Land of Our Ancestors

Jaxon Fleming was excited to serve in the land of his ancestors when he was called to serve in the Denmark Mission.

He was understandably excited to be called to serve there again, in the Mission, with his wife, after retiring as an elementary school principal. They began their service as an office couple, taking care of the myriad daily needs of the mission and its 192 missionaries.

With ties to future administrators, the Mission was organized and its first missionaries were from the Frankfurt Mission. Early converts answered the call to Zion and emigrated and the work went silent for a century.

“The plan had sent me to these places,” he said in a recent interview. “I was in the land of my ancestors in all three of those first assignments, but I didn’t realize that until I completed some genealogical research.”

Fleming did not see genealogy/family history as what he was there to do as a young missionary, but as he later helped members of his family fill out their family group sheets and pedigree charts, he dutifully tried to fill out his own.

During his first assigned city, he contacted a family member he found in the phone book. He discovered from his relative and a friendly priest that his ancestors came from a nearby medieval town.

The two young elders got permission from their mission president to go there.

Upon exiting the bus, Fleming was greeted with an embrace and the traditional greeting and went to a local restaurant by a relative.

“After I’d gathered all I could by talking to family,” he said, “my companion and I boarded a bus, which was on our way back, to do some sightseeing. When we stepped off the bus, I discovered my work was not yet done. I ran into two cousins walking down the street who suggested we visit the diocese nearby to see more records.”

“The wonderful priest let us in,” Fleming recorded. “He recognized our white shirts and name tags but was so kind to us.” After they told him they were looking for family records, he took them up to the attic to look for the books for the village where his grandfather had been born.

They could not spot the right book among the leather-bound volumes on rows and rows of shelves. Praying silently for success, they found it in a jumbled pile of books on the floor in the corner as they were about to give up.

The local priest cleared off a table, and with the light of a single bulb dangling from a wire, he started translating the information from Latin as the elders sitting on each side of him filled out the pedigree charts. As night fell, the priest asked his novices to bring candles, and the three continued to work until the two missionaries had to leave.

When they returned the next preparation day, the priest had apparently been chastised for helping members of the Chancel, and he told them they would not be allowed in the attic again nor could he translate the Latin for them. He offered instead to bring the books down to them, but without his assistance the young missionaries couldn’t read the ancient Latin.

Days later, they would be allowed to return.

Both of them expressed awe at what they were allowed to do as they researched ancestors in Denmark.

Ryan Hite President and Founder Inner and Universal Aquarian Epochal Chancellate Cell: 720-207-7943 Websites: Ryan J. Hite IUAEC Savvycards: Ryan J. Hite IUAEC Books: Amazon Createspace Wishlist: Amazon H Perks Website: H Perks Shop: Café Press Social Media: Facebook LinkedIn Instagram Tumblr Google + Youtube Pinterest Twitter  
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