Obituary: Ernie Hansen

LACEY, WA (April 21, 2016) — Ernie Hansen, 82, retired Covenant pastor, peacefully went home to be with the Lord on April 20, 2016, in Lacey, Washington, after a battle with renal disease.

82795854F037Ernie was born and raised in Reedley, California. After marrying his high school sweetheart, Barbara Swanson, and graduating from the University of California at Berkeley, he studied at North Park Theological Seminary and graduated in 1961, having served a two-year internship at Mercer Island Covenant Church in Washington State. After graduation from North Park, he and Barbara and their two young daughters left for Nome, Alaska, where they served at radio station KICY. The Hansen family spent six years in Nome, with Ernie managing the radio station for five of those years.

In 1968, Ernie accepted a call to Alum Rock Covenant Church in San Jose, California, and served there until 1975, when he became pastor at Crown Valley Covenant Church in Laguna Niguel, California.

In 1980, a cell group from First Covenant Church in Tacoma, Washington, asked Ernie to become developer pastor for a new congregation the church was planting across Puget Sound’s Tacoma Narrows in Gig Harbor, Washington. Ernie and Barbara spent the next 20 years at the result of that plant, Harbor Covenant Church.

Ernie retired in 2000, and he and Barbara returned for a time to their roots in Kingsburg, California, before moving back to the Pacific Northwest and settling in the Panorama Retirement Community in Lacey. They enjoyed a full and active retirement as involved members at Grace Community Covenant Church in Olympia.

Ernie is survived by his wife of nearly 62 years, Barbara; two daughters and sons-in-law, Lois and John Kimber, and Shirley and Brent Martin; five grandchildren; and two great-grandchildren. A memorial service is scheduled for Saturday, May 7 at 11:00 a.m. at Grace Community Covenant.

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  1. Dear Barbara,
    prayers are with you. You and Ernie have had a long and wonderful venture serving our Lord over these many years. May God fill you with His love, joy, and peace as we continue to serve him until He takes us home to be with him and join our loved one up there. As Elisabeth Elliot once to a lady who had lost her husband, ” Keep Ironing!”


    Fenton McCahill

  2. Yvonne remembers when we saw Ernie and Barb off at the airport when they first went to Alaska. We have fond memories of both Ernie and Barb at North Park Seminary. You were a blessing to us, Barb! We send our sympathy to your whole family.

  3. Remembering Our Covenant Companion

    A friend left town the other day before I had a chance to say
    how much the Lord had used him in my life.
    I hope he knew.

    He challenged me to use my gift
    and helped me find the means to sift through options life afforded me
    to ascertain God’s best.

    He spelled his last name with an ‘e.’
    Appropriate it seems to me. Evangelism was the key
    unlocking Ernie’s joy.

    He had a pastor’s heart that beat
    for everyone that he would meet.
    He lived the gospel by the way
    he treated those who served.

    Our Covenant companion knew
    that grace takes root as we pursue relationships for Jesus’ sake.
    I’m grateful for his life!

  4. I remember Ernie well during his time at Alum Rock.
    The church was so very helpful as I spent a short time taking care of my mother who had terminal cancer before returning to Mexico.
    Peace to his memory.

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