Post Oak Mennonite Brethren Church (Indiahoma, Oklahoma, USA)
Post Oak, a mission station of the Mennonite Brethren Church of North America serving the Comanche Indians of Oklahoma, situated on a 160-acre farm one mile east and 4 miles north of the village of Indiahoma, near Lawton, Oklahoma, was opened in 1894 when Henry Kohfeld and his wife were appointed for this work, assisted by a conference committee which included E. C. Deyo, a Baptist missionary to the same Indians, and Dr. Morrow, supervisor of all Baptist Indian Missions in the United States. The opening of the work was made difficult by the indifference of Chief Quanah Parker. Finally, however, yielding to the pleas of the missionary and some of his own people and one of his wives, Parker led the missionary to the place where he believed the mission should be founded. He cut a sign to indicate this location in a post oak tree; hence the mission was named Post Oak. The religious indifference of the Indians was gradually overcome. The first converts were baptized in 1907; approximately 400 adults have been baptized at the station. In the late 1950s some 150 members constituted the Post Oak Comanche Mennonite Brethren Church.
The congregation has yielded some fine assistant workers such as George Koweno, Deacon Urheyah, Shelby Tenequer, and Ruben Tabbytosavita, all four of whom have died. Those specially active today are the deacons Felix Koweno, James Chebahtah, and Pete Coffey, and the lay members Herman Asenap and Max Pahcheka. The last named deserves special credit for having opened a promising work at the Fort Sill Indian School for children near Lawton, conducting Sunday school and worship services there.
The work in the main has been of an evangelistic type, but in 1948 a school for Indian children was opened at Post Oak under the supervision of D. J. Gerbrandt with Ruth Wiens as teacher. In 1949 the school was transferred to a new building in Indiahoma. There are some 60 to 70 Indian children and four teachers in the first eight grades.
Missionary families who have served at Post Oak are as follows: Henry Kohfeld 1894-1907, A. J. Becker 1901-1940, J. S. Dick 1941-1942, C. E. Fast 1942-1944, J. J. Wiebe 1944-1945, D. J. Gerbrandt 1945 (now at Indiahoma), H. J. Neufeld 1949, who was in charge of the Post Oak Mission in 1954. Among the helpers who have served on special occasions we mention only Mrs. Anna Hiebert Gomez, who had been with the mission since 1911 in various capacities, and was still doing a very commendable work, especially among the women, in the mid-1950s.
Kroeker, Marvin E. Comanches and Mennonites on the Oklahoma Plains: A. J. and Magdalena Becker and the Post Oak Mission. Winnipeg, Man.: Kindred Publications, 1997.
Peters, G. W. The Growth of Foreign Missions in the Mennonite Brethren Church. Hillsboro, 1947.
Address: 115 NW Post Oak Road, Indiahoma, OK 73552; Telephone: 580-246-3212.
Adapted by permission of Herald Press, Harrisonburg, Virginia, and Waterloo, Ontario, from Mennonite Encyclopedia, Vol. 4, p. 206. All rights reserved. For information on ordering the encyclopedia visit the Herald Press website.
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To cite this page:
MLA style: Lohrenz, John H. and George W. Peters. "Post Oak Mennonite Brethren Church (Indiahoma, Oklahoma, USA)." Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. 1959. Web. 19 May 2013. http://www.gameo.org/encyclopedia/contents/post_oak_mennonite_brethren_church_indiahoma.
APA style: Lohrenz, John H. and George W. Peters. (1959). Post Oak Mennonite Brethren Church (Indiahoma, Oklahoma, USA). Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. Retrieved 19 May 2013, from http://www.gameo.org/encyclopedia/contents/post_oak_mennonite_brethren_church_indiahoma.