Mary C. Ensign

Make a joyful noise unto the LORD, all ye lands! Serve the LORD with gladness: come before his presence with singing. Know ye that the LORD he is God: it is he that hath made us, and not we ourselves; we are his people, and the sheep of his pasture. Enter into his gates with thanksgiving, and into his courts with praise: be thankful unto him, and bless his name. For the LORD is good, his mercy is everlasting and his truth endureth to all generations.
The heavens rang with songs of joy on the first day of the New Year 2021. Mary Catherine Satre Ensign was welcomed home by her Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ! She joins her beloved husband, James Robert Ensign, who preceded her to everlasting life in February 2018. Mary lived her life praising her Lord. She was a talented musician, an organist in the Lutheran church, a director of church choirs, and teacher of piano and organ to many young students for over 25 years.
Mary is survived by daughters, Elizabeth (Barry) Latoszewski of Vermontville, Mary Copping of Pinckney, Sarah (Tom) Gruber of Rockford, Laura (Brad) Beyer of Gaylord; and her son, Paul (Terry) Ensign of Blanco Texas; along with many grandchildren, great-grandchildren, nieces and nephews. She is also survived by her younger brother, Rev. Carl H. (Joyce) Satre of Fort Wayne, Indiana, and sister-in-law, Mrs. Earl S. (Katherine) Ensign of Toledo, Ohio. She was predeceased by her parents, Rev. William Carl Satre and Mary Elizabeth Hersch Satre; her step-mother, Dorothy Drewes Satre; and her brother-in-law, Earl S. Ensign, Jr.
Mary was born May 29, 1930 in Polo, Ill., to Rev. W. Carl Satre and Mary Elizabeth Satre. Mary’s early years were spent in Lena, Ill., where her father was pastor of Amity Lutheran Church. She began studying piano at the age of four. The family later moved to Toledo, Ohio where she continued her music studies. She was just 16 when she began playing the organ in church. She graduated from DeVilbiss High School, Toledo, in 1948. It was in church where she met her future husband, James Robert Ensign, and they were married April 14, 1950. Her husband Bob also became a Lutheran pastor. They were married for 68 years, until his death on February 3, 2018.
Mary lived her faith. She was a kind, loving woman who raised five children while serving as a full-time church organist at All Saints Lutheran Church in Worthington, Ohio, Christ Lutheran Church and Grace Lutheran Church in Monroe, Mich. In her retirement years she played the organ part-time at Bethel Lutheran Church in Cedarville, Mich. and First Lutheran Church in Charlotte, Mich. She began teaching piano while in Monroe, and then taught for over ten years in Cedarville. Many of her students rode the school bus directly to her home for after school lessons. Knowing they would be hungry, Mary always had a tray of homemade cookies waiting for them.
Mary became a resident of Eaton County Health and Rehabilitation Services in Charlotte in 2017. The family wishes to thank the staff at ECHRS for their compassionate care. Due to the risks of COVID-19, a service was held for immediate family only, on January 7, 2021 at First Lutheran Church of Charlotte, with the Rev. Jim Eggert officiating. Interment followed at Hillside Cemetery in Kalamo, Mich.
For those who wish, memorial gifts may be directed to First Lutheran Church, Charlotte. Friends and family are encouraged to share memories of Mary on her tribute page at The family is in the care of Pray Funeral Home, Charlotte.
We rejoice in Mary’s triumph over death, and say with the Apostle Paul:
“Thanks Be to God through our Lord Jesus Christ who gives us the victory!”