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Thread: Little Brown Church in the Vale - Nashua, Iowa

  1. #1
    Super Member Edie's Avatar
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    Last week, June 11-13, my husband and I traveled from St. Paul to Nashua, Iowa to renew our wedding vows for our 50th anniversary at the Little Brown Church in the Vale. We were married there on June 11, 1960 and my husband started planning this journey back in 1969 (unbeknownst to me). Then a few months ago, he told me about his plan and we got the ball rolling. It was wonderful. Beautiful sunny day, (actually it was "sweating" hot out. We renewed our vows, had communion, exchanged an additional ring to go next to the ones we exchanged when we were married the first time. It was a very personal time between the two of us and very meaningful. We had an organist, a photographer, the minister and us. That was all. The minister was marvelous. When the service was over, the organist played "The Little Brown Church in the Vale" and I just fell apart. It was like all 50 years had come back bit by bit, reminding me of the good times, the hard times, the fun times, the scary times.

    The next day we drove down to the Amana Colonies where we have relatives and hit the quilt shop! I bought enough material to make our "Anniversary Quilt" which had been running through my mind for the past month or so and it all came together in a matter of 24 hours.

    I was just wondering how many of you were also married there? And how many of you would ever consider being married there? It's about 3 hours from St. Paul and is a wonderful trip.

    If you are in the least bit interested google "Little Brown Church in the Vale" and where you see the piano keys click on and it plays the music. We had a cd made of pictures, again, just the two of us, for posterity and that song is played throughout the pictures.

    Wonderful experience. Edie

  2. #2
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    How lovely and also thoughtful of your DH.

  3. #3
    Power Poster CarrieAnne's Avatar
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    Aw, that sounds like the perfect day! Congrats on your rewedding!!!!!!!

  4. #4
    LindaLu's Avatar
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    Will your wedding quilt have the Little Brown Church on it?

  5. #5
    Super Member Edie's Avatar
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    Oh yes! It was recorded onto the CD as an album type thing with the pictures showing one by one and the music in the background. They also have a little garden in the back with a statue of St. Francis amd all kinds of flowers and a little path where the photographer took pictures. On the face of the cd, there is a picture of us in front of the church and then it gives our names and says "50 year renewal of vows". Also, I forgot to mention, that after the service, you go to the front of the church (from whence you enter) and there is the bell, and you and your husband ring the bell - "The ringing of the bell together is a tradition at the Little Brown Church. As you ring the bell, may you remember that as a couple you need to continue to pull together through all the ups and downs you will face in this life. May the joy you find pulling together be shared by family and friends, just as the people can hear and share the joy of our bell ringing today. May God bless you on your continued journey of love." It was as joyous last Friday afternoon as it was 50 years ago.

    If anyone has any questions, I will be glad to answer them for you (being a "been there - done that"! Edie

  6. #6
    Power Poster MamaBear61's Avatar
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    What a beautiful thing to do.

  7. #7
    LindaLu's Avatar
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    That is a wonderful thing yall did. I can remember singing that song in church. It was great!

  8. #8
    Junior Member Keaghank's Avatar
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    I'm from IA - that's such a nice little place. Glad you got to enjoy it!

  9. #9
    Super Member raptureready's Avatar
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    wasn't married there but I LOVED reading your story. What a beautiful and touching time.

  10. #10
    Senior Member Eagle Hawk's Avatar
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    I wasn't married there, but the church and the song hold very fond memories for me. I grew up in Iowa and my father used to sing religious songs to me like The Old Rugged Cross and one of my favorites, although not really a religious song, was The Little Brown Church in the Vale. My dad would have me sing it in rounds with him like singing Row, Row, Row Your Boat, only it started out Come Come Come Come...Come to th church in the wild wood, Come to the Church in the Vale.... When I was a little older I was surprised when my dad told me that there really was a Little Brown Church. Later on it was so neat to finally see the church my dad had been singing to me about all those years.

    It is a very special place and I am happy for you on renewing your vowes again in such a special place and such a special state. Congratulations and thank you for sharing such a beautiful story with us.

  11. #11
    Super Member MinnieKat's Avatar
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    What a sweet story! I wanted to get married at the Little Brown Church in the Vale but our plans didn't come together. We did get married anyway but just not there.

  12. #12
    Power Poster littlehud's Avatar
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    What a perfect day. He sure is a keeper.

  13. #13
    Super Member luv-e's Avatar
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    Reading you note ,a tear ran down my cheek. I'm such a softy. It just sounds like it was wonderful!!

  14. #14
    Super Member mary quite contrary's Avatar
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    Congratulations!! 50 years. WOW!

    We weren't married there but I am from Iowa and visited there severak times and drove past often.

  15. #15
    Google Goddess craftybear's Avatar
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    Congratulations!

  16. #16
    Super Member grammyp's Avatar
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    What a wonderful thing to do. I wonder if DH is working on our 50th plans yet.

  17. #17
    Power Poster sueisallaboutquilts's Avatar
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    What a beautiful story, thanks for sharing and I'm so happy for you both!! :)

  18. #18
    Power Poster earthwalker's Avatar
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    Thanks for sharing your beautiful story. Sometimes out of the blue my husband says...I'll marry you again someday...Don't know if we will, but you never know.

  19. #19
    Junior Member G-Maw Wilda's Avatar
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    I am so glad for you, very few people make it to their 5th much less their 50th now days.

    We have 12 more years(in Jan.) until our 50th.

  20. #20
    Power Poster amma's Avatar
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    That was one of Gramas favorite songs :D:D:D
    I never knew it was a real church, thank you for sharing your vow renewal with us and your anniversary. Also for bringing back such a wonderful memory of Grama singing this song all of the time :D:D:D

  21. #21

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    38 years ago, I asked my wife to marry me.
    She picked "The Little Brown Church In The Vale".

    I'd only known her for 4 months. When we got to the church, we had to go through an interview to satisfy the pastor that we were a good bet -- he had a record of success (1972 was NOT a good year for long lasting marriages)

    Like I said -- that was 38 years ago.
    Another 12, and I'll ask her to renew vows, and suggest the same place that worked the first time.

  22. #22
    Super Member Ditter43's Avatar
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    That is wonderful! So nice of your hubby to plan that so far in advance! Be sure to show us your anniversary quilt!! :thumbup: :thumbup: :D :D :D

  23. #23
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    What a beautiful story. Did not know there was really such a place. We sang the song when I was young. You are really blessed.

  24. #24
    Super Member Rann's Avatar
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    My grandmother loved the song and sang it to me. She also sang one about a little red wagon painted blue. That's all I can remember about the song and have never seen nor heard it again.

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