Bags packed, music playing, angels singing, resurrection is sure to follow! Jesus promised and she believed! Irene Luehring left earthly life for heavenly glory on October 22, 2021, at the age of 91. The LORD declares “Be faithful even to the point of death and I will give you a crown of life.” Rev 2:11
Irene Luehring was born to Christian parents Herman & Clara (Feinauer) Arnold on December 17, 1929, and soon after was baptized into the family of faith at Zion Lutheran Church of Bay City, Michigan. She was blessed to receive a Christian education at Zion Lutheran and later graduated in the class of ’47 at Central High of Bay City. From infancy she was taught the Holy Scriptures, able to make her “wise unto salvation!”
Soon after high school Irene met her future husband Wilbert Luehring, church musician and Lutheran school teacher. Married on December 30, 1950, Irene and “Bill” were blessed to establish a home and family in Kawkawlin, Michigan. In 1956 they moved to Kaukauna, Wisconsin. There they raised five children and served Trinity Lutheran Church and School (father, a called teacher, mother by his side managing home and volunteering as needed). Irene and Bill shared 60 years of marriage prior to Bill’s passing. They knew, “Unless the LORD builds the house, its builders labor in vain.” Ps 127:1
Motivated by God’s love, Irene’s adult life was filled with Christian service. At Trinity it was altar guild, adult choir, hand bells or mission society. Valuing children’s education, she frequently tutored youngsters at Trinity and got involved in Fox Valley Lutheran High School’s guild. In spare moments she was often found at a sewing machine altering wedding clothes, preparing quilts and pajamas for grandchildren. In her senior years, she delivered sermons and bible verses to friends and those she had just met. Regardless of the task, Irene was reminded, “Whatever you do, work at it… as if working for the LORD.” Col 3:23.
Community employment included making honey house kits at Hilltop Bakery and sewing custom curtains anddraperies for Carlyle’s Window Designs. Working after “retirement” included helping at Kaukauna’s elections, Oshkosh’s EAA Fly-in, the Grand Opera House, and the Performing Arts Center. Always on the go, Irene also enjoyed caring for the “elderly” and visiting with and chauffeuring friends to their medical appointments. Bags always packed, ready to travel!
Among Irene’s personal passions was playing the violin. She accompanied others in worship services, played with the grandkids, practiced and performed with friends in the New Horizon’s Orchestra.
The family would like to thank Dr. Alice Boshoven, the Theda Care at Home hospice team, and the staff at Appleton Retirement Center for their compassionate care while keeping up with “road-runner” Irene.
Preceding Irene in death were parents, husband Wilbert, son Charles; brother and sister-in-law Elmer (Wilma) Arnold, sister and brothers-in-law Florence Pfundt, Carl Nurmi & Henry Pfundt; in-laws Holly (Bartelt), Margaret (Ray) Freerksen, and Ruth Redwing.
God declares: “Children are…a heritage of the Lord, offspring a reward.” Ps 127:3 To that end, Irene was truly blessed. Surviving family members include children: Thomas (Karla) Luehring, Frederick (Carol) Luehring, Judith (Jim) Hahn, and Susan (Scott) Reineck; daughter-in-law: Jackie Luehring; eighteen grandchildren: Shaun, Jamie (Rachel), Phillip (fiancée Nicholl) & Timothy Luehring; Andrew (Nicole) Luehring, Mitchell (Rachel) Luehring, and Brittany (Chris) Burden; Kathy (Jason) Verpoorten, Mark (Heidi), Rachel, Karen Luehring, Ruth (Darren) Vogt, and David Luehring; Becky (Zach) Seeger, Joel (Margo), Jason (Deborah), Lindsey and Eric Hahn; and many great-grandchildren. “By grace you have been saved, through faith…not from yourselves, it is a gift of God…” Eph. 2:8-9
Although we grieve the earthly death of our mother, grand and great-grandmother; fellow musician, willing volunteer, counseling seamstress… we celebrate her arrival in heaven. She remains certain… not in herself; but in the perfect life, innocent death, victorious resurrection, and affirming ascension of Jesus Christ, her Lord and Savior; still astonished! God lavishes such love on us, that He calls us “dear children!” To God be the glory!
Jesus notes, “I am the Way, the Truth and the Life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.” John 14:6
The Christian Funeral for Irene will be held at 11:00 AM on Saturday, November 6, 2021 at Trinity Ev. Lutheran Church, 804 Grignon Street in Kaukauna, with her grandson Rev. Andrew Luehring officiating. Burial will be in the church cemetery. Friends may call at the church on Saturday morning from 9:00 AM until the service. A memorial fund in Irene’s name is being established.