New Hope Community Church of Midland (Midland, Michigan, USA)

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In the early 1910s, some Amish Mennonite families, initially from the Emma congregation, moved to Midland Township in Midland County, Michigan. Until 1913 they sometimes worshipped with nearby Old Order Amish. The Midland Mennonite congregation was organized in June 1913. William Haarer, who had moved to the area from Shipshewana, Indiana, served as a licensed minister for the congregation until the already-ordained Eli Bontrager moved to the area from Fairview, Michigan.

Initially, the congregation worshiped in an old log house on the A. D. Miller farm, five miles north of Midland. It fixed up and used this building until 1917. Then Albert Wyse donated land on his farm's corner, and a former Grange Hall building was moved to the property just north of the later meetinghouse. The congregation used this building until it erected a new meetinghouse that it dedicated on 4 March 1928. In 1960, it built another new meetinghouse that was dedicated on 29 January 1961.

By 2006 the congregation was more of a community church. Its pastor also served at the local more charismatic Church of God. It supported various ministries like Gideons, Right to Life, and a local Crisis Pregnancy Center. Three-fourths of the congregation did not come from a Mennonite background, and questions about the congregation's name had begun to arise.

In 2011 the congregation changed its name to New Hope Community Church of Midland. It believed the Mennonite name was misunderstood and a hindrance to outreach.


Duford, Don. "Midland Mennonite." Gospel Evangel 87, no. 5 (September 2006): 6-7.

Preheim, Rich. In Pursuit of Faithfulness: Conviction, Conflict, and Compromise in Indiana-Michigan Mennonite Conference. Harrisonburg, Va.: Herald Press, 2016: 311.

Wenger, John Christian. The Mennonites in Indiana and Michigan. Scottdale, Pa.: Herald Press, 1961: 149-150.

Woods, Matthew. "New Hope Community Church celebrates 100 years." 21 June 2013. Web. 5 June 2017.

Additional Information

Address: 2510 East Stewart Road, Midland, Indiana 48640

Telephone: 517-839-9451


Denominational Affiliations:

Indiana-Michigan Mennonite Conference

Mennonite Church USA

Pastoral Leaders at New Hope Community Church of Midland

Name Years
of Service
William H. Haarer (1885-1967) 1913-1916
Eli A. Bontrager (1861-1956) 1916-1939
Floyd F. Bontrager (1899-1992)
Clarence R. Yoder (1903-1987) 1936-1963
John "J. Otis" Yoder (1914-2003) 1938-1941
Erie L. Kindy (1920-2015) 1952-1958
Ralph J. Stahly (1908-1986) 1961-
Lloyd R. Miller (1920-2011) 1969-1978
Lay Leadership 1978-1979
Bradley A. Miller 1979?-1987
Edward Robbins, Jr. 1987-1991?
Lay Leadership 1991?-1994?
Donald Stoll 1994?-2000?
Donald Duford 2000-2012?
Harold "Denny" Heath 2012?-2022
Keith Harris 2023-

New Hope Community Church of Midland Membership

Year Members
1916 14
1920 50
1930 79
1940 133
1950 131
1960 138
1970 137
1980 145
1990 69
2000 69
2009 60
2020 50

Original Mennonite Encyclopedia Article

By Harold S. Bender. Copied by permission of Herald Press, Harrisonburg, Virginia, from Mennonite Encyclopedia, Vol. 3, p. 354. All rights reserved.

Midland Mennonite Church (Mennonite Church (MC)) was organized in June 1913, the first families having arrived from Emma, Indiana, in 1910 (Jacob Emmert) and 1912 (A. D. Miller). The first meetinghouse was a remodeled log dwelling in 1916, located five miles (8 km) north of Midland. The second, a former Grange hall 3/4 miles southwest of the city, was used in 1917-1928; then a new meetinghouse of cinder block was built on the same site. The first resident minister was E. A. Bontrager 1916-1939 (following Will Haarer, who served as unordained leader 1913-1916). F. F. Bontrager (ordained 1926) served as bishop-pastor after 1934, but Clarence Yoder (ordained 1936) served in 1956 as pastor, assisted by Erie Kindy, since Bontrager had charge of the mission outpost at Clare, 30 miles (50 km) northwest of Midland. In 1956 the membership was 134.

Author(s) Samuel J Steiner
Date Published July 2024

Cite This Article

MLA style

Steiner, Samuel J. "New Hope Community Church of Midland (Midland, Michigan, USA)." Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. July 2024. Web. 24 Jul 2024.,_Michigan,_USA)&oldid=179271.

APA style

Steiner, Samuel J. (July 2024). New Hope Community Church of Midland (Midland, Michigan, USA). Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. Retrieved 24 July 2024, from,_Michigan,_USA)&oldid=179271.

©1996-2024 by the Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. All rights reserved.