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Mennonite Heritage Centre appoints archivist

Conrad Stoesz

Winnipeg, Man.—Conrad Stoesz has been hired in a permanent position as archivist (half-time) for the Mennonite Heritage Centre. Stoesz has previously worked at the centre on six different occasions from 1992-2000, working on various projects.

At the Mennonite Heritage Centre, Stoesz will be responsible for adding new historical resources to the existing archives, and identifying, cataloguing, locating, and retrieving records for researchers.

"Conrad brings a youthful enthusiasm and a keen interest in Mennonite history to his work. He also has research and writing strengths, and is very active in his church," said Alf Redekopp, heritage centre director.

Stoesz credits a grade eleven family history project for piquing his interest in Mennonite history, and says his passion for history is on the same scale as the treasure trove of historical documents in the centre's vault.

"If you made one stack out of all the papers in the archive centre, it would be as high as the CN Tower," said Stoesz.

Stoesz holds a Bachelor of Theology (CMBC) and a Bachelor of Arts, History major (University of Winnipeg). He has written for the Mennonite Historian, Heritage Posting, and Preservings. More recently he served as chair for the 125th Anniversary Committee which organized numerous events to celebrate the 125th anniversary of Mennonites of Manitoba's West Reserve (Altona/Winkler area), as well as a volunteer for the 125th celebration of east reserve Mennonites in 1999. He has also completed a pastoral internship at Sargent Avenue Mennonite Church in Winnipeg.

"Mennonite history and the church is necessarily theology," says Stoesz. "I see this job as closely tied to the church."

Stoesz began his official appointment on August 2. Originally from Altona, Manitoba, he is now a member of Sargent Avenue Mennonite Church in Winnipeg where he serves as youth sponsor, refugee sponsor, and preaches occasionally. Stoesz also works half time at the Centre for Mennonite Brethern Studies. He lives in Winnipeg with his wife Michelle Stoesz.