Blenheim Mennonite Church (New Dundee, Ontario, Canada)
Blenheim Mennonite Church (Mennonite Church), on the county line road between Waterloo and Oxford counties in Ontario, served the Mennonite families of the Ontario Mennonite Conference in the most southwesterly portion of Waterloo County. The congregation was organized in the year 1839 and until 1850 when the church was built, services were held in a schoolhouse nearby. The land for church and cemetery was bought from Peter Erb. An addition to the church was built in 1859. In 1887 the building was moved slightly eastward and veneered with brick. During the summer of 1901 it was torn down and a new brick building erected. New Hamburg is the nearest town, four miles north. The ministers who served this congregation to 1953 were Jacob Hallman, 1836-1878; Joseph Nahrgang, 1878-1903; Isaiah Rosenberger, 1897-1907; Moses H. Shantz, 1907-1938; Moses N. Baer, 1939-1947. In 1953 the bishop in charge was Curtis C. Cressman. The deacons who served here were Jacob Bock, John Cressman, David Bergey, Gilbert Bergey, Omar Cressman. Arnold Cressman served as minister from 1951-1961.
The first evangelistic meetings were held by John S. Coffman in 1891. The first Sunday school was organized in 1885.
The congregation discontinued because of declining membership and financial burdens. It merged with Biehn Mennonite Church in 1975 to become Nith Valley Mennonite. The church building was used as a retreat center by Mennonite Church Eastern Canada. Pastor Gordon Bauman served in 1974 as the congregational leader. In 1900 there were 56 members; in 1925, 61; in 1950, 97; in 1965, 74; in 1974, 68.
Bergey, Lorna. "125 Anniversary: Blenheim Mennonite Congregation." 1964, 5 pp.
Bergey, Lorna L. "Mennonite Change: the Life History of the Church, 1839-1974." Mennonite Life (December 1977).
Burkholder, L.J. A Brief History of the Mennonites in Ontario. Kitchener, Ont. : Mennonite Conference of Ontario,1935: 64-66.
Canadian Mennonite (15 September 1964): 1.
Cressman, Kenneth. "The Development of the Conservative Mennonite Church of Ontario." Unpublished paper, 1976. 70 pp. MAO.
Cressman, Kenneth. "A Descriptive Analysis of the Conservative Mennonite Schisms in Ontario, 1956-1979." 1979. Unpublished paper, 92 pp. MAO.
Church records at Mennonite Archives of Ontario.
Mennonite Reporter (3 February 1975)": 14; (3 March 1975): 4.
Adapted by permission of Herald Press, Harrisonburg, Virginia, and Waterloo, Ontario, from Mennonite Encyclopedia, Vol. 1, p. 360. All rights reserved. For information on ordering the encyclopedia visit the Herald Press website.
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To cite this page:
MLA style: Fretz, Joseph C. and Marlene Epp. "Blenheim Mennonite Church (New Dundee, Ontario, Canada)." Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. January 1989. Web. 23 May 2013. http://www.gameo.org/encyclopedia/contents/B559ME.html.
APA style: Fretz, Joseph C. and Marlene Epp. (January 1989). Blenheim Mennonite Church (New Dundee, Ontario, Canada). Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. Retrieved 23 May 2013, from http://www.gameo.org/encyclopedia/contents/B559ME.html.