Big Spring Mennonite Church (Luray, Virginia, USA)

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Big Spring Mennonite Church, Luray, Virginia
Source: Church website

The origins of Big Spring Mennonite Church date back to summer 1956 when Mahlon Horst moved from Pennsylvania to Stanley, Virginia to begin a Mennonite mission in Page County. Horst soon connected with Leonard and Thelma Sours, a Baptist family who had previously attended a Mennonite church in Maryland. The Sours began attending Horst's worship meeting and they quickly became friends.

In the late 1950s Thelma began bible study meetings at her home on Sunday mornings, assisted by a group of students from Eastern Mennonite College. By 1960 the Bible study had outgrown the Sour's house and participants began looking for a building to house their growing numbers. An abandoned Baptist church building, built in 1890, was located and the group was offered use of the building. Members of the congregation and members of Young Persons Christian Association from Eastern Mennonite College renovated the building to make it usable. On Easter Sunday, 19 April 1961, Big Spring Mennonite Church was born with its first Sunday morning service in the building.

Big Spring has a strong history of using its gifts in the area of mission as many of the people who have passed through the congregation have been sent out to other churches and to mission work or pastoral vocations. The church has maintained involvement in service and ministry to the community in a variety of ways that has changed over the years depending on the involvement members of the congregation have in the broader community. The church has enjoyed a variety of worship styles and music. In addition to meeting for worship, the community has also gathered for Sunday School (pre K-adult), prayer meetings, and monthly fellowship meals. The most visible outreach ministry of the church has been sponsoring and hosting a Community Children's Choir.

Big Spring celebrated its 50th anniversary on 19 June 2011.

The pastor in 2012 was Kathryn J. Hochstedler, and the congregation had 40 members.


Big Spring Mennonite Church. "Our History." Web. 6 April 2012.

Additional Information

Address: 2545 Mims Road, Luray, Virginia 22835

Phone: 540-743-1434

Website: Big Spring Mennonite Church

Denominational Affiliations:

Virginia Mennonite Conference

Mennonite Church USA

Author(s) Richard D Thiessen
Date Published April 2012

Cite This Article

MLA style

Thiessen, Richard D. "Big Spring Mennonite Church (Luray, Virginia, USA)." Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. April 2012. Web. 22 Sep 2023.,_Virginia,_USA)&oldid=139812.

APA style

Thiessen, Richard D. (April 2012). Big Spring Mennonite Church (Luray, Virginia, USA). Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. Retrieved 22 September 2023, from,_Virginia,_USA)&oldid=139812.

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