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New history project holds first editorial meetings

   
 


U.S. and Canadian editorial committees from left, Abe Dueck, John Thiesen, Kevin Enns-Rempel, Peggy Goertzen, Rich Preheim, Sam Steiner, David Rempel Smucker, Bert Friesen, David Giesbrecht, Beth Graybill, Peter Penner, Richard Thiessen, Alf Redekopp, Victor Wiebe and John Sharp. Not pictured Linda Huebert Hecht.

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January 6, 2006
-by John Sharp

Winnipeg, Man. – The capacity for the Anabaptist and Mennonite faith community to share its stories just got a lot bigger.

The Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online (GAMEO) has been broadened with the addition of the Mennonite Church USA Historical Committee and the binational Mennonite Brethren Historical Commission as partners.

A U.S. editorial committee has been formed to work with a Canadian committee under the oversight of a management board. GAMEO originated with the Canadian Mennonite Encyclopedia Online begun by the Mennonite Historical Society of Canada in 1996.

The editorial committees of GAMEO represent a new international Anabaptist history initiative for the Internet. During their first meeting at the Centre for Mennonite Brethren Studie in Winnipeg (Dec. 1 and 2), the group initiated plans to put the entire five volumes of the current Mennonite Encyclopedia online, select writers to update existing articles and write new ones, then edit the submissions.

The GAMEO Internet site currently has about 2,500 articles, mostly carried over from the Canadian Mennonite Encyclopedia Online, plus about 125 confessions of faith and other denominational statements.

Organizers hope GAMEO will eventually include articles from the Anabaptist family around the world and be available in multiple languages. At the start, however, it will focus on the United States and Canada and be only in English.

In addition to three Mennonite historical organizations, GAMEO is seeking to add more partners. The Winnipeg meeting included visits with Hutterite representatives to invite their participation.

U.S. editorial committee members include: chair John Sharp (Hesston, Kan.), Kevin Enns-Rempel (Fresno, Calif.), Peggy Goertzen (Hillsboro, Kan.), Beth Graybill (Lancaster, Pa.), Rich Preheim (Elkhart, Ind.), David Rempel Smucker (Lancaster, Pa.), and John Thiesen (Newton, Kan.)

Canadian committee members include: chair Bert Friesen, (Winnipeg, Man.) Abe Dueck, (Winnipeg, Man.), David Giesbrecht (Abbotsford, B.C.) Linda Huebert Hecht (Waterloo, Ont.), Peter Penner, (Calgary, Alta.), Alf Redekopp (Winnipeg, Man.), Sam Steiner (Waterloo, Ont.), Richard Thiessen (Abbotsford, B.C.) and Victor Wiebe (Saskatoon, Sask.).

The management board includes: Friesen (chair), Steiner (managing editor), Dueck and Sharp.

Contact: John Sharp, (620) 327-8428; johns@hesston.edu