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Who are the Mennonites?

Mennonites have been a Christian group named after Menno Simons (1496–1561), a Dutch priest. During the Protestant REFORMATION, teams in Switzerland and the Netherlands got here to reject the follow of toddler BAPTISM.

They believed that solely individuals who have been ready to attest to their FAITH needs to be baptized and that people who had been baptized as infants needs to be baptized once more. As a end result, they have been often known as Anabaptists, “re-baptizers.” Some of the earliest Anabaptists used power in attempting to order society in accordance with GOD’s instructions. But by 1535 their makes an attempt had failed. Ever since then Anabaptists have adopted Menno Simons in advocating a strict separation of church and state. They are now often known as Mennonites.

From the 17th to the 19th centuries, many Mennonite teams immigrated to the United States and Canada. The earliest immigrants have been vital in the settlement of Pennsylvania. Perhaps the finest identified group is an offshoot known as the AMISH. They separated from different Mennonites in the 1690s. At subject was how to implement the neighborhood’s self-discipline or lifestyle. The Amish imagine that those that violate the self-discipline needs to be shunned, in different phrases, completely prevented. Other Mennonites fi nd this penalty too harsh. Today, different delicate variations additionally separate the Old Order Amish from the “plain” or most conventional Mennonites. For instance, even plain Mennonites enable buttons on clothes; the Old Order Amish enable solely hookand-eye fasteners.

Although Mennonites have drawn up statements of perception, they acknowledge the B IBLE as the solely authority. Mennonite WORSHIP providers have a tendency to be easy, emphasizing studying from the Bible, preaching, and congregational singing. Mennonites generally have a good time the E UCHARIST or communion in the context of a “love feast.” This includes not solely consuming and consuming but in addition washing each other’s toes in imitation of J ESUS at his final supper.

In accordance with a instructing in the N EW TESTAMENT, Mennonites have intentionally tried not to conform to the methods of the world. For some, however just for some, that has meant a rejection of contemporary gown and conveniences. For instance, “black bumper Mennonites” have black automobiles with no chrome. Most Mennonites, nonetheless, nurture a life-style of simplicity and discipleship whereas carrying up to date clothes and utilizing fashionable conveniences.

From the 1530s on, Mennonites have refused to carry arms, maintain public offi ce, and take oaths. That habits has triggered varied governments to query their loyalty. But the custom of pacifi sm and, extra broadly, the need to put the teachings of Jesus into follow have given Mennonites a well-developed social conscience. Unlike some liberal branches of North American PROTESTANTISM, Mennonites haven't typically tried to reform society. Instead, they've been extraordinarily energetic in catastrophe reduction, in selling world peace, and in fostering financial growth, particularly amongst indigenous Americans and people residing in the Third World. The Mennonite Central Committee (MCC), based in 1920, coordinates these efforts for the Mennonite and Brethren church buildings in North America. (The Brethren are related to the Mennonites however have a distinct historical past.) At the starting of the 21st century the MCC was energetic in additional than 50 international locations worldwide in addition to in the United States and Canada.