Program: “Surprises encountered when writing the history of Mennonites in Ontario” by Sam Steiner

Sam Steiner programThe Mennonite Heritage Center invites the public to the program “Seven surprises encountered when writing the history of Mennonites in Ontario” by author Sam Steiner on Thursday evening, October 15 at 7:30 pm. The program is based on his new book In Search of Promised Lands: A Religious History of Mennonite in Ontario (Herald Press, 2015).

In Search of Promised Lands describes the emergence and evolution of today’s 30-plus streams of Ontarians who have identified themselves as Mennonite or Amish from their arrival in Canada to the last decade. Author Steiner also considers how various Mennonite groups have adapted to or resisted evangelical fundamentalism and mainline Protestantism, and identifies the nineteenth- and twentieth-century shifts toward personal salvation and away from submission to the church community.

Sam Steiner grew up in the home of a Mennonite pastor and school teacher. During the Vietnam War he became a draft resister and moved to Canada in 1968. He studied history and library science, served as Librarian and Archivist at Conrad Grebel University College (affiliated with the University of Waterloo) for almost 34 years, retiring in 2008. He is married to a retired Mennonite pastor. He wrote two earlier books, Vicarious Pioneer: The Life of Jacob Y. Shantz (1988) and Lead Us On: A History of Rockway Mennonite Collegiate, 1945-1995 (1995).  He has an ongoing historical blog for In Search of Promised Lands at

Copies of his book will be available for signing. The program is open to the public with no registration needed. Admission is by donation.