Friesenov and Gorkoye Mennonite Brethren Churched (Omsk Oblast, Siberia, Russia)

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Many Mennonite settlements arose along the great Siberian railway at the beginning of the 20th century. One of the earliest of these was that at Tchunayevka, west of the Irtish River, near Omsk, which was founded in 1899. In 1901 the village Friesenov near Petropavlovsk was settled. Among the first to settle here were Peter Friesen of Rückenau, and Heinrich Reimer of Margenau of the Molotschna settlement, whose farewell service was held in the Mennonite Brethren Church in Rückenau on 18 March 1901. In the new settlement, which was situated north of the stations of Tokushi and Assanovo and east of the town of Petropavlovsk, the Mennonite Brethren united into a congregation, whose leader was Isaak Braun. When Braun moved to Barnaul as that settlement was founded, David Janzen was chosen to lead the congregation and held that position until his death, 18 January 1922. There were also other ministers, some of the later ones being Johann Barkmann, Johann Abr. Janzen, and Jakob Franz.

In 1903 two new villages were established near Gorkoye. These were Margenau and Putchkovo. They were made on leased land, which was, however, later purchased. Here the Mennonite Brethren organized a congregation under the leadership of Jakob Friesen of Margenau. On 19 June 1907, Jakob Fr. Hubert of Margenau and Peter Fast of Putchkovo were ordained as ministers and Heinrich Martens of Putchkovo as deacon. Officiating at this service were the elders Jakob G. Wiens of Tchunayevka, Hermann A. Neufeld of Ignatyevka, and Jakob Janz of Friedensfeld, of South Russia. Thereupon Jakob Fr. Hubert had charge of the congregation. In that year a meetinghouse was built and dedicated on 7 October 1907.

When Elder Jakob G. Wiens of Tchunayevka faced the question of moving to the Pavlodar settlement, Jakob Fr. Hubert was ordained elder by Jakob G. Wiens on 4 June 1913 (Old Calendar) in the presence of missionary Cornelius Unruh. Until 1929 Jakob Fr. Hubert then served all the Mennonite Brethren congregations along the Siberian railway. In that year he was among the refugees before the gates of Moscow, and succeeded in escaping with his family (with the exception of a son) to Germany and then to Brazil. There too he served as a Mennonite Brethren elder as long as his health permitted, and in the 1950s was living near Curitiba in retirement. The remaining members at Margenau continued to hold their meetings, but it is not known how long.

After 1903 the following villages were settled in the region of Gorkoye: Nikolaifeld, Ivanovka, Alexanderkron (Mirolyubovka), Alexandrovka (where the Mennonites built a church); and near the Kuyan-Bar station the village of Korneyevka was settled. All the Mennonite Brethren in these villages belonged to the Margenau congregation. In 1907 a settlement consisting of several villages was made north of the town of Issil Kul; in Friedensruh a Mennonite Brethren church was dedicated on 26 September 1910, as a subsidiary of Margenau. Its ministers were Heinrich Barg (leader) and Abraham Hildebrandt, and later also Aron Warkentin and Johann Sperling. Hildebrandt was arrested by the Communists during the Revolution in 1920. He died of tvphus in the prison at Omsk on 1 May 1920. Heinrich Barg died in April 1915.


Hege, Christian and Christian Neff. Mennonitisches Lexikon, 4 vols. Frankfurt & Weierhof: Hege; Karlsruhe: Schneider, 1913-1967: v. II, 7.

Author(s) H. J Wiebe
Date Published 1956

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MLA style

Wiebe, H. J. "Friesenov and Gorkoye Mennonite Brethren Churched (Omsk Oblast, Siberia, Russia)." Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. 1956. Web. 9 Jul 2020.,_Siberia,_Russia)&oldid=145188.

APA style

Wiebe, H. J. (1956). Friesenov and Gorkoye Mennonite Brethren Churched (Omsk Oblast, Siberia, Russia). Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. Retrieved 9 July 2020, from,_Siberia,_Russia)&oldid=145188.


Adapted by permission of Herald Press, Harrisonburg, Virginia, from Mennonite Encyclopedia, Vol. 2, pp. 406-407. All rights reserved.

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