His Name Was John

The Life Story of an Early Mennonite Leader

By Barbara F. Coffman

His Name Was John

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  • ISBN: 9781592443123
  • Pages: 352
  • Publication Date: 8/18/2003
  • Retail Price: $36.00
Web Price: $28.80
Web Price: $28.80

His Name Was John

The Life Story of an Early Mennonite Leader

By Barbara F. Coffman

paperback-logo

PAPERBACK

  • ISBN: 9781592443123
  • Pages: 352
  • Publication Date: 8/18/2003
  • Retail Price: $36.00
Web Price: $28.80

About-

Does the age produce the man, or does the man produce the age? It can be argued both ways. John S. Coffman, Mennonite evangelist, writer, and organizer, was born at a time when his church, long the "quiet in the land," needed leaders to show the way to a more vital spiritual life and a more effective Christian witness in the world. Into this vacuum of need came this dynamic man, with just exactly the qualities of character and the spiritual and natural gifts to accomplish this task. Although he died young, his years were sufficient to make a powerful impression on the church of his fathers, the church he loved and for which he poured out his life.

A granddaughter has immersed herself for a number of years in the life and work and influence of this great man. She has heard the recollections of her father, S.F. Coffman, who walked in the footsteps of his father to become also a great church leader. She accumulated the reminiscences of other members of the family and of older people who knew her subject intimately. She found many primary sources of information, such as files of old letters and her grandfather's diaries. She spent time in both Virginia and Indiana to absorb atmosphere and setting for a competent biography.

The author chose to use a semi fictional form for her story. All quotes from letters and diaries are verbatim. Conversation is constructed from this factual background, using a good deal of the colloquial style which she knows the principals of the story used. The result is a biography which is not only an accurate portrayal, but is also interesting reading.

Contributors-

Barbara F. Coffman

Bio(s)-

Barbara Frances Coffman, the granddaughter of John S. Coffman, the subject of this biography, was born at Vineland, Ontario, and was graduated from the nearby Beamsville High School. She received in 1931 a B.A. at Goshen College, an institution which her grandfather, through Elkhart Institute, had an important part in founding. After a summer course in library science at McGill University, she served as assistant librarian at Goshen for several years. Through this library work in the historical library at Goshen she became interested in church history and got acquainted with research methods.

Miss Coffman studied journalism and wrote for newspapers a number of feature articles on historical subjects. She is a charter member of the Jordan Historical Museum of the Twenty, and has served as secretary to the Board of Trustees since its beginning in 1953. She is a director of the Ontario branch of the Pennsylvania-German Folklore Society, and president of the Niagara branch. She published articles in 'Canadian-German Folklore', a publication of the Ontario society.

The present work is not a piece of research, but rather a work of love for the author. Her deep appreciation for the great man she portrays is evident. But her close family connection has not made impossible the scholarly detachment which the writing of history requires.

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