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Woodlake Mennonite settlement, now extinct, was established in the eastern part of the San Joaquin Valley of central California. Before World War I numerous Mennonites became stockholders of the Woodlake Citrus Development Company, some of whom never moved to Woodlake. The virgin land of the Woodlake area was gradually transformed into orange groves. Some of the families who founded the town of Woodlake came from Reedley and Upland. The spiritual needs were taken care of by visiting ministers from Men­nonite communities in California.

In 1915 H. A. Bachmann came to Woodlake and on 13 June 1915, the First Mennonite Church (General Conference Mennonite) was organized with 18 members who met in the local school. In 1916-18 F. J. Isaac served as minister, fol­lowed in 1918-19 by J. J. Engbrecht. After this the Reedley Mennonite Church provided for occasional services. In 1926 some young people were baptized. The last meeting of the congregation was held on 20 January 1929, attended by three families. In 1953 there were only three families living at Woodlake who had once belonged to the Mennonite Church of that place.

Author(s) Cornelius Krahn
Date Published 1959

Cite This Article

MLA style

Krahn, Cornelius. "First Mennonite Church (Woodlake, California, USA)." Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. 1959. Web. 29 Apr 2017.,_California,_USA)&oldid=80830.

APA style

Krahn, Cornelius. (1959). First Mennonite Church (Woodlake, California, USA). Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. Retrieved 29 April 2017, from,_California,_USA)&oldid=80830.

Adapted by permission of Herald Press, Harrisonburg, Virginia, and Kitchener, Ontario, from Mennonite Encyclopedia, Vol. 4, p. 977. All rights reserved.

©1996-2017 by the Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. All rights reserved.