Franklin Mennonite Church (Franklin, Kentucky, USA)

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The Franklin Mennonite Church in Franklin, Kentucky, USA was established in 1966.

During the second half of the 1960s, members from Kempsville Amish Mennonite church in Virginia actively looked for a place to start a new community. Urbanization was pressuring many members to sell their farms for urban development.

On 14 September 1965 the four men in the search had an automobile accident while on their way to Alabama. Jacob J. Hershberger, Kempsville’s bishop and prominent personality in the broader Beachy Amish Mennonite church, was killed instantly upon impact. The other three survived, though one died six months later.

The passing of Hershberger expedited the search process because, as Abner Overholt, one of the family heads that eventually moved, wrote, " ...with the passing of these men, the Kempsville Church really seemed to have a great emptiness," and after this incident, he "was ready to relocate."

Another expedition consisting of Overholt and three other men took them to the Franklin, Kentucky, area. The land was good for farming and the market was thriving. Before the men left, all had made down payments on farms.

Deacon Joe Mast moved with the group. Eli Beachy, a minister from Hartville, Ohio, also joined the group. The group first met in members’ houses, but soon built a meetinghouse on Beachy’s land. The new congregation adopted the standard of practice from Kempsville Amish Mennonite congregation. In 1995, Brad Groff was ordained as bishop in Franklin Amish Mennonite to replace Eli Beachy, who at that point retired, but remained in the church.

In 2017 the church was a member of the Beachy Amish Mennonite Fellowship and had a membership of 75. The bishop was Jonathan Overholt, and the ministers were Larry Baer and Alan Overholt.


"Amish Mennonite Churches in Kentucky." The Beachy Amish Mennonites. 2013. Web. 8 February 2018.

Anderson, Cory. The Amish-Mennonites of North America: a portrait of our people. Medina, New York: Ridgeway Publishing, 2012: 118.

Anderson, Cory Alexander. "The Diffusion of Beachy Amish Mennonite Congregations in the US South: A Regional Chronicle and Spatial Analysis." Unpublished paper, 2006: 38. Web. 8 February 2018.

Mennonite Church directory (2017): 42.

Yoder, Elmer S. The Beachy Amish Mennonite Fellowship Churches. Hartville, Ohio: Diakonia Ministries, 1987: 327-328.

Additional Information

Address: 102 Mennonite Church Road, Franklin, Kentucky

Phone: 270-586-4756


Denominational Affiliations:

Beachy Amish Mennonite Fellowship


Franklin Mennonite Church

Author(s) Samuel J Steiner
Date Published February 2018

Cite This Article

MLA style

Steiner, Samuel J. "Franklin Mennonite Church (Franklin, Kentucky, USA)." Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. February 2018. Web. 10 Jul 2020.,_Kentucky,_USA)&oldid=164990.

APA style

Steiner, Samuel J. (February 2018). Franklin Mennonite Church (Franklin, Kentucky, USA). Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. Retrieved 10 July 2020, from,_Kentucky,_USA)&oldid=164990.

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