Rev. Earl Edward Stephan, 92, died on March 15, 2023 at the Benedict House in Rochester, Minnesota. Earl's life was full of love and caring service to his family and his congregations, along with the youth of Rochester. He was born on May 16, 1930 in Winona County, Minnesota and was raised there by his parents, Inez Isabelle Stephan and Vern Edward Stephan.
On September 11, 1955 he married Darlene Orvetta Larson whom he had met at Aurelia Moravian Church in North Dakota, while serving as a summer pastor. They spent almost 70 years together and had four children: Gay Deane, James Edward, John Peter, and Thomas Earl. He was a devoted husband and father, and was always ready with a word of support, advice, kindness and encouragement; he was always an example of God's love and constant presence.
Earl attended the Moravian College, graduating with a B.A. in English and History. He then attended the Moravian Seminary, receiving an M.Div. in preparation for a lifetime of Christian service as a Pastor. He was ordained in 1956 at the Hebron Moravian Church. He served churches in Rudolf, WI, Aurelia, ND and Northfield, MN. In 1963 he was ordained by the Methodist Church, and served churches in Elgin, MN, Riverside, IA, and Douglas and Mazeppa, MN. He also served as counselor at Rochester's Kellogg Jr High, and John Marshall Sr. High, along with leading the Testing Program for Rochester Public Schools. He also taught Parenting Classes, and designed kitchens in Rochester. While in Iowa, he worked on his Ph.D. at the University of Iowa. Earl was preceded in death by his sister Betty Lou, and his two brothers Gerald and Melvin. Earl is survived by his wife Darlene, and his four children Gay Deane, James, John and Thomas. He had many nieces and nephews. Earl will be deeply missed by all who knew and loved him. He was wonderful, kind, gentle person, who's faith was a constant and continual support to him and many others.
The memorial service for Earl Stephan will be held at 2:00 p.m. on Saturday, April 1, 2023 at Douglas United Methodist Church. Family visitation will be held one hour prior to the service.