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Fall 1997 · Vol. 26 No. 2 · pp. 26–38 

J. B. as Missiologist

Clarence Hiebert

The contemporary roster of Mennonite Brethren (MB) recognized as “missiologists” is fairly high for its approximately 52,000 membership in North America. “Missiology” is a relatively recent discipline in academic settings. Mission theology and methodology have become important topics in the wider church during the past two centuries. They have always been a priority of the Mennonite Brethren.

The efforts of the past decade to internationalize MB ministries in evangelism, church-planting, mutual concerns, and service are a fulfillment of the vision shared by Toews and by many of his fellow MB constituents.


Some contemporary MB “missiologists” hold degrees in Missiology. The most notable in North America are Dr. Hans Kasdorf (formerly of the Mennonite Brethren Biblical Seminary) and the late Dr. George W. Peters. Dr. Nzash Lumeya, Republic of Congo, and Dr. Johannes Rei-mer, Germany, are two others. In addition, there are missiologists who have not pursued formal degrees in this discipline but in related fields such as theology, linguistics, anthropology, sociology, world religions, and cross-cultural studies. Anthropologist Dr. Paul Hiebert, Professor of Missiology and Chairperson of the Missiology Department, Trinity Theological Seminary (formerly at Fuller Theological Seminary’s School of World Mission), is the best known and a prolific contributor {27} as a researcher, missions consultant, lecturer, and author. Other such persons include Dr. Jacob A. Loewen (linguist) and the late Dr. Peter Hamm (sociologist).

Russian-born J. B. Toews must be included in such a list. Although he never perceived himself as a missiologist and felt his roles in missions agencies were largely thrust upon him, his expertise and interests definitely include missiology. His life-shaping involvements comprise experiences and studies in South Russia, Holland, Canada, and the United States. His international exposures enabled him to converse in German, Russian, Low German, and English. In addition, he had some knowledge of Dutch and biblical Greek.

Though initially aspiring to become a physician in Russia, his education after leaving the former USSR in 1928 included undergraduate and graduate studies in the liberal arts and theology. His first vocational appointment, at age twenty-six, was as administrator and instructor at Bethany Bible Institute, Hepburn, Saskatchewan. His pursuit of graduate studies for a doctorate in theology was never completed. Tabor College, Hillsboro, Kansas, his alma mater where he pursued two years of liberal arts and theological studies, later bestowed upon him an honorary doctorate. Prior to receiving this doctorate, he had earned both a Bachelor of Theology and a Master of Theology degree at Western Baptist Theological Seminary of Portland, Oregon. Theology and biblical studies, not missiology, were his primary focus, and it is doubtful that he ever taught courses in missions prior to coming to the MB seminary.


His missiology expertise developed later. In part, this was prompted by the strong missionary emphasis of his MB moorings and by involvement as a member of the Mission Board. He eventually served on that board as executive secretary. The chronology of Toews’ experiences is helpful for understanding the development of his missiology. In addition to his roles as executive secretary for MB missionary endeavors and as Professor of Missiology at Mennonite Brethren Biblical Seminary, one can note preaching, teaching and administrative responsibilities that schooled him for his missiological tasks.

1930-1932 – Student, Tabor College, Hillsboro, KS (liberal arts and theology)

1933-1938 – Administrator and teacher at Bethany Bible Institute, Hepburn, SK

1938-1940 – Graduate studies Western Baptist Theological Seminary, Portland, OR {28}

1940-1942 – Instructor in Bible, Freeman Jr. College and Academy, Freeman, SD

1942-1945 – Pastor, MB Church, Buhler, KS

1945-1948 – President/Professor, MB Bible College, Winnipeg, MB

1948-1953 – Pastor, MB Church, Reedley, CA

1953-1963 – Executive Secretary, MB Missions, Hillsboro, KS

1963-1972 – President/Professor of Theology/Missiology, MB Biblical Seminary, Fresno, CA

1972-1982 – Executive Secretary and Archivist, Center for MB Studies and adjunct professor, MB Biblical Seminary, Fresno, CA

In surveying his publications (see “A Partial Bibliography of Writings” in this issue), one notes the many articles devoted to missiology. The most specific theoretical statement by Toews in this field is probably a typed manuscript of his lecture notes used at the MB seminary in the late 1970s. Other major documents that are most helpful in this pursuit are his 1993 Pilgrimage of Faith, his 1995 autobiography, J B: The Autobiography of a Twentieth-Century Mennonite Pilgrim, a three-part video, “The Mennonite Brethren Church: A Missionary Movement” (1988), and the reports he authored, 1953-1963, for the Mission Board and Conferences.

He was never involved formally in a long-term, cross-cultural mission assignment. Nor did he publish a book on this topic. Many current middle-aged Mennonite Brethren know his missiological position through his dramatic and impassioned sermons. He included vivid reports of administrative mission visits abroad. His illustrations and storytelling, alongside the Bible-based mandates, were very influential. He spoke throughout North American MB congregations on the subject of missions at General Conference sessions and at “Missions Conferences.”


During the past century, missiological interests and expertise blossomed among the MBs. This milieu was significant in his development. It is helpful to understand Toews’ moorings in the context of these settings and times, of which four aspects are significant.

First, evangelism and missionary outreach has been a central emphasis for MBs. Their history is rooted in sixteenth-century Anabaptism. Only “Anabaptist” theology, one of the four sixteenth-century European reform movements, represented a “Free (adult believers) Church” concept. A church of “Christ-believers/followers by a personal, deliberate choice” was distinguished by the symbol of baptism administered {29} to adults. This position contrasts the Constantinian “church/state” membership practice (infant baptism) that had developed since the fourth century. Anabaptists protested the practice of persons becoming “Christian” through the traditionally imposed baptism of all infants.

Second, the 1860 “awakening” which triggered the formation of the MB Church in South Russia was characterized by intensive Bible study. There was a reaction against the traditional ways of mainstream “Kirchliche” Mennonites, the name given to mainline Mennonites of Russia whose sixteenth-century beginnings stemmed from Northwestern Europe and Prussia. Their faith was perceived as lethargic, lacking spiritual vitality. MBs felt that their contemporary Kirchliche colleagues, nearly two hundred and fifty years after Anabaptist beginnings, no longer espoused or practiced the vitality of their forebears. They sought newness of life. Knowing that they no longer wanted to follow their traditions, they immersed themselves in Bible studies. What they should believe, be committed to, and how to express that in Christ-given and Spirit-empowered ways were driving motivations in their new situation.

Thirdly, MBs generally have been the most avant-garde in missionary and evangelistic endeavors among the Anabaptist/Mennonite progeny since the nineteenth century. This is true not only of nineteenth-century European Russia, but also, after the 1870s, in North America.

Finally, this awakening was seen as “opening windows.” MBs welcomed influences, insights and inspiration beyond their own ranks. Their pursuits led them to greater awareness of other Christian movements and denominations who were experiencing God’s direction. Such vitality was recognized in Evangelical and Pietistic expressions. Foreign missionary Bible societies, home Bible study and prayer groups, missionary endeavors, emerging Bible schools and seminaries, and particular musical styles were some of the movements that inspired them. These innovations stirred their creativity, and some other Mennonite bodies gradually incorporated the results as well.


In the 192-page, seventeen-chapter, typewritten manuscript captioned “Biblical Basis for Missions,” we probably have a good summary of Toews’ missiology. These are lectures he delivered in his Missiology course while at Fresno’s Mennonite Brethren Biblical Seminary. The purpose, he states, is “to consider the Book of Acts as an encyclopedia of missions . . . [addressing] . . . the spiritual, social, cultural, and strategy questions of the missionary assignment of the church in the past as well as its contemporary setting” {30} (p. 1).

By and large, Toews’ missiology is biblio-centric in expression as shaped through his Anabaptist/MB heritage. Yet it is not an exegesis of the Book of Acts. Nor does it offer numerous references from available missiological writings. The lectures tend to be sermonic, incorporating illustrations from his pastoral and executive mission post experiences.

Seminary students who have taken this course assert that it contains virtually the same content and basic outline as J. B. employed to teach other courses, such as “The MB Church” and “MB Theology.” A possible conclusion is that such incorporation reflects his strong conviction that theology, history, biblical studies, and missiology must, in the final analysis, be seen as one holistic matter.

His missiology shares much in common with his contemporary “Free Church” evangelical contemporaries. There are also significant differences. Unlike many who are Evangelical, Premillennial Dispensationalists, he does not allude to the “hastening the day of the Lord” eschatological orientation they espouse in their missiology. The following summary, taken from his missiology lectures, offers an overview of his emphases.

1. A Christocentric Mandate. Toews regards Jesus’ ascension and final words as a basic issue in evangelism and missions; it is a Christocentric mandate. He objects to anthropologically-oriented missiology which tends to focus on the “human predicament” rather than on Christ’s commission. “The focus of redemption is not anchored in man’s predicament. It is anchored in the glory of God, the supremacy of God and the exaltation of God” (p. 20). “Missions only makes sense in the light of the complete triumphant power of Christ . . . not from the perspective of the predicament of men” (pp. 22-23).

2. Avoiding Utilitarianism. When mission is viewed as “utilitarian”—the benefit it brings—one recognizes a motivation that is linked to self-preservation. Jesus, however, said: “If any one wishes to come after Me, let him deny himself, take up his cross, and follow Me” (p. 32). Though self-preservation has frequently motivated people to accept the gospel (and these should not be rejected for this), the missionary assignment must focus on the primary emphasis: proclaiming the indwelling Christ (p. 33).

3. An Invitation to Discipleship. Christ’s invitation to belief is not merely a self-benefiting provision (as many contemporary missionaries emphasize) but an invitation to relate to Christ as his disciple. It is distinctly a volitional choice, cost what it will (p. 36). Toews regards baptism as an expression of one’s identification of self-denial (death/burial imagery). Discipleship implies teachableness and receptive-readiness to “observe all that I (Jesus) have commanded you.” This becomes the standard of the {31} disciple’s lifestyle. Again, the focus is Christocentric (pp. 37-40).

4. Individualism Rejected. Toews rejects the contemporary, rampant individualism broadly espoused. God offers his illumination to a corporate body not only to an individual. “Our volitional disposition must be conditioned to recognize the corporate function as superseding the individual interpretation in reliability. . . . Confirmation comes through the corporate body” (p. 47). It is not only insight, but the lived-out application of unity and love that expresses the corporate body. “The Holy Spirit and the community join to express that which God would wish to be accomplished” (p. 48). This relational interdependence curbs the individualism which some may regard as the “Spirit’s work.” If an authoritarian individual demands exception from corporate confirmation and the Spirit’s confirmation, his word should be questioned (pp. 45-53). In missionary and church-planting ventures, problem solving, direction setting, and decision making are cardinal. Understanding God’s agenda, purposes, and will is a priority.

5. Caring for the Whole Person. The holistic ministries of Jesus and the apostles model the kind of responsibilities included in Christian witness. Christ’s mandate and example is to meet physical and spiritual needs. Missionary movements have struggled with balancing the implications of this mandate. Expressing one extreme or another is the problem—only “soul saving” emphases or striving only for social betterment. “The interrelationship of responsibility between the physical and spiritual must not be separated” (p. 72). Revealing Jesus is the central focus in all ministering

6. Spontaneous Witness. A constant, consistent readiness to be a Christ-witness with words and in the stream of life’s unraveling realities is at the heart of Christian mission. Spontaneity as seen in Stephen’s Spirit-empowered sermon to Jesus-defiers exemplifies this (Acts 7-8). Martyrdom followed and the persecuted scattered. This dispersion of witness-ready Christians, for Toews, illustrates the ideal missionary mindset. Significant, life-changing encounters with the risen Christ fueled them to share their Christian faith dynamically and spontaneously. That is what they did in locales to which they scattered. “If the redemptive provision of God is genuinely experienced it will become a spontaneous dimension that cannot be contained, it has to be shared” (pp. 113-14). Toews asserts that sharing what Christ has come to mean can be more effective than preaching.

7. Conversion and Christ’s Lordship. Toews focuses on the essence of Christian conversion. Two questions the Apostle Paul asked at his initial Christ-encounter represent the cardinal issues of conversion: {32} “Who art thou?” and then, “What wilt thou have me to do?” The need for a true recognition of Christ, followed by subordination to Him, are the basic issues (p. 12). “When conversion is a concept of accepting a provision without the basic concept of subordination we will experience difficulties. . . . The principle of Lordship is central to the concept of conversion” (p. 127). “Throughout [Paul’s] ministry the Lordship of Jesus cancels his right for self-determination in subordination to God and to the brethren” (p. 128). This principle makes all bona fide Christians “missionary.” They are accessible for God’s usefulness and glory.

8. Corporate Subordination. The Acts 15 experience addresses, for Toews, subordination to co-workers in missionary endeavors. “In this relationship [Paul] had learned a dependence on the corporate communication that God gives” (p. 128). The Holy Spirit may offer a special revelation to an individual. Before acting on this as “God’s will,” Paul reported this “revelation” to the corporate body of believers to seek their confirmation. In the life of the church, such interdependence avoids pitfalls that can occur when autocratic leadership is tempted to be independent. People who implicitly tend to trust autocratic leaders may not be aware of power that can be usurped unquestioningly.

9. Diverse Methodology. On the basis of Acts 10, Toews argues for diverse missionary methodology and church models to accommodate different cultural styles and settings. He says the realization that one can/should make relevant accommodations in communication patterns is biblically appropriate and “liberating.” “[Peter] had to be redeemed from tradition, forms and demands which were to be the expression of a relationship to God and recognize that there are new forms through which the Holy Spirit will manifest himself” (p. 141; see also pp. 143-56).

10. Servant Leadership. Instead of viewing leadership as persons in “high positions,” it must be noted that biblically understood leadership is “servanthood.” Ordination has been widely misunderstood. “Laying on of hands is the identification of the corporate body in confirmation that they share the deep realization that God’s hand is upon that brother or sister. . . . The laying on of hands is not a symbol of status or of office, but a relational function” (p. 157).

11. The Importance of Training. The missionary assignment is not simply to “win converts.” It is “making disciples among all nations, baptizing them.” Toews regards an evangelizing endeavor as something more than a “rescue mission.” Paul’s experiences with the Corinthian Christians attest to the intense discipling/training encounters missionaries may have in church planting, and the cost of doing so. Accomplishing this is usually due more to what the missionaries model {33} in their lives than to what they teach (pp. 162-63).

12. Spiritual Discernment Required. Missionaries often assert that the urgency of “needs seen” was the primary motivation for their sensing “God’s call” to the mission field. Toews considers this dangerous. He argues that “need alone is never the criteria. There are many other aspects that have to be considered . . . not only the issue of the circumstantial situation. This demands a waiting before God and asking for his guidance. . . . Recognize that the selection for proclamation of the gospel is also distinctly a prerogative, subject to supernatural guidance and direction” (pp. 167-69). Nor, similarly, must the primary sense of call be based on demographic and other technical, sociological analyses of data so readily available today. “Spiritual discernment supercedes the important factor of the circumstantial and sociological aspect” (p. 180).

Toews summarizes Paul’s missionary approach using three expressions:

(1) Identification — “I have become all things to all men.”

(2) Infiltration — “always speaking from inside of their position . . . where the people are.”

(3) Confrontation — “from inside their value patterns . . . [Paul] challenges the correctness of their position.”


The theoretical missiological position which Toews espoused was basically consistent with his Anabaptist/MB moorings, while influenced by other contemporary Evangelically-oriented missiologists. Applying his methodology administratively was put to the test in his executive position with the MB Missions/Services agency from 1953 to 1963.

As noted, many of his prior experiences served him well in this position. His preparations for doing so were significant: his international experiences, multilingual fluency, teaching/administering in educational institutions, preaching in congregations, and serving on an increasing number of conference boards and committees. He had become widely known in and beyond the MB constituency, particularly for his dynamic and influential persuasive preaching abilities as well as for being a respected theologian.

During these years some of his interpersonal, one-on-one relational skills, as Toews himself says, were generally not as satisfying to parishioners, educational colleagues, and missionary contacts. The European-styled, authoritarian manner in which he had been raised and schooled in Russia and Canada earned him respect and authenticity, but tended to be somewhat intimidating. Canadian MBs, most of them more recent immigrants, {34} more readily accepted and positively regarded this kind of leadership style, at least up to the mid-century.

In that era and setting, ministers were generally highly respected and considered to be the most trustworthy. They were “in charge.” They were generally perceived as honorable speakers and administrators. Some pastoral aspects in that era, such as counseling and casual relationships, were not as demanding as pastoring has become since then. With the laity’s increase of educational opportunities, interests, and broader vocations beyond farming, ministers gradually lost some of the power status they had developed. Traditionally, they had been regarded the most educated, informed, and wise persons in the community. Confidence was placed in them as leaders because they were closest to “understanding God’s ways.”

In his decade as the MB missions administrator (1953-63), Toews was widely appreciated for his strengths in espousing a biblical missiology. He was seen as a knowledgeable, enthusiastic, influential advocate, teacher, and inspiring preacher on missions throughout the North American constituency. He was an assertive administrator of approximately two hundred Mennonite Brethren missionaries serving in Europe, Asia, Africa, and South America.

The perception that Toews was intimidating, authoritarian, and autocratic was noted among some missionaries. Missionary complaints about their inability to feel open to dialogue with him in matters of mission methodology increased considerably during the decade of his administration. In addition to his perceived intimidating style, one must, of course, recognize the other complex variables that made his administration so tense during those years.


MBs, as with most other aggressive mission agencies, were facing one of the most difficult times in modern missions: the indigenization of native churches resulting from foreign mission endeavors. Between 1945 and 1990, forty-four new nations emerged from their years of domination by Western colonial powers. The targeted areas of MB missions had, by that time, focused primarily on colonial countries: India’s outcaste people, China’s poor, the Belgian Congo’s rural, tribal people, and Paraguay’s nomadic Indian tribes in the Chaco (Pilgrimage, 262).

Both the foreign missionaries and the Christian converts suffered frustrations and struggles. The missionaries with their compound-centered approach focused on “saving souls” had developed clusters of converted natives. An essentially paternalistic approach offered missionary {35} guidance, provision and leadership. Missionaries functioned independently and authoritatively. Natives regarded them largely as “fathers and mothers in Christ” (J B, 159). This was especially true of the older missionaries. In part, they emulated the kind of colonialism under which they lived. The native people expected this, adjusted to this, could not really conceive of “white people” among them in any different way. But with the movement toward self-identity and nationalism and the demise of colonialism, things changed.

The difficulty for the missionaries had to do with trusting nationals in decision making and continuing leadership, with their use of funds needed to support the institutions which the missionaries had established and supported: clinics and hospitals, schools, printing presses, the construction of church buildings, and the support of native ministers and workers. Some missionaries were also threatened by this move, knowing that it would end the ministry to which they had devoted their lifelong vocation in these places.

Up until this time many mission agencies similar to MB missions did not send executive administrators to the foreign places of ministry. It was regarded as too costly. Usually the recommendations of the missionary personnel were formulated by an on-the-field “missionary council.” They would send their recommended requests and funds requirements to their sponsoring constituencies. These would normally be acted upon by the mission board, then recommended (as approved or modified) to the periodic (usually triennial) gathering of conference delegates for ratification. Senior missionaries tended to supervise rather large “fields” over which they were “in charge” of the programs in process.

When Toews became the MB executive, he and the Mission Board were becoming aware of how crucial indigenization was. He and the board’s increasing awareness of missiological trends, post-colonialism’s pressures by native Christians to be self-governing, and the urgency to train national leadership, heightened the need for Toews and board members to make field visits to ascertain next steps toward indigenization. The threat missionaries felt, the challenge and inabilities many nationals experienced in moving into leadership, and the tendencies toward being intimidated by Toews along with these “field visits” to missionaries and nationals, was a juxtaposition that created tension and anxiety (J B, 159-63; Pilgrimage, 262-73).


The new indigenization goals were set at the 1957 MB Conference with the slogan, “Partnership in Obedience.” The transition was painful, {36} slow, and tedious for all. Interdependence was a hoped-for immediate step in planning and decision making. A subordination of the national Christians to the control of American Christians continued to be felt. On the part of their American partners, national conferences felt frustrated by the democratic style which was expected. From the standpoint of their own native cultural moorings, the selection and style of governance and leadership which their American partners seemed to demand did not “happen” satisfactorily. The matter of funds and the trained personnel needed to “support the American-begun programs” became another difficult hurdle.

Indigenization was complex and difficult. It was most readily accomplished in areas such as Japan and Europe which had higher literacy rates and had made greater strides in technological expertise. India and the Republic of Congo had the greatest struggle. The challenging transition which fell on Toews’ shoulders was frustrating. Decades later, even up to the present, he has found it difficult to understand why indigenization and the next step taken, internationalization, has been so difficult to attain.

Perhaps a part of this frustration stems from the successful accomplishments Toews had in the Western world, in his influential roles with endeavors undertaken there where the levels of culture, economics, and socio-political arrangements were closer to his own moorings. He expressed mistrust occasionally in what the social sciences (e.g., anthropology, sociology) had to offer in missiological endeavors, which may reflect a part of this frustration. In the contexts of his statements about the social sciences, his comments were appropriate: they should not provide the primary direction-giving guidance for missiological ventures. Dr. Paul Hiebert, in contrast, is noted for his positive emphasis on anthropological insights which are beneficial in missionary endeavors.

Toews’ concern for indigenization was not new. As early as 1854, Henry Venn, the Secretary of the Church Missionary Society in London, had defined the aims of missionary endeavors. He called on mission personnel to work with native people toward self-governing, self-supporting, and self-propagating churches. He viewed foreign mission activity as something transitional. He anticipated the formation of churches totally led by national leaders taking all of the functions of a church. Missionaries would then be free to go to new unevangelized areas. Toews was at the helm as the administrator when he and the Board took the most courageous and strongest steps toward that goal. The first step toward indigenization was to move in that direction: “mission with{37} rather than “mission to” a given national body.

By the 1950s missionary compounds of “American Christian missionaries” with their special houses, American technological equipment (radios, telephones, refrigerators), automobiles, and schools had already been established and used as comfortable havens among the many poor and disadvantaged whom they were evangelizing. These compounds served as the hub where schools, printing presses, medical clinics, church building, and other important services of ministry were headquartered. Nationals only became a part of these ventures in subservient ways.


Toews and other Mission board members, for the first time in the history of MB missions, made several field visits to process changes, both with missionaries and with nationals. The intensity of interpersonal tensions which had developed during the Toews decade subsequently resulted in the appointment of Vernon Wiebe as the next executive secretary. Wiebe was not a recognized missiologist. His expertise was in interpersonal relationships and in being a catalyst for team formation and spirit for ministries. This indicates, in part, how intense things had become during this transition.

One other missiological note can be added with reference to Toews. In inter-Mennonite endeavors, like Mennonite World Conferences and Mennonite Central Committee gatherings, he exercised a strong missionary emphasis and influence in calling all Mennonites to give greater attention to Christ’s missionary mandate. Mennonites tended to have a number of other agendas, from their traditions to avant-garde issues, that threatened to usurp the priority which MBs and other “evangelical” Mennonites considered missions should have in those years. These were emphases that Toews, and others, felt should be secondary to the missionary mandate.

The decade in which Toews was the missions executive was a crucial era of focusing on indigenization. It was urgent that missionaries move toward “making themselves and their leadership unnecessary” by training native Christians to take their places. This was threatening and difficult; some regarded it as impossible. It meant “letting go;” it meant “trusting;” it meant shifts from North American ways to native ways. There was a seesawing back and forth: on the one hand, the insistence that national conferences, committees, and boards “take over” management, on the other, the continuation of having some positions filled by missionaries. {38}


Toews has been one of the most important MB missiologists, both in terms of his Bible-based mission theology, and in the aggressive way he needed to work with the shift from missionary-centered evangelization to indigenization of national churches. His tendency to resist insights from the social sciences to enhance cross-cultural ministries is unfortunate. His earlier intimidating relational style has changed radically since then. His counsel and advice are sought by many. The slow process of indigenization which was so frustrating for him, particularly in the less developed countries and in radically different cultures, is understandable and should have been anticipated.

One should also commend those early missionaries who, without the blizzard of missiological studies, books, and learning opportunities available today, went into far-flung places to share the gospel. Though some of the models they used, in retrospect, are regarded as problematic, their courage to go with the best motives and insights they had is commendable. By God’s grace, their service miraculously “happened,” resulting in blessings far beyond expectation. We would do well to ask ourselves how the insights and expertise we presently consider to be indispensable will be regarded by those who critically analyze our missiological efforts a hundred years from now.

It is noteworthy that the ministries undertaken by Mennonite Brethren have resulted in established Christ-believing bodies in many countries of the world, and now total about 250,000 members. Those who were involved, like Toews, have served faithfully in obedience to the mandate of Christ to share that gospel. The efforts of the past decade to internationalize MB ministries in evangelism, church-planting, mutual concerns, and service are a fulfillment of the vision shared by Toews and by many of his fellow MB constituents.


  • Toews, J. B. “Biblical Basis for Mission.” Typescript of lecture notes, 1978(?). The Center for Mennonite Brethren Studies, Fresno, CA.
  • __———. J B: The Autobiography of a Twentieth-Century Mennonite Pilgrim. Fresno, CA: Center for Mennonite Brethren Studies, 1995.
  • __———. A Pilgrimage of Faith: The Mennonite Brethren Church in Russia and North America 1860-1990. Winnipeg, MB and Hillsboro, KS: Kindred Press, 1993.
Clarence Hiebert served as professor of Religious History, Cross-Cultural Studies, and Bible at Tabor College, 1962-1991, where he also taught courses in missions. He was a friend and teaching colleague of J. B. Toews at Tabor and they served together on the Board of Mennonite Brethren Missions/Services, 1969-1979.

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