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The Franconia Conference decided on 3 May 1917 to organize a mission board. Members of the conference had already been serving in the Philadelphia Mission, which was started by the Lancaster Conference Sunday School Mission, later the Eastern Mennonite Board of Missions. Joseph Bechtel served as superintendent from the beginning until his death in 1928. The conference in May 1908 had decided to aid in the purchase of the Howard Street property in Philadelphia. It was decided that each congregation should have one member on the board.

The first officers of the organized board were Allen A. Freed, president, Isaac F. Detwller, vice-president, William D. Roth, secretary, and Garret S. Nice, treasurer. A charter was secured in July 1918. The first conference mission station was opened at Norristown on 6 April 1919, and others followed in rapid succession; by 1954 there were 17 stations in the district, and a mission in Cuba.

Author(s) J. C Clemens
Date Published 1956

[edit] Cite This Article

MLA style

Clemens, J. C. "Franconia Mennonite Board of Missions and Charities." Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. 1956. Web. 28 Jun 2017.

APA style

Clemens, J. C. (1956). Franconia Mennonite Board of Missions and Charities. Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. Retrieved 28 June 2017, from

Adapted by permission of Herald Press, Harrisonburg, Virginia, from Mennonite Encyclopedia, Vol. 2, p. 367. All rights reserved.

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