Schroeder, Peter R. (1888-1941)

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Peter Reuben Schroeder: General Conference Mennonite minister and conference leader; born 22 August 1888 in Mountain Lake, Minnesota, the third of 10 children of Jacob D. Schroeder (18 May 1858 - 15 September 1916) and Maria (Friesen) Schroeder (6 January 1863, Bergthal Mennonite Settlement, South Russia - 31 January 1940, Mountain Lake). On 1 September 1910, he married Susie T. Nickel of Mountain Lake. Four daughters were born to them: Celeste, Vernell, Louise, and Esther Ruth. Peter died on 16 April 1941 in Mountain Lake at the age of 52.

Peter grew up in Mountain Lake, where he attended elementary school, German school and high school. He graduated from Bethel College in 1912 and took some additional classes at the University of Chicago, the School of Theology at Winona Lake, and the University of South Dakota. In June 1912 Schroeder became the assistant pastor of the Berne (Indiana) Mennonite Church, although he and his wife had planned to go to India as missionaries. Schroeder was ordained in 1914 by S. F. Sprunger. During his ministry at Berne the church grew in membership from 776 to 1042, as well as growing in other areas. From 1928-30 he served as president of Freeman Junior College at Freeman, South Dakota. In 1930 he resigned and became the pastor of the Salem Mennonite Church at Freeman, but continued as Bible teacher of the college until 1936.

In 1933 Schroeder was elected president of the General Conference Mennonite Church. This office he held for two terms, a total of 12 years. In 1936 he attended the third Mennonite World Conference in the Netherlands. In 1940 he became pastor of the Bethel Mennonite Church of Mountain Lake.

P. R. Schroeder had excellent leadership qualities and influenced many young people to go into the ministry and mission work. His emphasis was on a warm Bible-centered concept of the Gospel and Christianity. He was active in evangelistic work and Bible lectures in many states and provinces of North America.


Dehnert, Celeste Schroeder. "Peter R. Schroeder--Pastor and Conference Worker." Mennonite Life 4 (July 1949): 38-41.

GRANDMA (The Genealogical Registry and Database of Mennonite Ancestry) Database, 7.02 ed. Fresno, CA: California Mennonite Historical Society, 2013: #307568.

Author(s) Cornelius Krahn
Date Published 1959

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MLA style

Krahn, Cornelius. "Schroeder, Peter R. (1888-1941)." Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. 1959. Web. 6 Jul 2022.,_Peter_R._(1888-1941)&oldid=101863.

APA style

Krahn, Cornelius. (1959). Schroeder, Peter R. (1888-1941). Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. Retrieved 6 July 2022, from,_Peter_R._(1888-1941)&oldid=101863.


Adapted by permission of Herald Press, Harrisonburg, Virginia, from Mennonite Encyclopedia, Vol. 4, p. 481. All rights reserved.

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