Did you know that there are around 600 million people who reside in Latin America? And of those, 5.4 million are members of the Church. In fact, nearly 40% of Church membership resides in Latin America! So it makes perfect sense that after English, Spanish is the largest indexing language in the world and will be a major focus for indexing in 2013.
Worldwide, there is a strong community of Spanish indexers that are making records available online for free so people can find their families and perform the saving ordinances for them. There is a staggering 128 collections for Latin America on familysearch.org! Let’s take a closer look at how those searchable records blessed the life of one sister from Mexico.
Aide Calvo, a recent convert, is one of many indexing volunteers in Latin America who lives in Mexico. Last year she went to a FamilySearch Center and set up an LDS Account. She then received her patriarchal blessing that mentioned that she had an important work to do for her family on the other side of the veil. She started by talking to her family members and even took a trip to see relatives in another city. Eventually, she was able to find and prepare temple cards for nine generations of her family in three months using information on familysearch.org.
Aide said, “I first began to search familysearch.org and found many relatives, then went to the images and found more family, until I had over 400 names.” Aide now has a calling as an assistant director at the FamilySearch Center, where another volunteer taught her how to index. She is now a top indexing contributor in her stake and even found four family names in a batch she downloaded.
With the release of Family Tree, it will become easier to link images to family pedigrees. These valuable images, for years only available on familysearch.org, will now be part of the experience of preparing a name for the temple. With this new resource, indexing will be as important as ever and will not detract from the temple experience but enhance it.
Elder Richard G. Scott said in the October 2012 General conference, “But what about you? Have you prayed about your own ancestors’ work? Set aside those things in your life that don’t really matter. Decide to do something that will have eternal consequences.” If Aide can get so much information on her family in such a short amount of time, why can’t you give it a try?
In 2013 we plan to bring you more success stories from Latin America and throughout the world. There will also be a greater effort to recruit and retain more indexers and arbitrators. We would like to personally thank you, the many diligent volunteers in Latin America, who are making more and more images available, and who are enabling ordinances to be performed in sacred temples in Latin America and across the globe.