Friday, February 10, 2012

A Sincere Desire To Help

Joseph Smith Memorial Building Lobby
Our mission has over 1000 missionaries that serve the family history effort. Kathleen and I are assigned to the Joseph Smith Memorial Building.

Our zone is the world wide patron support zone. It consists of professional staff, full time missionaries like Kathleen and I, part time church service missionaries that serve a couple of days a week, and hundreds that serve at home 15 or more hours per week. We answer questions difficult or easy. They may be on research, PAF software, or other facets of family history and genealogy.

It doesn't matter if the question comes from a church member or not. We strive to answer every question completely and accurately.

Each morning our zone starts the day with a brief devotional which consists of announcements, a hymn, a spiritual thought, and a prayer. I was touched this morning by the spiritual thought. The Elder that was speaking was being transferred from our zone to the family history library zone. He humbly shared that he loved being here. It is important that we answer even the very simplest of questions. He pointed out that many of those who call or contact us are frustrated and full of desire to search out their answers.

Even what may seem simple to us is of great importance to the patron.

It is a marvelous thing to witness how the spirit of family history and genealogy grabs the hearts of people from all walks of life. At the recent RootsTech conference we had the opportunity to converse with people attending. Many were serious genealogists. I am thinking of one lady from Arkansas. I asked her if she had signed up to index the 1940 Census. She not only had done that, but had enlisted her entire genealogy society to help and was now going to other societies recruiting their help. A comment she made that stood out was, "You know it's funny, when it comes to genealogy, when someone asks for help I just go and do it."

Surely, the church is a leader in providing resources and support - but we are not alone in this effort and attitude. There is an amazing spirit to it. We know it as the Spirit of Elijah. Have you caught it yet?

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