Saturday, November 24, 2012


November 15, 2012 was Zone Conference in Fargo from about 8:30AM to 4:30 PM.  The conference was fabulous.  The Assistants to the President and zone leaders gave excellent presentations.  President and Sister Anderson spoke to us.  It was good to hear from them. They work so hard and love all the missionaries.  President Anderson, Sister Anderson and the Assistants were on a week trip to visit all the missionaries in the mission.  The mission covers all of North Dakota, South Dakota, and parts of Minnesota, Wyoming and Nebraska. They told us that by June or July the mission will have tops 250 missionaries.  We now have about 140.  They expect about 60 Sisters where there are only 14 at the present.  There will be 180 Elders plus 10 Spanish speaking missionaries.  So this will be a busy time for the President and everyone involved.  The Relief Society served us a delicious lunch.  It was great!!  After the conference we drove up to Grand Forks to visit a Seminary class the next morning.

There were 25 missionaries at the conference,.

Detroit Lakes, Minnesota Seminary

On November 14, 2012 we visited an Evening Seminary class in Detroit Lakes, MN Branch. This is about 1 hour from Fargo, ND.  This Wednesday evening class is held before the YW/YM activity at the church. The class is made up of about 10 youth.  Some are home schooled and others go to different high schools in the area.  It is a very rural area with lots of lakes and trees. The class is outlined for the students to do 4 days of individual study at home with assignments from the Wed. evening teacher.  Then on Wed. they turn in their assignments and do scripture mastery, etc.  They are a fun group of kids and really like being together.  The teacher is Sister Paulson. She is great.  Her husband is the Stake Patriarch.  We take treats whenever we visit, usually donuts and chocolate milk.  They like us to come!!!

Break the FAST


November 8, 2012 we traveled 200 miles south to Aberdeen, SD.  We attended an Institute class that evening at the church taught by Brother Gonzales.  There were about 10 people present.  This included us and the 2 Elders that serve there.  Brother and Sister Gonzales had us over for dinner before the class.  They both have Mexican ancestors.  Sister Gonzales is really into genealogy and he teaches Spanish at Northern State University in Aberdeen, SD. 
     The next morning at 6:20 AM  we attended Sister Taylor's Seminary class in Groton which is 20 miles east.  She teaches her daughter who is a senior. She has applied for BYU.  The class has two other students, both seniors.  One is a member young man who brings his non-member girlfriend.  It was a great class.  

     Later in the day we visited Brother Peterson in Northville, SD, about 25 miles south.  Then back to Aberdeen to visit Sister Vassar.   

Zone Training Meeting

Some have fun!!!!

Friday, November 23, 2012

Happy Halloween YSA


Sisters Kalio and Taggart, Branch President and Sister Brayton


Halloween Birthday

Sisters Taggart, Gordon, Hutton, Elder Berning, Sister Berning, Elders Drabandt, Sadler, Sister Kalio

Sisters Gordon and Hutton made this jello treat

A Special Seminary Class

Brother Looper and his Granddaughters and daughter
We have the great opportunity of visiting the Seminary and Institute classes in the Fargo Stake.  The Stake is about 400 miles north and south, and about 250 miles east and west.  We have 18 Seminaries and 4 Institutes with 26 teachers all together.  We traveled to Hines, MN on October 11-12, about 156 miles east one way.  We attended Brother Looper's Seminary class at 7:00 AM.  This was such a great experience as he teaches his special 2 blind grand daughters the gospel.  The spirit is present as he teaches and the girls participate.  Kennedy read scriptures from her Braille New Testament.  You can feel the love they all have for one another. The grand daughters live next door.  Their mother came to get the girls.  She was a beautiful woman and wearing a BYU sweatshirt.  They also have a younger sister that is blind.  The blindness is hereditary. Wow, what a challenge they are living and conquering.  They live in an isolated area among lots of trees.

Bismarck Temple

Bismarck North Dakota Temple
October 4-5, 2012 we visited the Bismarck Temple and met for a Senior Mission Conference,.  Bismarck, ND is about 3 hours west, 193 miles.  We had a great experience and were able to become better acquainted with the senior missionaries and Mission Presidency in the Mission.  All together there are 10 full time missionary couples in the mission. The President also has 2 Counselors. As a mission group we were able to attend 2 sessions at the Temple.  The Friday morning session was just our group.  Spiritual and motivating lessons were taught. 

Tutti Fruitti

October 1, 2012  Sisters Gordon and Hutton came to do their laundry at our apartment.  Met up with Sisters Taggart and Kalio.  We had a fun visit with the 4 sisters as we took them to Tutti Frutti.  They are outstanding missionaries and great young women.   

First Institute Class

Elder Berning, Juvaughn, Karen, & Nathaniel
On September 25, 2012, after the "Mission Train" we held our first Institute Class at the church.  It is for the YSA Branch.  We got a late start because all the young adults were busy visiting with the missionaries. We had a good meeting with only 3 YSA members there.  Sister Taggart and Sister Kalio also attend.

"Mission Train"

Our First District

Sisters Berning, Taggart, Kalio, Hutton, Gordon, Elders Berning, Brignone, Wilkes

Elder Empy with Elders

YSA Branch

September 23, 2012 Elder Berning was sustained to be a counselor to President Brayton in the YSA (Young Single Adults) Branch.  President Brayton was sustained as the new Branch President on our first Sunday here just last week.  We also met Sister Taggart and Sister Kalio.  The Branch is small with about 25 in attendance.  Some of the Young Adults are going to college and some are working. 

Traveling to Minneapolis, MN

     We spent September 20-21, 2012 in Minneapolis, MN.  We traveled there for training with the CES Area Directors and Secretaries.  They have so much love for the youth and the programs.  It was wonderful learning from them.  Minnesota is the "Land of 10,000 Lakes".  We saw many along the side of the road as we traveled.  The sunrise was beautiful.  The land is so flat with some rolling hills.