News Story

One Name at a Time

Latter-day Saints in Loganholme, Brisbane are enjoying getting involved in indexing genealogical records, which is helping family history enthusiasts around the world

Members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints of all ages from the Loganholme area of Brisbane, Queensland enjoying indexing.© 2022 by Intellectual Reserve, Inc. All rights reserved.

When members of the Loganholme Ward of the Beenleigh Stake (similar to a diocese in other churches) was looking for a new way to love, share and invite, they took on a tech savvy project to help family history enthusiasts all over the world.

Latter-day Saints believe in the eternal nature of families and have a strong focus on researching their famly trees. 

For family history enthusiasts all over the world, the process of searching for names has significantly changed over the last two decades. One of these major changes is the introduction of indexing. Indexing is an online system where volunteers view a digital image of a record, then type in the names, dates and places listed on that record. This digital data is used to create a searchable index that makes it possible for people to find records about their ancestors. Learn more here.

To get the ward members excited about the project, the ward leaders set a goal, to index 10,000 names from April to December 2022. Excitement spread like wildfire and by mid-August, the goal was reached and extended to 20,000.

This particular service project was chosen for a number of reasons, but mainly because it is accessible for a range of ages and skill levels. Early in in the challenge, the ward gathered and learned together how to access records and correctly assess and record the information. Due to the accessibility of this project and the training that was available, many individuals have joined the cause, from children, teens and adults.

According to one participant, "To see the range of ages come together in a common goal is an incredibly unifying experience."

But why indexing? In an article released by the Church aimed at the youth in 2014, it states, “Every name you index has the potential to help others find their ancestors and help those ancestors receive the necessary ordinances in the temple. Because of your efforts in indexing, historic records can be made searchable online so that lives can be blessed on both sides of the veil.”

Through indexing, not only have people been able to link the generations of their family together, they have also created a greater bond with their living family.

Every Thursday evening, ward members can gather at the chapel and work together, sharing knowledge and stories. Each participant can share their knowledge and wisdom with each other. Young children have been spotted helping older participants with technology as older participants share stories of days gone by and how the world has changed. Everyone can can share their knowledge and ask questions if they need assistance, and the group celebrates individual successes together.

"Everyone involved has had such an amazing experience working on these records," one observer said.

"Many are now finding the search for their ancestors addictive, spending their Sabbath researching for new clues and preparing family names for the temple."

One of the local Church leaders commented, "What’s great about indexing is that anyone and everyone can participate regardless of your age or experience. Testimonies were strengthened, and an increased interest in temple and family history work was established."

To learn more about family history and temple work, visit here. If you would like to start researching your own family history, click here, or to join in indexing, visit here.

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