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Broadway Mennonite Brethren Church – Chilliwack, BC

Proper Title

Broadway Mennonite Brethren Church fonds

Dates of Creation

1947–1993

Physical Description

17.5 cm of textual records and 2 microfilm reels

Administrative History

Broadway Mennonite Brethren Church, located in Chilliwack, BC, began as a daughter church of the East Chilliwack Mennonite Brethren Church. In the late 1940s, East Chilliwack was experiencing overcrowding. To relieve this situation, a group of urban members from East Chilliwack MB Church, began holding their own services in the St. Thomas Hall. After meeting together for seven months, the new group decided to construct a new church building on the corner of Broadway and Maple. The building was completed and dedicated in 1947. In this same year, the new congregation sought affiliation with the General, Canadian, and British Columbia Conference of Mennonite Brethren Churches. The congregation was referred to as the Chilliwack Mennonite Brethren Church, a name that changed to Broadway Mennonite Brethren Church in 1970.

In 1969, the Broadway congregation decided to build a new structure on the same site. The congregation met at Little Mountain School until the new building was dedicated in early December of 1969. It had a seating capacity of 450 people. A new stage area, an enlarged foyer, a reconstructed balcony, and several other aesthetic changes were completed with volunteer labour in 1990.

For several years, the Broadway church assisted in a church plant effort in the Sardis area. In 1975, nine families left the church to form the core of the work in Sardis. Financial and prayer support for the Sardis group were regular contributions from Broadway.

J.I. Bergen is considered the founding leader of the group, serving the church as lead minister from 1947 to 1958. Since this time the following ministers and pastors have served the congregation: I.H. Thiessen (1959–1963, first salaried minister), Henry Warkentin (1964–1974), John E. Friesen (1975–1978), Robert J. Friesen (1981–2000), Wilf Richert (2002–2003), and Gary Simpson (2004– ).

The language of worship is English.  The transition from German occured in the 1960's.

Scope and Content

This fonds consists of an historical sketch, bulletins, congregational meeting minutes, and Church Council meeting minutes.

 

Custodial History

Many of these records were microfilmed in 1978 through the work of the Historical Commission of the Mennonite Brethren Conference. The textual records were deposited regularly over the last few decades.

Notes

  • Location: Volume 360.
  • Finding aid consists of a file list.
  • The records are classified under the Canadian Conference of MB Churches inventory number BB507, and partially located on microfilm reels 131 and 136.
  • Described by Donovan Giesbrecht, September 4, 2004.
  • No restrictions on access.

 

File List

Volume 360
1. Historical sketch. -- [ca. 1980].
2. Bulletins. -- 1968–1969.
3. Bulletins. -- 1970.
4. Bulletins. -- 1971.
5. Bulletins. -- 1972.
6. Bulletins. -- 1973.
7. Bulletins. -- 1974.
8. Bulletins. -- 1975.
9. Bulletins. --1976.
10. Bulletins. -- 1977.
11. Bulletins. -- 1978.
12. Bulletins. -- 1979.
13. Bulletins. -- 1980.
14. Bulletins. -- 1981.
15. Bulletins. -- 1982.
16. Bulletins. -- 1983.
17. Bulletins. -- 1984.
18. Bulletins. -- 1985.
19. Bulletins. -- 1986–1987.
20. Bulletins. -- 1988.
21. Bulletins. -- 1989–1990.
22. Bulletins. -- 1991.
23. Bulletins. -- 1992.

Microfilm file list

Reel 131

  • Congregational meeting minutes. Jan 1947–Apr 1947. -- p. 1–35.
  • Congregational meeting minutes. May 1947–Dec 1956. -- p. 35–236.
  • Congregational meeting minutes. Jan 1957–Dec 1959. -- p. 237–305.
  • Congregational meeting minutes. Jan 1960–Jun 1964. -- p. 306–633.
  • Congregational meeting minutes. Sep 1964–Jun 1970. -- p. 634–915.
  • Congregational meeting minutes. Oct 1970–May 1977. -- p. 916–1289.
  • Church Council meeting minutes. Aug 1958–Dec 1959. -- p. 1290–1315.
  • Church Council meeting minutes. May 1961–May 1977. -- p. 1316–1825.
  • Yearend reports. 1958. -- p. 1826–1833.
  • Yearend reports. 1959. -- p. 1834–1866.

Reel 136

  • Congregational meeting minutes. Jun 1976–Jun 1983. -- p. 1267–1726.
  • Church Council meeting minutes. Jun 1982–May 1985. -- p. 1727–1929.
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