Wall, John (1923-2014)

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Frieda and John Wall.

John Wall: missionary, mission administrator and pastor; born 5 November 1923 in Alexandertal, Ukraine, to Aron Wall (1896-1972) and Maria (Braun) Wall (1898-1987); immigrated to Canada with his parents in 1926, initially living in Namaka, Alberta, and eventually settling in Vineland, Ontario, in 1938. He had six younger siblings – four sisters and 2 brothers. John Wall married Frieda Baerg (1929-1995), daughter of Isaac Baerg (1883-1965) and Aganetha (Enns) Baerg (1885-1969) in 1953. John and Frieda Wall had two children. John died on 18 March 2014 in St. Catharines, Ontario, and is buried in the Vineland Cemetery.

His conversion and baptism at the Vineland Mennonite Brethren Church in 1945 gave John Wall direction for his life. He left Vineland and studied at Winkler Bible School, Mennonite Brethren Bible College in Winnipeg, Tabor College in Hillsboro, Kansas, and Mennonite Brethren Biblical Seminary in Fresno, California. In 1953 he accepted a position to teach at the East Chilliwack Mennonite Brethren Bible School in British Columbia. He was greatly appreciated as a Bible teacher and for his caring and pastoral spirit. John and Frieda Wall served as missionaries with Mennonite Brethren Missions/Services (MBM/S) in Uruguay from 1957 to 1961, followed by a term in Paraguay. From 1963 to 1973 John was the pastor of the Fort Garry Mennonite Brethren Church in Winnipeg, Manitoba. In 1973, another assignment with MBM/S was accepted, pastoring a German-speaking Mennonite Brethren church in Asunción, Paraguay, and teaching in the Spanish Bible Institute. In 1977 John began working for MBM/S in the Hillsboro, Kansas office, directing the Latin American ministries, a role that took him across Canada and the U.S.A., to Peru and Panama. He also travelled to Pakistan and Afghanistan while serving with MBM/S. In 1985, John and Frieda accepted a call to pastor the Kitchener Mennonite Brethren Church in Ontario, where he served until 1989.

As retirees, the Walls ministered in Germany and John was also on the MBM/S board for several years before becoming the MBM/S Interim Director of Programs, a position he held from July 1994 until June 1995. When his wife Frieda was killed in a car accident in Steinbach, Manitoba, on 21 April 1995, John felt the tremendous loss of his partner who had been supportive throughout their marriage and mutual ministry. John Wall’s final years were lived in the Vineland area where his life’s calling first began, continuing to be available to serve. Even on the day of his disabling stroke in 2007, he was preparing a sermon.

The memorial gravestone for John and Frieda Wall declares “There is joy in serving Jesus.” Many people could affirm this statement as a most appropriate summary of their life.


GRANDMA (The Genealogical Registry and Database of Mennonite Ancestry) Database, v.19-07 ed. Fresno, CA: California Mennonite Historical Society, 2019: #107189.

“Frieda Wall dies in collision.” Mennonite Brethren Herald (19 May 1995): 14.

“John Wall” [obituary]. Mennonite Brethren Herald (September 2014): 30.

Author(s) Alf Redekopp
Date Published November 2019

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MLA style

Redekopp, Alf. "Wall, John (1923-2014)." Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. November 2019. Web. 12 Apr 2024. https://gameo.org/index.php?title=Wall,_John_(1923-2014)&oldid=166166.

APA style

Redekopp, Alf. (November 2019). Wall, John (1923-2014). Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. Retrieved 12 April 2024, from https://gameo.org/index.php?title=Wall,_John_(1923-2014)&oldid=166166.

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