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Stadem Reunion 1994,

"Moments of Reflection,"


June 1, 1994

Eldest Stadem child Pearl Ginther and Missionary Cora Stadem-Taylor

"Moments of Reflection" was the theme of the annual Stadem family reunion held at the home of Tom and Ruth Harrington, near Bryant on Memorial Day Weekend. Led by LeRoy Stadem, only surviving son of Alfred and Bergit Stadem, the event was attended by 72 of their descendants, friends and local visitors representing ten states and Brazil.

All seven daughters were also in attendance and struck a characteristic pose for the latest in a series of historic photographs. As in years past the family formed a choir and small ensemble, both of which sang for the Sunday service at Our Redeemer Lutheran Church in Bryant. The family had dinner at the church, followed by a memorial visit to the church cemetery.

In 1919, Alfred and Bergit Stadem built the home on Plain View Farm now owned by the Harringtons, five miles northwest of Bryant. They raised nine children, including son Arthur, who died in 1947. He was followed in death by Alfred in 1964 and Bergit in 1983. Memories of the couple were shared by their children and grandchildren in a series of sessions held in a tent erected beside the farm home.

Also shared by family members were pictures of family unable to attend, a picture gallery from last year's reunion, a book authored by a great grandchild, a quilt with over 5000 pieces, an aluminum dome construction sample, a copy of an original play, a poem, a skit, an African native dance, songs, prayers, male quartet cassettes and numerous other gifts, momentoes and trophies.

Accompanying the music and family singing were guitars and keyboasrd. Cora Taylor and son Calvin presented a skit portraying the difficulties communicating to a foreign language audience, as well as two videos. One video showed Cora's home in Jacutinga, Minas Gerias, Brazil, and the other showed the success of the dramatic chronological method of Bible evangelism.l

The Taylors, including Calvin's wife Gwen and daughters Karen, Karis and Anita, are home on furlough from their mission work in Brazil where Cora and her late husband Carl, began serving with the New Tribes Mission in 1949. A report sent back by Cora to the States in 1952 was read, reliving the adjustment of an American to the customs of Brazil.

Cultural diversity was also the theme of Black American family member Curtis Coatts, who led the group in reflecting on the diversity of surnames, languages spoken (7), and denominations represented (8) within the family.

A humorous looking troll depicting Norse folklore made of native stone from the farm by a Norwegian gal from North Dakota was presented and enjoyed.

A genealogical chart was posted by great-grandson, John Brown, who announced plans for completion of the collection of family members life stories by next year's reunion. The births of five new family members was noted, as well as a marriage and the 50th anniversary of the marriage of Russell Schaefer to Bernice, second oldest of the Stadem children.

Younger members of the family were entertained by a sweatshirt painting project, and a walking tour to a buffalo circle south of the Stadem homestead.

Besides current Chairman LeRoy Stadem, officers elected for upcoming reunions were, Vice Chairman Steve Stadem, Secretary/Treasurer Eloise Hefty, and Activities Coordinator Todd Svanoe. Sumptuous meals were catered by Amy Tawzer's Rustic Haven in Bryant.

Mama Bergit's Quotables

Please link to a Tribute to Daughter Bernice Stadem Schaefer, Second Eldest of the Seven Stadem Sisters:

"Would You Recognize a Queen?" A Tribute to Bernice Stadem Schaefer by Nephew Ronald Ginther

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