Arnhem is the capital of the Dutch province of Gelderland (population in 2006 was 142,210; in the 1950s about 725 Mennonites lived there). Presumably there was a congregation here as early as 1539 or 1540, but its existence cannot be proved before 1596. Information about this congregation is very scarce. In 1603 it met in the house of Jan Wints, a smith, and in 1607 at the home of a basket weaver; in the following year in the Turfstraat; and about 1629 in a house on the Ketelstraat. In 1617 the city council decided that the Mennonites should take a more active part in the civil defense and in 1624 Pouwel Huyberts (preacher or elder?) was fined 10 guilders for withdrawing from the defense of the city. On 21 April 1632 Cornelis Jansz and Dirk Rendersen of Arnhem signed the Flemish confession at Dordrecht, which indicates that the Arnhem congregation belonged to that wing. In 1664 Arnhem united with the stricter wing of the Zonists. Since then scarce information becomes still scarcer. On 30 January 1715 a house was bought for the Mennonite congregation (intended for a church? It was later called the Mennisten Erf). On 21 February 1787 Abraham de Haas said that he was the only remaining member of the congregation. In the early 19th century the Amsterdam congregation had the supervision of the fund called Mennisten-fonds or Mennisten Erf.
On 10 March 1851, 28 Mennonites living in Arnhem notified the government of their intention to organize a Mennonite congregation there; permission was given on 20 January 1852, and meetings originally were held in a hall in the Bakkerstraat. In 1855 the congregation received a preacher in H. Haga, who served the congregation 1855-1887. The later preachers were H. J. Elhorst, 1887-1898; B. P. Plantinga, 1898-1901; G. Wuite, 1901-1910; P. J. Glasz, 1910-1911; D. Pottinga, 1912-1925; P. Vis, 1926-1938; J. E. Tuininga, 1939-1946; and Th. van der Veer after 1946. The first service here was conducted by J. Boeke, the Mennonite minister of Amsterdam, 13 June 1852.
The congregation increased rapidly in membership. In 1861 the number of baptized members was 60, in 1900 it was 390, in 1950 it was 685. On 8 September 1889 the congregation began to hold its services in the present church in Weverstraat. The church was damaged in the war in September 1944.
The Doopsgezinde Gemeente Arnhem is a member of Ring Arnhem. In the 1950s it had a men's organization, a committee to visit newly organized Mennonite congregations, a division of the Doopsgezinde Zendingsvereeniging. It supported a Sunday school for the children together with the Remonstrants and the liberal Reformed Church. In Doorwerth near Arnhem stands the Mennonite home for the aged called "Mooiland" (lovely land); another home for the aged is "Avondzon" (evening sun), maintained at Velpnear Arnhem in cooperation with the Remonstrants and the Reformed.
Het Archief der Doopsgezinde Gemeente te Arnhem. 1936.
Doopsgezinde Bijdragen (1863): 43-74.
Een eeuw Doopsgezinde Gemeente, Herdenkingsgeschrift. Arnhem, 1952.
Hege, Christian and Christian Neff. Mennonitisches Lexikon, 4 vols. Frankfurt & Weierhof: Hege; Karlsruhe: Schneider, 1913-1967: v. I, 85.
Hoop Scheffer, Jacob Gijsbert de. Inventaris der Archiefstukken berustende bij de Vereenigde Doopsgezinde Gemeente to Amsterdam, 2 vols. Amsterdam: Uitgegeven en ten geschenke aangeboden door den Kerkeraad dier Gemeente, 1883-1884: v. I, Nos. 1524-1530; v. II, Nos. 12-25.
Address: Da Costastraat 10, 6824 NV, Arnhem
Website: Doopsgezinde Gemeente Arnhem
Denominational Affiliation: Algemene Doopsgezinde Societeit
|Author(s)||Nanne van der Zijpp|
Cite This Article
Zijpp, Nanne van der. "Arnhem (Gelderland, Netherlands)." Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. 1953. Web. 31 Oct 2014. http://gameo.org/index.php?title=Arnhem_(Gelderland,_Netherlands)&oldid=110419.
Zijpp, Nanne van der. (1953). Arnhem (Gelderland, Netherlands). Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. Retrieved 31 October 2014, from http://gameo.org/index.php?title=Arnhem_(Gelderland,_Netherlands)&oldid=110419.
Herald Press website.
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