Hanley Mennonite Church (Hanley, Saskatchewan, Canada)
Russian Mennonite immigrant families arrived in the Hanley area of Saskatchewan in the 1920s. They soon formed a congregation for worship, meeting in homes and farm buildings. That year, these families joined other Mennonites to form the Nordheimer Gemeinde, a group of congregations that, at its peak, had 400 members in a broad area spanning much of southern Saskatchewan. But by the 1930s the Gemeinde had decreased to three congregations. Hanley, Dundurn and Pleasant Point Mennonite churches remained part of the Gemeinde until it dissolved in 1975. Thereafter, the congregations gradually emerged as independent congregations, Johann J. Klassen is considered the founding leader of the group. The congregation originated through immigration from the Soviet Union.
The congregation built its first meetinghouse in 1929, on 0.8 hectares of land purchased by the ladies aid group. During a large celebration in the 1950s, a beam in the building’s foundation broke, collapsing the floor. The church constructed a new building in 1956.
The church called Gary Peters and his wife, Margaret Ewen Peters, into ministry in 1989. As the congregation’s first salaried ministers, they served together until 2011, when Margaret resigned to serve the Fiske and Herschel Ebenfeld Mennonite congregations. Gary continued as Hanley Mennonite’s sole pastor on a half-time basis. In early 2020, he told the congregation he wished to move toward retirement. For some years, attendance averaged 15 to 20 people, including children. The official membership was 75, but most no longer lived in the community.
On 4 April 2021 the congregation held its closing service though there was some discussion of continuing to meet more informally for worship.
The language of worship was initially German; the transition from German to English occurred in the 1960s.
The congregation's cemetery is on the churchyard
Mennonite Heritage Centre Archives (Winnipeg, MB): "Hanley Mennonite Church fonds." Web. 9 July 2010. https://archives.mhsc.ca/hanley-mennonite-church-fonds.
Mennonite Reporter (24 June 1996): 14.
Nordheimer Mennonite Church of Saskatchewan, 1925-1975. Hanley, SK: Nordheimer Mennonite Church, 1975, 140 pp.
Schulz, Donna. "The church lives on in the people: Hanley Mennonite closes after nearly 100 years." Canadian Mennonite 25, no. 9 (26 April 2021): 20-21.
Mennonite Heritage Centre, Winnipeg, MB: https://archives.mhsc.ca/hanley-mennonite-church-fonds Vols. 66, 1622, 2824, 2883, 4031, 4426.
Mennonite Historical Society of Saskatchewan, Saskatoon, SK: Volume 387.
Address: Box 387, Hanley, SK S0G 2E0
Location: 15 km west of Hanley on Highway 764, then 1.9 km north on gravel road [Coordinates: 51.6376°N, 106.6422°W].
Conference of Mennonites in Canada / Mennonite Church Canada (1925-2021)
General Conference Mennonite Church (1926-1999)
Hanley Mennonite Church Ministers
|Abram A. Kröger||1931-1941|
|Margaret and Gary Peters||1990-2021|
Hanley Mennonite Church Membership
|Richard D. Thiessen|
|Date Published||May 2021|
Cite This Article
Schulz, Donna and Richard D. Thiessen. "Hanley Mennonite Church (Hanley, Saskatchewan, Canada)." Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. May 2021. Web. 8 Dec 2021. https://gameo.org/index.php?title=Hanley_Mennonite_Church_(Hanley,_Saskatchewan,_Canada)&oldid=171386.
Schulz, Donna and Richard D. Thiessen. (May 2021). Hanley Mennonite Church (Hanley, Saskatchewan, Canada). Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. Retrieved 8 December 2021, from https://gameo.org/index.php?title=Hanley_Mennonite_Church_(Hanley,_Saskatchewan,_Canada)&oldid=171386.
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