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Bible, an Enduring Keepsake

Entzle, Anna. "Bible, an Enduring Keepsake." North Dakota REC/RTC, July 1999.


My maternal grandparents, Samuel and Karolina Fregien, were among the first families to settle in Roloff Township, McIntosh County. Like many other Germans living in the dorfs of Russia, they fled the country to avoid military service, to receive free homestead land, and to have religious freedom, which they cherished dearly.

The newlywed couple were leaving behind their parents and families to come to this new land and to settle in strange surroundings. What could their parents give them to take along, to remind them of their faith and closeness to God as well as of their parents? They gave them a Bible, so they could study the word of God and gain the faith and courage they would need in their new home.

When my grandparents passed away, my mother, Bertha Hauff, inherited their Bible. Later, when my mother and my siblings passed away, the Bible was given to me.

Whenever I look at the Bible, it reminds me of my grandparents coming to North Dakota with this book of faith, of their struggles to start a new home in a strange land, and of how their faith provided comfort, strength and guidance. They found this in God--and in this Bible, which today is 174 years old.

The Bible is written in German. Though its pages are worn with use, it is legible and in good condition. I feel blessed to have such a book in my possession, and to have had ancestors who had such faith in God.

Reprinted with permission of the North Dakota REC/RTC Magazine.

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Germans from Russia Heritage Collection
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