In his devotional address, Elder Kevin R. Duncan and his wife, Nancy Duncan, addressed the importance of family history work, and the ‘joy’ that can come from temple work.
They described our responsibility to our ancestors as being a core of our eternal progression, a matter of love, essential, critical and necessary for our eternal salvation.
The couple addressed the students of BYU-Idaho together and took turns speaking. Each stepped to the side of the podium as they switched off.
“It threw me off a little bit at first, but I liked the group teaching,” said Hannah Weber, a sophomore majoring in marriage and family studies. “I thought it was an interesting way to go about it, and I definitely paid attention because it was new; it wasn’t something I’d ever seen before.”
As they talked about the spirit of Elijah and the history and importance of family history in early Church times, they encouraged students to follow the words of the prophet Malachi and ‘turn their hearts to their fathers.’
They spoke about the promises that God made to our ancestors and how we can do our part in helping to fulfill those promises.
“We are helping God fulfill his promises to our ancestors when we offer them the chance to have ordinances performed in the temple,” Elder Duncan said.
Sharing their experiences with the temple focused their message on how attending the temple and helping with work for the dead doesn’t have to be a burden.
“One of the things that I loved the most is the list of blessings we can get from temple work,” said Annalise Jones, a senior studying food sciences. “I already have a pretty regular schedule of doing temple work, but I loved how he said that it used to be a checklist for him, and one of the thoughts that I had was that I want it to be less of a duty and more of a desire.”
One thing the couple said to help students to feel the importance of the temple was listing the blessings that can come.
They quoted apostles and prophets to support their own promise of finding peace and joy by attending the temple.
Some of the blessings included assistance to mend the broken, troubled or anxious hearts; no longer feeling alone; the power to discern; having a greater influence of the Holy Ghost; increased joy and an abiding commitment to follow the Savior.
Students who filed out of the BYU-Idaho Center after devotional left with smiles on their faces.
“I thought it was good,” said Ian Rose, a freshman studying electrical engineering. “I need to go to the temple more often, and I am definitely going to be making that more of a priority in trying to make it a part of my schedule.”
The full devotional address can be found on the BYU-I website listed under devotionals.