Brethren

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Brethren Brethren a German Baptist religious group. They were popularly known as Dunkards, Dunkers, or Tunkers, from the German for “to dip”, referring to their method of baptizing. The Brethren evolved from the Pietist movement in Germany. Alexander Mack, a miller who had been influenced by both Pietism and Anabaptism, organized the first congregation in the town of Schwarzenau, Germany in 1708. Though the early Brethren shared many beliefs with other Protestants, issuers which separated them from the state churches included discipleship and obedience, reinstitution of the New Testament church, church discipline, biblicism, and nonresistance. They also shared their faith enthusiastically with others, sending evangelists to other parts of Germany, Switzerland, and the Netherlands. Due to growing persecution and economic hardship, Brethren began migrating to North America in 1719 under the leadership of Peter Becker. Most Brethren left Europe by 1740, including Mack, who brought a group in 1729. The first congregation in the New World was organized at Germantown, Pa., in 1723. Soon after this formation, the Germantown congregation sent missionaries to rural areas around Philadelphia. These missionaries preached, baptized, and started new congregations. Their zeal, honesty, and hard work drew many new members into the Brethren faith community through the 1700s. New congregations were formed in New Jersey, Maryland, and Virginia. With the promise of inexpensive land, they moved into Kentucky, Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, and Missouri after the Revolutionary War. By the mid-1800s Brethren had settled in Kansas and Iowa and eventually the West Coast. Expansion across the continent and changes due to the Industrial... ... middle of paper ... ...le to discern God’s will. They make decisions as a group, and each person’s voice matters. During their traditional love feast, they gather at the table of the Lord, and each summer at Annual Conference they convene as a denominational family. Because Jesus urged unity, Brethren work alongside other denominations, at home and abroad, in worldwide missions and outreach. Their congregations welcome all who wish to share with them in another way of living: the way of Christian discipleship, life in community, and fulfillment in service. Bibliography: Bibliography 1. Keillor, Garrison “Born Among The Born Again”, America Voices 3rd Edition Dolores LaGuardia, Hans P. Guth. California; Mayfield Publishing Company 1998. 2. Eller, Vernard “Kierkegaard and Radical Discipleship: A New Perspective”, Princeton, New Jersey; Princeton University Press 1968.
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