Sunday, August 22, 2010

Sister Churches and Family

I grew up in a Mennonite Church community of  3 sister churches and cousins.  In the horse and buggy days the Bishop would travel to the different churches each Sunday and preach  taking turns. The churches were
5 - 7 miles apart.  In the early 1900's my great-grandfather was the bishop and traveled to the churches until they all had their own pastors.  These churches still closely relate to each other as sisters.
This is the church I grew up in as I knew it.  The North Lima Mennonite Church. My grandfather was the pastor here for many, many years.
This is it now.
These churches all have their cemetaries.  My mother is laid to rest here.
This is the Midway Mennonite Church which is next door to my Aunt and Uncle. My grandparents and other relatives are buried in this cemetary.
These churches are so related that through the years intermarriages happened quite a lot. When I was in high school, I look at family history trees and saw that I was 3rd cousins with most of the other children in my generation in these 3 churches. With some I could say I was a 1st cousin and a 4th cousin because my aunt and uncle who were 3rd cousins married.
I now live in a church community where the same thing is starting to happen.  The sister churches are farther apart, but the marriages are happening within the churches.  I see it continuing to happen as the Word of God is preached here and the children build into the local church.  It is exciting to see this happen amongst us.

1 comment:

  1. These pictures remind me of visiting my Grandma in Colorado and walking with her through the cemetary as she told us stories of our ancestors. I always loved to hear about our history. It's amazing how everyone's story was interwoven (not like today's culture). I'm glad we are closely knit together.


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