Elijah project: Hooper girl finds 150 names for temple ordinances

Apr 1 2013 - 5:55am

Images

Shelby Taylor poses with a photo album of temple name cards she took to the temple to perform baptisms for 101 of her female relatives. (JaNAE FRANCIS/Standard-Examiner)
Shelby Taylor visits familysearch.org, where she researched family names to find those ready for temple ordinances. (JaNAE FRANCIS/Standard-Examiner)
Shelby Taylor poses with a photo album of temple name cards she took to the temple to perform baptisms for 101 of her female relatives. (JaNAE FRANCIS/Standard-Examiner)
Shelby Taylor visits familysearch.org, where she researched family names to find those ready for temple ordinances. (JaNAE FRANCIS/Standard-Examiner)

HOOPER -- She didn't do it for the notoriety, but when people find out that 15-year-old Shelby Taylor has found 150 relative names that could be taken to the temple for ordinances, they take note.

Shelby was featured on a video that was shown at an area-wide fireside on the Elijah project, where young people from a number of area stakes were asked to find names of those who need ordinances on family history records and prepare them for the temple.

She recently was asked to speak in the Hooper 3rd Ward about her efforts.

"Lots of people know me, and I don't know them," she said.

Shelby recalls exactly the day she got excited about family history work. It was just as the Elijah project was getting organized in Hooper.

"I'm not gonna lie," she said. "I thought it was for old people, like grandma. I didn't think it was for me. I thought it was going to be way hard."

And Shelby recalls the exact day when her enthusiasm sparked -- Dec. 10, 2011.

That's when two neighbor girls, Katie Hansen and Taylor Sandberg, invited her to go to the temple with them.

"I was like, 'I don't want to go to the temple with only one name,' " she said. "We went up there, and I was so proud of my 10 names."

And the happiness she felt at the temple that day was something she wanted to duplicate.

"There's something about family names that is different than temple names," Shelby said. "You go to the temple, and you get a natural high, and you want to go back."

And the feeling that day and in the days that followed was something she wanted to experience again.

"I didn't feel compassion as much as I do now," she said. "I've noticed that it hurts me when something happens and before it didn't hurt, like when people say something mean about someone. I guess the temple just makes you feel better."

She said she'd heard her bishop say that people get blessings from the temple.

"I don't think he was bluffing," she said. "I can feel it -- plus I don't think bishops would bluff."

Shelby said she has found that time seems to stand still while she is researching names.

"When I do it, it's a long time, but it feels like a short time."

"It's not that hard," she said. "It just takes time and effort. It's not like a homework effort. It's like a sit-and-click-buttons effort."

Shelby said she estimates she has been to the temple 10 times since she was invited by her neighbors to take her family names.

She has gone half the time with her grandparents, Rich and Cheryl Taylor, of Slaterville.

And she has gone with her older cousins, Kassie and Kyson Priece, who invite other young cousins, Whitney Hawkins, Kameren Hawkins and Rachelle Aurich, and Shelby's sister, Hanna Taylor, to go along as well.

"We usually go to the Bountiful temple," she said. "We go to Carl's Jr. afterward for breakfast."

Shelby said she is usually able to get as many names done as she brings to the temple.

"It will be packed with wards, and when I get there, it's just gone," she said.

And she has two favorite names. Jemina Daubs was the first female name she found for baptism.

But Elizabeth Rogers was the most memorable.

"She's my oldest name," Shelby said of the woman who was born in 1563 in Derbyshire, England.

"When I was getting baptized for her, I could just feel her thanking me."

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