Esther Wiebe—long-time music professor, pianist and composer—died in Winnipeg on January 26 at age 90.
She is survived by her husband George; children, Robert (Verna) and Peter (Ruth); daughter-in-law Marlene Wiebe; 12 grandchildren; 11 great-grandchildren; extended family and friends. She was predeceased by her son, Tim Wiebe.
Born in 1932 in Plum Coulee, Man., Wiebe was a gifted musician, playing both piano and violin. She was baptized at Bethel Mennonite Church at age 19.
While studying music at Canadian Mennonite Bible College (CMBC), she met George, whom she married in 1953. They were both hired by CMBC to develop the music program.
Over the years, Wiebe became an accomplished musician, studying piano accompaniment with Gwendolyn Koldofsky in Los Angeles, composition with Bernhard Heiden in Indiana, and piano and harpsichord in Germany.
A beloved professor with a delightful sense of humour, Wiebe taught music theory courses at CMBC and helped administer the music program. She arranged and composed music for CMBC, the Faith and Life Male Choir and the wider church.
For five decades Esther and George collaborated in training and performing with choirs in Canada and abroad.
After retirement, Esther and George served musically in various Mennonite church contexts, including Brazil, Paraguay, Uruguay and Springfield Heights Church in Winnipeg.
At the funeral, Wiebe’s daughter-in-law Marlene Wiebe expressed gratitude. “We give thanks for the gift Esther was to her family, friends and community. She was a devoted daughter, sister, wife, mothert and faithful servant of God. We who hold her dear will be forever uplifted by her faithful love and generosity of spirit.”
– Adapted from the family obituary