Cover photo for Donna J. Habenicht's Obituary
Donna J. Habenicht Profile Photo
1934 Donna 2022

Donna J. Habenicht

December 13, 1934 — June 22, 2022

Donna (Lugenbeal) Habenicht was born Dec.13,1934 in the Philippines. Her missionary parents later moved to South America where she grew up. Her father drowned in Lima, Peru when she was 14 so the family returned to the US settling in Berrien Springs. She went to Emanuel Missionary College (now Andrews Univ.) graduating in 1954 with Elementary Ed degree.

She married Herald Habenicht and spent next seven years in California as he went to medical school and residency. She supported family as teacher and secretary. They then moved to Puerto Rico where he worked at Bella Vista Hospital. None of the Seventh-day Adventist churches on the island had children’s programs so Donna wrote the programs and visited each church with seminars to help them get started.

After nine years of mission service they moved to Berrien Springs. Donna worked in the Campus Chaplain’s office at AU while she did her Masters (1974) and Doctorate in Educational Psychology and Counseling (1977). She spent the next 23 years teaching at Andrews and as a licensed psychologist. She was chairperson of the Education Department from 1990-95. During this time she published scores of journal articles and five books. The most popular “How to Help Your Child Really Love Jesus” is used around the world.

After retirement in 2000 Donna and Herald spent the next 15 years traveling the world giving seminars teaching how to promote spiritual growth and the development of Christian values in children.

Donna passed quietly to her rest on June 22 after a several year decline with dementia. She is survived by her husband of 68 years, Herald; a brother, Ed; son, Larry; daughter, Nancy; four grandchildren and five great-grandchildren.

Memorial service at Pioneer Memorial Church, Andrews University June 25 at 4 p.m. with visitation from 3-4 p.m. Memorial contributions at YOUR STORY HOUR, Box 15, Berrien Springs, MI, 49103. Messages and memories at

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Saturday, June 25, 2022

3:00 - 4:00 pm (Eastern time)

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Memorial Service

Saturday, June 25, 2022

Starts at 4:00 pm (Eastern time)

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