Executive director of Mennonite Church USA Ervin R. Stutzman speaks at annual banquet

Ervin R. Stutzman

“Can the quiet in the land keep their peace?” This is the question Ervin R. Stutzman will be asking at the Lancaster Mennonite Historical Society’s annual banquet on April 5. As he answers, Stutzman will speak about the historic vision for Christ’s peace that has motivated Anabaptist believers for centuries, and how that vision has taken concrete shape in several different contexts in the United States, from the first Amish colony to the current debates about gun control.

Stutzman is Executive Director for Mennonite Church USA. He previously served as a professor and dean at Eastern Mennonite Seminary. He also served the Mennonite Church in the roles of pastor, district overseer, missions administrator, Lancaster Mennonite Conference moderator, and moderator for Mennonite Church USA. He received his Ph.D. from Temple University and holds Masters degrees from the University of Cincinnati and Eastern Mennonite Seminary.

Stutzman was born into an Amish home as a twin in Kalona, Iowa. Stutzman was baptized in the Center Amish Mennonite Church near Hutchinson, Kansas. In his youth, he joined the Yoder Mennonite Church, near Yoder, Kan.

Stutzman married Bonita Haldeman of Manheim, Pennsylvania. They currently live in Harrisonburg, Va., where they are members at the Park View Mennonite Church.

Stutzman is a preacher, a teacher, and a writer. He has written two books about his Amish parents— ”Tobias of the Amish” and Emma, “A Widow Among the Amish.” His most recent books are “From Nonresistance to Justice”, a book that examines a century of change in peacemaking in the Mennonite church, “Discerning God’s Will Together”, a study about communal discernment, and “Jacob’s Choice”, a historical novel about an Amish ancestor. Copies of Stutzman’s works will be available for purchase and signing.

The Society will also honor longtime board member Clarke Hess at the banquet. Hess is an accomplished historian of Lancaster County who has made many great contributions to local history, both research and preservation, as well as given significant insight into the county’s material culture.

The banquet will be held on Saturday, April 5, starting at 6 p.m., at Yoder’s Restaurant in New Holland. Tickets cost $25 and can be purchased online at lmhs.org or by calling (717) 393-9745. The Lancaster Mennonite Historical Society preserves and interprets the culture and context of Anabaptist related faith communities connected to Lancaster County, Pennsylvania.

From Lancaster Mennonite Historical Society