Obituary – Steven Lance Witte

Steven Lance Witte was born in Ann Arbor, Mich., on September 6, 1957, and officially made a child of God through baptism. He was raised in South Haven, Mich., where the Lord grew his faith at St. Paul’s Lutheran Church and grade school. He graduated from L.C. Mohr High School in South Haven in 1976, then followed the Lord’s calling to study in the pastoral ministry at Northwestern College in Watertown, Wis. Part time jobs included life guarding at the Watertown community pool and summer camp manager at Camp Lor-Ray Lutheran kids camp near Muskegon, Mich. In 1985 he completed his ministerial studies at Wisconsin Lutheran Seminary in Mequon, Wis. Later in 2007, Steve went on to complete a doctorate in divinity at Gordon Conwell Seminary in Boston, Mass.

He married Mary Serwe in 1982. Steve served the Wisconsin Evangelical Lutheran Synod for many years: as a pastor at Emanuel Lutheran Church in New London, Wis. (07/85 – 08/01), Beautiful Savior Lutheran Church in Green Bay, Wis. (08/01-08/09), Asia Lutheran Seminary in Kowloon, Hong Kong (08/09-10/21), and most recently on the Asia One Team (Chiang Mai, Thailand). He was faithful, tenacious, creative, and humble in carrying out God’s mission—sharing the Gospel of Christ, the WORD to many, many people in Asia and beyond!

Steve and Mary had five children and 11 grandchildren. Steve, two daughters (Charis Kuehl and Lydia Witte) and three granddaughters (Stella Kuehl, Lena and Merci Henselin) all perished in a house fire on a family vacation. He is survived by wife Mary, sons Seth (Katelyn) in Egan, Minn., and Micah in Columbus, Ohio, daughter Hannah (Karl) and seven grandchildren: Isaiah and Zachary Henselin, Norah and Vera Kuehl, Josiah, Micah and Anna Witte.

Philippians 1:21, “For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain” pretty much sums up this faithful servant’s life.

A joint memorial service for Steve and his daughter Lydia will be held on Tuesday, July 9, 2024, at St. Mark Lutheran Church in De Pere, Wis. (2066 Lawrence Dr, De Pere, WI 54115). Visitation will be from 1:00 – 3:00 p.m. with the service to follow at 3:00 p.m. A livestream will also be available at this link:

In lieu of flowers, the family asks you to consider a donation to the Steve Witte Memorial Scholarship that will help continue Rev. Dr. Steve Witte’s legacy of helping more people share the gospel with those who have not yet heard of Jesus’ love. It will assist Asia Lutheran Seminary students with tuition (or other costs associated with attending classes) who otherwise would be unable to take classes, receive training, and become leaders throughout Asia.


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