Cover photo for Ruhlig, Erwin Allan's Obituary
Ruhlig, Erwin Allan Profile Photo

Ruhlig, Erwin Allan

d. June 4, 2010

Rev. Erwin Allan Ruhlig, age 81, received his Crown of Glory at his home in Athens on June 3, 2010.

Survived byWife- Karen
Sons- Steven (Vanessa) of Champaign
Rev. Michael (Tammy) of Tuscola
Daughters- Beth (Kristian) Fosse of Cedar Rapids, IA
Sarah (Derek) Dunnagan of Peoria
Granddaughter- Zoe Ruhlig
8 Grandsons- Ethan & Judah Ruhlig
Jonathan & Bradley Ruhlig
Adam, Aaron, Jacob & Joseph Fosse

Sisters- Alice Gall of Ann Arbor, MI
Helen (Howard) Schafer of Pioneer, OH
Lois (Donald) Lutz of Jeffersonville, IN
Brother- Albert (Madonna) of Dexter, MI
Mother-in-law- Hazel Keller of Leesburg, FL
Sister-in-law- Patricia Murphy of Adamsville, TN

Numerous Nieces & Nephews covering 4 generations

He was preceded in death by his son Daniel, 2 brothers and 2 sisters.

Rev. Erwin Allan Ruhlig was born October 30, 1928 in Dexter, Michigan to Emil and Hazel (Campbell) Ruhlig. The sainted Rev. Carl Brauer baptized, confirmed, married and ordained him. He grew up in the Dexter area, vegetable farming with his father and selling the produce to the Detroit Markets. He was drafted into the Army and served in Germany during the Korean War. Upon discharge, he attended Concordia Theology Seminary in Springfield, Illinois earning his college and theological degrees and graduating in 1961. On August 7, 1959, he married Karen Keller in St. Paul’s Lutheran Church, Ann Arbor, MI. The Lord blessed their union with 5 children. He served his vicarage year at St. Matthew’s Lutheran Church in Miami, FL. He served parishes in St. James Lutheran Church, Northrop, MN (1961-1967), Mount Calvary Lutheran Church, Indianola, IA (1967-1974), and Trinity Lutheran Church in Sturgis, MI (1974-1998). In 1998 he moved to Athens and served as the Executive Director for the Ongoing Ambassadors for Christ (OAFC), a youth evangelism program serving all of the United States. After retiring, he served as the business manager of OAFC. Training and experience taught him to be an excellent listener, counselor, and evangelist.

For God so loved Erwin that he gave His only begotten Son, Jesus Christ, to suffer, die, and rise in victory for Erwin, so that if Erwin believes in Jesus as his Savior from sin, Erwin shall not perish, but Erwin shall have everlasting life. [refer to John 3:16]

A family and friends gathering will take place from 5 to 7 PM at the Immanuel Lutheran Church in Athens on Saturday, June 5. Services will be at the church on Sunday, June 6 at 2 PM.
Rev. Richard Becker & Rev. David Bueltmann Officiating
Burial: Memorial Gardens Sturgis, MI
Memorials: Ongoing Ambassadors for Christ PO Box 175, Nokomis, IL 62075


  1. Dear Karen and family,

    We are rejoicing with you that you dear husband and father is now in the glories of heaven with the Savior he served for so many years. May God bring comfort and peace to your hearts. We are continuing to pray for you.

    Love in our Lord Jesus Christ, Jim and Joyce

  2. Thoughts and prayers with the family at this time. Pastor was a man who lived and did God’s work everyday of his life, he made this world a much better place for all fortunate enough to come in contact with him… He will be greatly missed, never forgotten… He goes to his eternal reward and rests with his beloved God…..

  3. Dear Karen, Mike, Beth, Steven, and Sarah;

    Praise the Lord that Pastor is now at peace in the arms of our Lord! My prayers are with you as our Lord gives you the comfort and peace only He can bestow. I am sorry I cannot be there to offer these words in person. Please know that you are in my prayers constantly.

    In Christ, Annette Rudick

  4. Dear Karen and Family, We the members of Christ Lutheran in Mason City, IL offer our sincerest condolences in your loss and the Lords gain in the passing of Pastor. He gave us so much in our vacancy when he served our needs. Now we hope if there is anything we can do, we hope we can serve your needs. A memorial to Ongoing Ambassadors for Christ will follow after services Sunday in his Memory!

    God’s Love and Peace! Dan Agrall – Elder CLC

  5. Karen, you and your family are in our prayers during this physical separation of your loving husband, father and grandfather. Pastor Ruhlig was very helpful in the evangelism program at Good Shepherd and we are thankful for his service. His love of the Lord was evident to everyone he met. What a comfort to know that he is with the Lord he served so diligently.

    Delores and Earl Fowler

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