Photography

Paul Gerhard Mathre

April 12, 1929 ~ April 14, 2022 (age 93)

Tribute

Paul Mathre was born April 12, 1929 in Minot, North Dakota, the son of Gerhard and Esther Hagen Mathre. He graduated from high school in Sheyenne, North Dakota. He attended Concordia College, Moorhead, Minnesota, and the University of Washington, Seattle, Washington. To put himself through school he worked on the assembly line at the Boeing factory building B-47 bombers. He graduated with a major in Sociology. He attended Luther Theological Seminary, St. Paul, Minnesota. While a student at the seminary, he spent one summer at Skjeberg Lutheran Church teaching Vacation Bible School and the following school year he came from St. Paul on alternate weekends to conduct worship in the Drayton parish.

Paul married Gloria Herseth who was born in Robbin, Teien Township, Minnesota, June 27, 1931, the daughter of Elias "E.B." Herseth and Florence Brenberg Herseth. They were married at Skjeberg Lutheran Church on 20 August 1954. They moved to Madison, South Dakota, where Paul served as intern at Trinity Lutheran Church. Gloria was organist for the youth service and directed the high school choir. They returned to St. Paul for his senior year at the seminary. He graduated in May 1956 and was ordained at Central Lutheran Church, Minneapolis, Minnesota. He entered the United States Air Force as a chaplain in June 1956.

After attending Chaplain's School at Lackland AFB, San Antonio, TX, he served his country for 20 years and achieved the rank of Colonel. His assignments included Perrin AFB, Sherman, TX; Naha AB, Okinawa; Kelly AFB, San Antonio, TX; Laon AB, France; RAF Upper Heyford, England; Minot AFB, ND; Laughlin AFB, Del Rio, TX; and Randolph AFB, San Antonio, TX.

Retiring from the Air Force in 1976, Paul then served as parish pastor for more than 16 years. His parishes included Zion Lutheran Church, Twin Valley, MN; Our Savior's Lutheran Church, Moorhead, MN; Minnetonka Lutheran Church, Minnetonka, MN; and First Lutheran Church, Minot, ND. He retired in October 1992 and he and Gloria moved to Kingwood, TX.

While in retirement, Paul served as secretary of the Freedom Fund for Mission Task Force in the Gulf Coast Synod, as a member of the Board of Directors of the Melanchthon Institute and has worked with the Foundation for Interfaith Research and Ministry (FIRM). He served as interim pastor at Shepherd of the Pines Lutheran Church, Jasper, TX; Friendship Lutheran Church, Cleveland, TX; St James Lutheran Church, Houston, TX; and Living Word Lutheran Church, Katy, TX. He also served as Visitation Pastor at Faith Lutheran Church, Bellaire, TX and assisted in the establishment of a Second Family Care Team there. He also served as Visitation Pastor at Zion Lutheran Church in Houston.

Paul lived his entire life in Godly service to others. He had a quiet, gentle demeanor, a quick laugh and a bright smile. He was loved by many. In public and private, he set a high standard for himself, which he always strove to meet. Paul always met people where they were in their lives, was never judgmental and always searched for the good he believed he could find in everyone. He never lost his faith or his belief that we are all God’s children. He was a great minister, husband, father and grandfather. The world is a better place for him having been here. He will be missed. 

Paul peacefully passed away, surrounded by family, almost a year to the day of the passing of his beloved wife, Gloria. Four children survive Paul and Gloria and their spouses: Lynn Mathre and Stewart O'Dell of Houston, TX, Mary Mathre and Steve Overby of Hockley, TX, Karen Mathre and Chris Storment of Charlotte, NC, and Mark and Linda Mathre of League City, TX. Additional family members include grandchildren Erika Mathre Peters, David Andersen, Susan Andersen, Elizabeth De Guerrero, Christopher Mathre-Overby, Shayna Berkowitz, Niko Storment, and numerous great-grandchildren. Three siblings survive Paul, his brother, Loren Mathre, his sisters Esther Reusche and Rachel Petersen. He is preceded in death by his parents, Gerhard and Esther (Hagen) Mathre, his twin sisters, Ruth Schuelein and Grace Flaten, and his brother, David Mathre.

Neighbors and friends are invited to a visitation and reception with the family from two until five o’clock in the afternoon with a memorial service starting at three o’clock on Saturday, May 7, 2022, at Bradshaw-Carter Memorial & Funeral Services, 1734 W. Alabama St., in Houston.    

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the following charities:

Skjeberg Lutheran Church, c/o Koda Bank (Tel: 701-454-3317), Box 369, Drayton, ND 58225;

Concordia College, Moorhead, MN (https://concordiacollege.givingfuel.com/rene-clausen-choral-legacy-endowed-fund);

Houston Public Media (Classical Music), https://www.houstonpublicmedia.org/support/memorial-and-honor-donations/
Please fill out the "in honor of" name AND put the address for the notifying family under "Additional Information".

Houston Symphony https://houstonsymphony.org/donate-now/ 
Please fill out the "in honor of" name AND put the address for the notifying family under "Additional Information".

 

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Services

Celebration of Life
Saturday
May 7, 2022

2:00 PM
Bradshaw-Carter Memorial & Funeral Services
1734 W. Alabama St
Houston, Texas 77098

Memorial Service
Saturday
May 7, 2022

3:00 PM to 4:00 PM
Bradshaw-Carter Memorial & Funeral Services
1734 W. Alabama St
Houston, Texas 77098

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