Friday, June 3, 2011

Our 54th Happy Anniversary

Frances and Me

God has been so good to me to give me a good and godly wife!  She is my inspiration.  The greatest moments in my adult life have happened with her by my side.  She is beautiful, brilliant, dignified and so sweet that sugar won't melt in her mouth.  The sight of her smile, when focused on me, takes my breath away. She has incredible inner strength that others are attracted to like a magnet. Honesty comes naturally for her. She speaks what she means and means what she speaks. She has raised our three daughters up to be lovely women who share the same old fashioned values with their Mom - and did this while I was away much of the time, "somewhere working for the Lord". Yes, the Lord has been good to me.  When we met, she was at Berea College in KY, working on plans to become a medical doctor/missionary.  However, when I asked her to marry me she changed her plans to fit in with her husband's plans.  She went on to U.T. in Knoxville, TN and earned her B.A. degree in Education.  She became a school-teacher and helped support me while I pastored small churches that could not pay a full salary.  After five years she followed me to Guyana, S. America, back to Tennessee, then to Africa where we lived for ten years!  So she has literally followed me half way around the world.  What a woman ! 

 God was also good to us over the years and as we pastored churches for 24 years and served in missions for 23 years.  He gave us many good friends.  One such friend from a church we pastored in the 1980s sent an e-mail asking us to join him for breakfast on the morning of June 2nd at the Cracker Barrell for breakfast.  Bobby R. and his wife lived across the street from us for 7 years.  He was on the Church and Pastor's council and also led singing in our church.  He worked with our youth of the church and won their respect and trust.  He currently works for the State of Tennessee and has responsibilities all over the eastern part of our state.  We are thankful to you, Bobby, for being our friend.
Bobby R., Church Member and Good Friend

Immediately after our leisurely visit with Bobby, we received a call from Frances sister, Beth, that Curtis was having a tough time.  We decided to spend the rest of our day by driving up and spending some time with Beth and Curtis.  He has to have oxygen 24/7 and is feeding himself through a tube into his stomach, but maintains a most congenial and positive attitude.  I was privileged to take Beth to the grocery store and help with an errand or two.  Then we joined two of Frances Brothers and one of the wives at the new BoJangles for dinner before driving back home.  We were tired but felt a sense of satisfaction.  Curtis has a new laptop and a grandson is there with them to help him whenever he has a tech problem.  So - Curtis, if you are reading this blog - THANKS for your hospitality!  I still think you should consider doing a blog and giving us your thoughts here.  What about it?

Curtis in front of his new laptop


Ginny said...

Oh, HAPPY HAPPY ANNIVERSARY, Fred!! To both you and Frances. I'm so glad you were able to get together with friends and family. Looks like God hand picked the perfect woman to spend your life with.

Melanie said...

Happy Anniversary to you and your lovely wife! Wow...54 years. How amazing is that!
I'm so glad you two have had so many happy years together. I wish you many more.
God is good. :)

Betsy from Tennessee said...

That is so NEAT, Fred. Congrats to you and Frances... 54 yrs!!!! AWESOME..... Hope you have many many more.


jack69 said...

I must comment on your tribute to such a wonderful lady. When we met in 1958 or there abouts we both had hair. Frances and Sherry became good friends in that trailer park. although we lost personal contact for 40-50 years, it is great to now. know you guys again.
I remember the first church you pastored and me, thinking I was a preacher too, you allowed me to preach in your church. The times together as kids has always stuck in our memories. Happy belated Anniversary to two nice kids, who have been all over the world. But are still just Fred & Frances. Love you guys!!

~mel said...

I'm so far behind on commenting on blogs BUT... I'm here now!!! HAPPY HAPPY be-lated ANNIVERSARY!!!! It's wonderful that you have ALL those years together. This year will be our 35th. I hope you can get in another 54!! LOVE & HUGS TO THE BOTH OF YOU!!

Cher' Shots said...

Sorry its a late greeting but none the less "Happy be-lated Anniversary!"
Fred - whenever we use up a jar of pickled beets, I then boil eggs, peel them and put them in the left over beet juice. If their isn't enough juice to cover the eggs I just pour in enough white vinegar to cover the eggs. Refridgerate and enjoy. I'm not a big fan but my husband loves them.

Favorite One said...

THIS was my most favorite post of all times! Loved the entry, love my parents!

Jo said...

A blessed and HAPPY 54th anniversary, Fred and Frances. I 've only just known you online for the past few months, and what a blessing it is to read about your live in God. I wish I could meet you; perhaps we might get to Tennessee one day. If not, we'll meet at the Lord's feet one day. Thanks for always visiting my blog - I love your recognition of all things Kenyan. I'm sure many of the Christians I meet here are deescendants or off-shoots of your Godly work in this country. Bless you both. Kind regards, Jo

About Me

My photo
Cleveland, TN, United States
I am Fred Alton Brannen, the son of Louis A. Brannen (deceased) and Bonnie Jones Brannen, Louis was an Ordained Bishop with the Church of God. Bonnie is an Ordained Licensed Minister and at 89 years of age is still actively engaged in speaking and singing engagements. I am married to the former Frances Hildreth. We celebrated 53 years of marriage this past June and we are the parents of 3, grand-parents of 10, and great-grandparents of 10. I pastored in Tennessee for 24 years and served the Church in some capacity in missions for over 23 years. I retired from full-time ministry in August of 2008 but remain active, speaking and singing and teaching whenever opportunity affords itself. In January of 2010 I received a letter of commendation for having been credentialed as a minister in the Church of God for 50 years! My family is very important to me. Our get togethers are always noisy affairs and most times will include family sing-alongs. The children love their Mom's cooking so we have the privilege of seeing them regularly! WE LOVE having them over.

TheCabin on Day One

TheCabin on Day One
Fred Alton