Memrik and Kalinovo Mennonite Church (Donetsk Oblast, Ukraine)

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Memrik and Kalinovo Mennonite Church, located in the Memrik settlement, formerly in Bachmut district, province of Ekaterinoslav (Dnipropetrovsk), Ukraine and now in the Donetsk Oblast, was organized in the early days of the settlement, which had been founded in 1885 by settlers from the Molotschna settlement. The first ministers, elected on 27 August 1885, were Jacob Wiens, Peter Janzen, and Abram Warkentin, all ordained by J. Töws. The congregation first met in private homes and in schools, then purchased one of the mansions of the noblemen in the village of Memrik and rebuilt it as a church. In 1887, when the congregation was visited by Kornelius Dirks, Johann Schartner, and Abram Görz from the Molotschna, the following additional ministers were elected: Johann Duck, Jacob Berg, Dietrich Peters, and Franz Janzen.

On 28 June 1887 in the presence of Elder Abram Görz, Peter Janzen was ordained as elder. In 1898 the congregation built a church 120 x 50 ft. In 1899 Jacob Pankratz, Jacob Penner, and Peter Dyck were ordained ministers, and in 1910 Jacob Martens, Peter Schellenberg, and Bernhard Harder likewise. The congregation observed feetwashing in connection with the Lord's Supper. When Elder P. Janzen died of typhoid fever in 1918 Jacob Martens succeeded him, but died of the same disease in February 1920. He was succeeded temporarily by Franz Enns who had come to Memrik from the Terek settlement. In 1922 Jacob Pätkau, a teacher and minister, was ordained elder. Under him Bible conferences and song festivals became popular. Patkau was a member of the Kommission für kirchliche Angelegenheiten (KfK) and coeditor of Unser Blatt.

The Memrik church was soon nationalized and religious instruction for youth under 18 years of age was forbidden by the state. The taxes for the ministers and the church building increased constantly. After Elder Patkau left (1929) under pressure the other ministers were also soon silenced. The church building was closed. By 1935 most of the ministers had been exiled. For a time the Mennonites and the Mennonite Brethren worshiped together at Kotlyarevka. The Kalinovo church was used as a reading room, granary, and children's home. During the German occupation (1941-1944) it was used as a barracks.

In 1905 the Memrik Mennonite Church had a total membership of 2,215 including 1,183 unbaptized children. The contribution for benevolences was 1,649 rubles. In 1910 the total population was 470 families with 3,019 persons.


Dirks, Heinrich. Statistik der Mennonitengemeinden in Russland Ende 1905 (Anhang zum Mennonitischen Jahrbuche 1904/05). Gnadenfeld: Dirks, 1906.

Epp, David. H. Die Memriker Ansiedlung: zum 25-jährigen Bestehen derselben im Herbst 1910. Kalinowo, Post Shelannaja, Gouv. Jekaterinoslaw : D.J. Warkentin, 1910

Goerz, H. Memrik: Eine mennonitische Kolonie in Russland. Rosthern, SK : Echo-Verlag, 1954.

Goerz, H. Memrik: a Mennonite settlement in Russia. Winnipeg : Published jointly by CMBC Publications : Manitoba Mennonite Historical Society, 1997.

Hege, Christian and Christian Neff. Mennonitisches Lexikon, 4 vols. Frankfurt & Weierhof: Hege; Karlsruhe: Schneider, 1913-1967: v. III, 74.

Author(s) Cornelius Krahn
Date Published 1957

Cite This Article

MLA style

Krahn, Cornelius. "Memrik and Kalinovo Mennonite Church (Donetsk Oblast, Ukraine)." Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. 1957. Web. 3 Dec 2020.,_Ukraine)&oldid=166632.

APA style

Krahn, Cornelius. (1957). Memrik and Kalinovo Mennonite Church (Donetsk Oblast, Ukraine). Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. Retrieved 3 December 2020, from,_Ukraine)&oldid=166632.


Adapted by permission of Herald Press, Harrisonburg, Virginia, from Mennonite Encyclopedia, Vol. 3, pp. 569-571. All rights reserved.

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