Cover photo for Carl Andersen's Obituary
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1946 Carl 2024

Carl Andersen

November 12, 1946 — February 29, 2024

Rev. Carl Edwin Andersen passed away on February 29, 2024. Carl was born in Frederic, Wisconsin, on November 12, 1946, to Charlotte (Richter) and Rev. Leo "L.M." Andersen. Carl lived his early life in Luck and Racine, WI. During these years, he and his two siblings enjoyed summers visiting their maternal grandmother on Washington Island, WI, making all kinds of wonderful memories and plenty of mischief. The family moved to Norwalk, California, in 1958, where Carl would later graduate from high school.

Carl attended California Lutheran College in Thousand Oaks, CA, majoring in music. At CLC, he met the young woman who would become his bride, Penny Thilberg Berkeley. The two noticed each other while participating in the college's music ensembles. They shared a love for music as well as identities as "PK's" (pastors' kids); romance bloomed, and a true partnership was born.

Carl, who declared throughout childhood that he would never become a pastor like his father, nevertheless heard God's call in 1967. Carl and Penny were married in California on August 8, 1970, and they began their life together in married student housing at Luther Seminary in St. Paul, Minnesota. Carl was ordained as a pastor of the American Lutheran Church in 1972, and while he had hoped to begin his ministry back in California, God had other plans. Carl's first call was to Perley, a two-point parish in northwest Minnesota. The community warmly embraced the young couple in their early years of marriage, and in the welcome of their first child, Rachel, born in May of 1977. The family moved to Thief River Falls, MN, in 1979, where Carl served as an associate pastor at Trinity Lutheran Church. While there, they welcomed their second child, Joel, in May of 1981. That fall, Carl was called to serve the Fisher-Bygland Lutheran Parish in Fisher, MN, a call he fulfilled faithfully for the next 27 years. Carl's later ministry took place in Vining, MN, and Calvary Lutheran in Perham, MN, and he officially retired in 2014.

Carl possessed many pastoral gifts. He was a prolific and reflective writer, crafting and delivering a fresh sermon nearly every week, and his preaching was a beautiful balance of academic study and Spirit-led faith. He served and guided his parishioners with a steady and gentle presence that made people feel seen and known. Carl's influence reached beyond the church walls; he served on boards for public schools and charitable organizations like Pathways Outdoor Ministry and Habitat for Humanity. Additionally, Carl supported numerous individuals through their 12th Step at Glenmore Recovery Center, in Crookston, MN.

Outside of work, Carl was a natural and curious tinkerer who could fix just about anything. He would often spend hours taking things apart, diagnosing problems, and usually putting them back together. Another love for Carl was music. A true songbird, he could be heard singing or whistling anywhere he went. Carl had a particular fondness for barbershop music; he enjoyed composing and arranging for his quartets, and in retirement, he loved singing in the Heart O' Lakes Harmony barbershop chorus. Carl also participated and starred in several community theater productions during his years living in Fisher, giving performances that will remain in family lore for years to come. Although generally quiet and understated in everyday life, there is no doubt Carl loved an audience and always found great joy in performing.

In 2009, Carl and Penny settled into their home on Paul Lake near Perham, MN, where they made many happy memories together and with family and friends. In July of 2023, Carl moved to Ecumen Memory Care Cottage in Detroit Lakes, MN, where he remained until his death. His family is grateful to the staff at The Cottage for the care and compassion they provided during his final months of life.

Carl is survived by his wife of 53 years, Penny Andersen, Perham, MN; children, Rachel (Ted) Horan, Moorhead, MN, and Joel (Heidi Loving) Andersen, Plymouth, MN; grandchildren, Lydia and Jonah Horan, and Kinley and Bryce Andersen; sister, Martha (Paul) Glanzman, Elk Grove, CA; brother, Paul (Roseanna) Andersen, San Diego, CA; brother-in-law, Jeffry Thilberg, Mesquite, NV; sibling-in-law, Aowen Annbjorg, Tacoma, WA; brother-in-law, David (Willette) Thilberg, Hampton Bay, NY; and numerous nieces and nephews.

Carl is preceded in death by his father and mother, L.M. and Charlotte Andersen; mothers-in-law, Ruthe Berkeley and Doris Thilberg; fathers-in-law, Ted Berkeley and George Thilberg; and brother-in-law, Neil Thilberg.

A Memorial Service will be held at 11:00 a.m. on Saturday, April 6, at Calvary Lutheran Church in Perham, MN. Visitation will be one hour prior.

Memorial gifts may be given to:  California Lutheran University, Thousand Oaks, CA; Luther Theological Seminary, St. Paul, MN; or North Country Food Bank, East Grand Forks, MN.

Schoeneberger Funeral & Cremation Service, Perham, MN (218) 346-5175 www.schoenebergerfh.com

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Service Schedule

Past Services

Visitation

Saturday, April 6, 2024

10:00 - 11:00 am (Central time)

Calvary Lutheran Church

619 3rd Ave SW, Perham, MN 56573

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Memorial Service

Saturday, April 6, 2024

11:00am - 12:00 pm (Central time)

Calvary Lutheran Church

619 3rd Ave SW, Perham, MN 56573

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

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