Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Why I'm Starting a Blog

Hello family and general blogosphere. I'm about to write the obligatory "Why I'm starting a blog" post. Here it goes.

My family means the world to me. I grew up in a terrific family, my extended family (grandparents, aunts/uncles, and cousins) on both sides is high caliber, and now I have a small family of my own that I love very deeply. When someone asks me "Tell me about your family," I answer with a discussion in one of these three areas. Even though my family may be comparatively large, I can compartmentalize it all pretty easily. It starts with my grandparents and branches out to include my parents, aunts, and uncles; then reaches myself, siblings, and cousins; and just now is reaching the newest generation of kiddos. I usually stop here because 1) I don't know who's in the next generation, and 2) I can't remember the names of family members before my grandparents. I think I'm justified in reason number 1. But number 2? Maybe I'm not trying hard enough.

In the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (of which I'm a happy member), we stress the importance of family history work, i.e. identifying our ancestors so we can offer them saving ordinances, like baptism, by way of proxy in our temples. (More on temples here.) My family has done a stellar job of finding the names of many of these ancestors. Kudos to all! There is certainly more family out there. The search isn't over. But when I came to join, I found it very very difficult work. I didn't know where to start cause it all seemed like dead ends. It's like being late to an Easter egg hunt; most of the eggs are already in baskets and for all you know there are no eggs left to find.

My perspective on family history work changed two weeks ago. Another member of the ward mentioned that family history is not just about finding names, but also about getting to know who our family is. It's learning where we come from so we can better know who we are and form relationships with family that's already moved on. The people that went before were real people, just like us. They had good times and bad times, they lived and loved, and they don't want to be forgotten. We will be blessed by learning their stories, and I feel they will greatly appreciate our efforts.

So that's why I'm starting this blog. I want to learn who these people are, and have a place to store and share their stories with the rest of my family (at least with the relatively small part of my family, the living part.) I fully welcome contributions from all you other Wilsons/Garners. If you have ancestral stories, biographies, or pictures, please share the wealth. Let's turn some hearts (Malachi 4:6).

-Bryan W.


Kara said...

Thanks Bryan! I'll keep the blog in mind while I'm at the Bentley Reunion next week. It would be fun to share some of the stories, etc. somewhere where other family can appreciate them too.

Worthy endeavor!

1voice said...

This is just great, Bryan! I love your analogy about coming late to the Easter egg hunt. There really is a treasure trove of stories that should be shared. I'll try to help get some of them out.

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