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Oldest Mennonite church to celebrate

Spring Valley Mennonite Church, which claims the title of oldest Mennonite church in Kansas, is celebrating its 150th anniversary this year.

The church, three miles south and two miles east of Canton at 29th and Frontier Rds. in McPherson County, was founded in 1873 when Bishop Daniel Brundage organized a congregation of Mennonite homesteaders who had migrated from eastern states.

A 14-mile furrow plowed in virgin prairie marked the route to the church for original members who lived at a distance. A portion of the route became old US-56 between Marion and Hillsboro.

The congregation’s main celebration of its sesquicentennial will be Labor Day weekend.

A large tent like those used in bygone days will be set up.

A 3 p.m. session Sept. 2 will recount the history of Spring Valley and include worship and unstructured reminiscing.

A cemetery walk will relate stories of people buried there. Games and activities as well as historical displays will be part of the afternoon.

A supper at 5:30 p.m. will be followed by a 7 p.m. session that will include sharing by former pastors.

Worship will begin at 10 a.m. Sept. 3 in the tent and be followed by a basket dinner.

Howard Wagler, former lead pastor of Journey Mennonite Church in Hutchinson, will speak at an old-fashioned tent revival at 7 p.m. Sept. 3

More information is available at springvalleymennonite.org or from pastor David Norris at (620) 217-9228.

Last modified Aug. 24, 2023

 

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