Baier, George (1936-2021)
Gerhard "George" Baier: minister and missionary; born 11 September 1936 in Schoenau, Zagradovka Mennonite Settlement, Soviet Union, to Bernhard Baier (9 August 1900, South Russia – May 1945, Soviet Union) and Wilhelmina (Nikkel) Warkentin Baier (31 March 1895, Pakantan, Indonesia – 22 April 1984, Abbotsford, British Columbia, Canada); the youngest of three children. On 14 May 1959, George married Maria (Mary) Esau, daughter of Jacob J. Esau (1906-1985) and Anna (Froese) Esau (1908-1989) in the East Aldergrove Mennonite Brethren Church in British Columbia. George and Mary had one daughter, Darlene. George died on 21 November 2021 in Abbotsford, British Columbia. His funeral took place in the Clearbrook MB Church on 26 November 2021. He is buried in the Maclure Road Mennonite Cemetery in Abbotsford.
During World War II, George and his mother, Wilhelmina, and older brother Ben, fled from Ukraine with the retreating German army and were settled in Saxony before making their way to western Germany at the end of the War. In 1948, George and his family immigrated to Arnold, British Columbia.
George was baptized on 5 August 1950 in Arnold Mennonite Brethren Church. He earned baccalaureate degrees from both the Mennonite Brethren Bible College in Winnipeg, Manitoba, and Tabor College in Hillsboro, Kansas. Later in life he earned his MA in Christian Education at the Winnipeg Theological Seminary. He was ordained to Christian ministry in both the Canadian Mennonite Brethren Conference and the Canadian Baptist Conference of Western Canada.
Following their marriage, George and Mary served in a variety of settings. His church ministry appointments included the Vancouver MB Church in Vancouver, BC (Youth Leader); Coaldale MB Church in Coaldale, Alberta (Music Minister); Ebenfeld MB Church in Hillsboro, Kansas (Choir Director); Clearbrook MB Church in Abbotsford, BC (Youth Pastor, Music Pastor, and later Pastor of the German Congregation); Winnipeg Central MB Church in Winnipeg, Manitoba (Lead Pastor); Peachland Baptist Church in Peachland, BC (Lead Pastor); Culloden MB Church in Vancouver (Lead Pastor); King Road MB Church in Abbotsford, BC (Associate Pastor, German congregation); and Central Community Church in Chilliwack, BC (Seniors Pastor).
George and Mary also served with Mennonite Brethren Missions and Services as church planters in Austria, and as dorm parents at a school for missionaries in Kinshasa, in what is now Democratic Republic of Congo. Later George was appointed music instructor in the Brake Bibelschule, Germany from 1975-1982. In 2007 he cofounded the Heritage Quartet. Until his death in 2021, this quartet was in frequent demand to sing in church and at community events in the Fraser Valley.
Having been born in the Soviet Union, George retained a life-long interest in ministry in Russia. From 2010 to 2021 he served on the board of Logos Canada Society, serving as chair when he died.
George was a dedicated church leader. For several years he was the moderator of the Bakerview MB Church in Abbotsford, where he also conducted the seniors choir. He lived a full life. On the Sunday George died, he preached the morning sermon in the German service of the Clearbrook MB Church, then joined friends for lunch, and as he usually did, shared an evening devotional with Mary, his wife. Moments later, he passed away at age 85.
"George Gerhard Baier." Obituary. Abbotsford News (21 November 2021).
Naylor, Darlene (Baier). Biographical information.
|Date Published||November 2022|
Cite This Article
Giesbrecht, David. "Baier, George (1936-2021)." Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. November 2022. Web. 7 Dec 2023. https://gameo.org/index.php?title=Baier,_George_(1936-2021)&oldid=174287.
Giesbrecht, David. (November 2022). Baier, George (1936-2021). Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. Retrieved 7 December 2023, from https://gameo.org/index.php?title=Baier,_George_(1936-2021)&oldid=174287.
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