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James Quinter

Various Brethren Press PDF

dunkerguide-history-complete35/27/104:55 PMPage 711858-1908James QuinterGentle, persistent progressive by J. Douglas ArcherRespected Brethren leader championed periodicals, higher educationJames Quinter was born in 1816 in Philadelphia. At that time theBrethren supported no schools or colleges and had no regular publications or publishing houses. By the time of Brother Quinter’s death in 1888 this had changed dramatically—thanks in large part to his efforts.Almost all of what we know of his early life can be traced to the Life andSermons of Elder James Quinter (1891), by his daughter Mary. Raised in poverty near Phoenixville, Pa., and breadwinner for his mother and sister from the death of his father when he was 13, Quinter lacked all but the most basic formal schooling. However, what his family lacked in material resources was more than equaled by a passion for education. By 1833, at age 17, Quinter managed to qualify for a teaching position, and he appears to have been one of the first Dunkers to be employed as an teacher. While he held several jobs over the years, education— especially higher education—remained an enduring commitment.

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Unity and Dissension

Dale W. Brown Brethren Press PDF

another way body.qxd6/8/051:17 PMPage 156important. For many decades ministers added two questions to baptismal vows. One question asked whether an aspirant before baptism would pledge never to drill or join military units. The other asked whether the candidate would promise to solve differences according to Matthew 18:15-20. One of the central responsibilities of deacons was to facilitate maintaining the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace. When asked how Brethren differ fromMennonites, it has been alleged that Brethren treasure unity over truth.Mennonites more likely may savor truth over unity, whereas Brethren often compromise to maintain unity. In risking disunity Mennonites have held fast to what they regard to be true and right in risking disunity. Such an analysis may account for greater numbers of schisms among Mennonites.Among the Brethren I have perceived passions that impel us to stay together.Thus, it may be helpful to examine how our fathers and mothers in the faith have dealt with differences. In a book focusing on theology, it may be difficult to justify issues that seem to deal with ethics more than theology. In our tradition, however, it is difficult to separate theology from the fruit of discipleship. Many in our tradition, for example, have been attracted to the widespread admiration of Dietrich Bonhoeffer because it is difficult to separate his life from his theology.

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Free Church; Noncreedal

Various Brethren Press PDF

A DUNKERG U I D E TOFree Church;NoncreedalWe may see truth in new waysJohn 14:12-17; Acts 2:42-47Galen GrahamA“free church” is to follow Jesus and to keep his commandments daily, rather than to draft creeds and dogmas that may freeze truth in time. Disciples who have confidence in Jesus’ promise to send the Spirit of truth (John 14:16-17) are not preoccupied with fixed creeds and rigid codes of conduct. Led by the Holy Spirit they discover new truths for their lives in this changing world, and they see old truths in new ways.To appreciate this “free church” concept we need to go back to AD 312.In that year Constantine defeated his rivals in a civil war to become emperor of the Roman Empire. Tradition has it that at the pivotal battle that ended the war, Constantine saw a Christian cross in the sky, and with it this inscription:“by this sign, conquer.” The next year he issued an edict of tolerance forChristians that ended their persecution. This happened less than 300 years after the death of the young Jewish rabbi named Jesus, whose teachings would shake the very foundations of the world. His followers established a truly free church totally outside the Roman state. They lived together, worshiped together, prayed together, worked together, and ate together (Acts 2:42-47). They were persecuted for this, sometimes harshly, and operated perforce as an

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Peter Becker

Various Brethren Press PDF

dunkerguide-history-complete35/27/104:55 PMPage 22Mack and Beissel far outshone him as preachers, writers, and influential figures. But Becker was recognized for his sincerity, common sense, care for others, and patience. These qualities made Becker the perfect person to lead the Brethren through the turbulent first decades in America. founding of the church in America, Peter Becker is little more than a name to mostBrethren today. He deserves better.Becker was born in the village of Dudelsheim, northeast of Frankfurt,Germany, in 1687. Baptized into the Reformed church, he grew up to become a prosperous farmer with extensive landholdings. Yet he also grew dissatisfied with the established church. He became interested in the enthusiasm and deep spirituality of the radical Pietist movement. He was especially attracted to the preaching and teaching of the radical Pietist leader Hochmann von Hochenau. Hochmann’s influence prepared Becker to hear and respond to the message of Brethren minister Johannes Naas, who visited the Dudelsheim area in 1714. Peter Becker and his wife, Anna Dorothea, were baptized by Naas on the 15th of May, 1714.

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The Keepers of History

Various Brethren Press PDF

dunkerguide-history-complete35/27/104:55 PMPage 10300 YEARSThe keepers of history by Kenneth M. Shaffer Jr. and Logan CondonArchives provide significant service of preservationWhat becomes of a congregation’s membership records and council meeting minutes when the congregation is disorganized? Are the records destroyed? Does the last pastor to serve the congregation keep the records? Are they stored at the district office?According to the Church of the Brethren polity manual, congregational records become the property of the district, and the district decides where to deposit the records. Typically districts place congregational records at one of theBrethren archives. These records generally include newsletters, bulletins, directories, yearly budgets, annual reports, etc., as well as minutes and membership records. Some congregations transfer their inactive records directly to the district-approved archives on a periodic basis. And districts sometimes place their inactive records at the archives they have selected.

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