"Oh remember, remember . . . I urge you to find ways to recognize and remember God's kindness."

President Henry B. Eyring

Monday, March 2, 2009

My Great, Great, Great, Grandfather

I guess because I was abandonded by both parents and raised by a grandmother who was less than thrilled to do the job (meaning she left the job to me) I have never felt connected to anyone except my husband and children who I am passionately devoted to! But, I have never felt any real connection with ancestors. They have been just names on a pedigree chart. I've wondered if I suffer from some attachment syndrome or something---honestly! I guess when your own mother doesn't even care enough to talk with you more than once in the last 20 years and maybe a contact once a year in the 25+ years before that, it's a little hard to believe that a long-dead realative with thousands in posterity, could even know who you are, let alone care about you.

Yesterday I felt compelled to share this experience in testimony meeting. I resisted as long as my beating heart would allow, thinking that this was another wonderful witness, but that it was only for me. I was quite astounded with the reponse of a few in our ward afterward. Well, I thought that if I should share this experience in my ward I should surely share it with my family and friends.

When I first heard the film presented before the tour of the new Draper Temple it mentioned two of the men who founded Draper. Ebenezar Brown (who is related to Ron) and William Draper who is my Great, Great, Great, Grandfather. These two amazing men where friends who lived through all of the persecution of the church starting with Kirtland until they settled Draper. They became brothers-in-law when William married Phoebe Brown Ebenezar's sister. (Girls remember when your Dad took you to Draper and gave you the tour in the park which contains their statues) I had always known I was related to William Draper. But, when I heard his name mentioned in the film, for the first time I really felt something. He hasn't been far from my thoughts since. Last Saturday we served for hours at the open-house and I thought of him again. I've thought of him in the Jordan River Temple as I have administered in the ordinances there.

I got quite emotional (something I really try not to do in church) as I bore my testimony that the Temple is REAL. The ordinances are REAL. People on the other side really do know who we are! I've always known that I was William Draper's great, great, great granddaughter, but for the first time in my life I know that he knows it too! He knows me and cares about me, and is grateful I think, that I will be serving in the Draper Temple!


  1. Thank you for sharing this story. I am sure it will give comfort to others... I'm glad your my Mom!

  2. I am so glad that you had this realization! I believe that our ancestors do know and love us and are often our guardian angels!

    We went to the Draper Temple Open House on Friday. I wish I could have seen you there because I thought of you when I realized how close you live to that beautiful new building.