Marjorie Bennison

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Marjorie Bennison

July 27, 1917 - January 21, 2019

Marjorie Bennison As her husband left for a meeting in 1974, where he and other bishops of the Episcopal Church were to consider the ordination of women, Marjorie Bennison warned him of consequences back home if he were not to change his mind and vote yes. He voted yes.
Raised the granddaughter of Swedish and Norwegian immigrants in Minnesota at a time when Anglo-Americans dominated the state's political and economic interests, Marjorie spent her life in the majority community quietly but persistently advocating for minorities. She was still negotiating the feelings complicated by her background when at 101 years of age she died peacefully on Jan. 21, 2019 at Cordia, a senior residential club in Traverse City.
Marjorie Elizabeth Haglun was born on July 27, 1917, in Superior, Wisconsin. She spent her early years in Duluth, Minnesota, before her family moved to Minneapolis, where her father, John Arthur Haglun, prospered as a trader on the grain exchange until the depression erased the family's fortunes and necessitated her transfer from a private school to Washburn High School. Her mother, Sophie (Johnson), was a homemaker.
While living at home she attended the University of Minnesota, graduating with a degree in art history in 1939.
She set aside her aspiration to become an architect in order to marry Charles Bennison, whom she had first met at St. Luke's Episcopal Church, Minneapolis, when both were five years of age. Her parents had let her walk to St. Luke's because its worship was in English, while their church's liturgy was in Swedish. The two married on June 16, 1942, following his ordination. She fully supported her husband in his ministries as a parish priest in Hastings, Minnesota, Joliet, Illinois, and Kalamazoo and as bishop of the Episcopal diocese of Western Michigan for 25 years.
Following her husband's retirement in 1985 she lived in Claremont and Menlo Park, California, and after his death in 2004, in Monterey, California, and Leland. She had a lifelong interest in art and architecture, enjoyed drawing and painting and was an avid reader and lively interlocutor.
She is survived by her children, Charles Bennison Jr. (Joan), of Philadelphia, Mary Fleishman (Michael), of Leland, and John Bennison (Germaine), of Walnut Creek, California; six grandchildren; and 11 great-grandchildren.
Her sister, Kathryn, preceded her in death.
Her family will inter her cremains beside her husband's this summer in the Resurrection Garden of the onetime Episcopal Cathedral in Kalamazoo.
Memorial donations may be made to Leelanau Christian Neighbors, PO Box 196, Lake Leelanau, MI 49653.
The family is being served by the Reynolds Jonkhoff Funeral Home.
Published on February 3, 2019
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David Gury
Feb 04, 2019
Margorie stands out in my memory of growing up in Hastings Michigan where my father Don Gury served under Bishop Bennison. Margorie traveled frequently with the Bishop. Don and Lucile Gury and my first wife, Judith Gury's cremains are also in the memorial garden by the former cathedral.
Peace and Blessings to the Bennison family.