Union Democrat staff

Ihno Albert Janssen

July 2, 1918 - Oct. 22, 2013

Sonora resident Ihno Albert Janssen died Tuesday at Skyline Place. He was 95.

Mr. Janssen was born in Milan, Wis., and raised in Odessa, Minn., one of 10 children born to Minnie and Ihno Albert Janssen Sr.

He was a pastor with the Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod and served in the ministry for over 60 years.

He played baseball as a young man and declined an opportunity to play for the Minnesota Twins, instead choosing to pursue a career in ministry like his father and grandfather.

He earned a bachelor's degree from Concordia University in St. Paul in 1940 and a divinity degree from Concordia Seminary in 1945. He later earned a master's degree in counseling from San Francisco State University and doctorate of education from University of Santa Barbara in 1985. He received an honorary doctor of divinity from Concordia Seminary in Indiana in 1980 and another from the English District of the Lutheran Church in 2012.

Mr. Janssen opened Christian Counseling Services in Danville in the late 1980s. He also served as interim pastor and preacher at Bay Area Lutheran churches, and was a trainer and consultant to area nursing homes until he became legally blind at 83.

He moved to Sonora in 2008.

He enjoyed attending church at St. Matthew Lutheran Church in Sonora.

Mr. Janssen was preceded in death by his parents; three brothers; and three sisters.

He is survived by his wife of 68 years, Shirley Janssen, of Sonora; his children and their spouses, Judi and Bill Wilson, of Sonora, Jerolyn Janssen, of Oxnard, Janelle Janssen, of San Diego, and Jonathan Janssen, of San Jose; grandchildren, Andy Wilson, of San Diego, Darien and Daren Drown, of Sonora, Lauren Wilson, of Sacramento, Julianne Janssen, of San Jose; one great-grandson; and siblings, Marcia McCumber, of Hastings, Minn., Daniel Janssen, of Westlake Village, and pastor Arlo Janssen, of Benson, Ariz.

In lieu of flowers, donations in his memory can be made to Student Aid Endowment Fund, Concordia Seminary, 801 Seminary Place, St. Louis, MO 63105.

A memorial service will be held at 11 a.m. Saturday at West Portal Lutheran Church, 200 Sloat Blvd., San Francisco. Interment will be at Oakmont Memorial Park in Lafayette.

Terzich and Wilson Funeral Home is handling arrangements.


BECKER - Bettye C. Becker, 84, of Sonora, died Friday, at Skyline Place. Terzich and Wilson Funeral Home is handling arrangements.

ELLEFSEN - Edward Ellefsen, 69, of Sonora, died Friday at his home. Terzich and Wilson Funeral Home is handling arrangements.

LANE - Bertha Lane, 91, of Soulsbyville, died Friday at her home. Terzich and Wilson Funeral Home is handling arrangements.