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Missed RootsTech? Here are 8 Quotes from Church Leaders’ Remarks to Motivate Your Family History Work

by | Mar. 02, 2020

For 10 years, RootsTech has inspired family history connoisseurs with attendees from all over the world. The 2020 event saw nearly 30,000 attendees, according to Church Newsroom.

Leaders spoke at the Thursday night Temple and Family History Leadership Instruction, the keynote session for Saturday’s Family Discovery Day, and at Light Keepers—a special session tailored to Latter-day Saint Women. Here's what they focused on during those sessions.

Temple and Family History Leadership Instruction


Elder David A. Bednar speaks with a panel of youth and young adults during the Temple and Family History Instruction. Credit: Leslie Nilsson, Intellectual Reserve, Inc.

Members of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles and other General Authorities and General Officers participated in a broadcast originating from the Conference Center Theater on Thursday, February 27. Read a full summary of the evening at Church News or see some of what Church leaders had to say below:

Elder David A. Bednar of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles

“The youth need to be anxiously engaged in this work right now. They will help identify things to do—ways of accomplishing this work that majestically move this work all over the earth.”

Elder Dale G. Renlund of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles

“[The ward temple and family history leader] serves, he helps, he coordinates, he mobilizes resources for you to execute that portion of the ward plan that pertains to all in your organization under your direction. He can facilitate ministering to all.”

Elder Kevin S. Hamilton, General Authority Seventy and Executive Director of the Family History Department

Referencing the meeting’s theme, “Ministering to All through Temple and Family History,” Elder Hamilton explained, “In this context, all means all of Heavenly Father’s children—active and less-active members of the Church, children, youth, young single adults and those not of our faith. All means literally all.”

Sister Reyna I. Aburto of the Relief Society General Presidency

Talking about a newly baptized family, Sister Aburto said, “Temple and family history is all new to them, so having someone who is already familiar with this work can increase the spiritual power of the experience.”

President Joy D. Jones, Primary General President

“The data is indisputable, sisters and brothers—as youth minister to others through temple and family history, we see an increased rate in the number of young men being ordained elders and serving missions, and we see an increased rate of young women staying on the covenant path and receiving the blessings of temple ordinances in their lives; and for new members who engage in ministering through temple and family history, they are retained on the covenant path at higher rates.”

Read a full summary of the Temple and Family History Leadership Instruction at Church News or watch the broadcast here.

Family Discovery Day Keynote Session


Elder Gary E. Stevenson and his wife, Sister Lesa Stevenson, speak during their keynote address at Family Discovery Day. Credit: Intellectual Reserve, Inc.

Elder Gary E. Stevenson, and his wife, Sister Lesa Stevenson, were the keynote speakers at RootsTech Family Discovery Day and spoke about inviting the Spirit of Elijah to fortify Latter-day Saint families, according to a summary of their remarks by Church News.

Elder Gary E. Stevenson of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles

“Whatever your family looks like, it needs to be protected. What we observe time and time again is that the home is the most powerful defense and refuge for our families.”

Sister Lesa Stevenson

“I know that as you strive to do your best, you can start to ‘unleash the power of family.’ … You and your family can become a great force for good in today’s world.”

Read a full summary of Elder and Sister Stevenson’s keynote session at Church News or watch the broadcast here.

Light Keepers

Sister Joy D. Jones participates with youth during the Temple and Family History Leadership Instruction. Credit: Leslie Nilsson, Intellectual Reserve, Inc.

Sister Joy D. Jones spoke in two identical sessions of Light Keepers, a session tailored to Latter-day Saint Women on Friday, February 28 and Saturday, February 29. Read a recap of her remarks at Church News.

Sister Joy D. Jones, Primary General President

“When you look at a child or any member of the rising generation . . . will you look at them and pray that Heavenly Father will help you see who they really are—their vast potential? [Help] them to understand that potential. . . . Their testimonies of this work will empower them and help them to learn at much younger ages why covenants and ordinances are so important.”

Read the remarks of other women who spoke at Light Keepers in the Church News summary.

Other speakers at RootsTech included keynote speakers like Emmitt Smith, NFL all-time leading rusher, and Leigh Anne Tuohy, the mom behind the inspiration of “The Blind Side.” To read more about the keynote speakers, see RootsTech coverage from Church Newsroom, Deseret News, and KSL.

Can’t wait for more RootsTech? Registration for RootsTech London 2020, which will be held November 5–7 this year, is now open.

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Lindsey Williams

Lindsey Williams joined the LDS Living team with a passion to find the stories that matter most. Previous stops in her career include BYU-Pathway Worldwide, the Special Projects Department of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, and Utah Valley Magazine. When she's not searching for stories to write, the Colorado Springs native is most likely on a hiking trail or at her piano. 

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