Dean '62 and Barbara '63 Larson Honor Earlier Generation by Supporting Future Augsburg Students
Have you noticed—your parents got smarter over the years? Maybe not in IQ but in how you view their actions and ideas compared with what your teenage self thought? Dean '62 and Barbara '63 Larson laugh while describing this phenomenon.
Now this couple follows both sets of their parents' examples of generous giving. "My parents gave at the first of every month. If they had food on the table, they gave money away. That always came first before other spending," Barbara explains.
Today she and her husband, Dean—like their parents before them—practice "first fruits" giving, donating a percentage of income to Christian causes. They find tremendous joy in doing so.
Augsburg ranks as a priority in Dean and Barbara's charitable giving. They named Augsburg as a beneficiary in their will, established annuities benefitting Augsburg with the ELCA Foundation, and pledged current gifts for the Center for Science, Business and Religion (CSBR).
Dean and Barbara Make Gift With Dean's Sister Patricia Moylan
Dean's sister Patricia Larson Moylan '57 also is a CSBR contributor. Together they are naming a faculty office in memory of Dean and Patricia's parents, Ernest '32 and Ellen '28 Larson.
Dean and Patricia's family history intertwines repeatedly with Augsburg. Their grandfather, Endre Erik Gynild, who served as president of the Lutheran Free Church, was a graduate. Their parents and numerous aunts, uncles and cousins were Auggies. Dean and Patricia's father, Ernest, chaired the Board of Directors. Devotion to the college was closely tied to devotion to the Lutheran Free Church, a predecessor of today's Evangelical Lutheran Church in America.
Dean grew up attending many Augsburg events including the groundbreaking ceremony for the current science building. He declares the new building essential for the college. "I am excited that science, business and religion will all be combined in this space," he says. "Communication among these disciplines is needed in our world. It's necessary to get away from silos."
Barbara transferred to Augsburg from Concordia College, Moorhead. Fellow staff members at Galilee Bible Camp at Lake Bronson, Minnesota, encouraged her to come to Augsburg. A music major, she sang in the Augsburg Choir. Dean, a math education major, also sang in the choir.
Dean taught high school math in Buffalo, Minnesota, for two years and then attained a Master of Divinity degree from Pacific Lutheran Theological Seminary. "My dad and grandfather were pastors, so people always asked if I planned to be a pastor, too," he says. "I fought my call for a long time because I knew it would be all-consuming. In the end, it felt right. Ministry issues were deeply engaging."
Augsburg Is a Priority for the Larsons' Giving
Dean served congregations in Broadus, Montana; Fergus Falls, Gaylord and Morris, all in Minnesota; and Williston, North Dakota., before moving to the Twin Cities where he served four congregations as an interim pastor. Barbara taught music and led choirs in Gaylord, Morris and Williston, including teaching for 12 years at the University of Minnesota, Morris.
Now retired, Dean and Barbara reconnected with Augsburg upon moving back to the Twin Cities. Dean explains, "We consciously support ELCA causes as a way of strengthening the larger church. Augsburg is a priority because we like to give back to a place that meant a lot to us personally and to our families. We also admire the school's mission and the way it connects to the neighborhood and the world."
'We See Now What Our Parents Were Telling Us'
Barbara, an Augsburg Associates volunteer, comments, "As we have gotten older, we realize that as human beings we are here to give of ourselves, our time and our possessions. We are here not to accumulate but to give back. We now know the blessing that comes from being a part of God's generosity. We finally see what our parents were trying to tell us years ago."
Learn How You Can Help
If you would like to make a gift to support an Augsburg education, consider a planned gift from your estate. Contact Amy Alkire at 612-330-1188 or email@example.com to learn more, at no obligation.
The information on this website is not intended as legal or tax advice. For such advice, please consult an attorney or tax advisor. Figures cited in any examples are for illustrative purposes only. References to tax rates include federal taxes only and are subject to change. State law may further impact your individual results. Annuities are subject to regulation by the State of California. Payments under such agreements, however, are not protected or otherwise guaranteed by any government agency or the California Life and Health Insurance Guarantee Association. A charitable gift annuity is not regulated by the Oklahoma Insurance Department and is not protected by a guaranty association affiliated with the Oklahoma Insurance Department. Charitable gift annuities are not regulated by and are not under the jurisdiction of the South Dakota Division of Insurance.