Commission awards research grant, college scholarships
By Jon Issak
The MB Historical Commission met June 2-3 for its annual general meeting (AGM) in Winnipeg, Manitoba, at the Centre for MB Studies. The Commission heard reports from its four archives, awarded several grants and scholarships and planned for ways to continue its services to MB congregations while trimming its budget.
Jordan Duerrstein reported on his five-week archival internship. He helped with the normal archival tasks at each of the four MB archives and explored aspects of community development, especially the entrepreneurial initiatives that have and continue to be part of MB church planting. Duerrstein, a student at Wycliffe College in Toronto, returns to seminary this fall. The Commission was pleased with the outcomes of the internship and agreed to offer the internship again next summer.
Buduma Ramesh, a master’s degree student from India, was awarded a Katie Funk Wiebe research grant of $550 for his project on the role of women—both women missionaries and the Indian “Bible Women” they trained—in the empowerment of Dalit women in the Mahabubnagar district of Telangana, India. Ramesh's thesis project at Union Biblical Seminary, Pune, India, honors the life and ministry of Katie Funk Wiebe who passed away in 201
J.B. Toews scholarships in the amount of $1,000 were also awarded to Micheal Ryder of Columbia Bible College, located in Abbortsford, British Columbia, and Daniela Stahl of Canadian Mennonite University, located in Winnipeg.
At the AGM, the Commission agreed to continue funding the six initiatives that it has developed in the recent years but scale back the number of awards in each category. The six initiatives are the archival internship, Katie Funk Wiebe research grant, MB studies project grant, J.B. Toews college scholarships, Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online (GAMEO) stipends and archival development grants. For details about all six initiatives—and the news releases announcing this year’s recipients—see the Commission’s website (http://mbhistory.org/). The submission dates for the new grant year will be posted by the end of summer.
The Commission works with a network of four Mennonite Brethren archival centers: Center for M.B. Studies (Hillsboro, Kansas), Mennonite Library & Archives (Fresno, California), Mennonite Historical Society of B.C. (Abbotsford, B.C.), and Centre for M.B. Studies (Winnipeg, Manitoba).
Since its formation in 1969, the Commission has helped coordinate the collection, preservation, and interpretation of Mennonite Brethren archival records: congregational meeting minutes, conference proceedings, personal papers, periodicals, and photographs.
More information about the work of the Commission, a ministry funded by both the U.S. Conference of Mennonite Brethren Churches and of the Canadian Conference of Mennonite Brethren Churches, is available on its website.
Photo: The MB Historical Commission gathered in Winnipeg, Manitoba, for its annual general meeting (l to r): Dora Dueck, Don Isaac (chair), Peggy Goertzen, J Janzen (vice chair), Valerie Rempel (recording secretary), Hannah Keeney, Jon Isaak (executive secretary), Patricia Janzen Loewen, and Julia Reimer. Missing members: Richard Thiessen and Kevin Enns-Rempel. Photo credit: Gaylord Goertzen