Steinbach Mennonite Church (Steinbach, Manitoba, Canada)

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Steinbach Mennonite Church
Source: Church website

The Steinbach Mennonite Church in Steinbach, Manitoba, began services on 17 July 1938, and formally organized in 1939. Isaac Warkentin is considered the founding leader of the group. Mennonite immigrants from Russia had settled in the Steinbach area in the 1920s. They worshiped in the existing congregations there until the 1930s. In 1936 a group was formed as part of the Schönwieser Gemeinde. In 1942 they became an independent congregation.

Initially, the church was served by the Schoenwiese Mennonite church group but a split developed between members who wished affiliation with the Schoenwiese and those who wished to be autonomous. The church's application for membership in the Conference of Mennonites in Canada in 1942 was initially rejected because of opposition from the Schoenwiese, but after some deliberation, the application was accepted. Shortly after, members who had wanted to remain with the Schoenwiese locked the doors to the new church because they had helped financially towards its construction. Schoenwiese members continued to attend but did not transfer membership from the mother church. Because of its previous association with the Schoenwiese, the name Steinbach Mennonite was not used until 1942. The transition from German occurred in the 1960s.

The members of Steinbach Mennonite Church met in a rented building on Hanover Street until 1941 when the need for a building of their own became apparent. A lot was purchased on the corner of Reimer Avenue and Hanover Street. With the help of volunteers, the building was finished in the spring of 1942 at which time the sanctuary was dedicated. In 1951, three lots were bought on the outskirts of Steinbach (what was later the corner of Barkman Avenue and Hanover Street). Construction began in May 1951. The new building was built with a capacity for 352 people with a budget of $28,000. It was dedicated on 7 October 1951. In 1971 the congregation began to look into options for expansion. It decided to expand by constructing a new building (sanctuary with a basement) next to the existing building. Ground-breaking took place in April 1974 and by December it was completed and SMC held its grand opening. In 1983 space again became an issue. The congregation required a larger sanctuary and more Sunday school space, Itpursued selling the current property and building a new church on Loewen Boulevard (then called Townline Road). The new space featured an 800-seat sanctuary with a large stage, a large foyer, grade-level entrance for wheelchair accessibility, a combined gym and banquet hall for 500, and a larger education wing. Ground-breaking for this project began in 1988 and was completed in 1989.


"About the Steinbach Mennonite Church." Steinbach Mennonite Church. Web. 12 November 2013.

Hildebrand, Helen. "The Historical Development of the Steinbach Mennonite Church." Research paper, Canadian Mennonite Bible College, 1965, 12 pp. Mennonite Heritage Centre.

Froese, Franz J., ed. Steinbach Mennoniten Gemeinde: 25 Jahre 1943-1968. Steinbach: Steinbach Mennonite Church, 1968, 141 pp.

Harder, Leland. Steinbach and Its Churches. Elkhart, Indiana: Mennonite Biblical Seminary, 1970, 109 pp.

Mennonite Reporter (3 February 1975): 10; (30 October 1989): 16; (24 August 1992): 16.

Mennonites in Canada Collection, "70-Steinbach," Mennonite Archives of Ontario.

"Our history." Steinbach Mennonite Church. Web. 29 June 2021.

Peters, Evelyn. "The History of the Steinbach Mennonite Church." Research paper, Canadian Mennonite Bible College, 1978, 31 pp. Mennonite Heritage Centre.

Records microfilmed at Mennonite Heritage Centre.

Additional Information

Address: Box 2798, Steinbach MB R5G 1P2; located at 345 Loewen Blvd., Steinbach, Manitoba

Phone: 204-326-2293

Website: Steinbach Mennonite Church

Denominational Affiliations:

Conference of Mennonites in Manitoba, / Mennonite Church Manitoba

Conference of Mennonites in Canada  / Mennonite Church Canada (1942-present)

General Conference Mennonite Church (1945-1999)

Steinbach Mennonite Church Leading Ministers

Minister Years
Isaac Warkentin 1938-1942
Peter J. Reimer 1942-1957
Isaac Warkentin (interim) 1957
Henry P. Friesen 1957-1962
Frank K. Isaac 1962-1975
Abe Neufeld 1976-1989
Paul Dyck 1989-2000
Norm Voth (interim) 2000-2001
Gary Martens 2001-2012
Victor Kliewer (interim) 2012-2013
Randy Hildebrand (co-pastor) 2013-2016
Lee Hiebert 2017-present

Steinbach Mennonite Church Membership

Year Members
1943 55
1950 139
1965 101
1975 337
1985 432
1995 460
2000 434
2020 384

Author(s) Peter J. Reimer
Marlene Epp
Date Published June 2021

Cite This Article

MLA style

Reimer, Peter J. and Marlene Epp. "Steinbach Mennonite Church (Steinbach, Manitoba, Canada)." Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. June 2021. Web. 2 Aug 2021.,_Manitoba,_Canada)&oldid=171880.

APA style

Reimer, Peter J. and Marlene Epp. (June 2021). Steinbach Mennonite Church (Steinbach, Manitoba, Canada). Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. Retrieved 2 August 2021, from,_Manitoba,_Canada)&oldid=171880.

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