Saturday, April 13, 2013


April 2nd we made our final trip to Columbia South Carolina. First we had an interview with President Holm and were told we were relieved of our responsibilities in Augusta Ward and would be released as missionaries by our stake president upon our return home. The interview was followed by lunch with the President and the office missionaries, senior training then dinner at the mission home with all the senior missionaries. We had such an enjoyable time although it was bitter sweet, sad to be leaving the mission field but looking forward to our return home. During the past eighteen months we have served with many wonderful and faithful senior couples, elders and sisters, we love them all as we served in Augusta, Georgia. We are kindred spirits and will remain so eternally. 
President and sister Holm

Wednesday morning bright and early Elder Berry and I took a quick trip to Sarasota, Florida to visit our friend Marie. On the way we stopped in Orlando and went to the temple which is beautiful and we enjoyed the spirit  Marie and I served in the Las Vegas temple for over ten years. I was released to serve this mission and Marie moved to Florida to be close to her son. She has a beautiful home and we enjoyed visiting with her. As we returned to Augusta we drove through St. Petersburg and Tampa taking lots of pictures but too many to post but wonderful memories. 

Mick Mouse high power light pole driving through Orlando near Disney World. Elder Berry got really excited over this pole as he thought it was unique ( he doesn't care for amusement parks)

By the time we made it to Dayton Beach it had turned cold, the wind was blowing hard, looked like rain and the beach was closed.

Saturday we went to church and watched two sessions of conference and enjoyed hearing the message and feeling the spirit as our prophet and other church leaders spoke. Saturday evening just as the second session was over Elder Berry and I got in the car to make some visits before Priesthood session. As Elder Berry sat in the car he had a pain in his kidney which gradually got worse. At the first pain he said "I'm sorry but I'm having a kidney stone. We went to church ans spoke to Brother Brosnahan our ward mission leader who is a  doctor. Instead of going to the hospital he told him how much pain medication to take, go home and drink, drink, drink, and if the pain got too severe then go to the emergency room. That is just what we did and Elder Berry paced for about three hours in severe pain, finally when the Elders got out of Priesthood meeting they came over and gave him a blessing. Shortly after the Elders left Elder Berry passed the stone and was back to his normal self. We even made a trip to the grocery store at even o'clock in preparation for pot luck dinner between conference sessions the next day. We know our prayers were answered and are grateful for the immediate answer especially since we were anticipating our return trip home on Monday also Elder Berry was able to enjoy conference on Sunday. 

 Sister Crystal who joined the church almost a year ago made us this beautiful quilt. It is all hand made, no machine stitching on it. Elder Berry and I went with the Elders as they taught her and she didn't have a car at the time so we were her transportation also.  Sister Crystal suffers from a Bipolar disorder and is involved in a program to help others who also suffer from this same disorder and she hopes to start a program helping others make quilts and other activities as a diversion. We love this quilt and it will always be a treasure.

We weren't as organized as we hoped to be on Monday but thanks to the Elders who helped us load our car and Elder & Sister Gowans helping finish in the apartment we made it out of Augusta at 3:30 PM heading west to Atlanta to visit with two of Elder Berry Sisters. The first stop on on journey home.

 Give the Elders a camera and they love to play.

Do you think our third companion will get us to Vegas fully loaded?

As the curtain closes on the past eighteen months we thank all our family and friends and everyone who have kept us in their prayers.We have seen miracles in the lives of those we have served and in our life as we were able to overcome our physical limitations and illnesses. Elder Berry and I know the Lord knows what is best for all of us and that we were sent to Augusta under inspiration. The people in Augusta will forever be in our hearts and a part of our lives. We love all the missionaries and cherish all the experiences we have enjoyed serving together although we had many disappointments but we were able to overcome. Our mission president, President Holm is inspired in his leadership and has motivated us to become better missionaries and serve with greater purpose and power. Monday as we were preparing to leave a sister called to wish us well and share an experience with us. This sister is a single sister who cares for her elderly mother who had a stroke November of last year. We went by often but were never invited into her home because she said it was a mess. Elder Berry cut her grass twice last summer and we offered to help her do some home improvement projects and she always said she would when she got her house in order. During this phone conversation on Monday she told me she had being praying for someone to help and advise her because she had finally decided to get serious with making improvements in her home. She said she begged the Lord for several days to send her someone to help with this overwhelming project. She said after several prayers she heard a voice as plain as day say to her, "I sent you Elder Berry." Although she finally decided her house didn't need to be in order and to ask for help we were leaving. We encouraged her to speak with her home teachers and believe she is ready to follow through. We have been blessed to serve so close to my Sister Patti and her family and have been able to spend time with them. Thanks Patti for all you have done for us!
In June the Augusta, Georgia Stake will no longer be part of the Columbia, South Carolina mission but will be part of the Macon, Georgia Mission. Although we will be many miles away Augusta will always have a part of our heart and we will meet again but until then, "God Be With You Till We Meet again"

Love, Elder & Sister Berry

LDS Hymn
"God be with you till we meet again, 
By His counsels guide, uphold you, 
With his sheep securely fold you,
God be with you till we meet again.

Till we meet, till we meet,
Till we meet at Jesus' feet;
Till we meet, till we meet,
God be with you till we meet again"

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