Mennonite Hosts And Refugee Newcomers:
1979 – the Present

A Weekend History Conference
30 September - 1 October 2005

Eckhart Gramatte Hall
University of Winnipeg

Hosted by: The Chair in Mennonite Studies

Sponsored by: the Mennonite Historical Society of Canada (Divergent Voices of Canadian Mennonites Project)
and Mennonite Central Committee Canada 

Purpose | Friday's Agenda | Saturday's Agenda | Acknowledgements | Lodging/Food/Registration

In 1979 and 1980 thousands of Southeast Asia refugees, escaping the ravages of the Vietnam War and war in neighbouring countries, came to Canada. Many of these newcomers were hosted by Canadian Mennonites, creating new relationships and changing the nature of the Canadian Mennonite churches. Twenty-five years after this moment in history, this conference analyzes, evaluates, reflects and celebrates. This conference features presentations from scholars, hosts, and newcomers.

SEPTEMBER 30, 2005

Friday a.m. 8:30-8:35
Introducing the Conference
Royden Loewen, Winnipeg 

Friday a.m.: 8:35-10:00
Background: Politics and Practice in Southeast Asia
Chair: Stephanie Phetsamay Stobbe, Winnipeg

Coffee: 10:00-10:30

Friday a.m.: 10:30-12:00
Background: Concepts of Sponsorship and Integration
Chair: Louise Giesbrecht, Winnipeg

Lunch: 12:00-1:00

Friday p.m.: 1:00-2:15
The British Columbia Experience:
Chair: Dave Giesbrecht, Abbotsford

Coffee 2:15-2:45

Friday p.m.: 2:45-4:30
Manitoba’s Laotian and Vietnamese Newcomers:
Chair: Ed Wiebe, Winnipeg

Friday p.m.: 7:00-9:00
Linking Ottawa and MCC
Welcome: Royden Loewen, Winnipeg
Chair: Ken Reddig, Winnipeg

Reception: Vietnamese Spring Rolls and Lao Coffee

OCTOBER 1, 2005

Saturday a.m.: 8:30-10:00
Integration in Alberta and Saskatchewan:
Chair: Jim Gurnett, Edmonton

Saturday Coffee: 10:00-10:30 Coffee/Cookies

Saturday a.m.: 10:30-12:00
Intercultural Dynamics in Ontario and Quebec:
Chair: Deo Namwira, Winnipeg

Lunch: 12:00-1:00

Saturday p.m.: 1:00-2:15
Stories from the United States:
Chair: Dean Peachey, Winnipeg

Coffee: 2:15-2:45 

Saturday p.m.: 2:45-4:15
Mennonites and Newcomers from Other Places
Chair: Lilian Vagras, Resistencia, Argentina

Saturday p.m.: 4:15-4:30
Collecting the Voices
Larry Kehler, Winnipeg: “Summary Statements and Observations”


Conference Planning Committee: Ionka Hristozova, Larry Kehler, Royden Loewen, Mukai Muza, Ken Reddig, Stephanie Phetsamay Stobbe, Tim Wichert, Ed Wiebe

We Gratefully Acknowledge the Support of the Following: David and Katherine Friesen Foundation; Mennonite Central Committee Canada; Mennonite Historical Society of Canada; C.P. Loewen Foundation; University of Winnipeg.

The Conference was Organized by: The Divergent Voices of Canadian Mennonites (DVCM), a sub-committee of the Mennonite Historical Society of Canada. Other projects include: 1) Mennonite Women in Canada; 2) Mennonite-Aboriginal Relations; 3) Return of the Kanadier

Selected Papers from this Conference: will be published in a forthcoming issue of the Journal of Mennonite Studies. To subscribe email or phone 204-786-9391

Lodging & More

Suggested Lodging: 360 Colony, Holiday Inn, Winnipeg, 204-786-7011; book in advance and ask for the Mennonite Studies, University of Winnipeg, conference rate.

Food Services: food may be purchased at a dozen ethnic and fast-food restaurants within a block or two of the university or at Riddell Hall Cafeteria at the University of Winnipeg

Suggested Parking: (on Friday and Saturday) the Bus Depot and Hudson’s Bay parkades off of Colony; coin-operated Imperial Parking lots around the University; coin-operated street parking; (on Saturday only) free parking on Lot E, to the south of Homer’s Restaurant off of Young Street.