When you come,
you will notice the beautiful white clapboard
church buildings with
their tall steeples reaching for heaven.
has more churches per capita
than any other state in the United States.
These historic church buildings
grace the prairies, the hillsides, and the towns.
A few are abandoned
but still cherished.
moved to North Dakota
from the late 1800's through 1915.
I wonder -
Did they bring the blueprints with them
on the boat?
Who built them?
Skilled craftsmen or
was it a community effort?
Not only were they places to worship,
but they probably also served
as community gathering places.
The faithful here in North Dakota
are fiercely loyal to these buildings
I'm sure they have nostalgic memories
of parents, grandparents aunts, uncles and cousins
and of weddings and funerals, and preachers,
and choirs, and baptisms.
Some of the pews are packed every Sunday.
and some have only a few members left.
But they are all beautiful and must
have been photographed hundreds of times
by travelers like me.
So when you come,
bring your sense of awe
and your camera!