Tribute to George P. Magnuson
George P. Magnuson
1934 — 2018
George Peter Magnuson was born October 8, 1934 on the south side of Chicago. His parents, Raymond and Astrid Magnuson, raised George and his older sister and brother, Lois and Bruce in the Evangelical Covenant Church. George attended North Park Junior College and completed his bachelor’s degree at the University of Minnesota in 1956. He then returned to Chicago to study at North Park Theological Seminary and to pursue a career as a Covenant pastor. In 1959 he married Carolyn (Quiwie) Blomgren of Seattle, and in 1960, after he completed his Master of Divinity degree at North Park, he was called to be an associate pastor at Trinity Covenant Church in Oak Lawn, Illinois.
He later served as an associate pastor at the Covenant church in Hinsdale, Illinois; on the staff of the Central Conference of the Covenant Church; and as a professor at McCormick Theological Seminary in Chicago, where he had earned his Doctor of Ministry degree in 1973. He and Quiwie and their five children made Hinsdale their home, from the early 1960s until the middle of the 1980s.
In 1986, George transferred his ordination to the Presbyterian Church (USA) and he accepted a call to be the General Presbyter of the Presbytery of the Peaks in Virginia. He stayed in Virginia until 1994 when he began his work in a similar position in the Presbytery of Boston. In Boston he met Carrie Doehring, whom he married in 1998. In 2003, George and Carrie moved to Denver where Carrie joined the faculty of Iliff School of Theology. In Denver, George’s lifelong journey of church identity came to its conclusion and he was ordained a priest in the Episcopal Church in 2008. He joyfully served as assisting priest at St. Andrew’s Episcopal Church until his retirement in 2016.
George is remembered for his openness, his warmth and his enthusiasm for savoring life’s gifts. He cherished a good meal with family, capturing beauty through the lens of his camera, and listening to choral music.He lived his life in pursuit of truth and as an extension of God’s love. He traveled near and far to be with family during life’s important seasons. George died on October 18, 2018 as a result of a fall and brain injury.
He is survived by his wife, Carrie, his brother Bruce (Carole), his daughters Colette (Kelly) Quackenbush and René (Peter) Nelson; his sons Chad (Beth Glennon), Blake (Colette Halverson), and Kendall (Stephanie Nelson); his stepson Jordan Jones (Amy Dannwolf); many nieces and nephews; and fifteen grandchildren.
Peace to his memory.