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Few months ago, I saw a familysearch history ad on Facebook asking for volunteers who can speak a second language to help with translation. I thought this would be a good opportunity to serve, so I signed up.
After a good while, a family history missionary called to ask if I was still interested in serving for Familysearch. I almost forgot about that! I then met with a volunteer lead of the translation team, finished a test and started translating.
Something didn’t feel right after I started serving for a week.
I asked the missionary if there was other serving opportunity.
He said I could apply to become a family history missionary to work for the virtual record center. I will be extracting records for people to find their ancestry’s records.
I applied and had interviews with the Bishop and stake president. President asked why I wanted to serve… I thought I could fulfill my dream to serve a mission, and this mission is related to library work. I can also serve at home! What’s better than that?
(I didn’t really know what I would be actually doing… I only knew it’s related to record management and there’s a minimum of 8 hours per week commitment.)
I didn’t realize that there seemed to be a hand pushing me to do family history work since I came to the States: I attended the family history Sunday school class (super random) in Asian Ward, took a family history class at BYU (that was useful but I forgot about most of it), and finally, helped my grandma finished her work. I remember how I thought family history was for old people. I haven’t even been to my “hometown,” how could I do my family history work? Moreover, my parents and sisters had already done a lot.
But then my interest towards my family history had grown after I started my mission!
Although my parents and sisters had already done a lot of our family history work, I found there might be something I could do more when I was organizing the records. I also found there was government website that lists our whole family tree/line! I had always thought no one would put these old stuffs up online in China. Those records must have been burned or thrown away already!
But family history had become a thing in China! Too bad many of the records were gone during the Cultural Revolution. I don’t even know if the records we have are accurate.
But I know Heavenly Father will guide us. I just need to do my best!
I never thought I would help with the work. My name wouldn’t even be recorded on my family book. (In Chinese family book, daughters’ names wouldn’t be recorded. For wives, only the maiden name would be recorded, like Ms. Chan, Ms. Wong etc.)
But it has been fun. I also have the responsibility to help my ancestors to learn the gospel! There’s still a whole family forest for me to discover.
Maybe you and I are related!