Blake Mennonite Church (Zurich, Ontario, Canada)
The Blake Amish Mennonite Church, Hay Township, Huron County, Ontario, was established by settlers from Waterloo County in 1848, when Bishop John Oesch (d. 1850) arrived. Early families were Baechler, Gingerich, Kuepfer, Erb, Gerber, Gascho, Schantz, Bender, Egli, Schwartzendruber, and Wuetherich. The meetinghouse was built in 1884. The first preacher ordained was Joseph Wutherich (ordained 1849), the second John Egli, who moved away in 1860. John Gascho served as preacher 1876-1908. The small congregation was served by bishops from Waterloo County except when Bishop Eli Frey of Wauseon, Ohio, served 1915-1923. In 1908 some 50 members transferred to the Mennonite Church, which constituted the beginning of the Zurich Mennonite congregation. In 1954 the Hay Amish Mennonite membership was 72, with Ephraim Gingerich serving as pastor. The congregation is a member of the Ontario Amish Mennonite Conference.
The building is located 1.75 miles north of Highway 84 on Bronson Line, Hay Township. Pastor Clayton Kuepfer served in 1980 as a congregational leader. In 1925 there were 43 members; in 1950, 55; in 1965, 91; in 1975, 57. The congregation dissolved about 1981. It had been affiliated with the Western Ontario Mennonite Conference (1923-1981) and Mennonite Church (1959-1981). The language of worship was English; the transition from German occurred in the 1930s.
Blake was formerly known as Hay Amish Mennonite church (after the township). The members became part of the Zurich Mennonite Church when Blake closed. The Blake building was sold to the Lakeview Conservative Mennonite Church in 1992.
Burkholder, L.J. A Brief History of the Mennonites in Ontario. Kitchener, Ont.: Mennonite Conference of Ontario, 1935: 238-242.
|Author(s)||Harold S. Bender|
Cite This Article
Bender, Harold S. and Sam Steiner. "Blake Mennonite Church (Zurich, Ontario, Canada)." Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. 1992. Web. 22 Apr 2018. http://gameo.org/index.php?title=Blake_Mennonite_Church_(Zurich,_Ontario,_Canada)&oldid=113228.
Bender, Harold S. and Sam Steiner. (1992). Blake Mennonite Church (Zurich, Ontario, Canada). Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. Retrieved 22 April 2018, from http://gameo.org/index.php?title=Blake_Mennonite_Church_(Zurich,_Ontario,_Canada)&oldid=113228.
Adapted by permission of Herald Press, Harrisonburg, Virginia, from Mennonite Encyclopedia, Vol. 2, p. 682. All rights reserved.
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