Thursday, April 29, 2010

A Celebration of Family History

This was the title of the program held tonight at the Conference Center of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Speakers were Henry B Eyring and David McCullough, whose remarks I was especially touched by even while being unable to cite but one. Musical numbers were presented by the Mormon Tabernacle Choir and the Orchestra at Temple Square as well as a number of moving video vignettes of interest to all genealogists and family historians.

I do not recall such an experience recently. What I have come away with is a renewal of my belief- which David McCullough put to words- that if not forgotten, not gone.

Each time we reflect on the lives or activities of ancestors they are present- something I have been aware of as I read a name, or add a bit of data, or find a record previously unknown to me that for that moment that kinsman, relation, ancestor is as near as the chair beside me! OH! That we could speak!

But you and I could speak- can speak. We are here together now. I am delighted to have had such a chance with Dawn Kirkham Hair, daughter of Joseph Stoddard Kirkham (fourther). I have to ask again how she found me, but I came home Monday last, checked my e-mail and here was a note from her. Because we have -at the very least- the Family History Library in common we may be able to sit together and speak, or type n speak: but we have it in our power to do. ( I am at the FHL as I write; I could not wait to get home to make this note!)

As tonight's speakers, and musical and visual messages confirmed, our family's history is not written in the past but in the present. WE are writing it and if we are not then the history is not. What history we have to read today was bequeathed us- what will we leave for tomorrow's relations?

Let's talk sometime. Soon.

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