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BFC Denomination

Introduction to the BFC

We are part of a conference of churches known as the Bible Fellowship Church. This consists of 60 some churches from Connecticut to Delaware. Also, we have one church in Las Cruces, New Mexico and two in Yucatan, Mexico.

Locations of the BFC Churches from CT to DE with a 5 mile radius around each Church, Source.

The church that began in 1858 has gone through many changes yet has always had a passion for bringing glory to God through worship and evangelism. Today, we emphasize four major fundamentals. With regard to salvation, we are reformed. With regard to baptism, we are anabaptistic. With regard to church government, we are presbyterian. With regard to evangelism, we are evangelistic church planters.

Menno Simons, 1492-1559 Source

William Gehman, ca 1890 Source

The BFC began in Upper Milford Twp, PA (Zionsville, PA) back in 1858. Led by “Daddy” William Gehman, our forefathers broke away from the Mennonites during a revival period over the issue of prayer meetings. We wanted to hold these meetings as a intrigal part of Church-life and the leadership of the Mennonite conference would not permit it. Click here to read from the Mennonite perspective, what happened (Third paragraph). Known as Evangelical Mennonites, we began to spread throughout the Pennsylvania Dutch areas due to the evangelistic fervor of our preachers and the Gospel Herald Society.

Gospel Herald Society, ca 1902. Front (L->R) Menno P. Zook, Miss Soderstrom, CH Brunner (president and treasurer), Sarah G. Brunner (district leader), WW Zimmerman (secretary). Top (L->R) H Frank Meltzer, H Walter Feldges, Emanuel E Kublic, William S Hottel, Clement J Edwards, William H Stutzman, Randolph W Zoller, Paul J Musselman, Source.

By the early 1900s, we called ourselves Mennonite Brethren in Christ. As time progressed, subcultures began to meld into an American culture. We became less PA Dutch and less Mennonite and more Fundamental. By the end of World War II, the MBC needed to become less distinctive as a culture if it wanted to continue to thrive in its evangelism. In 1957, nearly 100 years after its birth, these Mennonites with a heart for the lost, became the Bible Fellowship Church. We do not forget our past, but we strive to do as the apostle Paul taught, “become all things to all men so that by all means I might save some” (1 Cor 9:22).
The Bible Fellowship Church continues in its heritage of having a heart for the lost and a passion for obeying the God of the Bible.

What does our Denomination believe?

Articles of Faith
Biblical Principles for Living
Annual Conference

Interested in learning more?

BFC Denomination Website:
BFC Historical Society Website:
A Book: The Bible Fellowship Church by Harold Shelly try to order it there order it from our denomination’s historical committee


Gehman, William photo. Shelly, Harold. The Bible Fellowship Church. Bethlehem, PA: BFC Historical Committee, 1992, p.7.
Gospel Herald Society photo. Shelly, Harold. The Bible Fellowship Church. Bethlehem, PA: BFC Historical Committee, 1992, p.169.
Simons, Menno photo. Shelly, Harold. The Bible Fellowship Church. Bethlehem, PA: BFC Historical Committee, 1992, p. 41. Originally from Menno Simons Historical Library, Eastern Mennonite College.
BFC Churches Map. Compilation of map data and BFC Church locations. Timothy Schmoyer, 2001.