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  • Corporate body

The Explorers was an organization for young girls. The meetings were held weekly and the girls would learn various skills to earn stars, pins and red ribbons. Prayer and song were also part of every meeting. The person responsible for recording the minutes was called "The Keeper of the Log".

Ewanchuk, Michael, 1908-2004

  • ewanchuk_m
  • Person
  • 1908-2004

Born in 1908 in Gimli, Manitoba, Ewanchuk was the son of pioneer settlers. Upon graduating from Gimli High School he worked at Ford's in Detroit and attended the Detroit Institute of Technology and Detroit City College (now Wayne State University). He received his B.A., B.Ed., and M.Ed. degrees from the University of Manitoba. He later received two honorary Doctoral degrees from the University of Manitoba (St. John's College), and the University of Winnipeg. Upon completion of his service with the Royal Canadian Air Force in 1946, he was appointed Inspector of Schools. Ewanchuk served on various curriculum committees and was chairman of a committee that organized the introduction of Ukrainian instruction in the high schools of Manitoba. He was elected president of the Canadian Association of School Superintendents and Inspectors and for several years was member of the Educational Showplace Committee in Toronto. Interested in oral history, Ewanchuk conducted a series of interviews in the 1930's with Ukrainian seniors and began writing oral histories. He also wrote articles and reports for several Ukrainian papers, notably, the Ukrains'kyi Holos, the American Svoboda, and the Ukrainian Weekly. He later published several books on Ukrainians, including Spruce, Swamp, and Stone: A History of the Pioneer Ukrainian Settlements in the Gimli Area (1977), Vita: A Ukrainian Community (1977), Pioneer Profiles: Ukrainian Settlers in Manitoba (1981), Hawaiian Ordeal: Ukrainian Contract Workers 1897-1910 (1986), Pioneer Settlers: Ukrainians in the Dauphin Area, 1896-1926 (1988), East of the Red : v. 1. Early Ukrainian settlements, 1896-1930 and v. 2. Early Ukrainian settlements north of the Dawson Trail (1998), Vertical Development I-III (1998-2002), and Growing up on a Bush Homestead (2003). Michael Ewanchuk passed away on August 26, 2004.

Ewanchuk, Alexander, 1915-1958

  • ewanchuk_a
  • Person
  • 1915-1958

Alexander (Alec) Ewanchuk was born on June 23, 1915 in Gimli, Manitoba. His parents Wasyl and Paraska Ewanchuk, Ukrainian pioneers, came to Manitoba in 1902. They had five children: Nettie, John, Michael, Peter and Alexander. Alexander attended the Dnister School in Gimli. After completing Grade XII in Teulon, he began to teach. His first school was Sky Lake School in Gimli. He took two extra courses in physical education and shops and in 1945 became a physical education teacher at West Kildonan Collegiate. There he coached a champion junior hockey team with Frank Bathgate as a player. Alexander was a very good baseball player and enjoyed Ukrainian dancing. During the Second World War, he received an Air Cadet Pilot Officer certificate from the Royal Canadian Air Force. After the war he completed a B.A.(1953) and B.Ed.(1956) at the University of Manitoba. In 1957 he moved to Toronto and taught at the Forest Hill Collegiate. He was an educator and Ukrainian pioneer who contributed substantially to the Ukrainian community in Canada. He contracted pneumonia and died in 1958.

Holenski, Evelyne

  • Person

Evelyne Holenski coached the 1995-1997 Smitty's Womens Senior Baseball Team

Evans, John Robert Charles, 1891-1959

  • Person
  • 1891-1959

Dr. John Robert Charles Evans was born in Nanaimo, B.C. on March 15, 1891. In the fall of 1907, at the age of sixteen, Dr. Evans entered the Academic Department of Brandon College. He played an integral part at the College, participating in academics, sports, and various other college functions and organizations. In his final year he was Senior Stick, the highest position in the Student Government. In 1913, Dr. Evans graduated from Brandon College. Immediately after graduation he was hired to teach Science and Academic Mathematics. In 1917, he became Principal of the Academic Department, while continuing to teach Mathematics and Science. Dr. Evans took leave in 1920 to do post graduate work at the University of Chicago. He received his Ph.D. in Geology in 1923, and returned to Brandon College as Professor of Geology and Residence Master. He also taught some Chemistry. On August 1, 1927, Dr. Evans married Adelene M. Bailey (Class of 1921, Music 1924) at the Joseph Bond Chapel in Chicago. He took over as College Dean in 1928 after the position became vacant. In September of 1928, Dr. Evans accepted the position of President of Brandon College, thus becoming its fifth president. Dr. Evans was head of the college at a very difficult time. He guided the College through the Depression and repeated threats of closure. Dr. Evans resurrected the Department of Theology and led the reorganization of Brandon College into a non-denominational college in 1938 affiliated with the University of Manitoba. During World War II, Dr. Evans started a War Emergency Fund aimed at keeping the College from sinking into debt during the war years as enrollment shrank. With increased financial support from the government, Dr. Evans also began expansion plans for the College. In 1958, he created the Dr. J.R.C. Evans Student Loan Fund in conjunction with the Alumni Association in order to provide worthy students with interest-free loans. It was also in 1958 that Dr. Evans was awarded the Queen Elizabeth Coronation Medal for his outstanding contribution to education in the British Commonwealth. On July 29, 1959, Dr. Evans died suddenly at his summer home in Robson, British Columbia. On his desk was the programme for the sod-turning ceremony for the new Arts and Library Building and Lecture Theatre. When it was completed, the Lecture Theatre was christened the Dr. J.R.C. Evans Lecture Theatre on behalf of the man who had made sure that it would be built. The Theatre had been his dream, a place to hold Chapel and Assemblies, as the student body grew in number.

Evangelical Mennonite Mission Conference of Canada

  • Corporate body

The Evangelical Mennonite Mission Conference was formed on July 1, 1959 from the Rudnerweider Mennonite Church, which had been organized in 1937 as a result of division from the Sommerfeld Mennonite church over its desire for renewal. The Rudnerweider Mennonite Church was led by four ministers, William H. Falk (1892-1976), Peter S. Zacharias (1893-1957), Gerhard J. Froese (1901-1947), and Isaac A. Hoeppner (1884-1955). These four had been inspired by the revival meetings held by Isaac P. Friesen in Reinfeld, Manitoba in 1934.

In total 1100 adult members left the Sommerfeld Mennonite church to become a part of the Rudnerweider Mennonite Church. William Falk was elected as Bishop on January 8, 1937. Between February and May of 1937 seven ministers were elected. They included: Cornelius G. Stoesz from Rudnerweide, Peter D. Berg from Schoenthal, Jacob H. Friesen from Neubergthal, Isaac P. F. Friesen from Rosenbach, Isaac J. Fehr from Waldheim, Jacob E. Nickel from Reinland, and Jacob P. Bergen from Kronsweide.

The church spread to western Manitoba, to the Interlake region of Manitoba, to Saskatchewan, Ontario, Texas, Belize, Bolivia, and Mexico.

A shift to more decentralized leadership and more local congregational autonomy led to the formation of the Evangelical Mennonite Mission Conference (EMMC) in 1959 with annual conventions and various boards which would continue to tie the various local congregations together. This was led by the new bishop J.H. Friesen who was ordained in 1955.

<p/> The church / conference kept it members informed through publications such as the Jugendtag, Der Leitstern, and the EMMC Recorder. The church also supported schools in Manitoba such as Mennonite Collegiate Institute (MCI) in Gretna, Elim Bible School in Altona and Steinbach Bible Institute (SBI). The Aylmer Bible School in Ontario was established in 1976 by the church. In 1957 a radio ministry was begun and later the conference also ran a summer daily vacation Bible School (DVBS) for its youth. Missions to Northern Manitoba and Latin America were undertaken by the conference in addition to sending its people to serve under other Mennonite agencies.

The Rudnerweider church was concerned with the secular influence of radio broadcasts and therefore was an early supporter of Radio CFAM which was founded in Altona, Manitoba in 1957. It was seen as an alternative radio station that promoted wholesome values. The radio station offered air time to the church. I.P.F. Friesen, Edwin Klippenstein, and G.H. Penner served as the radio committee and on March 1957, the High German program Die Evangelishe Botshaft was aired with Bishop Wilhelm H. Falk as speaker. In 2008 the program was still on the air in the Low German language.

In 1990 the adult church membership was 3,470 in 24 independent congregations and nine mission stations. The denominational offices are in Winnipeg.

The conference pastors that have given leadership were Henry Dueck (1986-), Jack Heppner and Allen Kehler.

Whidden, Evan McDonald, 1898-1980

  • Person

Evan McDonald Whidden (1898-1980) was born in Galt, Ontario to Dr. Howard P. and Katherine Louise Whidden. He was educated at Brandon College. Following service in the Great War he graduated Bachelor of Arts from McMaster University (Brandon College) in 1921. He obtained a Master of Arts in history (McMaster [n.d.]) and in 1928 a Bachelor of Divinity degree from Yale. Dr.Whidden married Frances Margaret Billington in 1941. Together they had three children: Howard John (b.1943), Roberta Katherine (b. 1945) and Eric Christopher (b. 1947). Dr. Whidden served in Baptist churches in Saskatchewan and Manitoba before joining the faculty of Brandon College in 1936. In 1938, he was appointed Thomas J. Armstrong Professor of church history at Acadia University. He became Dean of the School of Theology at Acadia in 1954 and served in that capacity until 1963. He retired from the faculty of Acadia University in 1967. Dr. Whidden has written in the field of church history and education. He was awarded honorary degrees by the Pine Hill Divinity Hall, Halifax, N.S. (1950), McMaster University [n.d.]and Acadia University (1969).

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