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Too Busy for Family History

Too Busy for Family History

Whenever the topic surfaced about researching and redeeming ancestors, Greg Veinot was one who always thought that his father had it covered. “My father had encouraged me to do family history work, especially after my mission,” he remembers. “I felt many times that I should begin, but I didn’t know how.”

That responsibility of salvation was buried even further down his list of things to do in July 2008 when he was called to serve as branch president. Surely, his small flock demanded his immediate attention.
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For his first Sunday presiding at Sacrament meeting, President Veninot was grateful for the foresight of his predecessor; the previous bishop had already arranged for the Halifax Temple president and his wife to speak. That meeting, in fact, added to the new leader’s responsibilities. “As they spoke, a very powerful impression came over me to take family history work seriously and that I needed to set a goal,” says President Veinot.

“I felt so rebuked and yet so motivated that I knew I needed to do something,” he recalls. “I went home and prayed and thought about what was said in that meeting. As I thought about what I should do, I covenanted that I would begin to search my ancestors and find one individual per month.”

During his prayer, President Veinot felt strongly that he should begin his family research with his mother’s family. One Sunday evening, he opened FamilySearch.org on the Internet. “I put in my father’s name, my mother’s name and then my grandparents’.  As the mirage of names began to unfold, one family stood out. “I had a strong impression, ‘Start here! This is the family that we need to research.’”
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Google searches and other sources began to yield some leads. “I found a person in the fourth generation who had 19 children. I found his parents and enough information on 16 of the children.” The web search also led to data from Ancestry.com that pointed him to the Nova Scotia vital records repository.

“Within the first month, I found 14 family members who needed temple work and I had their names ready that month. When I set the goal initially, I had such a small amount of faith. But within a very short period of time, I had more than enough names to meet my goal for the entire year.”
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Even with those successes, President Veinot does not consider himself a family history researcher. He says that family history research, like mining, doesn’t yield gold with each day’s effort. “The Lord wanted to give me a witness of it in my first experience to keep me going,” he recalls. After three to four weeks of regular searching, he was lead to the ten new family members that he had targeted plus more.

In addition to finding names and performing temple ordinances, President Veinot is engaged in a wide array of family history service, including keeping a personal journal, name indexing and temple ordinance service. “When I hit a dead end road, I will go do some FamilySearch Indexing.”

“All of this is the Lord’s work. It’s all helping and benefiting His children somewhere, in the vast spectrum of everything. He cares about all of us, whether it’s my family names or someone else’s.”

“It was a huge witness to me that, first, people are prepared in the spirit world to receive the gospel, and second, that the Lord’s hand is in the work and He has prepared the way for us to find these people and take them to the temple.”
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