Julia Osborne Christensen


June 15, 1950 - November 9, 2018

TORRINGTON - A Celebration of–Life for Julia Osborne Christensen will be 1 p.m. Saturday, April 6, 2019, at the First Wyoming United Presbyterian Church, 2972 Main St., in Torrington. 

Julia served as co-pastor with her husband Carl at the First Wyoming United Presbyterian Church, in Torrington, from 1988 to 1997. She was the first woman to serve as pastor of that church. 

Julia Osborne Christensen was born to the Rev. Howard and Marjorie Osborne on June 15, 1950, in Brookings, S.D. She graduated from Torrington High School in 1969. She graduated from Macalester College, and taught high school at Roseville, Minn., before being called to the ministry. 

She attended and graduated from Princeton Theological Seminary, where she served on the Alumni Board.  Julie was ordained at Dayton Avenue Presbyterian Church in St. Paul, Minn. She served as Associate Pastor in DePere, Wisc., where she met her husband Carl Christensen. She served as pastor in Henryville, Ind., while Carl attended seminary. They applied for and were called to serve as co-pastors in Torrington in 1988, and served faithfully and well until 1997, when they were called to serve in Tipton and Elwood, Ind.

Julia had a true pastor’s heart, full of love for everyone. Well grounded in her faith, with a brilliant understanding of biblical texts, she had an intimate relationship with God and a deep and loyal love for His people. 

She had a fierce desire for justice, and delivered her sermons and ministered to her congregations with a lively sense of humor. She tended to the poor in spirit, knew no strangers, and especially relished teaching confirmation classes. She and Carl took some of those classes on trips to Israel, Scotland, and France, making lasting impressions on the many communicants they tutored and loved.

When they retired, they moved to Maplewood, Minn. They loved the mountains, traveling, their families, many friends, and their dogs. Her lively sense of humor brought smiles and laughter to many, and earned her the fond nickname “Bubbles.” 

As her health started to fail, Julie still had a smile and a story for everyone. They moved to Waverly Gardens in St. Paul, where she passed away on Nov. 9, 2018.

She is survived by her husband Carl, sisters Kathleen Vellenga and Anita (Russ) Cummings, stepson David (Renee) Christensen, stepdaughter Deanne Girton, granddaughter, Tahlia Girton, and many nieces and nephews. She was preceded, in death, by her parents, a sister Janet Prosser, and brother-in-law Jim Vellenga.  

All who wish to honor and remember Julie are cordially invited to attend the Torrington Memorial Service.

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