Menno Bible Institute (Didsbury, Alberta, Canada)
The Menno Bible Institute (General Conference Mennonite Church) was located near Didsbury between Edmonton and Calgary, Alberta. With Wilhelm Pauls as principal, it was founded in 1937 by the Mennonite Conference of Alberta, which used the Didsbury Mennonite Church for both dormitories and classrooms. Under the tutelage of only 2 instructors the enrollment rose from 8 students in 1937 to 52 in 1940. The most successful years for the school came between 1940-50 when two or three teachers taught between 45-55 students a year. New classroom and dormitory buildings were built during this time that could serve up to 80 students. In 1950 Menno Bible Institute became a member of the Evangelical Teacher Training Association from which the students could receive a three-year diploma; 1950 also marked the beginning of the end for the school with enrollment dropping to 32. The need for a Bible institute was no longer as great since more Mennonite youth were finishing Grade 12, and those who wanted to study further generally opted for Bible colleges and universities.
Founding principal and instructor Wilhelm Pauls retired in 1962, having led the school and its cumulative total of over 500 students for 25 years. Unfortunately by this time enrollment was hovering at around 20 students. Measures to make the school more applicable to the changing social culture were attempted in 1964, but the enrollment results remained meager and funding church community did not appreciate the new direction. In 1966 the Mennonite Conference of Alberta made the decision to close the Menno Bible Institute.
Dick, C. L. The Mennonite Conference of Alberta: A History of its Churches and Institutions. Edmonton, 1980.
Adapted by permission of Herald Press, Harrisonburg, Virginia, and Waterloo, Ontario, from Mennonite Encyclopedia, Vol. 3, p. 574. All rights reserved. For information on ordering the encyclopedia visit the Herald Press website.
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To cite this page:
MLA style: Pauls, Wilhelm. "Menno Bible Institute (Didsbury, Alberta, Canada)." Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. 1957. Web. 21 May 2013. http://www.gameo.org/encyclopedia/contents/M4635.html.
APA style: Pauls, Wilhelm. (1957). Menno Bible Institute (Didsbury, Alberta, Canada). Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. Retrieved 21 May 2013, from http://www.gameo.org/encyclopedia/contents/M4635.html.