Eicher Emmanuel Mennonite Church (Wayland, Iowa, USA)

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Eicher Emmanuel Mennonite Church (Mennonite Church USA), located at 2670 330th Street, Wayland, Washington County, Iowa, was organized in 1862. Previous to its organization the congregation had been in charge of Joseph Goldsmith, the bishop of the nearby Henry County church, and was also served by preachers Joseph Wittrig and Christian Bechler. Meetings were held in private homes until 1868, when the first church, called the Noble Church, was built northwest of Noble. This meetinghouse was replaced in 1895 by a more modern building. A third church, built in 1911 on the same site, was in use in the 1950s. The first preacher and bishop after the 1862 organization was Benjamin Eicher.

After its separation from the Amish Mennonite Conference in 1874, the Eicher Church, as it came to be called, with about 50 members, followed an independent course for a number of years. In 1892 it joined the Middle District Conference (General Conference Mennonite) and in 1893 the General Conference Mennonite Church.

Those who served as pastors of the Eicher Church up to 1955 were Benjamin Eicher, H. G. Allebach, P. E. Stucky, S. M. Musselman, L. L. Miller, P. K. Regier, H. J. Schrag, A. H. Miller, D. E. Welty, H. D. Metzker, Walter H. Regier, Leander Fast, and H. L. Metzker. In 1953 approximately half of the congregation of 179 withdrew from the Mennonite Church to establish the Fern Cliff Free Evangelical Church under the leadership of Leander Fast. In 1955 the membership was 112, with H. E. Nunemaker as pastor.

In 2000 when the Northern District of the General Conference Mennonite Church and the Iowa-Nebraska Conference of the Mennonite Church (MC) merged to form the Central Plains Conference of Mennonite Church USA, Eicher Emmanuel shifted from the Central District Conference to the new Central Plains Conference. In October 2022, the congregation withdrew from the Central Plains Mennonite Conference and Mennonite Church USA, and joined the Evana Network.


"Eicher Emmanuel, Wayland, celebrates 150 years of service." Southeast Iowa Union 20 September 2018. Web. 15 January 2023. https://www.southeastiowaunion.com/life/eicher-emmanuel-wayland-celebrates-150-years-of-service/

Gingerich, Melvin. The Mennonites in Iowa: Marking the one hundredth anniversary of the coming of the Mennonites to Iowa. Iowa City, Iowa: The State Historical Society of Iowa, 1939.

Hege, Christian and Christian Neff. Mennonitisches Lexikon, 4 vols. Frankfurt & Weierhof: Hege; Karlsruhe: Schneider, 1913-1967: v. I, 564.

Huber, Tim. "Evana Network adding strategic partners as it readies for growth." Anabaptist World 3 May 2023. Web. 4 May 2023. https://anabaptistworld.org/evana-network-adding-strategic-partners-as-it-readies-for-growth/.

Preheim, Rich. "New merged conference comes with joy: Iowa-Nebraska, Northern District form Central Plains." TheMennonite 3, no. 25 (4 July 2000): 8.

"Sketch of Emmanuel Church, Noble, Ia." in Mennonite Year Book and Almanac for 1904. Quakertown, Pa.: U.S. Stauffer, 1904: 26-27.

Additional Information

Address: 2670 330th Street, Wayland, Iowa

Phone: 319-541-9307

Website: https://www.facebook.com/eichermennonite/

Denominational Affiliations: Evana Network

Pastoral Leaders at Eicher Emmanuel Mennonite Church

Name Years
of Service
Benjamin Eicher (1832-1893)
William B. Eicher (1869-1936) 1894
Harvey G. "H. G." Allebach (1869-1921) 1894-1897
Peter E. "P. E." Stuckey (1844-1929) 1897-1902
Samuel M. "S. M." Musselman (1875-1938) 1903-1920
Louis L. "L. L." Miller (1886-1981) 1920-1922
Peter K. "P. K." Regier (1891-1973) 1922-1924
Henry J. "H. J." Schrag (1897-1988) 1924-1930
Allen H. "A. H." Miller (1870-1950) 1930-1935
Delbert E. Welty (1896-1979) 1936-1942
Harvey "Leonard" Metzker (1917-1993) 1943-1945
Walter H. Regier (1915-1998) 1945-1948
Leander D. Fast (1917-1990) 1949?-1953
Harvey E. "H. E." Nunemaker (1893-1972) 1954-1960
Ernest Sawatzky (Interim) 1961
Archie F. Penner (1917-2007)(Interim) 1961-1963
T. Alvin "T. A." van der Smissen (1897-1974) 1963-1964
Omar Nisley (Interim) 1965
Rudolph C. Martens (1926-2013) 1965-1970
Nick Kassebaum 1971-1972
Harold D. Rixe 1973
George King (Interim) 1975-1976
Paul F. Goossen 1976-1990
Melvin J. Koehn 1990-2005?
Herbert L. Yoder (1929-2021) 2005?-2010?
Larry Evers 2010?-2013
Robert Hartzler (Interim) 2013-2014
David Schooley 2014-2020
Kendrick "Jack" Scandrett (Interim) 2020-2021
Joshua Wenger 2022-

Membership at Eicher Emmanuel Mennonite Church

Year Membership
1874 50
1890 190
1904 200
1910 225
1920 268
1930 260
1940 257
1950 188
1955 112
1960 117
1970 88
1980 94
1990 81
2000 60
2009 60
2020 60

Author(s) Walter H. Regier
Samuel J. Steiner
Date Published May 2023

Cite This Article

MLA style

Regier, Walter H. and Samuel J. Steiner. "Eicher Emmanuel Mennonite Church (Wayland, Iowa, USA)." Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. May 2023. Web. 27 Feb 2024. https://gameo.org/index.php?title=Eicher_Emmanuel_Mennonite_Church_(Wayland,_Iowa,_USA)&oldid=175446.

APA style

Regier, Walter H. and Samuel J. Steiner. (May 2023). Eicher Emmanuel Mennonite Church (Wayland, Iowa, USA). Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. Retrieved 27 February 2024, from https://gameo.org/index.php?title=Eicher_Emmanuel_Mennonite_Church_(Wayland,_Iowa,_USA)&oldid=175446.


Adapted by permission of Herald Press, Harrisonburg, Virginia, from Mennonite Encyclopedia, Vol. 2, p. 168. All rights reserved.

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