Hillview Conservative Mennonite Church (Bancroft, Ontario, Canada)
The Fort Stewart Conservative Mennonite Church began as a mission outreach of the Mennonite Mission Board of Ontario (MMBO) in 1947 when Joseph C. Fretz organized a Summer Bible school program at the Carlow United Church in Boulter, Ontario, Canada. The MMBO purchased the Fort Stewart school in 1952, and dedicated it as a church in June 1954. Elvon Burkholder, who had a nearby farm, was ordained to pastor the mission and to begin regular worship services. Burkholder's farm became the site of Fraser Lake Camp, beginning in 1955.
After several theologically-conservative Mennonite families moved to the area, the young congregation was caught in the growing tension within the Mennonite Conference of Ontario (MCO) that led to a division, and the establishment of the Conservative Mennonite Church of Ontario (CMCO). This division came to a climax locally when Elvon Burkholder left the community to study at Eastern Mennonite College in 1960. His replacement, George Elsasser, a convert to the Mennonite faith, was not supportive of symbols of separation from the world, like the prayer veiling and the plain coat, and resisted his leadership. Elsasser was also responsible for a new church in McArthur's Mills that opened in 1960. Soon the Fort Stewart group joined the CMCO, while the McArthur's Mills congregation remained part of the MCO.
Initially the CMCO met in the home of Lorne McDowell. In 1961 after local evangelistic meetings led by Elmer Grove, the CMCO group met in the Hartsmere Community Centre. In 1966 the group purchased the Fort Stewart church building previously used by the Mennonite Mission Board of Ontario and began to meet there.
The congregation began the Fort Stewart Christian School in 1970. In 1978 the school and church combined their facilities at the former Herman school. The name of the congregation was changed to Hillview Conservative Mennonite Church at the time of the move.
In 2018 the congregation became an unaffiliated Mennonite congregation.
Martin, P. Dean. "Congregational Histories." Unpublished manuscript on the Conservative Mennonite Church of Ontario, 2010.
Address: 116 Fort Stewart Road, R.R. 4, Bancroft, Ontario K0L 1C0
Denominational Affiliations: Conservative Mennonite Church of Ontario
Pastoral Leaders at Hillview Conservative Mennonite Church
|Elvon Burkholder (1925-1986)||1954-1960|
|Lorne McDowell (1923-2002)
|Elmer Grove (1925-1987)||1961-1965|
|Moses Baer (1913-1978)||1965-1967|
|Daniel J. Horst||2002-present|
|James M. Martin||2008-2018|
Membership at Hillview Conservative Mennonite Church
|Author(s)||Samuel J Steiner|
|Date Published||November 2020|
Cite This Article
Steiner, Samuel J. "Hillview Conservative Mennonite Church (Bancroft, Ontario, Canada)." Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. November 2020. Web. 29 Nov 2023. https://gameo.org/index.php?title=Hillview_Conservative_Mennonite_Church_(Bancroft,_Ontario,_Canada)&oldid=169449.
Steiner, Samuel J. (November 2020). Hillview Conservative Mennonite Church (Bancroft, Ontario, Canada). Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. Retrieved 29 November 2023, from https://gameo.org/index.php?title=Hillview_Conservative_Mennonite_Church_(Bancroft,_Ontario,_Canada)&oldid=169449.
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