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Menno Simons, 1492-1559, Dutch Anabaptist
AUTHOR: Unknown
PUBLISHED ON: March 17, 2003
DOC SOURCE: CCN
PUBLISHED IN: Biographies

Menno Simons
1492-1559
Dutch Anabaptist. Menno Simons was born in Friesland, Hol-
land. Little is known of his early life and education. In
1524 he was ordained to the priesthood of the Roman Church.
However, his study of the New Testament soon began to produce
doubts about many of the doctrines. Luther’s writings also
influenced him to leave the Roman Church. His preaching
thereafter is described as evangelical rather than
sacramental.
        Simons went farther than either Luther or Calvin in
rejecting the teachings of Romanism, and soon allied himself
with the Dutch Anabaptists. He was immersed in 1537 by Obbe
Philip. His fame as a writer and as a preacher grew, and soon
the Anabaptists of that area acknowledged him as their
leader.
        In his church discipline, which was drawn from the
Swiss Baptists, silent prayer was common and sermons were
without texts. He taught that neither baptism nor communion
conferred grace upon an individual, but that grace was ob-
tained only through faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. Although
he was not the founder, his preaching and influence were such
that many of the Dutch Anabaptists adopted his name, and
thereafter were known as Mennonites.

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