Re: [AQ_NFS] Doing the work (was: ? on reserving ordin)
- I think that this discussion is getting a little too personal.
Everyone doesn’t have the same level of skill in research. Duplicated ordinance work abounds. Originally this was caused because everything was done by paper and research was duplicated. There was no easy way
to check for work done. However, in the last few years, duplication is mostly caused by sloppy research. Too many people don’t bother to check to see if work is already done. There are still way too many names
that either need to be combined or separated.
The larger our file becomes, the more corrupt it becomes. There will be individuals added where the only documentation exists in books. Birth, Death, Marriage records will be non-existent. I have some individuals
whose information only exists in a compiled county history. I know where they are buried, but the tombstones are no longer readable. They settled the area in the early 1800’s. How accurate is the history book?
Entries in country histories were done by subscription. You could put anything in that you wanted. It didn’t have to be verified. The more you paid, the more you could have entered. Since this is the only record,
did I do the temple work? Absolutely. I asked the Temple President about it. His response. If you submit a name from the record and the person did not exist, only time has been wasted. But if the person did
exist and you do not do the work, that individual is on the other side of the veil, perhaps in tears. I also asked him about how to do sealings for children whose father died and the mother remarried and was sealed
to the second husband while living. His response. After they are all deceased, seal them every way possible. The Lord will choose and there will be no one unhappy with His choice. What wisdom!
We just had an incident where a person submitted names knowing the work had already been done. I will call that person “A” Why? Did A simply want to do the work and think that A’s work will supplant the others?
Does A think that the more times it is done, the more acceptable it is to the Lord? Did A know the individuals personally and figure the only way the individuals are going to get to a kingdom is by having the work
done so many times, it will confuse the Book of Life and let the family sneak through the gate?
However, all levity aside; if we follow the rules, we cannot go wrong. If you don’t have time to read the rules, stop until you do have time.
Never, never, never assume that information on Family Tree is correct, just because it is there. Don’t get carried away building a tree just because it goes on and on for centuries. If I were to do this on one of my lines,
guess what – My 39th great grandparents are King Arthur and Guinevere! But it’s on the tree – got to be right. Right? And please don’t tell me about your line that goes back to Adam and Eve!
Please remember that Family History research is more an art then a science. Only through blood tests and DNA, can a birth relationship be absolutely proven. You can only assume that your great-grandparents were
faithful to each other and that your great-grandfather is really the parent of your grand-father. Every relationship must be taken on faith that the documentation is correct.
I have one line where a “professional” researcher in England made up a connection to royalty to satisfy an American client. This occurred in the 1800’s. Those of us who belong to a very large New England family
organization are very familiar with this bogus research. I have another line where the family sailed to America from England and a historian in Virginia said they were from a parish near London and added the name
of the parish as part of the surname. However, when I found that they went to the port in England from Wales and I found their information in the Welsh National Library in Aberystwyth, Wales. Again, you can
never assume that information is correct unless you can see an official document, and even then there can be mistakes. My own Father’s name was misspelled on his birth certificate!
Can you have a “perfect file”? I don’t think so. As both an indexer and arbitrator, I can assure you that 100% accuracy only exists in fairy tales and on TV. Examples:
I have a relative who signed his name differently on a series of documents. Sometimes it was VanMeter, other times it was Van Meter. Which is correct? Birth Certificate says Van Meter.
Marriage License says VanMeter. His father spelled it Van Metre. My Grandfather was a Gillum, with 11 children, my Aunts and Uncles - three Gillum, six Gillam, two Gilliam.
The work is important, and we all need to do the best we can, but we should never point fingers or criticize. We can only instruct, assist, and be patient. We are all working for the same goal.
EATIS IN PACE DATA GESIS (Go in peace and may all your words be processed)
Sent: Wednesday, July 31, 2013 9:21 PM
Subject: Re: [AQ_NFS] Doing the work (was: ? on reserving ordin)
I appreciate your thoughts. I don't know if I mentioned this or not,
but the scripture was brought up by the mission president of the
Family and Church History Mission under the direction of Elder Bednar
of the council of the twelve. This was done in a special meeting in
the chapel of the Salt Lake Temple.
The guidelines for submitting work are spelled out in the instructions
that are updated periodically and are located here:
The specific instructions are found in that guide and it represents
the current official instructions for submitting names to the temple.
As I pointed out, we have had professional genealogists come through
the training zone (the equivalent of the MTC for the Family and Church
History Mission) and not one person has come in with a clean data
file. Even those with "years" of experience who stated without
reservation that they had no problems in their file. They were not
happy when the problems were identified.
So you can see my reluctance with this matter. As far as the young man
whose parents were taken away at gunpoint, his mother's body is
sufficient proof, but if his father was born within the past 110
years, the work is _not_ to be done.
There is no exception, but there are ways to gain permission to have
the work done.
First, if the man had been decalred dead by the courts or other
authorities, then that date can be used in place of the actual death
If there was no legal action declaring the person dead, then the
convert should be instructed to write a letter to the First
Presidency, explaining the situation.
Regardless, the "technical" instructions are not to be bypassed. If
there is ample reason to think that the person is deceased, but no
proof has been forthcoming, there is a means to still have the work
For the record, I have had two persons -- both related to me -- with
proxy work completed. The work was done before they died! In both
cases, the work had to be cancelled because the "technical"
instructions were not followed and the death dates not established.
Yes, one does not need more than a surname and approximated dates and
places to have work done, especially when no vital records (of any
kind) exist. I have done that myself for my father's sister for whom
no record of her life (and birth and death) exists. It is a long
story, but given the circumstances under which I learned about her and
consulting with other members of the mission, we all felt impressed to
go ahead and have her sealed to her family.
As a side note, I received a response back regarding other spouses and
children of non-blood-related husbands of relatives. There are not
among those for which we are authorized to do the work. It really is
as simple as that -- follow the instructions and yes, the work can be
I am not impressed with your claim for 165,000 names. The sheer number
alone suggests that these are not all related to you. That says to me
that you should double check every name and their relationship, to
make sure that they _are_ related to you.
I come from Swiss Mennonite families who settled in the early 1700s in
Lancaster County, Pennsylvania. To say I am related to most of those
people is possible, but at the same time, I know that there were
twenty-five separate and unrelated Huber families who settled in that
County. Two of them had the same two given names and are not related
(one is my ancestor). Three more share the same first name and are not
related. Any work that I submit for my ancestors and their descendants
has to be checked for accuracy. Fortunately, the Mennonites are very
family conscious and therefore had many _good_ records. By using all
available sources, I am usually able to determine family
relationships. But it still takes work, and there is no shortcut.
I keep seeing in what you are writing that you want to make this as
simple and easy as possible. And to me, that's a problem like that
member of the stake presidency who bragged about all the names that
needed work that he discovered when Ancestral File was first released.
Or the Bishop who simply gathered in a number of names so the yputh of
his ward could have a "temple experience" -- never mind that the work
had already been done.
Do the right thing for the right reason and you'll be blessed -- I
know that to be true, because many, many records are opening up for me
-- far more than I can handle, and so I've engaged other family
members, but even then, I seriously doubt that we will find all of
those waiting to have their work done.
I wish you well in your endeavors,
On Wed, 31 Jul 2013 09:18:07 -0700, you wrote:
>I thought I better change the subject line before the conversation deviated
>Brother Tom-- I applaud your desire to do things as correct as possible.
>Certainly doing things as *complete* as possible should be the standard we
>strive for. It is NOT however, the requirement for submitting names to the
>temple, nor I doubt, is having everyone's name/pob, death/pod, marriage/pob
>event filled out the only fulfillment of having a book worthy of all
>acceptation (in fact, I would disagree strongly on your interpretation of
>that scripture, but that is an entirely different conversation.)
>President Ezra Taft Benson made it clear that the *minimum** *acceptable
>information for a family group to be submitted was a *single* qualifying
>event for the entire family. One doesn't even need the names of both
>parents. Now, does that mean that we should rest there and submit the
>majority of the family blank? Of course not !!
>But neither should we revert back to the standard in the 1940s (yes, I'm
>old enough) when the standard was: a specific birth date (or christening)
>and place, a specific death (or burial) and place, a specific marriage date
>and place, and TWO PIECES OF MATCHING DOCUMENTATION for each event (and I
>mean, the spelling could not be off one iota), or the work could not be
>That's how I ended up with 165,000 names which need to be input, verified,
>compared and done. I'm sure you have had enough experiences with those on
>the other side of the veil to know they care more about accepting their
>ordinance work, than whether or not you have a specific death date & place
>when you know they were born 2 Apr 1836 in New York City, New York, New
>My point in this is, it is great that you have a personal standard of
>completeness. I agree with you that we should strive for that rather than
>send in records wily niley, or worse, blank. But I disagree that we should
>present that opinion to others as doctrine, when President Benson directed
>A case in point.
>I have an acquaintance in a former ward whose parents when he was small (4
>or 5) were involved with the mob. He *saw* them taken away at gunpoint.
>They never returned. A few weeks later, his mother's body was found on a
>deserted road out in the desert. His father's body has never been found. A
>decade+ later, this young man joined the church. Post mission and marriage
>(so we are now 35+ years after the event) he had a desire to do his
>parent's temple work.
>A well meaning, but ignorant, FHC worker told him that *without proof of
>death* his father's work could not be done. Now you and I know that is *
>technically* true. It is also extremely unlikely given the circumstances
>and the fact they were dealing with the mob, that his father is alive. This
>same person overstepped his/her authority and then told him EVEN IF he had
>his father declared dead, that because *there was no body*, the work could
>not be done.
>To this day (we are now 50 years after the fact), this poor man has still
>not had his work done (the member finally relented and did his mother's
>work without his father, he wanted to do them both at the same time.) He
>lives without being sealed to his parents (despite having dream visits from
>both of them), and all the blessings which flow from that. All because some
>FHC consultant decided to lay down his/her opinion as doctrine.
>I think most members find family history daunting enough that we don't need
>to add more obstacles in their path.
>But that's just my *opinion.*
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