Jerry V. Raedeke, 86, of Enterprise, Oregon, passed away and went to be with Jesus on Monday, May 13, 2019. He was born April 29, 1933 in Calgary, Alberta, Canada, to Walter and Esther Raedeke, the youngest of 4 sons. He married Jennie Heral on January 25, 1983. She preceded him in death on February 7, 2019.
Surviving are five children, Elaine (Dan) Meyer of Rockton, IL, Mark (Maria) Raedeke of Rockford, IL, Paul (Marilyn) Raedeke of Germantown, MD, Rhonda Raedeke of Rockton, IL, and Amy (Paul) English of Washington, IL, and eight grandchildren. He was preceded in death by his parents, and three brothers.
Jerry attended Concordia University, and taught for several years in parochial schools before hearing God’s call to preach the good news of Christ from the pulpit. He attended Concordia Theologic Seminary, and pastored at Trinity Lutheran Church in North Morristown, MN and Christ Our Savior Lutheran Church in Roscoe, IL. Jerry loved the mountains and rural life, which reminded him of his childhood, and came sight unseen to serve as pastor at Grace Lutheran Church in Enterprise. He also served at Lostine Presbyterian Church and Enterprise Community Christian Church.
Jerry had a great love for people, and didn’t know a stranger in the area. He had a gift for connecting with people, taking an interest in them and sharing God’s love in tangible ways. His easy-going manner helped him convey the truths of the Bible so everyone could understand them. He was counselor and confidant, walking through difficult times with many, as well as celebrating their joys.
Jerry was a true servant, and often filled the pulpit as interim pastor for many area churches while they were looking for full-time ministers. He preformed many weddings and funerals throughout the extended community, often joking, “I’m called the marrying and burying preacher.” His ministry motto was, “accept people where they are,” and then live Christ in front of them. He did just that, pointing people to Jesus, and His great love and forgiveness.
A memorial service will be held on Wednesday, June 19, at 1 pm at Enterprise Community Christian Church.