Providence Mennonite Church (Newport News, Virginia, USA)

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In 1897, a group of Midwestern Amish and Mennonite families moved into the Denbigh area Denbigh neighborhood of Newport News, Virginia. Disagreement over building a meetinghouse for the Warwick River Mennonite Church led to a division in group after a meeting with Bishop John M. Shenk of Elida, Ohio. David Z. Yoder led the Amish Mennonite families to form a separate congregation known as the Providence Amish Mennonite Church.

On 3 November 1900, the group purchased one acre of land from a Jones family for $10. It built a meetinghouse on the property and dedicated its church in summer 1901. Founding members were David Z. Yoder, J. Z. Mast, C. K. Miller, and D. S. Yoder. The congregation reconstructed the building on a new foundation. The first service in the restored facility took place on 29 November 1975.

Originally the congregation joined the Eastern Amish Mennonite Conference. In the 1920s that conference joined the Ohio Conference to form the Ohio and Eastern Mennonite Conference. In 1978 the "Eastern" part formed the Atlantic Coast Conference. In 1996 Providence changed its affiliation to the Virginia Mennonite Conference to be linked to geographically-closer congregations.


Butcher, Gloria P. "Atlantic Coast Conference Church." Atlantic Coast Conference Currents 6, no. 1 (January-February 1985): 1.

Fifty Years: Building on the Warwick. Denbigh, 1947: 32-35.

Kraus, Jo Anne. Holy Experiment: The Warwick River Mennonite Colony 1897-1970. Harrisonburg, VA: Herald Press, 2021: 111, 114-119, 122, 147, 277, 322-323.

Providence Mennonite Church. "A Short History of Providence Mennonite Church." 22 March 2013. Web. 29 March 2014. [broken link]

Additional Information

Address: 13101 Warwick Blvd., Newport News, Virginia 23602

Phone: 757-249-2702

Web site: Providence Mennonite Church

Denominational Affiliations:

Ohio and Eastern Mennonite Conference

Mennonite Church (MC)

Virginia Mennonite Conference

Mennonite Church USA

Providence Mennonite Church Ministers

Minister Years of Service
David Zook Yoder (1849-1929) 1900-1904
Joseph Zook (1845-1918) 1905-1918
George M. Hostetler (1883-1952) 1914-1937
Orrie D. Yoder (1895-1973) 1937-1943
Levi M. Hurst (1903-1999) 1943-1944
Kenneth G. Good (1910-1997) 1945-1946
Emery E. Glick (1889-1980) (Deacon) 1946-1953
Herbert N. Troyer (1889-1954) 1950-1954
Wilbur H. Smoker (1915-1972) 1954-1972
H. Wesley Boyer 1973-1980
Ernest M. Godshall 1980-1996
Mark Marvuglio 1997-1999
R. Todd Bowman 2001-2003
Kenneth J. Peterson 2004-2010
Carl E. Mericle 2010?-present

Membership at Providence Mennonite Church

Year Membership
1920 33
1930 17
1940 57
1950 40
1960 32
1970 57
1980 54
1990 39
2000 67
2007 42
2020 27

Original Mennonite Encyclopedia Article

By Melvin Gingerich. Copied by permission of Herald Press, Harrisonburg, Virginia, from Mennonite Encyclopedia, Vol. 4, p. 223. All rights reserved.

Providence Mennonite Church (MC), Denbigh, Virginia, located on Route 60 near Oyster Point, is a member of the Ohio and Eastern Mennonite Conference. The congregation was organized in 1900 and its church dedicated the following year. D. Z. Yoder was the first minister. It had 31 members in 1957. Wilbur H. Smoker was minister.


Map:Providence Mennonite Church (Newport News, Virginia, USA)

Author(s) Samuel J Steiner
Date Published February 2022

Cite This Article

MLA style

Steiner, Samuel J. "Providence Mennonite Church (Newport News, Virginia, USA)." Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. February 2022. Web. 30 Sep 2023.,_Virginia,_USA)&oldid=173081.

APA style

Steiner, Samuel J. (February 2022). Providence Mennonite Church (Newport News, Virginia, USA). Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. Retrieved 30 September 2023, from,_Virginia,_USA)&oldid=173081.

©1996-2023 by the Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. All rights reserved.