|FAMILY HISTORY QUOTES
"This work of administering the ordinances of the house of God to the dead . . . will require the whole of the Millennium, with Jesus at the head of the resurrected dead to attend to it. The ordinances of salvation will have to be attended to for the dead who have not heard the gospel, from the days of Adam down, before Christ can present this world to the Father, and say, 'It is finished."
-- Wilford Woodruff, September 5, 1869 Journal of Discourses, 13:327
"Bless them, we pray Thee, in their labors, that they may not fall into errors in preparing their genealogies; and further more, we as Thee to pen before them new avenues of information, and piece in their hands the records of the past, that their work may not only be correct but complete also."
-- Wilford Woodruff, 6 April 1893 Salt Lake Temple Dedicatory Prayer Deseret News Weekly, Apr. 15, 1893, p.514
"When the Savior comes, a thousand years will be devoted to this work of redemption; and temple will appear all over this land of Joseph, -- North and South America -- and also in Europe and elsewhere; and all the descendants of Shem, Ham, and Japeth, who received not the Gospel in the flesh, must be officiated for in the temple of God, before the Savior can present the kingdom to the Father, saying, 'It is finished." --Wilford Woodruff, September 16, 1877 Journal of Discourses, 19:230
"We live in a very important generation. We are blessed with power and authority, holding the Holy Priesthood by the commandment of God to stand upon the earth and redeem both the living and the dead. If we did not do it, we should be damned and cut off from the earth, and the God of Israel would raise up a people who would do it." --Wilford Woodruff
"It takes just as much to save a dead man as a living man."
-- Wilford Woodruff, September 16, 1877 J.D. 19:228
"We have got to enter into these temples and redeem our dead -- not only the dead of our own family, but the dead of the whole spirit world . . . This is the great work of the last dispensation - - the redemption of the living and the dead."
-- Wilford Woodruff, July 3, 1880 J. D. 21:192; 194
"We are building temples to the names of the Lord. What are we building them for? That we may enter in and redeem our dead."
--Wilford Woodruff, January 9, 1881 J.D. 22:209
"Yes, the Lord has raised up saviors upon Mount Zion, and the kingdom is the Lord's. It is His work. And we have the great power as Latter-day Saints to go into these temples and redeem our dead, and attend to ordinances for them that they never heard of in their day and generation. What will be the condition of these saviors upon Mount Zion? These Saints of the Lord will hold the keys of salvation to their father's house to the endless ages of eternity. There never will be a time when that power will be taken from them. We ought to realize these things, and we ought to prize the blessings which God has put in our hands."
-- President Wilford Woodruff M.S. vol. 53, pg. 405, Conf. Of 1891
"The more light we have, the more revelations of God we have, the more we shall prize these privileges. It is a great blessing that we stand in the flesh in this last dispensation and fulness of times; and where we can open our hearts to understand these blessings, all of us will labor, as far as we have opportunity, to attend to this duty for our dead. I do not want to go into the spirit world and meet with my progenitors and have them say to me, 'You held the keys of my redemption and my salvation and you neglected to do this work, and I am not redeemed."
--President Wilford Woodruff M.S. vol. 53, p. 405, Conf. of 1891
"Every father and mother has a great responsibility resting upon them to redeem their dead. Do not neglect it. You will have sorrow if you do. Any man will who neglects the redemption of his dead that he has power to officiate for here. When you get to the other side of the veil, if you have entered into these temples and redeemed your progenitors by the ordinances of the House of God, you will hold the keys of their redemption from eternity to eternity. Do not neglect this!"
-- Wilford Woodruff CR, p. 90, April 10, 1898
"Brethren and sisters, lay these things to heart. Let us go on with our records. I pray God that as a people our eyes may be opened to see, our ears to hear, and our hearts to understand the great and mighty work that rests upon our shoulders, and that God of heaven requires at our hands."
"We want the Latter-day Saints from this time to trace their genealogies as far as they can, and be sealed to their fathers and mothers. Have children sealed to their parents, and run this chain through as far as they can get it. This is the will of the Lord to His people."
"Two weeks before I left St. George, the spirits of the dead gathered around me, wanting to know why we did not redeem them. Said they, 'You have had the use of the Endowment House for a number of years and nothing has ever been done for us. We laid the foundation of the government you now enjoy, and we never apostatized from it, but remained true to it and were faithful to God.'
These were the signers of the Declaration of Independence and they waited on me for two days and two nights. I thought it very singular notwithstanding so much work had been done, and yet nothing had been done for them. The thought never entered my heart from the fact, I suppose, that heretofore our minds were reaching out after our more immediate friends and relations.
I straightway went into the baptismal font and called upon Brother McCallister to baptize me for the signers of the Declaration of Independence, and fifty other eminent men, making one hundred in all, including John Wesley, Columbus and others. I then baptized him for every President of the United States except three, and when their cause is just, somebody will do the work for them."
--Wilford Woodruff, J.D., p. 228-230
"There is a mighty work before this people. The eyes of the dead are upon us. This dedication is acceptable in the eyes of the Lord. The spirits on the other side rejoice far more than we do, because they know more than we do of what lies before the great work of God in this last dispensation. The Son of God stands in the midst of that body of celestial spirits, and teaches them their duties concerning the day in which we live and the dedication of this temple, and instructs them what they must do to prepare and qualify themselves to go with Him to the earth when He comes to judge every man according to the deeds done in the body."
--Wilford Woodruff at Dedication of Temple
".... A few days ago I went before the Lord in his Holy Temple, where I often go to pray. There is no more acceptable spot on this earth to the Lord than this temple. While in humble prayer, with the subject of temple ordinances on my mind, I prayed the Lord to open the way for the redemption of my dead. The Spirit of the Lord rested upon me and gave me the following testimony:
'Let my servant Wilford call upon the daughters and mothers in Zion, and let them enter into my Holy Temple on the first day of March, that day that my servant Wilford shall see the time allotted to man, three score years and ten. There let them receive their endowments for his dead kindred, and this shall be acceptable unto me saith the Lord. The dead relatives of my servant shall be redeemed in the spirit world and be prepared to meet my servant at the time of his coming, which shall be at the time appointed unto him, yet no revealed to man in the flesh. Now, go and perform this work and all shall be accomplished according to the desire of your heart.'
This was merely a key to me, a light burst upon my understanding, and I saw an effectual door opened to me for the redemption of my dead. When I beheld this I felt like shouting, 'Glory, Hallelujah to God and the Lamb.' I did not pursue this course, however, without first making known my testimony to President Young. Upon consulting him he said that my course was proper; what I did was right; and what I received cam from the Lord. He offered to provide several persons himself.
....I feel thankful to you, my sisters, for this manifestation of your kindness to me. Had you sought the world over, you could not have found a birthday present so precious to me as this. If I can redeem my dead and save myself and family, I shall be highly gratified. I feel that when we get into the spirit world, we shall see the importance of this day. I pray that we may meet with your kindred dead in the Celestial Kingdom of God." -- The Utah Genealogical and Historical Magazine Vol. 5, pp. 97-98, October 1922
'If the veil were lifted off the face of the Latter-day Saints and they could see and know the things of God as they do who are laboring for the salvation of the human family who are in the spirit world..., this whole people, with very few, if any, exceptions, would lose all interest in the riches of the world, and instead thereof their whole desires and labors would be directed to redeem their dead.'
Discourses of Wilford Woodruff, p. 152