Fort Collins Mennonite Fellowship (Fort Collins, Colorado, USA)
During World War II five Civilian Public Service camps were established in Colorado, one of which was Camp No. 33 in Fort Collins. Participants in this camp and its auxiliary Buckingham Side Camp, which were administered by the U.S. Department of Agriculture, Soil Conservation Service, between June 1942 and October 1946, worked in various soil conservation projects and built diversion ditches to lessen the effects of erosion in areas around Fort Collins. Although Camp No. 33 brought Mennonite men to the Fort Collins area, no Mennonite congregation was established in the city.
The Fort Collins Mennonite Fellowship was organized on 28 October 1973 to provide fellowship for Mennonites in the northern Colorado area. Some persons had moved there for employment while others were attending Colorado State University. Initially, the fellowship had a rather loose-knit structure, providing no corporate worship services and primarily meeting for fellowship in the Maurice Shenk home. On 12 September 1975 the group decided to meet regularly on the second and fourth Sunday evenings of each month at the Lake Sherwood Club House. Eventually in September 1980, a congregation formally organized with David Gingrich as coordinator, and in 1981 the new congregation dually affiliated with both the Western District Conference of the General Conference Mennonite Church and the Rocky Mountain Mennonite Conference. The latter began providing the church with an annual subsidy in 1981. With this financial aid the congregation purchased a church building at 400 Whedbee Street, several blocks from the downtown area of Fort Collins, in 1982.
The Fort Collins Mennonite Fellowship had outgrown its facilities by the early 2000s. With financial aid from the Rocky Mountain Mennonite Conference, the congregation purchased a church building from the Living Hope Evangelical Free Church in the Old Town section of Fort Collins in 2002. The new church building provided better facilities for children, youth, and adult ministries. To finance the purchase the congregation applied for a loan from Mennonite Mutual Aid who in turn required the conference to act as loan guarantor. Dedication services for the new church facility were held on 8 September 2002. In 2006 the congregation became a charter member of the Mountain States Mennonite Conference.
In 2010 Stephen M. Ramer served as pastor of the Fort Collins Mennonite Fellowship which then had 57 members/covenanted attendees. More than half of the congregation’s participants came from non-Mennonite congregations. The fellowship has been an open and affirming congregation, actively involved with the operation of a Ten Thousand Villages store in the Old Town section of Fort Collins, and committed to incorporation of faith with social justice issues.
Rempel, Edwin F. and Kathrine. "Rocky Mountain Mennonite Conference Forms Partnership with Fort Collins." Conference Connections (September-October, 2002): 2.
Unrau, Harlan D. In Pursuit of Land, Health and Mission: A History of Mennonites in the Mountain States Region. Printed in Canada by Blitzprint, Inc. 2007.
Address: 300 E. Oak Street, Fort Collins, Colorado 80254-2915
Website: Fort Collins Mennonite Fellowship
©1996-2013 by the Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. All rights reserved.
To cite this page:
MLA style: Unrau, Harlan. "Fort Collins Mennonite Fellowship (Fort Collins, Colorado, USA)." Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. May 2010. Web. 22 May 2013. http://www.gameo.org/encyclopedia/contents/fort_collins_mennonite_fellowship_fort_collins_colorado_usa.
APA style: Unrau, Harlan. (May 2010). Fort Collins Mennonite Fellowship (Fort Collins, Colorado, USA). Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. Retrieved 22 May 2013, from http://www.gameo.org/encyclopedia/contents/fort_collins_mennonite_fellowship_fort_collins_colorado_usa.