The Conseil Mennonite Belge (Belgian Mennonite Council) is a nonlegal, 'fraternal body responsible for coordinating the Mennonite witness in Belgium emerging from the work of Mennonite Board of Missions (MC), begun in 1950.
The Conseil originated in the late 1960s under the leadership of David A. Shank, followed as president by José Gallardo (1973-1977). The president in 1987, Willy Hubinont, had served since 1978, when the Conseil was reorganized through Mennonite Board of Missions (MBM) initiative. Other officers in 1987 were Jules Lambotte, Jr., vice-president; and Sylvia Shirk Charles, secretary.
The Conseil began as a consultation of workers of different nationalities (United States, Belgian, Italian, Russian, and Spanish) receiving MBM support for evangelistic, social, educational, pastoral, radio, and publishing ministries. While never organized as a Mennonite conference, the council has included persons from five congregations variously related to MBM work: East Brussels, Rixensart, Brussels Spanish, Flavion, and Slavic Evangelical. Total membership in 1984 was 85.
East Brussels, Rixensart, and Flavion belonged to the Groupe des Églises Évangéliques Mennonites de Langue Française (French-Speaking Evangelical Mennonite Conference) until this group's merger in 1979 into the Association des Églises Evangéliques Mennonites de France (Association of Evangelical Mennonite Churches of France, AEEMF). In 1987 Flavion was affiliated with AEEMF. Rixensart joined the United Protestant Church of Belgium in 1983 after an earlier (1972-1979) affiliation with the Reformed Church of Belgium. The Brussels Mennonite Center opened in 1982 as a joint Conseil Mennonite Belge and MBM project.
Shank, David A. "Discovering the Strategy of the Spirit." in Being God's Missionary Community. Elkhart, IN: Mennonite Board of Missions, 1975: 23-30.
Annual Reports of Mennonite Board of Missions, 1951-
Mennonite World Handbook Supplement. Strasbourg, France, and Lombard, IL: Mennonite World Conference, 1984: 113.
Cite This Article
Charles, Robert. "Conseil Mennonite Belge." Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. 1987. Web. 11 Mar 2014. http://gameo.org/index.php?title=Conseil_Mennonite_Belge&oldid=86913.
Charles, Robert. (1987). Conseil Mennonite Belge. Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. Retrieved 11 March 2014, from http://gameo.org/index.php?title=Conseil_Mennonite_Belge&oldid=86913.
Herald Press website.
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