Genealogy from the perspective of a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Mormon, LDS)

Friday, March 29, 2019

The Countries Knolwdgebase: The Family History Guide becomes even more valuable
One thing that The Family History Guide does for those of us who are searching for our ancestors is to organize and structure the online world of genealogy and family history in a way that we do not need to guess where to go or what to do next. For example, at last count, I have posted 11,419 blog posts not counting Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram, and Pinterest posts. There are 89.103 Wiki articles on the FamilySearch Research Wiki. There are 5,827,000+ articles in English on and a search for the word "genealogy" finds 50,824 articles. This is just scratching the surface of some of the information that is available online.

Think about it. Jointly, the large online genealogy database companies have billions and billions of records. Where do you start? How do you begin to understand what is available and how to learn all that there is to know? Well, those of us who are working on The Family History Guide are trying to organize and present all that information in a way that you can systematically progress and learn what it is that makes a good genealogical researcher along the way. The KnowledgeBase on The Family History Guide is part of the solution to the challenge of learning.

You can read more about the KnowledgeBase, presently being developed and implemented, from this article:

Introducing the Countries Knowledgebase
What is The Family History Guide? From one standpoint, it is a structured and sequenced way to learn about genealogy and family history by organizing thousands of links to online sources of information. But it is really a way to help everyone who uses the website to appreciate the core values of family, home, and heritage that go to make up the best of what we have to offer the world as human beings.

What is even more incredible is that the entire website with all of its linked resources is absolutely free. It only becomes available because of volunteers who spend their time and energy making it available. How can you help? Simple, you can donate to the whole operation through The Family History Guide Association.
You can also tell others about The Family History Guide website by sharing this post on all forms of social media and by talking about it to your friends and relatives.

Thursday, March 28, 2019

A Short Introduction to

You may or may not have noticed but has a new partner listed on each individual's detail page;  Who is this newcomer to the list of websites that can be automatically searched from the Family Tree? Here is a brief explanation from their website:
Launched in 1996 by genealogy enthusiasts, Geneanet is a community of more than 3 million members who share their genealogical information for free: more than 6 billion individuals in the family trees, some digitized archival records, some family pictures, some indexes, all available through a powerful search engine, and a blog. 
The Premium subscription offers additional options, including an advanced search engine, and to access hundreds of million of indexes provided by our partners. 
The Geneanet team is passionate about genealogy and emerging technologies. And at Geneanet, genealogy is almost a family affair as several team members have common ancestors!
Members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints have a free subscription to the website because of the FamilySearch partnership agreement.

The link for logging on with your LDS Account is available on the Solutions Gallery at the bottom of the pages on the website. Members qualify for the Geneanet Premium Subscription. has a huge searchable collection of French and other European records called the Genealogy Library containing over 3 billion indexed individuals in old books, academic journals, newspapers, obituaries, and hundreds of thousands of documents. You can search for the names of your ancestors. These resources come from all over the world from places you may never have seen documents previously. Here is a search of just the newspapers and magazine titles.

Here is a part of the list of collections:

The website is particularly helpful in searching for French ancestors.

The website has a lot of other projects and resources and is certainly worth investigating. You can also put a family tree up on the website and receive record hints from the website.

Wednesday, March 27, 2019

Using the Ordinances Ready App to Find Research Opportunities

The Ordinances Ready App can obviously be used to find available ordinances from the names of people in the Family Tree or people who have already been found and shared with the temples. But there is a way to use the app to find research opportunities in the Family Tree that could find many more of your ancestors and relatives. By applying these procedures, the Ordinance Ready App becomes a powerful finding tool for locating areas in the Family Tree that need research and could result in adding many more individuals to the Family Tree. 

The first step is simple. Choose one of the ordinance types and view the results. Here is one of the names I found in the list for potential baptisms.

Next, you need to view your relationship to this person. Here is my relationship to this person. 

He is married to one of my distant cousins. I always spend some time looking at the way I am related to these people to determine if there is a real connection. In this case, there are ample sources documenting this family's relationship to me. Here is the individual's Detail Page.

What is interesting about this family? Well, the father, George Orr, was found and added to the family tree a short time ago and then the ordinances were shared with the Temple. That is how I got his name suggested to me from the Ordinances Ready program. What else is interesting? His wife, my cousin, was also found and her ordinances were also shared with the Temple. What is missing? There is only one child listed. Granted, George Orr died in 1835 the same year that his daughter was born, but what happened to the daughter and the wife?

All this suggests that there is some research that could be done. Why be satisfied with one name to take to the Temple? Why not do some research and find the rest of this family? All provided courtesy of the Ordinances Ready App. In fact, I have counted up over 20 available ordinances from this family. 

Sunday, March 24, 2019

Six Things You Should Know About the Ordinances Ready App
The new Ordinances Ready app has engendered a fair amount of discussion among the active genealogist and family historians in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. I have decided that a lot of the discussion originates from a lack of understanding about the app itself. I decided there are at least five major issues that underlie developing an appreciation for what the Ordinances Ready app is apparently intended to accomplish. The following are mostly my own opinion but that opinion is based on how the app works and some of the existing challenges with the Family Tree.

If you need an introduction to the Ordinances Ready App, I suggest reading "Ordinances Ready: FamilySearch App Feature Helps Find Temple Ordinances for Your Ancestors" and for further questions about the app I suggest two of my previous blog posts: "A Question about the Ordinances Ready App" and "How Reliable is the Ordinances Ready App?"

1. The Ordinances Ready App is structured to resolve two main challenges: how to get more individuals in the Church to become involved in the Family Tree and how to begin to reduce the surplus of user-submitted names waiting to be processed in the Temples. The first challenge is addressed by the fact that the app is intended to be used by each person individually to discover some ancestors or relatives that likely need the Temple ordinances. Each individual should take the time to click on the names provided and see how they are related and also learn about each of the people. To answer the second challenge the app is designed to choose names as follows (based a slide used by Ron Tanner at one of his RootsTech presentations).

1. Pulled from your own reservation list
2. Pulled from your own names that you have shared with the Global Temple List
3. Pulled names from people with whom you are related from the Global Temple List
4. Pulled from names found by searching up and down your own family lines (green icons)
5. An ancestor from the Global Temple List

In order to do this, the app will also consider the following:

  • Ignore people who are subject to the 110-year rule
  • Verify that the name qualifies for temple ordinance work
  • Verify no possible duplicates
If you do select a name and leave it on your Temple list, the names will expire after 90 days, i.e. they will go back to the Global Temple List. Further, as far as possible the names will be added from your own Temple District. 

2. One of the problems I frequently see with the Family Tree and hear about from others is that people who have little or no knowledge of how it works or what is required are making changes. If this group of people does not feel compelled to "mess with the Family Tree" in order to "find a name to take to the Temple." Although the Ordinances Ready App is not specifically designed to discourage people from working with the Family Tree, it may have the effect of cutting down on the number of people, especially young people, who feel like they have to do something without knowing what they are doing. 

3. The Ordinances Ready app works with the online mobile app called the FamilySearch Tree. Although the FamilySearch Tree app does much of what the main Family Tree can do, it is limited and adding random names is not as easily done as it is on the desktop Family Tree. In addition, the FamilySearch Tree app is available to a rapidly growing number of people who only have access to the internet with a mobile smartphone. 

4. The Ordinances Ready app opens up a whole new way to discover areas in your part of the Family Tree that may be "ripe" for research. When you find a name of a person that needs Temple ordinances, you are already in a part of the Family Tree where either work is being done to add names or where no work has been done for years, either way, you know that the family where this name was found is where some work on the Family Tree needs to be done. 

5. You no longer have to feel the burden of maintaining a long list of people in your own Temple List. You can release those names to the temples and know that they will then become priority names for all of your relatives who use the Ordinances Ready app. Also, you do not need to worry about providing names for your family members. They are supposed to go onto the Ordinances Ready app and get their own names, even the younger members of your family. Also, there is no need to feel like you are pressured to supply names for a youth group or your entire Ward. Again, each individual should log onto the program and use the app to find their own names to take to the temple. 

6. The names produced by the Ordinances Ready App are not verified by FamilySearch or anyone else including the Church. You are responsible to make sure that the person actually exists and is not a duplicate. If you do the ordinance work without checking, you may be doing a duplicate. Although the app checks for duplicates, there are still duplicates that the program cannot find but may be obvious with some work. 

If you work through all your issues with clicking on green icons or duplicates, you will see that the Ordinances Ready app is designed to avoid both those issues as far as it is possible to do so today. 

Friday, March 22, 2019

Evaluating "errors" in the FamilySearch Family Tree

Unfortunately, the situation shown above with this screenshot for John Andrew b. 1700 is quite common. The Family Tree is liberally sprinkled with red icons and the purple ones also that say "No sources attached." But does this particular entry represent an error? Yes, if we considered entering information without a source an error and we define an "error" as information added to the Family Tree either without a source or failing to properly reflect the information contained in the source. But is this particular entry an error? In this case, there is also a blue icon indicating that there is a record hint. What does the record hint say?

This entry would only be an error if there was a record that showed that the information was incorrect. As the record stands, with no sources, it is not possible to determine if the information is correct or not. So, we look at the Record Hints. Here is what the Detail page for this person looks like before checking the Record Hints.

There are four record hints altogether. Here is a screenshot of the Research Helps page for the same person.

This page shows that the items marked by the red icons are a possible duplicate (a new addition to the Data Problems world on the Family Tree) and a missing standardization. So now, if I check the Record Hints, standardize the record and add a source or two or more, the existing information may be confirmed (no error), changed (errors), or detached (wrong family connection).

First, I look at the possible duplicate. It looks like the same people with the same child. But by merging the people, I create two more duplicates with the wife and child. The merged record still has no sources, but I need to merge the other two duplicate entries. Merging the duplicate for the wife, Alice, produces more duplicates and so forth. By the way, none of the duplicate entries have sources yet.

Time passes. I finally got through the duplicates. All of the entries seem to have cleared up. Every one of the people in the Family Tree now have sources. The only problem left is that the relationship between Edward Andrews or Andrew is not established by any source. All the people lived in the same very small area of England, but that is the only connection so far. But so far, there were no errors just a lack of information. This isn't always the case but it is possible that with some additional research the entire family can be cleaned up.

Tuesday, March 19, 2019

Please train your Temple and Family History Consultants
With all the changes for the members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, it is interesting to me how little attention is being paid to the 2019 Temple and Family History Leadership Instruction by some of the local leaders of the Church. The presentation by Elder Dale G. Renlund was particularly graphic about the need for Temple and Family History Consultants to be integrated into the Ward leadership structure and to be trained about the duties of their callings. The training materials have been available for quite some time and are being updated regularly.

As I have observed many times previously, Family History Consultants now Temple and Family History Consultants have been essentially ignored in many local Wards around the United States and into Canada. Elder Renlund's comments about Temple and Family History Consultants was right on point. Family history is often viewed as a subsidiary and purely optional activity by Ward and Stake leaders. There are, of course, some outstanding exceptions but often family history is considered as just one more thing that needs to be done sometime in the future.

Because of the worldwide nature of the Church, the current emphasis is on the FamilySearch mobile apps. It is probable that not only the Temple and Family History Consultants may need training on these apps but also any older members of wards and stakes need to be trained also. I am also finding a considerable amount of misunderstanding about the introduction of the Ordinances Ready feature of the website and of the FamilySearch Tree app also.

I am certain that there will be many changes in the future and I'm hoping that the details of these changes are not lost. In case you need some links to the available training for Temple and Family History Consultants here is a partial list:

And many more. There is really no excuse for the ignoring family history in the Wards and Stakes. 

Sunday, March 17, 2019

What Has Changed on the FamilySearch Family Tree? Part One

At RootsTech 2019, I attended two presentations by Ron Tanner, the Director of Product Management at FamilySearch. He outlined a number of recent changes to the website and particularly to the Family Tree. I decided to dig into the website and see some of the changes for myself and, of course, write about them. I am sure I will miss some and find some older changes that I just didn't know about before writing. Because I use the Family Tree and the rest of the website almost daily if I haven't seen something, you might not have seen it also. So bear with me if I am being a slow observer. Also, this exploration effort will probably take a while so there will be a series.

Some of the new features may only be visible to those users who are members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Since I am a registered user I tried turning off the link to LDS Resources in the settings menu to see what happened. But I found that it still presented everything the same except features having to do with the Temples were not visible. If you are not a member, just bear in mind that some of the things I talk about may not be visible.

One thing I can say about the subject of changes to the website is that many of the changes are unannounced and not obvious. There is a FamilySearch blog page about "What's New at FamilySearch" but those articles don't list everything. So expect some digging and some old and new features.
Here it goes... (in no particular order)

New Discovery Experiences

These featured experiences are based on the Family Discovery Center activities located in certain Family History Centers including a new one in Lehi, Utah and the one at the main Family History Library in Salt Lake City, Utah. Here is a screenshot from the website.
If you register and sign in, the Family History Activities are personalized to show your own family history. Presently, when you do sign in, your personalized startup page has a link to the activities. You may wish to try out each one.

New Temple and Family History Consultant Training

This page has actually been online for a while. It is part of the Helper Resources that are on the page renamed from the Consultant Planner. That page has also been redone. Here is a screenshot of the new Helper Resources page:
This page is still accessed from a pull-down menu link on the Help Center in the far upper right-hand side of each page. What happened to the fan chart? It was incorporated into the fan chart view on every detail page for the Family Tree. The fan chart can also be extended out to seven generations.

The view options are in the box on the upper left.

Tune in again for more of the new features of the website.

Saturday, March 16, 2019

Using MyHeritage to correct entries in the FamilySearch Family Tree

Several technologies have come together to provide a major increase in the ability to find errors in the Family Tree. One of the most significant of those technologies comes from the website's Consistency Checker. First of all, and have been cooperating in order to allow to import up to eight generations of your part of the Family Tree into a new family tree on This feature was introduced in Beta and called FamilySearch Tree Sync back in March of 2018. It has now been released to a relatively small group of users. The program is only available to those people who are members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
There was a limited distribution of the code to use the FamilySearch Tree Sync at RootsTech 2019.

I have been using the program for some time and one "benefit" has been to see how many errors there are in my eight generations imported from FamilySearch into my family tree on  The results from using the Consistency Checker (shown above) are a little discouraging. You can see that I have 747 Consistency issues found. This is a graphic example of the work left to do on the Family Tree.

You do not need to synchronize your file to have your family tree on MyHeritage. You can run the Consistency Checker any time but the advantage of synchronization is that it reduces the number of steps you need to take to correct the errors. The key is to use the error information from MyHeritage to find the same people in the FamilySearch Family Tree and make the corrections in both trees.

Here is an example from the Consistency Checker.

When I click on this entry, I can see his detail page on MyHeritage.

The arrow points to the link between the two programs. Yes, the dates on the entry are suspect. One advantage is that I can now see this person in both programs and use the resources for each program to make the correction. 

The challenge here is that there are about 500+ entries on the website for people named John Stewart in the time period indicated. There are also no sources showing a death date. On the MyHeritage website, it looks like there are quite a number of other family trees that have the same person with the same unsupported death date. However, on MyHeritage, the results of searching for this person show that the 1857 date probably belongs to a John Stewart who died in Ohio. 

After an extended search, for now, the solution is to remove the unsupported and unsourced date of death. That still leaves the entry with sources for a birth but a death date will have to wait for more research. 

By using the two programs, you have a much greater chance of making a correction to both records. 

Thursday, March 14, 2019

Explaining FamilySearch Apps as used in a previous post

I recently wrote a blog post entitled "A List of All of the FamilySearch Apps???". The way the post turned out may have caused some confusion. The term "app" has only a vague meaning. It was originally used to refer to the limited programs designed for mobile devices such as tablets and smartphones. As these programs became more sophisticated the use of the term "app" became used for more and more programs until even programs for desktop computers are included in the use of the term. For example, see Apple's App Store that has programs such as Microsoft Office 365.

However, I must admit that I used the term "app" somewhat injudiciously and perhaps to expansively. But my use of the term is also reflected in the expansive use by FamilySearch. Yes, FamilySearch has mobile apps that fall into the original use of the term but they also have lots of "hidden" parts of their website that fall into the more expansive category of apps. Here is one example:
I was thinking of this type of app when I began to write the previous blog post. I soon discovered that unless I already knew the identities of the apps or extensions or whatever you want to call them, I could not find them on the website. Of course, there are the not too easily found mobile apps in the Solutions Gallery. Here are the ones listed.

But there are also a few that I know about that are even harder to find. One really valuable one is the England Jurisdictions 1851 that hasn't been working for a while. Here is a screenshot:
While finding these additional "apps" I was overwhelmed with the number of pages on the website. Some of the apps I could remember have been removed. Here is an example.

There apparently is no longer a quick overview of the vast array of historical records and aids for those researching casualties and veterans of the Civil War.

Now I am sorry I used the word "all" in the previous post. I am completely at a loss to figure out how to find all the stuff on the website.

Wednesday, March 13, 2019

A List of All of the FamilySearch Apps???
Over the past couple of years, has announced dozens of apps and specialty pages on the website, such as the one shown above announcing "Family History Activities." Almost all of these apps or specialty pages have virtually disappeared over time and it is almost impossible to find a link from any of them on the website. You might expect to see some of them on a "Site Map" but even though there is one, only a few of the older pages are listed.

By the way, there is a Site Map. It is linked at the bottom of the startup page. Here is a screenshot:
If you spend some time, you will notice that the Family History Activities are not listed.

I decided to see how many of these invisible pages could be found with a determined Google search. They usually appear with a URL address of "[name of page]" Here is the list so far. I do not pretend to have found all of them, but this was a good attempt. Oh, before I get going on this list, I must mention some of the most obvious hidden pages: the pages for individual states and countries. How do you find these? Well, the best place to look is in The Family History Guide in the Countries section. There are links to all of the pages we know about. Here is a screenshot of England page:
Actually, in this case, there is a roundabout way to find this page. You click on the map on the Historical Records page and then click on an area of the world and select a country. These pages come up for each country. Any mention of this huge collection of pages in any other place on the website including the "Site Map?"

Hmm. I had another thought about the website before I get into my list. If you are on the ( website and find a page that looks like the following screenshot, where do the links take you to learn about the website?
You might have guessed. The links take you to a link to The Family History Guide.
So your best source for finding all this stuff is in The Family History Guide.

Am I finally going to get to my list? Well, that depends on whether or not I keep finding other obscure stuff. Yes, I actually used a program that will list all the pages instead of looking for them with a Google search. The results were pretty scary. The list ran on for thousands of pages. No wonder some of these previously announced pages get lost. I finally got tired of watching the list grow and grow, Here is a screenshot of part of the list.

I left the list running a growing because I ran out of time when it got listing all the 89,000+ FamilySearch Research Wiki pages. No wonder stuff gets lost.

So how do we find stuff like the Pioneer Discovery Page that came up last year? Well, it appears that those types of pages are temporary and now lead to dead links. Meanwhile, the list keeps growing.

Tuesday, March 12, 2019

Announcing The Family History Guide Knowledgebase

We are announcing a major addition to The Family History Guide: the new Knowledgebase.
Here is the description from a recent blog post:
Two of the main purposes of The Family History Guide are to accelerate your family history learning and research. What better way to assist with those goals, than with a handy reference that offers definitions, tips, guidelines and more. We are excited to announce the first release of our Knowledgebase for The Family History Guide, which covers general research principles and United States research. Keep in mind that this is a work in progress: we will be adding more topics and content as time goes on.
In the drop-down menus, there are several places where you can find the Knowledgebase:
  • FamilySearch menu, below “Discover”
  • Ancestry menu, below “Research”
  • MyHeritage menu, below “Research”
  • Findmypast menu, below “Research”
  • Countries menu, below “United States”
We think you will find this a fabulous resource in additional to all the other resources on the website.

Monday, March 11, 2019

Who gets lost in the FamilySearch Family Tree?

Let's suppose that I find a person who is not part of my ancestral family on the Family Tree and I decide to "Detach" that person from the family. Where does that person go? Let's further suppose that I find that a parent shown for one of the people in my ancestral line is not really related to my family. Again, I detach my ancestor from the person shown in the Family Tree. But the person in the Family Tree has a whole list of ancestors perhaps going all the way back to Adam. What happens to that liberated family line?

All of these are interesting questions. But they all have the same answer: Nothing. There is a big difference between detaching a relationship and deleting a person. Here is the rule about deleting a person from the Family Tree. See Deleting a person's record from Family Tree.
You can delete a deceased person's record from Family Tree if you are the one that created the record and no other contributor has changed it. The message "Delete Person Unavailable" appears if you cannot delete a person. 
You can also delete a living person's record if it appears in your private spaces. 
When you delete a record, these changes occur:
  •  Family Tree removes any relationships to other individuals.
  • The record can no longer be modified.
  • The record can only be searched by ID number.
What does this mean? It means what it says. You cannot delete a person you did not personally add to the Family Tree. But what happens when you detach a person from a relationship?

The answer to this question depends on whether or not the person detached has other relationships in the Family Tree. I the person is really the only instance of that person in the Family Tree or in other words, has no duplicates, then that person will still be in the database but will be floating unattached. Will the person ever get attached back to the main Family Tree? Yes, if someone enters a duplicate of that person and the program finds the floating individual and merges him or her as a duplicate. By the way, this happens all the time.

What if there is a whole ancestral line detached and floating out there in the Family Tree? Then if someone searches for an individual in the line or adds a duplicate of one of the individuals in the line, then the floating segment of the Family Tree will get reattached. Nothing is really lost.

In effect, all of the "duplicate" entries you find in the Family Tree represent these floaters that exist on alternative little Family Tree segments that are either floating around or attached to some other segment of the Family Tree.

This concept may seem a little strange but it is something you see frequently as you are merging individuals.

There are some imaginary people in the Family Tree beside the mythological connections back to Adam. Here is an example:

Hypothetically, this person might exist, but this entry appears at the end of a line. All of the dates and even the names are made up. There are no sources showing that this person existed back in the 1400s. There are no records showing the birth of any children or a marriage.  If this person is a valid entry in the Family Tree then we could simply keep adding identical entries every few years into the past until the line extends back to the Age of Dinosaurs or the creation of the world or whatever. However, interestingly, this type of entry was allowed under the rules for ordinance work many years ago. You were allowed to add a surname and a Mrs. wife so that the sealing ordinance could be done for this hypothetical couples supposed child. This rule no longer exists. But what do I do with this entry? Nothing.

If we someday find the actual existence of this particular family, there is already a placeholder person in the Family Tree. Actually, there are several generations of Jarvis ancestors that have no sources and who jump from one county to another in England beginning back in the 1600s. The entries jump from Wilshire, England to a Jarvis couple who were both born and died in Somerset, about 60 miles away. I am reminded of the First Rule of Genealogy: When the baby was born, the mother was there.

Oh, well, I might get around to detaching this unrelated ancestral line but I still have to determine if it is broken somewhere closer to the present.

Saturday, March 9, 2019

A Question about the Ordinances Ready App

I received an email comment concerning the potential restrictions on the number of people who can be reserved for ordinances on the Family Tree. The commentator expressed dismay at the limitation because he was concerned that he would not have "enough" ordinances for his family.  The comment was sent in response to a presentation which I did recently. Here is my reply:
Perhaps you didn't understand that the Ordinances Ready app is the answer. Each person is supposed to use the app for his or her own names. So, if you have a grandchild who is able to go to the Temple, he or she logs into FamilySearch and can get names from their own list or the from the following order: 
1. It pulls names from your own reservation list on
2. It pulls from any ordinances you personally have shared with the Temples
3. It pulls names related to you from the global temple list of shared names
4. It finally walks up and down your lines looking for other available ordinances (i.e.
green icons)
5. If none of these work, it pulls a name of an ancestor from the global temple list 
Essentially, you can use the app to recapture names that you personally have shared with the Temple. You can also do what I do. I maintain an "unreserved list." Because I had so many names on my list, I "unreserved" some of them, i.e. turned them into green icons on the Family Tree. I put all of these "unreserved" names on a list on Google Docs or Word so that if I needed more names, I could add them to my Temple list assuming someone in the family had not found them previously and done the work. With a limit, we do not have to be concerned that someone else will hoard the names and not do the work.
I hope that helps to explain why having a limit will not be a burden on anyone. Once you reach your limit, keep on finding names and put them on your unreserved list. Then you will have all the names you need. But the whole idea is that your family can use the Ordinances Ready app to do work you, a close relative, have shared with the Temples. 
For example, I do not have any baptisms on my Temple list right now but I can go to the Ordinances Ready list and get four names from my shared names or from the shared names of my close relatives if I needed to do so. 
Of course, the question goes deeper than a simple concern about maintaining a cushion of ordinances for family members. The key issue is that historically members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints have long relied upon the work of a few dedicated genealogical researchers, not only to provide names for Temple ordinances but also to do all of the genealogical research for a family.  I see the transition from this traditional model to emphasizing the need for each person, including young people, to be actively involved in the process.

Because the Ordinances Ready app draws primarily from the names which have been already submitted, whether or not the names are duplicates or unrelated is essentially moot. The names have already been submitted.

Hopefully, the members of the Church will not use the Ordinances Ready app as an excuse to avoid doing any original research.

The Family History Guide Reaches Thousands at RootsTech 2019
The report is in from Bob Taylor of The Family History Guide. I thought I would share some of the comments and statistics. I spent quite a bit of time at The Family History Guide booth, but I was busy with presentations, classes, networking, interviews and just visiting most of the time. However, my wife Ann taught several of the classes at the booth and we all helped the patrons. We had some wonderful volunteers who did a great job of helping.
Here are some samples of what we heard about The Family History Guide at RootsTech 2019:
  • “You’ve made my RootsTech experience worth the time and money it cost me to be here.”
  • “Why haven’t we been told about this incredible tool?”
  • “You’re the answer to my prayers.”
  • “I’m no longer scared of my calling.”
  • “Wow, is this cool or what”!
  • “I have plenty of encouragement as to why I should do family history. What I need is a tool to help me be successful in my consultant calling, and that’s what The Family History Guide has been for me.”
  • “With The Family History Guide, I feel like I am at the opening of a gold mine with a cart next to me.”
  • “I feel like I could do cartwheels out of the Salt Palace after hearing this presentation on The Family History Guide; I’m so excited about what I learned!”
  • “l was listening to what the people around me were saying. They all said they were SO glad they attended this seminar – that it was so good and so clear, it should have been an entire conference itself.”
These are real quotes, I heard some of them myself and sometimes more than once. You know, for many people learning about The Family History Guide is like they were lost in the wilderness and suddenly finding a map, a working GPS, and guide book. Here are some statistics about the event.

  • The Thursday presentation in Ballroom B had 1,100 attendees, with a room capacity of 1,200.
  • The Saturday presentation was at the close of RootsTech when many attendees had already left, but there were about 250 there, over 2/3 of which were family history consultants.
  • Mini-classes at the booth totaled 317 attendees.
  • The total number of demos given at the booth was approximately 1,600.
  • Total people directly reached with a demo, mini-class, or full presentation: over 3,200.

We are already looking forward to RootsTech in London and RootsTech 2020.