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Revision as of 22:01, 11 February 2014

Cornelius J. Rempel, 1970. Photo by David Hunsburger. Source: Mennonite Archives of Ontario.

Cornelius J. Rempel: financial advisor and church worker; born 11 February 1912 to Johann G. Rempel and Justina (Riediger) Rempel in Millerovo, South Russia. He was one of six children in the family, two of whom died in early childhood. In 1924, Cornelius and his family immigrated to Ontario, Canada, where they settled first in Vineland before moving to Kitchener. Cornelius married Marguerite Baerg on 3 August 1938 in Ontario. The couple had three children. Cornelius died of a heart attack, following a short illness, on 13 January 1994 in Kitchener.

Cornelius completed his schooling in Kitchener, Ontario, before obtaining work at the Waterloo Trust Bank, and later at Canada Trust. His special area of work was in mortgages, wills, and estates, a field he later used extensively in various church positions. He converted to Christianity early in life and was committed to serving the church in various capacities, especially in the area of financial guidance for the Canadian Conference of Mennonite Brethren (MB) Churches. In 1938 he married Marguerite Baerg in Ontario. After several years of working in finance, Cornelius became the first director of the Mennonite Central Committee Canada office in Kitchener, a position he held from 1944 to 1951. Much of the work during this time involved helping Mennonite immigrants coming from Europe after the Second World War.

In addition to his career, Rempel volunteered his time extensively, working with the Red Cross, Children’s Aid, and Gideons, as well as serving on the boards of Bethesda and Ontario Tabor Home. He was part of the Ontario Peace Commission, served as the Canadian MB Conference Board of Management representative, and served as the Canadian MB Conference secretary from 1975 to 1983. He traveled extensively, even after his retirement, when he served as an asset and legacy adviser for the Canadian MB Conference's Board of Stewardship from 1977 to 1985. Cornelius was a member of the Canadian Peace Commission for 16 years and was also deeply involved in planning for the Mennonite World Conference in 1962. In addition, he was involved with the "Dienst am Evangelium" radio program for many years, as well as the General Welfare and Public Relations Committee of the General Conference of MB Churches from 1951 to 1966. Rempel also served the General Conference of MB Churches as conference secretary from 1972 to 1978.

Even with all of his travels and meetings, Cornelius still took the time to sing in his church choir for over 50 years, as well as in the Sacred Song Quartet, which he helped form, and men’s choirs. He was also involved in various athletic activities, including golf, tennis, and baseball. He became ill early in 1994 and died of a heart attack on 13 January in Kitchener. The funeral was held at the Kitchener Mennonite Brethren Church on 16 January 1994. His wife, three children, and one brother survived him.

Cornelius J. Rempel was a dedicated church worker who used the skills he had gained from his career in banking to serve the church throughout his life. In the many committees in which he participated, he helped support the work of the church, becoming an example of faithful service for his family and the people around him.


Canadian Conference of Mennonite Brethren Churches. "Rempel, Cornelius J." Web. 7 April 2010. http://www.mbconf.ca/home/products_and_services/resources/published_genealogies/personal_papers/rempel_cornelius_j/.

Boldt, Ed. "Remembering Corny: C. J. (Corny) Rempel, 1912-1994." Mennonite Brethren Herald (15 April 1994): 30.

GRANDMA (The Genealogical Registry and Database of Mennonite Ancestry) Database, 6.02 ed. Fresno, CA: California Mennonite Historical Society, 2010: #160139.

Mennonite Brethren Herald (15 April 1994): 31.

Die Mennonitische Rundschau (19 June 1957): 1; (April 1994): 30.

Additional Information

Cornelius was the son of Johann G. Rempel (29 August 1878, Rosenthal, Chortitza, South Russia - 26 May 1957, Kitchener, Ontario, Canada) and Justina (Riediger) Rempel (1 December 1882, Chortitza, Chortitza Mennonite Settlement, South Russia - 7 December 1958, Kitchener, Ontario, Canada).

Cornelius married Marguerite Baerg (24 July 1915, Tiege, Molotschna, South Russia - 4 August 2007) on 3 August 1938 in Kitchener, Ontario. Marguerite was the daughter of Cornelius Johann Baerg (4 August 1874, Lichtenau, Molotschna, South Russia - 23 September 1955, Ontario, Canada) and Elisabeth (Unruh) Baerg (11 July 1876, Temir Bulat, Crimea, South Russia - 25 November 1972, Vineland, Ontario).

Cornelius and Marguerite had three children: Carol, Paul, and Betsy.

Author(s) Susan Huebert
Date Published April 2010

Cite This Article

MLA style

Huebert, Susan. "Rempel, Cornelius J. (1912-1994)." Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. April 2010. Web. 21 Aug 2018. http://gameo.org/index.php?title=Rempel,_Cornelius_J._(1912-1994)&oldid=112812.

APA style

Huebert, Susan. (April 2010). Rempel, Cornelius J. (1912-1994). Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. Retrieved 21 August 2018, from http://gameo.org/index.php?title=Rempel,_Cornelius_J._(1912-1994)&oldid=112812.

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