Girls' Homes

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Girls' Homes, also called Girls' Centers, were centers of fellowship and spiritual ministry, sometimes with rooms for rent and boarding facilities, for Mennonite young women who came to the larger cities for employment, especially as domestics. Four of these homes were established by the Conference of Mennonites in CanadaMary-Martha Girls' Home (founded 1935) at Vancouver, British Columbia, "Ebenezer" Girls' Home, Winnipeg, Manitoba, the Saskatoon Girls' Home, Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, and the Calgary Girls' Home at Calgary, Alberta, under the leadership of J. J. Sawatzky, the local minister, founded approximately in 1945 (see First Mennonite Church). The Mennonite Brethren Church had three such homes—the Mary-Martha Girls' Home of Winnipeg, founded in 1925, the Bethel Girls' Home of Vancouver, founded in 1931, and the Mennonite Brethren Girls' Home of Saskatoon. In the Mennonite Church (MC) there were two such homes—the Mennonite Girls' Home, founded in 1935 at Reading, Pennsylvania, and the Mennonite Girls' Center at Goshen, Indiana, founded in 1948. The girls' homes commonly were operated by a matron under either a district mission board (as in Mennonite Church homes), a district conference (as in Mennonite Brethren homes), or a local committee (as in Canadian Conference homes). Usually a local pastor is assigned as spiritual adviser.

Author(s) Harold S Bender
Date Published 1956

Cite This Article

MLA style

Bender, Harold S. "Girls' Homes." Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. 1956. Web. 18 Jun 2021.

APA style

Bender, Harold S. (1956). Girls' Homes. Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. Retrieved 18 June 2021, from


Adapted by permission of Herald Press, Harrisonburg, Virginia, from Mennonite Encyclopedia, Vol. 2, p. 521-522. All rights reserved.

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