly one work.

Connecting new converts with their ancestors is critical.

Quentin L. Cook, of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, and Chairman of the Temple and Family History Executive Council

Now members are by and large taking our own family names to the temple and not relying so much on extracted records.

We must sacrifice time to do more family history and temple work.

Youth and new converts will have greater protecting and true joy by doing this work.

Watch the Leadership Training session here:

Cordial Genealogy Wishes,


LDS Highlights from RootsTech 2018 -- Boundless Genealogy

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