The Vineland United Mennonite congregation in Vineland, Ontario was formed by Mennonites who arrived from the Soviet Union in 1924-1926 and later, who at first worshiped in an old abandoned sawmill. Initially Vineland United Mennonite Church worshiped with the Mennonite Brethren. In 1927 they joined the United Mennonite Church in Ontario under the leadership of Bishop Jacob H. Janzen of Waterloo. Prior to the election of the first leaders (beginning with Wichert in 1927) sermons were read from books by someone in the congregation. The first ministers to serve this group were John Wichert, elected by the group in 1927, and Cornelius Neufeld and Nicholas Fransen, elected in 1929. Until that time sermons were read from books by someone in the congregation.
On 24 December 1935, a new meetinghouse was ready for occupation, built mostly by voluntary labor. On 13 April 1936, the congregation resolved to separate from the Waterloo-Kitchener United Mennonite and organize as an independent congregation under the leadership of Bishop Dietrich H. Koop. By 1942 the congregation had grown to such an extent that the church had to be enlarged. In 1944 Koop died and John J. Wichert was elected to this office. Other ministers serving the congregation are Nicholas Fransen, Abram H. Harder, and John W. Neufeld (ordained 1954).
In 1957 a larger church was built of brick.
The language of worship is English; the transition from German occurred in 1971. German services ended in December 2003.
Canadian Mennonite (3 January 1958): 7; (12 July 1966): 16.
Fransen, Harold. "The History of the Vineland Mennonite Church." Research paper, Canadian Mennonite Bible College, 1977, 25 pp. Mennonite Heritage Centre.
Fuenfundzwanzig Jahre Vineland Mennoniten Gemeinde 1936-1961. Vineland, Ontario: Vineland Vereinigte Mennonitengemeinde, 1961, 58 pp.
Highlights of the Vineland United Mennonite Church 1936-1986: Reflect, Rejoice, Renew. Vineland, Ontario: Vineland United Mennonite Church, 1986, 92 pp.
Neufeld, Peter J. "Vineland UM Church History with Ministerial and Mission Outreach Data." Conference of United Mennonite Churches in Ontario Yearbook (1987).
Stobbe, Bernard. "Ein Geschichtlicher Ueberblick ueber die drei Gemeinden der Vereinigten Mennoniten in der Niagara Halbinsel." Research paper, Canadian Mennonite Bible College, 1956, 20 pp. Mennonite Heritage Centre.
Church records at Mennonite Archives of Ontario.
Address: 3327 Menno St., Box 305, Vineland, ON, L0R 2C0
Web site: Vineland United Mennonite Church
Mennonite Church Eastern Canada (1988- )
General Conference Mennonite Church (1938-1999)
Vineland United Mennonite Church Leading Ministers
|John J. Wichert||1927-1966; Bishop, 1944-1966|
|Cornelius K. Neufeld||1929-1938|
|Nicholai N. Fransen||1929-2000|
|Dietrich H. Koop||Bishop, 1931-1944|
|Jacob K. Klassen||1965-1973|
|Henry H. Epp||1974-1976|
|Jacob Fransen (interim)||1977-1978|
|John W. Neufeld||1978-1984|
|Jacob Fransen (interim)||1984-1985|
|Jim Sutton (interim)||2008-2009|
|Corney Klassen (Associate)||2009-Present|
Vineland United Mennonite Church Membership
|Author(s)||John J. Wichert|
|Date Published||November 2012|
Cite This Article
Wichert, John J. and Marlene Epp. "Vineland United Mennonite Church (Vineland, Ontario, Canada)." Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. November 2012. Web. 23 Mar 2017. http://gameo.org/index.php?title=Vineland_United_Mennonite_Church_(Vineland,_Ontario,_Canada)&oldid=116931.
Wichert, John J. and Marlene Epp. (November 2012). Vineland United Mennonite Church (Vineland, Ontario, Canada). Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. Retrieved 23 March 2017, from http://gameo.org/index.php?title=Vineland_United_Mennonite_Church_(Vineland,_Ontario,_Canada)&oldid=116931.
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