A Moment from Yesterday

January 13, 2021 | Opinion | Volume 25 Issue 2
Laureen Harder-Gissing | Conrad Grebel University College
(Photo: The Canadian Mennonite / Mennonite Archives of Ontario)

Why go to all the trouble of producing a new hymnal? The Gesangbuch commission of the Conference of Mennonites in Canada faced this question in 1961. The 1942 version, it was felt, lacked readability and a variety in tunes. Furthermore, the world of the early 1960s “demanded a broader witness,” with more vocational, youth and gospel songs. The conference needed a unifying hymnal. Although the adoption of a German hymnal of the Mennonite Brethren denomination was considered, “the fullness of time for a complete exchange of spiritual treasures seems not to have arrived” due to theological and musical differences. Visit for the identity of Gesgangbuch commission members at this Winnipeg meeting.

For more historical photos in the Mennonite Archival Image Database, see

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Victor Neumann
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Brubacher House

(Photo: The Canadian Mennonite / Mennonite Archives of Ontario)

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