Hendrik Maelschap (Maesschop, Maelschalk, Maerschalk) was an Anabaptist martyr, burned at the stake on the Veerle square at Ghent, Belgium. He had been arrested on his way to a meeting with Jan van Parijs, Peter van Cleve (Pieter Aelbrechts), and Laurens Pietersz; they had not yet been baptized, but they wished to be faithful and confessed their faith "without fear," and were therefore sentenced to death in 1568. As they were to be burned they sang together, "Ick roep v, o Hemelsch Vader, aen, wil myn geloove sterken," and were therefore beaten by the Spaniards. Steadfastly they endured their cruel martyrdom. In prison Maelschap wrote a letter on 26 January 1568 to a friend Goelken, stating that they were all in good spirits and wanted to remain faithful to the Lord until death, and admonished her and all his friends in Biblical terms to live a Christian life to the end. In addition he sent her three songs as a friendly and sincere greeting; "Although they are simple, accept them with thanks, for they were sent in love, Farewell to eternity. Amen." In a postscript written on the next day he describes the cross-examination they had to endure. When he was asked whether he would desist from his faith, he answered that he had desisted from lies and was now following the truth; he hoped to stay by the truth through the grace of the Lord. These martyrs are commemorated in the song "Alsmen schreef duyst vijf hondert jaer ende twee en tsestich mede," which is found in the appendix to the Lietboecxcken van den Offer des Heeren.
Braght, Thieleman J. van. Het Bloedigh Tooneel of Martelaers Spiegel der Doopsgesinde of Weereloose Christenen, Die om 't getuygenis van Jesus haren Salighmaker geleden hebben ende gedood zijn van Christi tijd of tot desen tijd toe. Den Tweeden Druk. Amsterdam: Hieronymus Sweerts, …, 1685: II, 367 ff.
Braght, Thieleman J. van. The Bloody Theatre or Martyrs' Mirror of the Defenseless Christians Who Baptized Only upon Confession of Faith and Who Suffered and Died for the Testimony of Jesus Their Saviour . . . to the Year A.D. 1660. Scottdale, PA: Herald Press, 1951: 723 ff. Available online at: http://www.homecomers.org/mirror/index.htm.
Dit Boec wort genoemt: Het Offer des Herren, om het inhout van sommighe opgheofferde kinderen Godts . . . N.p., 1562, 1567, 1570, 1578, 1580, Amsterdam, 1590, n.p., 1591, Amsterdam, 1595, Harlingen, 1599. The 1570 edition is cited as reproduced in BRN II., 51-486, including Een Lietboecxken, tracterende van den Offer des Heeren (pp. 499-617): 652.
Hege, Christian and Christian Neff. Mennonitisches Lexikon, 4 vols. Frankfurt & Weierhof: Hege; Karlsruhe; Schneider, 1913-1967: v. II, 711.
Verheyden, A. L. E. Het Gentsche Martyrologium (1530-1595). Bruges: De Tempel, 1946: 43, No. 138.
 Cite This Article
Neff, Christian. "Hendrik Maelschap (d. 1568)." Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. 1956. Web. 8 Mar 2014. http://gameo.org/index.php?title=Hendrik_Maelschap_(d._1568)&oldid=81893.
Neff, Christian. (1956). Hendrik Maelschap (d. 1568). Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. Retrieved 8 March 2014, from http://gameo.org/index.php?title=Hendrik_Maelschap_(d._1568)&oldid=81893.
Herald Press website.
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