I love how Utah can have completely different weather each month. February this year surprised us by being mild and warm. This winter season it snowed on Christmas, but we haven’t got snow at our house since. Yesterday we were asked by our local Authority to fast and pray for moisture. So hopefully, March will be a wet month.
Last year, after I graduated, I was officially a stay at home mom. The adjustment was a little overwhelming. Going from working full time, going to school full time, being a young woman leader, to “just staying home” came with its challenges. I would sit on our chase lounge and nurse my baby boy most of the day. I watched Downton Abbey, Larkrise to Candleford, and a bunch of Disney movies. I loved holding my sweet baby after he ate and cuddling him in my arms as he slept, but I felt quite unproductive. I decided to start to do my family history. I started to do it out of obligation because I knew I should, but then i grew excited to work on it every day. I felt like I was sincerely getting to know these family members. This weekend I reflected on how finding and learning about my ancestors has blessed my life.
There is so much confusion and sadness going on in the world. There are those who are abandoning their faith and losing hope. This time last year I found my personal faith being attacked. I had sick feelings about all that was going on. It was around that time that I began doing family history. Again and again I came upon ancestors of mine who gave everything to come to Zion and follow the Prophet Joseph Smith. Those ancestors left their homes, countries, and families to come to America and join with the saints. Some lost children while crossing the plaines to Utah. As I learned about these ancestors my faith was strengthened and I knew that they did it so their posterity would be able to be partakers of the gospel. They had a testimony that Joseph Smith was a prophet of God, and they reminded me of that same testimony which I have. The way has never been easy for followers of Christ, and it never will, but we can be sure that Christ will never leave or abandon us. If we follow Him and stay in the Old Ship Zion, we will safely return home to our Father in Heaven.
Else Kathrine Andersen Christensen (1847-1923)
This is my Great Great Great Grandmother (My mother’s, mother’s, mother’s, Mother) I have felt a special connection with her since I have learned more about her life. I thought I was the only person in my family who likes medical stuff. This lady was one of the first Midwives in Utah. She delivered over a thousand babies. She was born and raised in Denmark. When she was a young woman she secretly allowed LDS missionaries to teach her about the restored gospel and the Book of Mormon. When it was discovered that she had been baptized she was kicked out of her home and her family disowned her. She never saw her parents again. She met and fell in love with her eternal sweetheart Lauritz Mathias Christensen. Together they came to America, traveled with the pioneers to Utah, and Laurs kept his promise to build her a nice home and raise a family. They were the parents to 10 biological children and 2 foster children. Else lost her family and two of her children passed away while on their way to Utah. She gave up her precious Denmark to come to America and gather in Zion. She is one of many of my ancestors who had tremendous faith in a very difficult time. I will forever honor and be grateful for this Matriarch of mine!