If you’ve been involved in genealogy or are new to the hobby, you’ll invariably run into lexicon like LDS and Mormon.  So what does LDS and Mormon mean and why do Mormons care about Genealogy?

On FamilySearch, LDS and Mormon are just shortened names that refer to either

  • members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

  • the church as an institution, or

  • genealogy collections that involve these people in some way.

You can visit:

Caring for ancestors is a core LDS belief and is why Mormons have invested time and resources into preserving genealogy records worldwide. Mormons believe they have a specific charge to care for their own ancestors and by extension, do their best to help others connect with their ancestors to whatever degree they desire. With this as a fundamental creed of the religion, the church has become a dominant player and resource in the genealogy industry.

FamilySearch is a free site for accessing many genealogy collections and participating in family history projects. You’ll run across references to LDS and Mormon if you visit FamilySearch and you’ll often run across these same references at other genealogy sites.

As I blog about family history at OnGenealogy, I’ll use the terms LDS and Mormon as if these terms are understood, but I’ll try to remember to link to this post in case someone is new to the jargon.

That said, OnGenealogy is not intended to be a religious site and is not affiliated with or sponsored by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Half my family are Mormon and half are not–we all love genealogy.

Here’s a brief explanation of why Mormons care about genealogy, taken from www.comeuntochrist.org, where anyone can explore any religious topic if they want to know more about what Mormons believe.

“Mormons make a dedicated practice of doing genealogy and creating family histories, thereby connecting together generations that would otherwise not know each other.”

“In over 4,600 family history centers operated by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints around the world, the fabric of humanity is being woven together through formal record keeping. The Church records important dates and other information about those who have died, stores it, and makes it accessible to the public. This practice allows Mormons to identify their deceased ancestors so they can perform ordinances for them in the temple, a holy place where worthy Church members make sacred commitments to God and perform sacred acts, such as baptism by proxy for the dead. These ordinances on behalf of the deceased allow those who were unable to perform saving earthly rites for themselves to receive them in the afterlife.”

“The Apostle Paul spoke about performing ordinances for the dead when he asked, “Else what shall they do which are baptized for the dead, if the dead rise not at all? why are they then baptized for the dead?” (1 Corinthians 15:29). Today the restored Church of Jesus Christ is engaged in “turn[ing] the heart of the fathers to the children, and the heart of the children to their fathers” (Malachi 4:6) by performing saving ordinances for the dead. These acts of service permanently bind the generations of humanity to each other and ultimately create oneness in the family tree of humankind. It is a beautiful, massive tree—seemingly without limits—and one that has room enough for every root, branch, limb, and leaf. Our universal desire to belong exists for good reason; it exists because we do belong.”

From www.ComeUntoChrist.org article “What is the purpose of Family?” expanded menu for full article

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