22 December 2010

Advent Calendar - December 22 - Christmas and Deceased Relatives

Sometimes my children accuse me of loving the dead more than the living. Hmm, my dead relatives don't criticize me as much, that's for sure.

Our community has a loosely organized candlelight memorial vigil at each city cemetery on Christmas Eve. Luminaries or candles are lit at each grave site where the families come to participate. It's a quiet peaceful time to remember the gift Jesus Christ gave us all--the power to rise again in our bodies. I often think of resurrection morning when I'm at the cemetery.

There are other ways to honor deceased relatives. Footnote has an interactive feature I like called Footnote Pages. To use footnote pages, no membership is required. You can search for a person and read what others have written or create a page of memories yourself. Attach documents, photos or memories about this person. A huge database is already provided by the Social Security death index. I established footnote pages for some of my loved ones that have passed on. Think social networking--Facebook for those who can't post for themselves (lol). Truly, I believe that the more we can share information and memories, the more our family history work will progress. I would like to make an interactive page for many more of the characters on my family tree.

Bert Whitney -- Merry Christmas Dad!
Here is a Christmas memory I posted last year on Footnote for my dad.
Dad made Christmas magical for his 10 children. He and Mom sacrificed to give us wonderful gifts every year when we were young. There was a grand display of toys for all of us on every Christmas morning. When we married and left home, he was generous with his financial gifts so we could do the same for our children if we desired. In the years he spent alone, he often worked for hours on homemade presents like the step stool and bench I still love. He enjoyed the family Christmas parties, loving the musical offerings of his children and grandchildren and serving, as always, as the main audience for our re-enactment of the Nativity story. He was a quiet generous man with a heart as big as the desert landscape that he loved.


  1. What a wonderful tribute to your father. It's humbling to look back at our childhood and realize the sacrifices our parents made so that we could have a good Christmas.

  2. I love you, Mom and Dad. Merry Christmas