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Rev Dr Mary Newgeon Hawkes


Mary Newgeon Hawkes passed away on July 9, 2023. Mary was born June 27, 1934, to missionary parents, Rev. William Hawkes and Jessie (Newgeon) Hawkes in Thessaloniki, Greece. After her parents returned from their work in Greece, Mary spent time growing up Ohio, Connecticut, and Missouri before the family settled in Colorado Springs, Colorado where she graduated from high school. She then attended college at Doane College in Crete, Nebraska, where she majored in music with emphasis on the organ.

Mary moved to Hartford to attend Hartford Seminary and received her master’s in religious education in 1958. After serving churches in Connecticut, Germany, New York State and Michigan, she began working on her doctorate in a joint program in religious education from Columbia University Teachers College and Union Theological Seminary in which she received the Ed. D. from Columbia in 1983.

After being ordained at First Church of Christ (Center Church) in Hartford, CT (where she was a long and active member) on April 20, 1980, Mary began serving on the staff at United Church Board for Homeland Ministries in the 1980’s. While there she wrote and edited several Christian education resources including being the word and content editor for the Christian Education Shared Approaches hymnal, “Sing to God”. After her time with the United Church Board, Mary then served as both an interim and called pastor for churches in New Hampshire, Connecticut, New York, and Vermont Conferences of the UCC.

When she retired as a minister and Christian educator in 2008, she devoted much of her time serving as president and newsletter editor of the Adam Hawkes Family Association, a position she loved due to being an ancestor of an original settler of Saugus, MA and the great-great-great grandfather of the second president of the United States, John Adams.

Since 2014, she has been a resident at Covenant Village of Cromwell, CT. There she enjoyed time singing in the chorus, working on the Spiritual Life Committee, and being a leader of a Current Affairs group and book studies, while also serving as a writer and director of an Epiphany Festival.

Mary gave charitably and was affiliated with such organizations as the American Association of University Woman, the Alban Institute, the Children’s Defense Fund, Amnesty Intl, the Southern Poverty Law Center, Common Cause, and Habitat for Humanity.

Enjoying music, her cats, and traveling, Mary made many trips to see family in the Great Plain states.

Mary also loved to laugh and will forever be remembered by nieces and nephews for her many silly jokes and puns as she would always remind them that “You have to see the humor in life.”

She was preceded in death by her parents as well as sister and brother-in-law, Catherine (Hawkes) and Rev. Dr. Dwight Snesrud.

Mary is survived by nieces and nephews: Dorothy Snesrud, Osceola, NE; William (Linda) Snesrud, McPherson, KS; Deborah (Keith) Mueske, Rapid City SD; and James (Melody) Snesrud, Bennett, NE; numerous great and great-great nieces and nephews as well as several cousins.

In lieu of flowers, donations to Public Broadcasting 1225 South Clark Street, Arlington, VA or Union Seminary 3041 Broadway, New York, NY 10027 in Mary’s name would be welcomed.

A Memorial/Celebration of Life will be is planned for a future date.

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Unknown member
Aug 04, 2023

Memorial Service is now Set for September 16th at 11 am at Hartford Center Church UCC

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