This week we are celebrating a very special woman and a very special occasion! Can you guess who she is?
“Behind every successful man is a great woman.”
Humble as she is, we insist this sentiment to be true of our beloved originators, as we know Wally would. We are thrilled to honor Mrs. Irene Bronner on her 90th birthday!
In his own words from his autobiography Sharing JOY 365, Wally credits his beautiful bride:
“Irene mightily inspired, encouraged and supported me. … Irene’s support during this exciting time of progress [business foundations and growth in early marriage] was never failing. She was a dear wife and motivator in our home and in our business.”
All throughout his book Wally notes Irene’s dedication to all she did, whether it was caring for his father or niece during times of loss, her commitment to her faith and involvement in many activities, nurturing their growing family or supporting him as the business evolved with the Lord’s blessings. Irene radiates with such a warm and genuine spirit. She and Wally’s love for the Lord permeates everything they do … and EVERYONE they meet!
Together Wally and Irene have stewarded well what the Lord has given them. Many people may just see a Christmas store, but if you talk to Bronner’s team members or many guests who have been visiting for years, it is so much more …
Irene … Birthday Wishes From Some Of Your Team
- “I could say so much more but … Irene has such grace, class, kindness – and she lives her faith in everything she does. I love her to pieces and it has been a privilege to have known her all these years. Wally would not have been able to establish Bronner’s without Irene. She has been a devoted wife, mother, missionary and co-worker. God bless her with many more years.” – Jan Kribs
- “‘But the meek shall inherit the land and delight themselves in abundant peace’ (Psalms 37:11). How fitting is this verse for a beautiful woman such as Irene Bronner. Not only does her name mean peace but she makes her love for the Lord Jesus very apparent, and the humble kindness she shows to all is the greatest example of Christ’s love. Irene’s life is and has been a living prayer, and I have had the great privilege of working with and for this amazing lady. Happy Birthday, Irene!” – Cindy Ross
- “Happy 90th Birthday to one of the kindest, sweetest people on God’s green earth!Some of my fondest reflections of Irene center on my years working on the floor at the end of a busy fall day. A half hour before closing, Irene would announce, ‘The time is now 8:30 (5:00 on Sundays back in the day) and Bronner’s will be closing in 30 minutes.’ After a long and tiring day, it was like a voice from heaven for all of us!
I am also very fond of time you and Wally attended my high school graduation party after being in the Bavarian Festival parade that same day. Despite your incredibly busy schedule and the fact that I had been an employee for less than a year at that point, yours and Wally’s presence made a huge impression on me, my family and friends in attendance. I still have the photo of the three of us from that day in my FHS portfolio and is one of the great memories I have from that year. To say my friends were green with envy is an understatement to say the least!
Being invited to attend the TV-12 Saginaw Symphony CHRISTmas Concert with you and Wally back in 1994 was also very special. (The front row seats weren’t too shabby either!) Who else would anyone want to spend an evening enjoying a Christmas concert with other than ‘Mr. & Mrs. Christmas’?Blessings and best wishes for many, many more years of good health and happiness!” – Craig, Heather, & Kylie Fick
- “One of my favorite parts of working at Bronner’s is that on the evenings when Irene closes, she always adds a personal touch to the closing announcement by thanking the customers and also thanking the staff for all that we do as well. If it is poor weather, she wishes us safe travels, and if it is a beautiful afternoon, she encourages us to enjoy it. It just gives you a warm feeling inside when you hear that. Thank you, Irene! May you have the happiest of birthdays.” – Stacy Tuck
- “Dear Irene, With gratitude and appreciation, I love hearing your voice signing off over the intercom after a long day at work. You make me smile every time I hear the evening announcement. You’re an inspiration to me, sharing your kindness and care for the employees here at Bronner’s. I wish you a very happy birthday and hope you have a day filled with love!” – Erin Lee Beller
- “Faith is the seed of inspiration. Happy birthday to someone who never ceases to inspire me and all those around you.” – Connie Rochow
- “I’d like to add that it always brings a smile to my face when Irene’s voice comes over the PA system at the end of the night, thanking the customers who came in to shop as well as thanking the staff for all their hard work.” – Joshua Roebuck
- “Happy Birthday, Irene! I enjoy seeing you every week at work, and I hope I look as good as you do when I am 90 years young! God’s blessings!” – Jill Catterfeld
- “Working on Friday nights with Irene has been very nice. She is so sweet to everyone and I love hearing her closing announcement. Irene always thanks the guests and the staff . She also tells everyone to be careful on the roads. Irene makes all of us feel so special. She is a very special lady to all of us. Happy Birthday, Irene!” – Renee Lacewell
- “Irene, my heart is full from having the privilege to know you and see you every week! You have blessed my life in more ways than you will ever know. I thank you for helping to build a company that values faith and family, and allows me to foster the passions the Lord has placed in my heart. You are inspiring, with a long legacy of love that comes from a pure heart. I will never forget the immense kindness you showed to me when you came to teach the ladies from church how to make your mouth-watering butterhorns*; but it was the time we had to converse and hear your heart that I will most cherish. I will always have the utmost adoration for you. My wish is, this birthday, you will have a glimpse of the HUGE impact you have made on countless lives, and that you will be filled with heaven’s love as you are surrounded by friends and family. I love you, my sister in Christ Jesus!” – Aileen Libbey
Did You Know?
At 90 years young, Irene is still an adored presence in the Frankenmuth, Michigan store, working hard in Bronner’s reception department!
See her pictured here from her 89th birthday last year which was shared in our DIY tinsel decor post.
Your Birthday Wishes
Please feel free to share your own birthday message with our dear Irene Bronner in the comments below!
*Irene’s delicious butterhorn pastry recipe is available in Bronner’s Flavorful Favorites, 1st edition on page 107.
Enter to win a $90 Gift Card Contest
In honor of Irene’s birthday and as a thank you to our wonderful subscribers, we are giving away a $90 gift card that can be used in-store or online at bronners.com. This contest is for subscribers only so if you haven’t already, make sure to subscribe now! The contest will run from now until her birthday, Midnight EST March 16, 2017.
Enter to Win!