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Rev. Dr. Carl McKenzie
September 19, 1934 ~ August 13, 2023 (age 88) 88 Years Old
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Rev. Dr. Carl McKenzie died peacefully at home on August 13, 2023. He was born September 19, 1934 in St. Petersburg, FL, the son of Russell and Lela McKenzie. He was baptized in the family farmhouse with his father and brother Richard, by Pastor Satorius of Jerusalem Lutheran Church, Columbiana, OH. He graduated from Wittenberg College (B.A., 1956); and from Chicago Lutheran Theological Seminary in Maywood (B.D.,1960); and was ordained by the Illinois Synod of the United Lutheran Church in America in 1960.
As pastor he served at Gethsemane Lutheran, Cicero, IL (1960-1964); First Lutheran, Harvey, IL (1964-1974); and Immanuel Lutheran, Chicago, IL (1974-1998). He earned a doctorate from the Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago (D.Min., 1977), with study in Liberia, Africa. He graduated from the Shalem Institute for Spiritual Formation (1995, Washington, D.C.), journeying as a spiritual director with many well into retirement, and served as visitation and interim pastor at Grace Lutheran, Hendersonville (2002-2006), leader of “The Magnificent Seven” team.
His ministry was one of welcome and dialogue with people of differing ethnicities and faiths. Trained at the Saul Alinsky Industrial Areas Foundation (1967), he was a community organizer during the Civil Rights era in Chicago, and later helped to organize three ethnic congregations: the Chinese Mandarin Christian Church (Immanuel, Chicago), St. Elias Arabic Church (Immanuel, Chicago); and Grace Lutheran Church Hispanic Ministry (Grace, Hendersonville). He was ecumenical officer of the Metropolitan Chicago Synod, instrumental in the Covenant with the Roman Catholic Diocese of Chicago. As a parish pastor he was involved in ecumenical dialogue with St. Gertrude’s Roman Catholic Church (Chicago); Immaculate Conception Roman Catholic Church (Hendersonville); and in Jewish-Christian dialogue with Temple Emmanuel, Chicago.
He swam daily and enjoyed reading. He gardened and was twice President of the Asheville Rose Society. He enjoyed playing piano and bass, and sang in the Carolina Concert Choir.
He is survived by his wife, Barbara (daughter of William and Ervaline Penrod); brother, Richard and wife, Jan; son, Timothy and wife, Mari; son, Jonathan; daughter, Kathryn and husband, Gary; sister-in-law Bonnie Sauer; and brother-in-law, William Penrod and wife, Darlene.
A memorial service will be held at 1 pm on Saturday, August 26, at Grace Lutheran Church, 1245 6th Ave W, Hendersonville, NC. Memorial gifts may be made to ELCA World Hunger or to ELCA Global Mission designated “for Japan” (both at: P.O. Box 1809, Merrifield, VA 22116-8009).