Rainham Mennonite Church (Selkirk, Ontario, Canada)

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The Rainham Mennonite community began services in 1793. The first building was occupied in 1846, with a subsequent building program in 1873. Jacob Hoover (d. 1810) of York County, Pennsylvania settled in the community in 1790 with his family of five sons and three daughters. Early names in the settlement included Strickler, Shank, Swartz, Byers and Miller. Trouble apparently arose early in the history of the Mennonite community here, because an 1853 list of ministers omits the Rainham community. Perhaps the Rainham leadership was in sympathy with Daniel Hoch's movement based in Vineland, Ontario.

The profusion of cemeteries is also an indication of division. There are two small cemeteries south of Selkirk; there are also cemeteries in Walpole, Fisherville, Sweet's Corners and at Hoover's Point on Lake Erie. A settlement of Mennonites from Strickler church of Clarence, New York that settled here in the mid-1800s.

For a time Rainham shared a pastor with South Cayuga Mennonite Church.

Rainham has also been known as Stoney Creek Mennonite, Lake Shore Mennonite and Huberts meetinghouse. In 1989 about 30 members (including pastor Malcolm Eby) left to form the Living Word Christian Fellowship.

Pastor Catherine Hunsberger served in 2002 as a congregational leader. In 1925 there were 24 members; in 1950, 38; in 1965, 31; in 1975, 37; in 1985, 51; in 1995, 44; in 2000, 38. The congregation has been affiliated with the Mennonite Conference of Ontario (1836-1988), Mennonite Church (1898-1999), the Mennonite Conference of Eastern Canada (1988-) and the Conference of Mennonites in Canada / Mennonite Church Canada (1995-). The language of worship is English.

The church's address is R.R. 1, Selkirk, ON, N0A 1P0. (905) 776-3021. It is located 5 km east of Selkirk on the west side of Fisherville Rd.


Mennonite Reporter (17 September 1979): 4; (30 May 1983): 4; (25 December 1989): 5; (18 October 1993): 15.

"The Rainham Church," n.d., 6 pp.; Mennonites in Canada collection, MC (1900-Rainham), Mennonite Archives of Ontario.

Author(s) Joseph C. Fretz
Sam Steiner
Date Published July 2000

Cite This Article

MLA style

Fretz, Joseph C. and Sam Steiner. "Rainham Mennonite Church (Selkirk, Ontario, Canada)." Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. July 2000. Web. 23 Oct 2017. http://gameo.org/index.php?title=Rainham_Mennonite_Church_(Selkirk,_Ontario,_Canada)&oldid=93338.

APA style

Fretz, Joseph C. and Sam Steiner. (July 2000). Rainham Mennonite Church (Selkirk, Ontario, Canada). Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. Retrieved 23 October 2017, from http://gameo.org/index.php?title=Rainham_Mennonite_Church_(Selkirk,_Ontario,_Canada)&oldid=93338.


Adapted by permission of Herald Press, Harrisonburg, Virginia, from Mennonite Encyclopedia, Vol. 4, p. 248. All rights reserved.

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