Cover photo for Reverend Charles Edward Lippse's Obituary
Reverend Charles Edward Lippse Profile Photo
1934 Reverend Charles 2016

Reverend Charles Edward Lippse

January 2, 1934 — September 2, 2016

Charles Edward Lippse, 82, of Chattanooga, went peacefully from under the stars to his eternal home on Friday, September 2, 2016.  He lived his entire life in the Holston Conference of the United Methodist Church.  He was born to the late Reverend Glenn Lippse and his wife, Grace, in Radford, VA on January 2, 1934. After attending Emory & Henry College, Charles received his Masters of Divinity from Emory University and followed his fathers' footsteps into the ministry. Charles first served as a student pastor at the Benton and Carlock churches of Polk County, TN and was then was appointed full-time pastor at Pound United Methodist Church in Pound, VA.

Charles set out for the small town of Pound rather pessimistically, but it was there that he met the love of his life, local girl, Kay Fleming. Pound was where the two were married on April 2, 1960 and graced with twin daughters, Jill and Gwen the following spring. Though they would leave that next summer, the town would remain special to them for the rest of their lives. At his next appointment, Lupton City United Methodist Church, the Lippses welcomed their third daughter, Hilda in October 1962.

The next seventeen years Charles would lead congregations at St. Luke's United Methodist Church (Knoxville), Dublin United Methodist Church (Dublin, VA), and Tyner United Methodist Church (Chattanooga).   In 1979, Charles transitioned into the role of Superintendent of the Chattanooga District. He would re-enter the pulpit as senior pastor at Broad Street United Methodist (Cleveland), Munsey Memorial (Johnson City) and First Broad Street (Kingsport) before retiring in 1999.

Charles felt fortunate to meet, know, and serve so many wonderful congregations across the conference through his forty-three years of work. As a pastor, Charles could filter complex theology and doctrine through his own life experiences, telling relatable stories that conveyed memorable messages. Beyond committing his days and nights directly to the churches and communities in which he worked, Charles proudly represented the Holston Conference as a delegate and chair of multiple committees at Jurisdictional and General Conferences. Charles maintained the Methodist message he was raised with, but continually sought to deepen his understanding of the faith through relentless research, taking annual trips to Union Theological Seminary at Columbia University.

As a husband, a father, an uncle, and a grandfather, Charles exhibited the same level of unconditional commitment and care. He could be steady and serious, sly and silly -- a patient listener, an expert storyteller, and an unstoppable jokester. He thrived in the sunshine and cherished any opportunity to walk outside, particularly through Heritage Park off Jenkins Road in Chattanooga. Travel truly delighted Charles, and he counted himself blessed to have travelled extensively in the Holy Land, Europe, and Central America.

In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by his brother, James F. Lippse, and his wife, Kay.

He is survived by his daughters, Jill Brown and her spouse, Doug, Gwen Guthrie and Hilda Sullivan and her spouse, Julian; five grandchildren: Grey Watson, Wells Guthrie, Ella Marie Sullivan, Sam Sullivan and Charlsey Sullivan; and one step-grandson, Will Brown. Charles is also survived by brothers-in-law, Frank Jackson and Craig Fleming and his spouse, Margaret; five nieces and nephews: Finley Jackson, Crystal Bolling, Shannon Fleming, Ryan Fleming and Vanessa Fleming; and several cousins.

The family will receive friends at Tyner Methodist Church in Chattanooga on Thursday, September 8 from 5-7pm. Following a private family committal at First Broad Street in Kingsport, a public memorial service will be held at Munsey United Methodist Church in Johnson City, TN at 1pm on Friday, September 9 with visitation to follow.  The Reverend Douglas Grove-DeJarnett will preside over the service.  The Reverend Dr. Gordon Goodgame and the Reverend James Bennington will also take part in the service. 

In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations to Unity Center (685 Benton Pike NE, Cleveland, TN 37311) or the Society for Biblical Studies (846 Massachusetts Ave. Suite 1-A, Arlington, MA 02476).

Fike-Randolph & Son Funeral Home is in charge of the arrangements.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Reverend Charles Edward Lippse, please visit our flower store.

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Thursday, September 8, 2016

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