- 1924-2015 (Creation)
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7.0 m of textual records ; 67 photographs
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Vineland United Mennonite Church had its origins in immigration of Mennonites from the Soviet Union in the 1920s. The first of these immigrants arrived in Vineland, Ontario, Canada in 1924. After Jacob H. Janzen arrived in Waterloo, Ontario in December 1924, a congregation was organized in Waterloo, and included Kirchliche Mennonites elsewhere in Ontario, including Vineland. A first baptism took place in Vineland in summer 1925. John J. Wichert arrived in Vineland in August 1926 and began giving leadership to worship services there. The Vineland group elected him as a candidate for lay ministry in 1927, and he was ordained in 1928.
Until 1934 this congregation and the Mennonite Brethren worshiped together, most often in a machine shed owned by Chris Fretz. In 1934 the Mennonite Brethren formed their own congregation, and in 1935 the United Mennonites built a church building across Victoria Avenue from the machine shop near the intersection of Culp Road. This building, with a 1942 addition, served the congregation until 1957 when a new building was erected on Second Street (later called Menno Street).
Vineland United Mennonite Church became an independent congregation in 1936.
n 1953 they were part of a number of Mennonite congregations to found a senior citizens home which was built in Vineland. In 1957 they built a larger meeting house near the Senior citizens home.
The congregation has made occasional donations to the Mennonite Archives of Ontario; the large donation of pastors' records was made in the 1980s by Peter J. Neufeld. In 2009, a significant donation of early records, additional papers of John J. Wichert, and the records of the Helfenden Hande ("Helping Hands") women's society were received.
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Contains the formal and informal records of the congregation. Reflecting the early recordkeeping practices of the group when the pastor or bishop served as primary recordkeeper, many of the congregation's early records are located within the pastors' files series.
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For further information see Fuenfundzwanzig Jahre Vineland Mennoniten Gemeinde 1936-1961 (Vineland, Ont.: Vineland Vereinigte Mennonitengemeinde, 1961), 58 pp.; Harold Fransen, "The history of the Vineland Mennonite Church," Research paper, CMBC, 1977, 25 pp. Mennonite Heritage Centre (Winnipeg); Highlights of the Vineland United Mennonite Church 1936-1986: reflect, rejoice, renew (Vineland, Ont.: Vineland United Mennonite Church, 1986), 92 pp
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Dates of creation revision deletion
The original description was created December 1999 by Sam Steiner