This morning I got up before the crack of dawn to go to the temple with my younger brother and sister. It was the first time I had done baptisms for the dead in over a year and a half. It was fun to take a trip down memory lane, doing something that I used to do every week all through high school and college.
But the best part of the process was the fact that, this time, we took our own family names with us! For years we had never been able to find any family members in our family history lines that needed work done. Nearly all of my ancestors were among the early pioneers of the Church, so there are so many members of the Church in my family that all of the work available to be done in my immediate family lines had already been done long ago. My mother has worked many painstaking hours on our family history lines and only ever managed to shake out one or two names still to be done.
Then the Church came out with the new family history program, Puzzila, to accompany familysearch.org. In Puzzila, you can branch out your family tree to include not only your direct grandparents, great-grandparents, and so forth, but also the siblings and other descendants of said ancestors, people who are distantly related to you, but not in your direct line. Thanks to this new program, we have already succeeded in finding fifteen "cousins," and we took all of their names to the temple this morning to be baptized and confirmed in their behalf. It was really cool to know that these people were receiving these saving ordinances because of work we have done to help them.
I'm grateful for these continued advances in technology and understanding that are allowing us to participate more and more in the hastening of the Lord's great work. What a wonderful time to be alive!