News Release

Baguio Philippines Stake (Diocese) Introduces Family History in Panagbenga 2018


With the aim to further the Family History work in Baguio City, leaders of the Baguio Philippine Stake (Diocese) opened a FamilySearch Exhibit booth in the Panagbenga Flower Festival’s Session Road in Bloom 2018.

A Ribbon Cutting Ceremony opened the exhibit booth officially. Elder Evan A. Schmutz of the Philippine Area Presidency, a Church leadership in the Philippines, and his wife, Sister Cindy Schmutz; Baguio Philippines Stake President Edison Cabrito and his wife, Sister Florciele Cabrito; and Baguio Stake Public Affairs Director Danilo Quinto led the ceremony together with special guests City Councilor Leandro Yangot, former City Councilor Lulu Tabanda, and Baguio Flower Festival Foundation Inc. (BFFFI) Director Anthony De Leon. 

The guests were overjoyed with the launching of the family history booth and invite everyone to participate and to start discovering their family roots. 

In his speech, Elder Schmutz explains that the purpose of Family History in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is to search the names of ancestors so that the great words of the Prophet Malachi in the Old Testament be fulfilled. “He will turn the hearts of the fathers to their children, and the hearts of the children to their fathers,” he said quoting from a scripture verse.  He continues by sharing, "As we search for our ancestors to find their names, to find stories about them we are linking together generations."  Elder Schmutz invites everyone to participate in this endeavor to do the work of God.

Former Baguio City councilor Lulu Tabanda said, “Families are forever and this has always been my advocacy.” She then invited others to come and visit the booth.

In addition to opening the booth, church member volunteers in Baguio used the opportunity to introduce the Church's mobile application, FamilySearch, to the special guests and visitors. The mobile app provides users a faster and easier way to search, create and organize a family tree. FamilySearch developed the app to help preserve culture, memories, and photos for future generations. Furthermore, the mobile app aims to help family relationships become stronger.

During an interview with the media, Philippines Area FamilySearch Manager Felvir Ordinario explains the reason the Church do family history work.  "Families are essential to Heavenly Father’s plan and that every one of us, His children, is why there is a great emphasis on the importance of linking families together through generations."

He further explains that, as an organization, they provide the resources and the tools for people to connect with their ancestors and descendants for free. He invites everyone to visit and to start discovering their family roots. 

Other special guests who visited and toured the FamilySearch exhibit booth were Philippine Information Agency Regional Director Helen Tibaldo, Department of Tourism Regional Director Venus Q. Tan, and City Councilor Leah Fariñas.

FamilySearch is the largest genealogy organization in the world. Since 1894, FamilySearch has worked with archives, libraries, and churches in over 100 countries to facilitate economical access to records that help people find their ancestors.

The Panagbenga Festival is a month-long flower festival that occurs in Baguio City annually. The festival includes floats, street dancing, and trade fairs and exhibits along Session Road. It is the first time for the Church in Baguio to join the Panagbenga event Session Road in Bloom to celebrate this year's theme "Celebration of Culture and Creativity." The family booth is open from 26 February to 4 March from 8:00 am to 8:00 pm. On its last day, 4 March, the booth will close at 10:00 pm.

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