Title and Description
Gem Mennonite Brethren Church fonds. – 1979. – 2 pages of textual records.
The Gem Mennonite Brethren Church, located at Gem in central Alberta, had its beginnings in November of 1928 when 25 Mennonite families, immigrants from the Ukraine and Siberia, settled there, some of whom were Mennonite Brethren, some Evangelical Mennonite Brethren and some General Conference Mennonites. On 2 June 1929 the Mennonite Brethren congregation was organized with 35 members and with H. K. Siemens as leader. They met in the school every Sunday for worship together with the members of the other two branches.
In 1932 a church was built, which was enlarged a few years later. In 1952-3, because of its unsatisfactory location and poor condition, it was sold and a new one was erected. An important milestone was the opening of the Bethesda Bible School on 12 November 1933 which, with a few interruptions, served until 1957. On 16 December 1934, P. P. Doerksen was chosen as leader of the congregation.
The membership in 1953 was 130. The congregation continued to grow, in spite of the fact that the subsidiary congregation in Countess became an independent congregation in 1939, and many members moved to British Columbia. In 1942 all the members of the Evangelical Mennonite Brethren congregation formally united with the Mennonite Brethren congregation. The language of worship is English, the transition from German to English occurred in the 1950s.
The congregation celebrated its 50th anniversary on 4-5 August, 1979 and its 75th anniversary on 23 May 2004.
Scope and Content
The content consists of the bulletin of the 50th Anniversary of the Gem Mennonite Brethren Church, 4-5 August, 1979.
Source of Acquisition
Gem Mennonite Brethren Church, 1929-1979, (Gem, Alberta: Gem Mennonite Brethren Church, 1979.)
GAMEO Gem Mennonite Brethren Church.
John A. Toews, A History of the Mennonite Brethren Church, (Fresno, Ca: Conference of Mennonite Brethren Churches, 1973.