Nith Valley Mennonite Church (New Hamburg, Ontario, Canada)

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The Nith Valley congregation near New Hamburg, Ontario began services and formally organized in 1865. The first building was occupied in 1870 with a subsequent building program in 1964. Menno Cressman is considered the founding leader of the group. The congregation originated through colonization from the Doon area of Kitchener.

The Nith Valley Mennonite Church is located about four miles (6.5 km) from New Hamburg, Waterloo County, Ontario. This congregation of the Ontario Mennonite Conference took rise about 1865. Early family names found here were Biehn, Cassel, Bechtel, Cressman, Nahrgang, Stauffer, Christner, and others. At first the meetings were held in Green's schoolhouse south of the present site of the church. In 1870 John Biehn gave land for church purposes and a building was erected. In 1900 a plot of land was added to the grounds for cemetery purposes. A few years later the church was rebuilt. There was a subsequent building program in 1964.

Sunday school was first conducted in 1871 with some 40 in attendance. Young people’s Bible meetings were regular after 1911 and alternated with those of the neighboring Geiger congregation. This church was missionary in its interests and activity over the years. In 1924 with the coming of Mennonite refugees from Russia a considerable number of families were provided for in the homes of this congregation. Revival meetings, Bible conferences, and summer Bible schools became regular features among the activities of this church.

The congregation has been affiliated with the Mennonite Conference of Ontario (1865-1988), the Mennonite Church (1898-), Mennonite Conference of Eastern Canada (1988-) and the Conference of Mennonites in Canada (1995-). The language of worship is English; the transition from German occurred in the first decade of the 20th century.

The congregation was known as Biehn Mennonite prior to 1975 when it merged with Blenheim Mennonite Church.


Canadian Mennonite (11 February 1964): 1; (4 December 1967): 4.

Mennonite Reporter (3 March 1975): 4; (2 September 1975): 4.

Burkholder, L. J. A Brief History of the Mennonites in Ontario. Kitchener, ON: Mennonite Conference of Ontario, 1935: 62-64.

Koch, Alice. "History of the Biehn Mennonite Church." 1960, 4 pp. Mennonite Archives of Ontario.

Waterloo Historical Society annual (1964): 61.

Church records at Mennonite Archives of Ontario.

Additional Information

Address: 1355 Bean Road, New Hamburg, Ontario

Telephone: 519-662-3520


Denominational Affiliations:

Mennonite Church Eastern Canada

Mennonite Church Canada

Nith Valley Mennonite Church Pastors

Name Years
of Service
Gordon Bauman 1975-1977
Amzie Brubacher 1977-1989
Harold Schilk 1989-1996
Sue C. Steiner
Bruce Keown 1997-2000
Henry Regehr
Matthew Isert Bender 2001-March 2018
Hendrike Isert Bender 2001-March 2018
Greg Yantzi
(Intentional Interim)
September 2018-present

Nith Valley Mennonite Church Membership

Year Members
1925 77
1950 88
1965 92
1975 140
1985 154
1995 119
2000 112
2008 130
2015 121
2020 108


Map:Nith Valley Mennonite Church (New Hamburg, Ontario, Canada)

Author(s) J. C. Fretz
Marlene Epp
Date Published January 1989

Cite This Article

MLA style

Fretz, J. C. and Marlene Epp. "Nith Valley Mennonite Church (New Hamburg, Ontario, Canada)." Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. January 1989. Web. 19 Aug 2022.,_Ontario,_Canada)&oldid=171680.

APA style

Fretz, J. C. and Marlene Epp. (January 1989). Nith Valley Mennonite Church (New Hamburg, Ontario, Canada). Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. Retrieved 19 August 2022, from,_Ontario,_Canada)&oldid=171680.

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