Using FamilySearch’s Green Temple Icons to Focus Your Search for Temple Names

September 23, 2016  - by 
Using FamilySearch’s Green Temple Icons to Focus Your Search for Temple Names

Perhaps more intimidating than signing in to FamilySearch and finding that there isn’t much information about your family is signing in and finding that there is lots of information there. If this has happened to you, you might have wondered what you could possibly add. Perhaps you’d like to be able to make a meaningful contribution, but you don’t have tons of time and maybe you don’t have tons of experience either. Besides, it might appear at first that everything is already done.

If this sounds like you, then becoming familiar with FamilySearch’s green temple icons might be just what you need. This feature of FamilySearch.org helps you quickly and easily identify ancestors who are missing temple ordinances so you can focus your time where it matters most.

Finding Green Temple Icons on Your Family Tree

So what are green temple icons, and what do they mean? Green temple icons are small green boxes with temple silhouettes in them that are located beside a family name of someone who appears to be missing temple ordinances. (There is a chance that duplicates of that person exist and the temple work has actually been done. See “Special Circumstances” below for more information.)

How do you find and use these icons? It’s simple! Just follow these steps:

  1. Log in to your FamilySearch account, and click Family Tree at the top of the screen. Under the Show tab on the right, be sure to check Request Ordinances.
  2. Use the green temple icon to focus your search and find names to take to the temple

  3. Look for boxes with green temple icons, such as those shown above. You might need to expand your family tree back farther to find some.
  4. Click the icon to bring up a box with the title “Request Ordinances.” Here, you can instantly tell which ordinances are ready to be done because they will show up in green. In the example below, Samuel Knapp Wilt and Jane Worden both have all their individual ordinances completed. However, their sealing to each other isn’t done.
  5. Use the green temple icon to focus your search and find names to take to the temple

  6. Verify that the information is as complete and accurate as possible. In many cases, FamilySearch provides shortcuts that make checking the information a breeze. You can click the individual’s name and then click Person to see what sources might already be attached. Or you can also click the blue Record Hints icon to see suggestions of places you can look—often with just one click. It’s also always a good idea to contact relatives and ask them about these people. You might be surprised at what information is floating around among family members just waiting to be gathered in.
  7. Use the green temple icon to focus your search and find names to take to the temple

  8. When you’re ready to do the temple work for a person, click the blue Request button. You can choose to leave all ordinances selected, or you can click the boxes to the left of the individual’s names to select ordinances for specific people. If you uncheck one of these boxes, the person’s name will be removed from your submission.
  9. Use the green temple icon to focus your search and find names to take to the temple

  10. After you click “Request,” the Church’s policy on temple work will appear, reminding you that you can submit names to the temple for ancestors, descendants, descendants of your ancestors as well as collateral lines (the families of aunts, uncles, cousins, and so on). Click that you agree, and those names will be added to your temple ordinance list. For more help on taking names to the temple, see FamilySearch’s “Quick Start to the Temple” guide.

Finding Green Temple Icons with Descendency Research

Maybe you pulled up your family tree and searched back several generations and still didn’t find any green temple icons. Now what? Does this mean there is no temple work to do on your family? Not at all! Another way to find green temple icons—and to find family members who are missing temple ordinances—is through descendency research.

Descendency research is just another way to look at your family tree. Instead of starting with one person and moving backward, with descendency research you start with an ancestor and trace his or her descendants toward the present. Here’s how you do it:

  1. Choose an ancestor born in the early to mid 1800s. This time period will give you space to move forward before you run into living people.
  2. Click the descendency view icon in the top left corner.
  3. Use the green temple icon to focus your search and find names to take to the temple

  4. On the descendency screen, you can click the arrows next to a person’s name to expand the chart and see more descendants.
  5. Use the green temple icon to focus your search and find names to take to the temple

    Use the green temple icon to focus your search and find names to take to the temple

  6. Look for green temple icons. When you find them, follow the steps 3–6 above to add ordinances to your temple ordinance list.

For more information on descendency research, try:

Special Circumstances

As you prepare names for the temple, be on the lookout for these special circumstances:

  • Family members born in the last 110 years. Keep in mind that a person must be deceased for at least one year before his or her name can be taken to the temple. Also, if you are not a spouse, child, parent, or sibling of a deceased person who was born in the last 110 years, you must obtain permission from the closest living relative.
  • Resolving Duplicates. When you click the Request tab, you may see this message: “Possible duplicates exist. You may reserve these ordinances; however, they may have already been completed.” If you see this message, be sure to dig a little deeper before you add these ordinances to your ordinance list to ensure that you don’t repeat temple work. Duplicates occur when a person is included in FamilySearch’s tree more than one time, or in other words, when there is more than one record for the same person. In the case of temple work, this duplication could mean that the record you are looking at might not show any temple work for that person but another record for the same person might include information about completed temple work.

For more information about duplicates and how to handle them, try these two resources:

So if you already have a long and leafy family tree, before you decide that taking a family name to the temple is hopeless, try looking for some green temple icons. You might find that making a meaningful contribution to your family history is easier than you thought.

 

You may also like:

Finding ancestor names to take to the temple, and teaching others to do the same

Finding ancestor names to take to the temple, and teaching others to do the same

3 Simple Ways to Keep the Temple in the Spotlight

3 Simple Ways to Keep the Temple in the Spotlight

Youth Temple Challenge: Promised Blessings

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Leslie Albrecht Huber

Leslie Albrecht Huber has written for dozens of magazines and journals on genealogy and other topics. She currently does communications consulting and contract work for nonprofit organizations. Leslie received a bachelor's degree in history from Brigham Young University and a Master of Public Affairs (MPA) from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. She has worked as a professional genealogist, helpingothers trace their families, and has spoken on genealogy and history topics to groups across the United States.

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Comments

  1. It would be wonderful if there was a legend easily available from any family tree page so that we could see what each of the symbols and colors mean right there. I’m still not 100% sure what a blue temple icon means vs an orange, etc.

    1. Mark, I hope this helps! Let me know if you have any more questions.

      A green temple icon represents ordinances that are ready to be requested. The only time you should run into difficulty reserving these ordinances is if the person was born in the last 110 years, at which time you need to request permission to reserve the ordinance to ensure that any close family that wishes to complete the ordinance has the opportunity to first. Here’s what the green icon looks like: Green Temple Icon

      An orange temple icon represents ordinances that have not yet been completed but need more information before they can be requested. For instance, a person may not have an exact location or year added to their profile. To find the information needed, we recommend using Record Hints or FamilySearch’s search function to find more records about the person. Here’s what the orange icon looks like: Orange Temple Icon

      A blue temple icon represents ordinances that are ready to complete but have been reserved by another FamilySearch user. FamilySearch releases reserved names after a name has been reserved for over 2 years. You can contact the user that reserved the names by opening the person’s profile, clicking on the ordinances tab, and selecting the username next to the ordinance in question. Then select Send a Message. Here’s a screenshot of ordinance page, which also includes the blue temple icon: Blue Temple Icon

  2. What does the number by “Ordinances Reserved” mean? Is it the number of lines on your list or the number of ordinances counting B C I SS SP individually?