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Richmond Bethel Mennonite Brethren Church – Vancouver, BC

Proper Title

Richmond Bethel Mennonite Brethren Church fonds

Dates of Creation

1970–1998

Physical Description

12 cm of textual records and 1 microfilm reel

Administrative History

Richmond Bethel church in Vancouver, British Columbia has its roots in a Sunday School project known as “Cottages Mission”. Two men began teaching Sunday School to the children of the area in the 1940s. In the mid-fifties the Vancouver Mennonite Brethren Church agreed to assume the work and all assets including property and buildings were donated to the Vancouver church. Soon there were more children than there was room so in 1965 the Vancouver MB Church 1965 erected a bigger building. Now the children could better be accommodated and church services could be held. At this time the name changed to Richmond Bethel. Other MB churches in the area such as Culloden and Fraserview also became involved in this project.

It was also at this time that discussion started regarding officially starting a Mennonite Brethren Church in the Richmond area. After considerable discussion from provincial conference leaders and area church leaders a new church was started in 1970 and officially joined the Mennonite Brethren Conference in 1971. A sod turning ceremony for their building took place on April 23, 1972.

On December 17, 1972 the first worship service was held in the new facility, and on January 14, 1973, the building was dedicated to the Lord. The Killarney Park Mennonite Brethren Church also gave a portion of land, provided that Richmond take over the financial obligations. This land was then sold and the money used to build the second stage of the three stage building process. The building program began in May of 1976 and the dedication service was held in October of 1977.

The church continued to grow and Sunday morning services were becoming too crowded. Two services were begun in the late 70s. In 1979 a daughter church was begun in Delta, B.C. known as the Cedar Park Mennonite Brethren Church.

The church is indebted to Pastor Herb Brandt, who served the church from 1970–[198-], for many of the practices and traditions of the Richmond Bethel Church.

Leaders of the congregation include the following: Herb Brandt (1970–1983), Henry Unrau (1983–1984), Henry Petkau (1984–1987), Brad Julihn (1987–2005), Harry Heidebrecht (2006– ).

Scope and Content

This fonds consists of history, bulletins, membership register, family register, annual reports, membership and church board meeting minutes.

Custodial History

It is unclear when the textual materials came to the archives. The materials on microfilm were done ca. 1978 through a conference wide microfilming project led by J.B. Toews.

Notes

  • Location: Volume 375, microfilm 69.
  • Description by Shauna Hudson, June 9, 2004. Edited by Sheralyn Heinrichs, August 17, 2005.
  • Finding aid consists of a file list.
  • No restrictions on access.

File List

Volume 375
1. History. -- [194-]–1985.
2. Bulletins. -- 1981.
3. Bulletins. -- 1985.
4. Bulletins. -- 1986.
5. Bulletins. -- 1987.
6. Bulletins. -- 1988.
7. Bulletins. -- 1989.
8. Bulletins. -- 1990.
9. Bulletins. -- 1991.
10. Bulletins. -- 1992.
11. Bulletins. -- 1993.
12. Bulletins. -- 1994.
13. Bulletins. -- 1995.
14. Bulletins. -- 1996.
15. Bulletins. -- 1997.
16. Bulletins. -- 1998.

Microfilm file list

Reel 69

  • Membership Register. 1971–1978. pp 1063–1091.
  • Family Register. [1978?]. pp 1092–1332 (+240).
  • Annual Reports. 1971–1978. pp  867–1062.
  • Membership Meeting Minutes. 1970–1978. pp  382–551.
  • Church Board Meeting Minutes. 1970–1978. pp  552–866.
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