Todd Scoles, senior associate pastor at Northwest Chapel Grace Brethren Fellowship in Dublin, OH, and vice-chair of the Brethren Missionary Herald Co. board, has again been digging around in Grace Brethren history archives.
Here are a few nuggets he recently shared with his colleagues in the North Central Ohio district:
The first National Conference (then called Annual Meeting) of the Brethren was held in 1778. Here are a few random highlights from history:
1790 (Schuylkill County, PA) – Brethren were prohibited from holding communion with those who baptize backwards (English Baptists).
1827 (Lancaster County, PA) – Mutton was affirmed as the proper meat for the Love Feast.
1849 (Somerset County, PA) – Churches were not permitted to debar people from fellowship based on race.
1853 (Beaver Dam, MD) – Women wearing ear-rings or jewels were not allowed at the communion table.
1858 (Carroll County, IN) – Beef allowed as a substitute for lamb at the Love Feast.
1860 (Limestone Church, TN) – People are permitted to use medicine after being anointed with oil by the elders.
1875 (Miami County, OH) – Churches are prohibited from making indoor pools for baptisms.