Thursday, August 17, 2023
SESSION 1: PRESENTATIONS
SESSION 2: PRESENTATIONS
SESSION 3: PRESENTATIONS
SESSION 4: PRESENTATIONS
SESSION 5: PRESENTATIONS
Friday, August 18, 2023
SESSION 6: PRESENTATIONS
SESSION 7: PRESENTATIONS
SESSION 8: PRESENTATIONS
SESSION 9: PRESENTATIONS
SESSION 10: PRESENTATIONS
SESSION 11: PRESENTATIONS
SESSION 12: PRESENTATIONS
SESSION 13: PRESENTATIONS
SESSION 1: PRESENTATIONS
Black and White Moravian Responses to American Racist Violence 1917-1919: Rev. Dr. Charles Martin and Bishop Edward Rondthaler
Frank Crouch, Moravian Theological Seminary (retired)
After 1865, American slavery morphed into a century of segregation, discrimination, and lynching, eventually outlawed (except housing discrimination and lynching) by the 1964 Civil Rights Act.
During that period, the overwhelmingly white American Moravian Church generally supported “separate but equal” society and accepted the lynching of over 6,500 people as an unfortunate symptom of “the Negro problem.”
1917-1919 reveal two strikingly different Moravian responses to a rising tide of lynchings and racist mob violence. In a 1917 newsletter, Black Moravian minister Rev. Dr. Charles Martin made a public case that “the Righteous Spirit of Christianity demand[s] Political and Social Equality for the Negro” and detailed his involvement in planning and marching with 8,000-10,000 others in the “Negro Silent Parade” in NYC. He also described meetings with members of Congress, former President Roosevelt, and President Wilson, petitioning them to outlaw lynching and segregation.
Contemporaneously, white Moravian Bishop Edward Rondthaler—influential pastor and civic and denominational leader from 1877-1931—extolled “separate but equal” society. His widely distributed “Memorabilia” annually recapped significant events and in 1918 and 1919, touched on Winston-Salem’s attempted but thwarted lynching. A mob of 3,000 sought to lynch a Black man falsely believed to have raped a white woman. Rondthaler celebrated the police and military’s preventive actions but did not note the city’s capacity to generate a massive lynch mob overnight. A year later he obliviously celebrated a mob-free 1919, with authorities and God “[seeing] us safely through, without as far as we know, a single instance of disorder.”
The paper explores two conflicting forces: inertial white complacency proclaiming a lack of local lynching as a sign of social order; and energized Black agency confronting leaders about rampant, national, racist violence and discrimination and demanding every possible move toward justice.
- See “Antilynching Act Signed into Law,” which has links to two Equal Justice Institute reports on 6,500 documented lynchings during the eras of Reconstruction and Jim Crow: https://eji.org/news/antilynchingact–signed–into–law/.
- Charles Martin, The Beth-Tphillah Reminder 2, Nos. 8-9 (1917), PM 1.1 Reminder Newsletter 1916 & August September 1917, the Charles Martin Collection, North Carolina Central University, Durham, NC.
- This primarily draws on contemporaneous newspaper accounts and Keith Kapp, “A Lynching That Did Not Happen,” Raleigh History Club, September 2020. Unpublished.
- Edward Rondthaler, The Memorabilia of Fifty Years,1877 to 1927, Raleigh: Edwards & Broughton, 1928, pp. 359-62, 374, 385-6, 391-2.
Flight from Bethlehem: A Runaway Slave, 1767
Scott Gordon, Lehigh University
On 21 March 1767 an enslaved man named Jacob (1745-1817) asked Moravian authorities if he could leave Bethlehem. He also asked authorities to produce a Freÿ-brief for him, but Jacob left without permission the following day. Two weeks later Moravian authorities “fetched him” back to Bethlehem. They placed him in the single brothers’ house (though no longer a congregant) to observe if he showed contrition. In August, disappointed by Jacob’s behavior, authorities decided to sell him to a friend in New York. This threat led Jacob to “promise an improvement,” and he convinced authorities that real change “had taken place in him.” They relocated Jacob to a farm near Lititz instead of selling him. The discussions that Jacob’s flight prompted expose how Bethlehem’ authorities thought about the enslaved men and women whom the congregation owned.
When county justice John Jennings reminded Jacob that “he was not free, rather was a slave (Sclave) for life,” he used the binary opposites (free/slave) that organized social and economic life in early America and most of the Enlightenment world. But these terms operated differently in Bethlehem. Jacob had been considered “a free person”—even though legally enslaved—since he had been “allowed to earn his own bread.” The dilemma was: to continue to consider Jacob “free” or to treat him “as a slave in the future”? The encounter with county justice taught authorities that their unconventional thinking about freedom and slavery made no sense beyond Bethlehem. They even decided to clarify Jacob’s legal status by having “a legal document prepared showing that [Jacob] was given to the Brethren as a gift.” Moravian authorities tried to be “indifferent” to the legal status of their Afro-Moravian brothers and sisters, but in 1767 they hurried to conform to Enlightenment standards that (supposedly) carried no weight in Bethlehem.
Intimate Indifference: Magdalena More, Andrew “the Moor,” and the differences between free and enslaved in eighteenth century Bethlehem
Josef Köstelbauer, Bonn Center for Dependency and Slavery Studies
In the Moravian Archives in Bethlehem, PA, a remarkable set of sources from 1784 has survived. It documents a dispute between Magdalene, a widowed Moravian woman and former slave, and Bethlehem authorities regarding a sum of money she claimed to be due to her after her husband’s death. Magdalene (1731-1820) and her husband Andreas or Andrew “the Moor” (ca.1727-1779) are probably among the best-known Black enslaved Moravians, thanks to the works of Katherine Faull, Daniel B. Thorp, and Seth Moglen. But the sources in question have only recently been subjected to an in-depth analysis (Scott Paul Gordon 2023). Magdalena based her claim on the fact that Andrew had been a slave of the congregation and thus it had been responsible for his upkeep. A close reading and semantic analysis of these sources provides insights into the perceptions of enslaved and European Moravians on slavery and race and reveals different, and even conflicting uses of the label “free.” Especially the first source, a letter by Magdalena to Johann Ettwein, is of interest as in it she strategically combined an early version of her memoir with a description of her and her husband’s economic circumstances in Bethlehem. Thus, the edifying and spiritual rhetoric of the memoir is juxtaposed with a much more mundane narrative of poverty and insecurity, offering a rare glimpse of the lived experiences of enslaved people in Moravian Bethlehem.
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SESSION 2: PRESENTATIONS
Charles J. Latrobe’s ‘Reports on Negro Education,’ 1837-1839: Evangelical Missions and Post-Emancipation Education in the British West Indies
Jenna Gibbs, Florida International University
Charles J. Latrobe was a highly educated member of the Moravian Church, which, in the fervor of eighteenth-century revivalism, established missions all over the globe. After the Emancipation Act of 1833, he became the British Commissioner for Negro Education, charged with assessing existing missionbased “Negro” education and articulating proposals for post-emancipation education of formerly enslaved people in the British West Indies. The British government deemed him an ideal choice for this position as his family had extensive global missionizing experience and long-standing connections with missionizing evangelicals of other denominations. He was also a seasoned traveler who had published journals of his tours through North America and Mexico. As Commissioner for Negro Education, he spent two years surveying the state of education of formerly enslaved people in the post-emancipation British West Indies between 1837 and 1839 and produced three parliamentary reports on “Negro education”: on Jamaica, the Windward and Leeward Islands, and Guiana. In them, he advocated for regular schoolhouses (rather than Chapel classes), daily instruction of children, and governmental funding of previously underfunded religious entities like the Moravian Ladies’ Negro Education Society and the Wesleyan Missionary Society schools. In this paper, I examine how Latrobe’s upbringing as a well-educated member of a Moravian missionizing family, his knowledge of missions in the West Indies and familiarity and commitment to, more broadly, global evangelicalism combined to shape his prescriptions for the education of formerly enslaved people in the British West Indies.
Moravian Education in an Era of Enslavement and Warfare: Children’s Relationships in 18th-Century Pennsylvania
Amy Schutt, SUNY Cortland
Examining spelling books, handwriting manuals, and students’ arithmetic notebooks can place curricula and formal reading, writing, and numeracy instruction center stage in a study of children, youth, and education in the eighteenth century. But the social connections and relationships formed in and through schooling were also a significant part of this history. My paper will extend beyond the topic of formal curricula to investigate the relationships formed among young people in education settings in Pennsylvania from the 1740s through the era of the American Revolution. This study will focus on schools at Moravian mission sites and on institutions housing and educating Moravian missionaries’ children along with other children. Among these were Native American, African American, and European American children, whose interactions with each other occurred under the watchful eyes of various adult caregivers. Some areas for consideration include the following: how young people interacted with each other, how adults tried to shape these interactions, and how these contacts could have longer-term implications. This paper will examine how slavery in early Pennsylvania and ideas about race impacted these interactions. Children’s contacts occurred within the contexts of war and dispossession, and this paper will investigate the impacts of these circumstances, particularly during the eras of the Seven Years’ War and Revolutionary War. Uncovering information about young people’s relationships is challenging for the eighteenth century, given the paucity of writings from children themselves. Yet a variety of sources, including those written by adults looking back to their own childhoods or by adults reporting on children’s activities, help reveal evidence about interactions among young people; furthermore, they raise worthwhile questions about longer-term implications as these young people moved into adulthood.
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SESSION 3: PRESENTATIONS
Vocal Pedagogy in Moravian Music in the United States: An Exploration
Bruce Earnest, Moravian Music Foundation
Moravian music was written with the necessity for an innate full voice that requires a basis of pedagogical accomplishment for proper presentation. According to vocal pedagogue James Stark, the ideal vocal quality for the classically trained singer is called chiaroscuro. This term refers to the bright quality and dark quality that comprises the timber of each tone that is sung.
American Moravian vocal/choral music, clearly influenced by European compositional techniques, is typically performed with in a Germanic style that includes more of darker or Oscuro tone quality. This tone quality evolved in the German speaking realms in the early 1700’s and had a distinctly different production style than the Italian and English Schools. In addition, vocal range and preferred Fächer (voice types) varied in from country to country. By the middle of the 1700s, France, Germany, Italy, and Britain all had distinct pedagogical elements and style expressions (national schools).
The term “national schools” refers to varying range, color, and vocal expression based on Germanic, Italian, Franco-Flemish, and British languages and sound preferences. Due to the Germanic quality of Moravian Music, we see a seamless musical transition from the homeland to the new world. The Moravian Church did not have an official training center for music but because music was such an innate part of Moravian life, training became part of the Moravian Cultural experience for most members of the church.
This paper will focus on the evolution of a “culture of singing” in the Moravian Church and the pedagogical influences that brought European classical music to the United States. We will explore various national schools of vocal pedagogy and focus on the German School for Singing as the basis for Moravian Music performance practice.
The Most Musical People: Moravian Music-Making and the German American Experience
Christopher Ogburn, Moravian Music Foundation
The Moravian settlers in North America, although a religious, rather than national group, often found themselves cast as “German” by their new neighbors. Their arrival in North America predated the large German-speaking immigration boom of the post-1848 period, however, their experience in their new home presaged and eventually paralleled that of later German-speaking immigrants. The moment between the arrival of the Moravians in North America and the growth of immigration in the midnineteenth century coincided with the emergence of the “German” nation as an idea. To find a cultural tie that defined Germanness in opposition to other European nationalities, many writers and cultural figures began to latch on to music as the force that most clearly defined the uniqueness of the German people. Germans began to see themselves as the people of music—an idea that would soon be adopted by others as well. This paper examines how Moravians anticipated the experience of later German-speaking communities through their use of music as a tool in community and identity formation, while also adding an additional layer of complexity through a constructed image of insularity. Their reputation for quality music-making served to set the Moravian settlers apart from their neighbors, as would later be true for the German-speaking immigrant community overall, but it also became one of the primary means of interaction. A few Moravians began to fear the many visitors were coming for the music, rather than for God. Despite efforts to appear aloof and removed from the political and cultural world around them, the Moravians, as evidenced by their rich musical life, did not completely wall themselves off. Instead, they engaged in a market of cultural exchange that would help shape American music and eventually pave the way for later German Americans to find a place in their new home.
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SESSION 4: PRESENTATIONS
Exploring the International Context of the 1st American Edition of John Amos Comenius’s Visible World, 1810
Farrar Lannon, Moravian Historical Society
In this paper, I aim to offer a close examination of the first American edition of John Amos Comenius’ Orbis Sensualium Pictus: Visible World, and its international context. Intended for universal education of young readers, Comenius’ encyclopedia of all things, first published in 1658, featured a format of one-to-one association of words and images. Each page features an illustration and two descriptions accompanying it; one in Latin, and one in the language of the country that it was published in. The format of the book evolved over the 17 and 18th centuries to include new scientific discoveries and updates to translations and images. Each successive edition of Orbis Pictus offered an added layer to include contemporary developments. In this way, the physical book serves as a primary source for understanding the emergence and influence of Comenius’ pansophism and the origins of textbooks in education. The first American edition was published in 1810 by T. & J. Swords in New York City from the 1777 London edition with text in Latin and English and new engravings by Alexander Anderson. Utilizing methods from book history and material culture studies, I hope to discuss how this edition exemplifies the international nature of print culture in America’s early national period. A comparison of the Swords edition to earlier and other contemporary editions will illuminate the distinctively American properties of this work and highlight the range of influence Moravian theology had on educational philosophy.
Comenius and the French: A Complex Epistolary Relationship
Vanessa Romero, Arizona State University
Jan Amos Comenius (1592-1670) was the last bishop of the Unitas Fratrum, by then a church completed uprooted by the political and religious upheavals of the 17th century. He was renowned throughout Europe for his formidable grasp of pedagogy, languages, philosophy, and theology. He was a very active member of the Republic of Letters, sending and receiving thousands of letters throughout his life (570 survived). He used his network of correspondence with leaders and intelligencers not only to support the cause of the dispersed Unitas Fratrum but also to spread and discuss his pedagogical and pansophic scholarly efforts and seek patronage for translation and publication.
This paper will examine seventeen letters written by and to Comenius that helped define his relationship to the French in the 17th century. Scholars rarely mention these letters because very few are translated from Latin, and none were translated into English until this study. Comenius’ correspondents include Mersenne (1588-1648) (Catholic friar who founded the French Academy of Science and friend of Descartes), a secretary of Richelieu, Huguenot theologians, pastors, mystics, and the French Reformed Church.
The most fascinating of these letters is Lux e Tenebris, Comenius’ second letter to Louis XIV (1661). Toward the end of his life, as repression was escalating against the Huguenots, Comenius became really interested in French affairs. Comenius’ friends and colleagues were becoming distant over his millenarism and his association with Drabík (1588-1671) and other “prophets”. Comenius wanted the Sun-King to play a major political and religious role in the future of Europe. In his letter, he used flattery, promises, and even threats to try to convince the king, known for his piety, of Drabík’s vision that God had chosen him for this important mission, bringing universal peace.
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SESSION 5: PRESENTATIONS
Getting a grip on Weiss
David Blum, Moravian Music Foundation
Shortly after the Jedidiah Weiss Memorial Fund was created at the Moravian Music Foundation in the early 1980s, the fund was used to purchase a 1794 manuscript composition by Jacob Van Vleck dedicated to Johann Georg Weiss (Jedidah’s father) and a collection of duets (mostly for 2 violins) by various composers, many copied by Johann Friedrich Peter or John Christian Till. The collection had not been catalogued until 2022. This paper will summarize the life and talents of Jedidiah Weiss and the impacts of the Weiss family on music in Bethlehem.
Maria und Johannes by Johann Abraham Peter Schulz: A Musical Treasure from Moravian Archives
Tim Sharp, Trevecca University
The passion oratorio Maria og Johannes by Johann Abraham Peter Schulz (17471800), composed to a text by Danish poet Johannes Ewald (1743-1781) with German translation by Cramer, was performed in Nazareth, PA in 1803, 1807, and 1811, and the score and Schulz’s compositions are listed in Moravian registers in America, England, Denmark, and Germany. The complete score is found in the Johannes Herbst Collection. Maria og Johannes was Schulz’ first composition in Denmark and first setting of a Danish text after receiving the call to the theater in Copenhagen in 1787.
He began work on the passion oratorio in the winter of that year, completing it the following winter. Sören Sönnichsen published the oratorio in Copenhagen in 1789 and produced a Chiffrenschrift or code-writing publication of the full orchestral score in 1791. In 1849, the Berlin Singing Academy was still arranging performances of the oratorio.
Maria und Johannes is the latest addition to the Musical Treasures from Moravian Archives series (Volume VI) from Steglein Publishing by author/editor Tim Sharp. Sharp’s research on Johannes Herbst’s manuscript collection of 172 songs, re-texted with Moravian hymn texts, was the subject of Volume 1 in the Steglein series Hymns to be Sung at the Pianoforte. This presentation will work from the most recent Steglein publication in a lecture/recital performance presentation of the published critical edition of Maria und Johannes, presenting a musical and textual analysis of the work, its place in Moravian theology and thought, and its position in Moravian performance history.
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SESSION 6: PRESENTATIONS
“Salt of the Earth”. Moravian Diaspora in comparison
Wolfgang Breul, Johannes Gutenberg-Universität Mainz
In research on European religious history of the early modern period, the concept of diaspora has gained considerable importance in the last two decades with the growing interest in religious, ethnic, and national minorities and in migration movements. It allows one to examine different phenomena, which in older research on the history of the early modern period in Europe have received rather less attention, in a comparative perspective with regard to religious, cultural, social, and political factors.
The Herrnhut Diaspora differs from such early modern phenomena in that its origins are not the result of a migration movement, but rather an ecclesiological concept influenced by Philadelphian concepts, which nevertheless shaped the practical work of the Brüdergemeine to a considerable extent.
My paper will compare the Herrnhut Diaspora of the late 18th and early 19th century in its theological conception and congregational practice with other diasporas of early modern Europe in different aspects, as they existed, for example, in the form of Anabaptism of the 16th and 17th centuries or the Reformed Huguenots of the late 17th and 18th centuries. In particular, the theological interpretation, the social form, economic factors, and the relationship to the political authorities will be examined.
Creating networks between Paramaribo, Basel, Königsfeld and Zeist: The activities of Johann Rudolf Passavant in support of the Moravian Mission in the 1st half of the 19th century
Jessica Cronshagen, Oldenburg University
During the 18th century, very different social groups in the Atlantic region joined the Moravian community: Among them were various free and unfree craftsmen and workers, some nobles, members of mobile indigenous groups in the Americas, and occasionally merchants and traders.
Rather unusually for the Moravian community, it was mainly members of wealthy merchant families who joined the Moravian Church in Basel. One of them was Johann Rudolph Passavant (1785-1848), son of one of the wealthiest and main merchant families in Basel. In the Passavant family, several generations were already involved with various Pietist movements, and Johann Rudolph joined the Moravian community in his early 20s. Later he lived as a missionary in Paramaribo and founded a school there. After his return, he settled in Königsfeld, from where he published various missionary writings, and supported the “Missionsgenossenschaft” in Zeist.
Johann Rudolph Passavant was a busy networker in all his places of residence: everywhere he went he promoted the mission and asked for financial support. In doing so, he made intensive use of his connections in the Basel bourgeoisie.
Many of the merchants and traders in Basel invested in colonial plantations in the first half of the 19th century: they were involved in the trade in plantation goods or even personally owned land in the colonies. One of the central regions of their activity was the Dutch colony of Suriname.
In letters, papers and contacts with missionary associations, Passavant specifically addressed this group of successful Basel merchants who invested in the colonies: he promoted the mission as an instrument for disciplining enslaved plantation workers or reminded the Basel people of the responsibility for their souls.
In my paper I would like to examine how missionaries – here using the example of the Moravian missionary Johann Rudolph Passavant – built up networks of supporters in Europe, how they specifically activated personal contacts and what arguments they used to promote the mission to potential sponsors and supporters. The history of the perception and support of missions within Europe is thus also an analysis of colonial networks beyond the major colonial powers.
Filling the World with the Gospel: the Motivation for the Global Scale of Moravian Activity
Paul Peucker, Moravian Archives
The Moravian Church of the eighteenth century was a global community with congregations and mission posts in remote parts of the world. From its earliest beginnings, the community of Herrnhut set out to build a network that included remote regions far beyond Central Europe. This is surprising as most other religious groups of the time lacked the drive to engage on such a global scale. The extent of Moravian activity is well known but the motivation for the globality of Moravian outreach is less sufficiently studied.
In this paper I will argue that Moravian interest in worldwide engagement is connected with the ecclesiology of early Herrnhut. According to their Philadelphian worldview, Moravians believed they represented the true apostolic church, that unlike the established denominations was not divided over doctrinal arguments. As such, they believed to be able to effectively preach the gospel to non-Christians and to fill the world with the Gospel.
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SESSION 7: PRESENTATIONS
Helpers and Donors: Type-casting Moravians in 19th Century Biographies of Wesley, Whitefield, and Carey
Jared Burkholder, Grace College
This paper demonstrates how Moravian heritage was written into 19th. century evangelical devotional biographies of evangelical figures who had a broad transatlantic, and even global reach and influence: John Wesley, George Whitefield, and William Carey. Admittedly, much has long been written about the interaction or engagement these individuals had with the Moravians, but this is part of the problem. So much has been written that Moravians have become part of the imagined lore and mythology of evangelical devotional and hagiographic memory. Through an examination of this body of literature, this paper offers a literary analysis of the origins of this hagiography, showing how Moravians were type-casted as “helpers” and “donors” – to use Vladimir Propp’s categories – within the larger literary genre of evangelical devotional literature (which would include spiritual biography). This practice, though predictable, reduced Moravians to two-dimensional figures who were significant only for what they provided to Wesley, Whitefield, and Carey as they developed and then pursued their respective divine quests. Inherent within this literature is a critique of the Moravians that served the hagiographic interests of 19th century writers but has subsequently obscured Moravian significance within evangelical historiography.
Moravian Heritage: The Use of the Church’s Emblem at the Crossroads in Tanzania
Revocatus Meza, Teofilo Kisanji University
The question on who should legally use the Moravian emblem as a sole proprietor looms in Christian community in Tanzania. The pluralism demand for ownership emerges following its positive economic impact as far as church’s merchandise is concerned.
In 2004 the Moravian Church in Tanzania used for the first time the emblem for commercial purposes with an intention of fundraising money to establish a higher learning institution, the now Teofilo Kisanji University (TEKU).
The Moravian Seal was printed on fabrics: “Mwanakondoo Ameshinda-Tumfuate” best known in English as Our Lamb Has Conquered-Let Us Follow Him. The use of the emblem attracted the population regardless of their religious affiliations. The stocks of tie and dye of which men tailored tie and dye shirts and women had tie and dye dresses as well as khanga, T-Shirts, mugs and pens.
In the development sister churches borrowed a leaf and started printing the Moravian emblem on fabrics for commercial purposes and their pulpits are decorated with the seal.
The follow-up questions then are: Should the Moravian Church in Tanzania register the emblem to legally get known by the Business Registration and Licensing Agency (BRELA) manned by the Ministry of Industry and Trade responsible for business in Tanzania as the sole proprietor of the seal for business purposes as well religious entity?
Either, should the Moravian Church in Tanzania adhere to pluralism thus leave it open to whichever Christian community use it without restrictions as long as we all have a goal to proclaim the Word of God?
Or, legalizing the Moravian Seal for business purposes would be privatizing Jesus?
Unless these questions are addressed the official Moravian Church’s emblem as one of Moravian Church’s Heritage and identity are at the crossroads, so far.
The Moravian Hourly Intercession and the 24/7 Prayer Movement
Jill Vogt, Moravian Church, Herrnhut
The topic of my paper is the 18th century Moravian practice of the Hourly Intercession and how this tradition has been utilized by Charismatic groups in relation to the 24/7 prayer movement. The Hourly Intercession began in the wake of the spiritual renewal of the Herrnhut community in August of 1727. The practice consisted of members of the congregation, both men and women, volunteering to pray continuously around the clock, each filling a one-hour time slot. This form of prayer became an integral part of the spiritual life of the Herrnhut community and was carried to other Moravian settlements.
It continued until the first half of the 19th century and thus has been known as the “one-hundred-year prayer watch”.
In the modern Moravian Church, the tradition of the Hourly Intercession has been revived in the 1950s in the practice of the Unity-Prayer Watch, which is a continuous chain of prayer in which all provinces of the Unitas Fratrum participate.
Interestingly, the Moravian tradition has also been “rediscovered” by Charismatic groups and the 24/7 prayer movement. In this context, the Herrnhut prayer practice is often described as an early instance of 24/7 prayer and as an example of the profound effectiveness of prayer for mission and evangelization. In the late 1990s, several leaders of the 24/7 prayer movement visited Herrnhut and wrote about their discovery of the Hourly Intercession. Books by Tom Hess, Jim Goll, Pete Greig, and others, as well as many 24/7-related websites show how the Moravian tradition has been appropriated for charismatic narratives of messianic mission and evangelism.
In my paper I want to take a look at the historical origins of the Hourly Intercession and then explore how this tradition has been utilized, interpreted, and sometimes misrepresented in the narratives of the 24/7 prayer movement. In conclusion, I want to use the example of the Hourly Intercession to ask larger questions about what it means when non-Moravian groups lay claim to elements of the Moravian Heritage.
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SESSION 8: PRESENTATIONS
“Such a Scene of Industry…In So Small A Place” The Moravian Aesthetic in North Carolina Decorative Arts
Johanna Brown, Old Salem Museums & Gardens
Eighteenth and nineteenth century visitors to the Moravian town of Salem, North Carolina, often remarked on the physical and cultural distinctiveness of this isolated backcountry community. The industry of the residents, the operation of a pseudo-guild system within the congregation town, and the deeply religious nature of the settlers fascinated outsiders who were allowed to visit and shop – but not live or work –within the carefully controlled theocracy. The governing boards of the Church certainly influenced the ways artisans worked, the setting of prices and wages, and the interaction of tradesmen with outsiders, yet these boards did not dictate style. Moravian artists and artisans in North Carolina produced furniture, pottery, silver, textiles, paintings, and countless other decorative objects. As this material culture changes over time, it reflects not only the religious commitment and cultural backgrounds of the Moravian settlers but also their ultimate assimilation within the backcountry South. As Moravian craftsmen mingled ideas born of their own diverse European experience with the requests of a culturally diverse customer base, what emerged was a Moravian aesthetic that was decidedly Moravian but also uniquely American.
Moravian Musical Instruments and Instrument Makers in the Atlantic World
Stewart Carter, Wake Forest University
In the early days of their settlements in North America, Moravians often sang chorales to the accompaniment of instruments, and within a few decades they were also performing larger works by European and American composers. As their musical activities became more sophisticated, demand for musical instruments grew. Some of their instruments were manufactured in the New World, but many were imported from Europe.
More than 200 musical instruments made before 1900 survive in Moravian-related collections in America.
Using these instruments and surviving documents as source material, my paper demonstrates that the Moravians’ early commerce in instruments centered primarily on two locations in Saxony: Herrnhut, the headquarters of the church; and Neukirchen, an instrument-making center in the Vogtland.
Moravians in America often relied on agents in Herrnhut to procure instruments for them. Gottfried Weber in Herrnhut, for example, arranged for the shipment of brass instruments to Salem, North Carolina in 1784. The instruments that survive from this order were made by Johann Schmied of Pfaffendorf, a community not far from Herrnhut. Some fourteen instruments made by the Schmied family still exist in Moravian communities in the United States.
Instrument makers and dealers from Neukirchen began to emigrate to Moravian communities in America.
In 1795 Christian Paulus arrived in Bethlehem, where he traded in musical instruments and other goods. In 1817 his nephew, Heinrich Gütter, joined him. Gütter established a thriving music business, obtaining instruments from family members in Neukirchen and selling them to Moravian communities in the United States. The most prominent Neukirchen-born instrument maker in Pennsylvania, however, was Christian Friedrich Martin, who arrived in America in 1833. Martin made fine guitars in the Nazareth area, where the firm he established is still managed by his descendants.
“Pious Innkeeper and Godly Tavern”: Concepts of Hospitality and the Accommodation of Visitors in 18th Century Moravian Settlements
Peter Vogt, Moravian Church Germany
It is well known that members of the Moravian movement traveled a lot. What is less well known is that Moravian settlements were frequently visited by travelers and that Moravians thus faced the task of having to consider, both from a spiritual and a practical point of view, how to welcome and to accommodate travelers.
With the proposed paper I want to argue that the 18th century network of Moravian Church settlements incorporated a distinctive Moravian approach to welcoming visitors that involved spiritual and economic concerns, as well as specific architectural elements. While Moravians felt committed to the biblical commandment of hospitality towards strangers, they had serious moral objections to the operation of inns in the secular manner. Their ideal was to have a “godly tavern”, run by a pious innkeeper.
After a “Gemeinlogis” (congregational guest accommodation) was established in Herrnhut as early as 1726, all later Moravian settlements each had a “Gasthof” (congregational inn) to accommodate visitors and transient travelers. The congregational inn represented an important point of contact between the settlement and its surroundings, thus supporting the community in its economic life and evangelistic outreach. In order to safeguard the spiritual values and municipal interests of the community, the central leadership of the church and the local boards provided detailed instructions for the management of the inn. The buildings of Moravian inns with a high degree of similarity represent a unique feature of the overall architectural heritage of Moravian settlements.
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SESSION 9: PRESENTATIONS
Heinrich August Jäschke’s Musicianship Manual of 1847: Insight into Moravian Music Pedagogy
Alice Caldwell, University of Bridgeport
The astonishing level of musical activity in historic Moravian congregations is a wellknown fact, tangibly evidenced by the enormous collections of musical scores across virtually all Moravian communities. Less well understood, however, are the methods by which young members of those communities learned the musical skills that enabled them to perform and compose in the sophisticated culture of Moravian music. We can gain some insight into those methods by examining a textbook written for students in German Moravian schools by a one-time teacher at the Pädagogium in Niesky. Titled Sammlung der gebräuchichen Choral-Melodieen der evangelischen Brüder-Gemeine and published in Niesky in 1847 together with a separate Gebrauchs-Anweisung, these two slim volumes present a methodology for developing musicianship skills based upon chorale melodies in common use at the time. The author, Heinrich August Jäschke, would later move to Tibet as a missionary and is still renowned today as an early scholar and translator of the Tibetan language. The music learning sequence he outlines can be understood as a version of sound-to-sight pedagogy commonly known today through the Kodaly method and related approaches to music education. Later biographical writings on Jäschke make passing note of his musical skills while emphasizing his prodigious aptitude for learning languages. Certainly, the two skills are related, and in examining Jäschke’s method for teaching aural skills we can see a juxtaposition of two great contributions of the Moravian church, music and mission work.
“Ach wär ein jeder Puls ein Dank und jeder Odem ein Gesang!”: Female Musicking in Christiansfeld, 1774–1800
Christina Ekström, Academy of Music and Drama, Gothenburg University
Within a decade of Christianfeld’s founding in 1773, the musical activities came to be defined as something that differed from other performances in Denmark. This has previously been noticed by several musicologists, including Sybille Reventlow and Peter Hauge. Several factors contributed to the flourishing musical life in Christiansfeld: surprisingly rapid building of houses including assembly halls, influx of instruments and repertoire, establishment of (music) education, and most notably, the fast-growing musical life in the congregation’s subgroups, such as the choir of unmarried women. This presentation begins with the question of what characterized the musicking in the unmarried women’s choir from its founding in 1774 through the period of establishment in 1800. An analysis of the sisters’ diaries (including more than 1,000 pages) reveals several details related to their musical performances, such as the significant connection to the women’s emotions and their bodies; rooms and spaces where the musicking occurred; and the categories of listeners. Surprisingly, the unmarried women performed music for Moravian sisters (and brothers), as well as to persons who were not affiliated with the Moravian church. This complements previous research on musicking in Christiansfeld, which repeatedly points out that musical performances for non-Moravians were reserved for the unmarried men.
Conclusions of the analysis are that the unmarried women’s choir appeared to be a hub for learning and performing music, and that it’s possible to discern consequences of its musical activities stretching beyond the choir per se, and even beyond the village of Christiansfeld.
Opera music as church music? On the practice of parody in the Moravian Church
Maryam Haiawi, Universität Hamburg, Institut für Historische Musikwissenschaft
The practice of parody experienced a flowering in Catholic and Protestant church music from the late 18th century onward, which – largely unaffected by the gradually spreading idea of the autonomous work of art – continued well into the 19th century. The focus of reception was on both contemporary sacred and secular music. It is remarkable that new texts and musical adaptations of operas for liturgical purposes enjoyed great popularity, especially in monasteries in southern Germany, Austria and central Switzerland. The spectrum ranged from primarily pragmatic transformations to artistic new creations. This phenomenon, which has so far been treated only marginally in research, also has a hitherto completely unnoticed parallel to musical practice in the Moravian Church. In this community, contemporary sacred and secular music was received and transformed from 1760 onwards to such an extent that becomes scarcely comprehensible to the researcher and in an extraordinary variety. The focus was on oratorios by Johann Adolph Hasse, Georg Friedrich Händel, Carl Heinrich Graun and Johann Heinrich Rolle, masses by Joseph Haydn and Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, as well as opera settings by Hasse, Graun and Mozart. The choice of works was not only subject to general pragmatic and aesthetic criteria – accessibility, popularity, musical quality – as was the case in the monasteries. It should also correspond to specifically Moravian norms of musical practice such as simplicity and gravitas.
The talk will discuss the extent to which the spiritual parody practice of contemporary opera music in the Moravian Church features both in the general context of music history and in the particular Moravian standards of music-making. This is illustrated using, as an example, their arrangement of the first part of the final movement in the second act of Mozart’s Singspiel Die Zauberflöte. On the one hand, we shall consider to what extent the adaptation of the piece is connected with the early Mozart reception around 1800. On the other hand, we shall analyze how the extreme transformation of Mozart’s composition reflects the aesthetic maxims of the Moravians and their conception of religion and music.
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SESSION 10: PRESENTATIONS
God’s Acres and the Easter Sunrise Service: The Making of Southern American Moravian Identity in the Post-WWII Era
Josh Follweiler, Moravian Theological Seminary (Student)
Moravian identity has long been a subject of much scholarship, but the distinction between the American north and south is under-explored. Moravian ritual practices, and the cemeteries that housed them, offer us fertile ground for examining how the American provinces differentiated themselves. After WWII, there was a surge in the construction, organization, and revival of God’s Acres in the American Southern Province. Using Salem Congregation as a model, new and historic churches established God’s Acres and renewed their Easter Sunrise Services. Having a God’s Acre, with carefully aligned matching tombstones, became a critical mark of Moravianism. This self-identification contrasts with prevailing societal normativity and the broader Unitas Fratrum. Southern Province Moravians did not arrive at this understanding through official provincial action. The Easter Broadcasts and the provincial newspaper, The Wachovia Moravian, were the channels that communicated this likeness. My research and paper, God’s Acres and the Easter Sunrise Service: The Making of Southern American Moravian Identity in the post-WWII Era, closely examine how these sites helped to shape Moravian identity and how that identity interacted with broader American society.
Moravian Close, Chelsea (London): the adaptation of a Moravian settlement
Lorraine Parsons, Moravian Archives London
Just off the Kings Road in London is the Moravian Burial Ground and chapel where the Fetter Lane Moravian Congregation has worshipped since the 1950s, now known as Moravian Close. The site was acquired by the Church in 1750 as part of a larger estate intended to be the international headquarters of the Moravian Church and the proposed Moravian settlement known as ‘Sharon’. After Count Zinzendorf died in 1760 these plans were abandoned, and most of the property was later sold, except for Moravian Close which was retained primarily as the Burial Ground of their main congregation, based at Fetter Lane in the City of London.
The use of the buildings on the site of this Burial Ground has changed from the original stables of Sir Thomas More, a former Lord High Chancellor and the first person to write of a ‘utopia’, a word used to describe a perfect imaginary world. When the stables were converted to a chapel by Zinzendorf’s architect Sigismund von Gersdorf, a Burial Ground was laid out for the Moravian settlement which was taken over by the Fetter Lane Moravian Congregation in 1777. The Congregation later leased the buildings to be used for a Church of England school in the nineteenth century, and in the next century, became the workshop and home of the artists Mary and Ernest Gillick, the former best known for her effigy of the late Queen Elizabeth II used on coinage in the United Kingdom and elsewhere from 1953 to 1970.
The proposal for this paper intends to explore the development of this Moravian heritage site and examine how it adapted whilst continuing to remain God’s Acre for over three hundred years.
The Moravian Settlement: Looking Back to Look Ahead
Jared Stephens, Moravian Church, British and Irish Province
I propose to offer a reflection on the nature of the Moravian Settlement Community as an historic model of a healthy expression of Christians living out the Gospel in the world. The Moravian Settlement is a solid model that can be useful as a blueprint for building alternative communities today. These communities can provide a wide range of benefits for individuals and larger communities. This is especially important in the current global economic and environmental crisis for these communities, properly constructed and administered, can offer concrete solutions to the problems that are infesting our society such as: loneliness, anxiety, and poverty. The Moravian Settlement was a practical, pragmatic expression of the Christian vision of the Moravian Church. It grows out of a rich history of community building, that flows from the original formation of the Unitas Fratrum.
The Moravian Settlement is an extremely useful form of Christian Community as it allows flexibility for individuals to come and go, to be themselves, and yet, with rules for governance and a system for equitable division of resources. It is the pragmatism and rigors attempt at fairness and equality that allowed the Moravian Settlement to be the stable institution it has been, for it allowed personal growth, and missional growth wherever a Settlement was established.
It is this ability to step beyond idealism and ground the community building in pragmatism, experience, and singular focus on following Jesus that allowed the creation of, and continued stability of the Moravian Settlement, which makes it an excellent form to replicate for the future wellbeing of the Church and the broader society.
In this research I will look at how, historically, the Settlements faired in a variety of contexts. I will also explore modern movements that have gained inspiration from the Moravian Settlements for their own development with a view on ways the model can continue to be developed further.
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SESSION 11: PRESENTATIONS
Wachovia in North Carolina: “There is none like it”
Martha and Michael Hartley, Old Salem Museums & Gardens
“There is none like it.” With these words, Oeconomus Frederick William Marshall described the 100,000-acre Moravian tract of Wachovia, reflecting on the Brethren’s new colony being built on the frontier of North Carolina. In twenty years’ time — from the purchase of the land from Lord Cornwallis in 1753 to 1773, the Moravians implemented the basic plan for the colony, which is the structure of Winston-Salem, North Carolina, seat of the Moravian Church in America, Southern Province.
Wachovia is unparalleled in American history and endures in the culture, landscape, and people today.
This paper will address three periods in the history of Wachovia, illustrating the foresight and durability of the Moravian plan. The first period will describe the plan and its intentions, which were not for short-term exploitation but were consciously designed as foundation for the long-term and succeeding generations of Moravians on the 100,000-acre tract. The second period will discuss the Moravians on the Wachovia Tract through the nineteenth century and steps, positive and negative, to maintain, sustain, and adapt to the containing context, and to preserve the Moravian presence in Piedmont North Carolina. The third period will tie the past to present-day Winston-Salem/Forsyth County — a place formed of the Wachovia Tract — and the significant structural and cultural impact of the Moravians, locally, state-wide, and nationally. This period will explore and emphasize Marshall’s observation that, “There is none like it.”
The Hartleys will draw on their thirty-five-year study of the Wachovia Tract, and ongoing work, to illustrate this profoundly significant place.
Gracehill 1798: A City of Refuge
David Johnston, Gracehill Trust
The diaries of the Gracehill Moravian congregation date from 1765 and provide a fascinating insight into not only the customs of the religious and social aspect of life at the time, but also the impact of dramatic national and international events in that part of Ireland.
Following the French Revolution and the American War of Independence, there was a growing movement for political change in Ireland and in 1791, the Society of United Irishmen was founded, initially seeking peaceful reform, but ultimately resulting in a violent and bloody uprising in 1798.
Conflict erupted in various parts of Ireland, including the northern province of Ulster. The small Moravian Settlement of Gracehill found itself in the middle of the hostility and its aftermath.
A review of the contemporary diary entries and relevant literature will demonstrate the impact Moravians brought to bear on the situation and how as the diaries record “the hearts of many who hated us, and even designed our destruction, were turned” creating a legacy of tolerance and understanding which continues to the present time.
Pride in their past: A study of the role of history and heritage in two English Moravian settlements
James Rollo, Open University
This paper examines how aspects of Moravian history and heritage are employed to present and construct English Moravian identity, that speaks to both internal and external audiences. My research focused on two Moravian settlements in the North of England: Fulneck near Pudsey in West Yorkshire and Fairfield near Droylsden in Greater Manchester. It investigates and engages with the ways in which contemporary members of these two settlements represent their history, heritage and identity through festivals, heritage open days, pageants and through the displays at the museums located at each of these two locations. It explores notions of belonging to a lived-in community and the relationship that members have with the physical settlements. Furthermore, this paper considers how external interest in both Fulneck and Fairfield predominantly focuses on historic or architectural features of the settlements. In conjunction with this notion, it explains the way Fairfield in particular and Fulneck more recently are used in period TV and film productions, exploring the paradox of, on the one hand a willingness to embrace modern technology, while on the other, maintaining the old-world image of the settlement itself, reflecting the community’s pride in the picturesque location of their community that they wish to share with others.
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SESSION 12: PRESENTATIONS
The Band System and Slavery on St. Thomas, 1736-1746
John Balz, University of Wisconsin-Madison
My proposed paper advances historical knowledge about relationships between
Moravians and the World through ongoing dissertation research about early Moravian missions in the Danish West Indies. I will look at how African and African-descended people adapted the Moravian band system in St. Thomas. I use a micro-historical approach that centers Afro-Moravian motivations and experiences to concentrate of the 475 people comprising the first 30 male bands and 37 female bands. News of these bands and their members reached European audiences in a 1741 Büdingische Sammlung.
Moravians used the list to extol the mission’s success and raise their status on the global Protestant stage. African and African-descended people, meanwhile, overlaid existing and new kinship networks on the band structure to secure their family relationships against violence in a slavery society. Using Moravian and Danish colonial records, my paper provides a snapshot of St. Thomas bands in the late 1730s and early 1740s rather than a full change-over-time story of bands in the eighteenth-century. Understanding how the band system functioned in the Caribbean is important to the historiography of creolization – or how cultural mixture happens amidst slave society violence. Michel-Rolph Trouillot points to the plantation as a “cultural matrix” in creolization processes but neglects systematic analysis of formalized Christianity in structuring intra and inter-plantation creolization. Meanwhile, African diaspora historians have emphasized the role that African backgrounds and ethnicities played in the formation of Afro-Christian communities in the Americas. Geographic proximity, enslaver characteristics and social networks among African-descended peoples and enslavers are all important variables that my research considers as part of a close study of the earliest Afro-Moravian bands.
Doing Theology at Cherokee Missions: The Moravian Context in the Early American Republic
Ulrike Wiethaus, Wake Forest University
This paper offers an exploration of early Cherokee and Black theological responses to Moravian evangelization as recorded in Moravian archival sources and elsewhere between the beginning of the Moravian mission to the Cherokee Nation in the early 1800s and the forced Cherokee removal, the Trail of Tears, in the late 1830s. Rather than passive recipients of Moravian teachings, Cherokee and African descent congregants and converts actively engaged and reflected on missionary oral and written instructions.
Located near the home of James Vann, a prominent Cherokee politician and entrepreneur, Moravian missions attracted the attention of notable Cherokee leaders and spokespeople such as Principal Chief Charles R. Hicks (1767-1827), who frequently served the mission as a translator and was baptized by Moravians in 1813; Gallegina Uwati, also known by his adopted American name Elias Boudinot (18021839), who served as the first editor of the Cherokee Phoenix newspaper; and Margaret Ann Crutchfield (1783-1820), widow of James Vann, first Cherokee Moravian convert, and member of a Cherokee Women’s Council that lobbied against Cherokee removal.
The mission station owned and rented enslaved Black workers, both female and male, and was surrounded by one of the largest enslaved communities in the region. According to the Moravian archival records, members of the slave community were literate and already familiar with Christianity when the missionaries began to evangelize.
Given their active engagement with Moravianism and missionaries, the paper will pursue the question how Black and Indigenous interlocutors thought and theologized Moravian faith in their frequent crosscultural encounters with the missionaries. Considering the existential threat to Cherokee sovereignty caused by federal and state efforts to usurp Cherokee homelands, and the devastation of enslavement, doing theology from a Black and Indigenous perspective carried an unprecedented historical weight the participants were well aware of.
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SESSION 13: PRESENTATIONS
Did the first Moravian missionaries to South Africa reveal an unexpected origin of an extinct language?
Pieter Boon, University of the Free State, South Africa
The Moravians were the first to send missionaries to the Cape of Good Hope from 1737 and even in 1792 after about 50 years of absence. Because of this and thanks to their extensive reporting to Herrnhut in letters and diaries, the Moravian archives form a treasury on the history of South Africa. In their writings the missionaries not only dealt with spiritual and ecclesiastical matters, but also with what they encountered, for example political, geographical, socio-economical, and linguistical matters. This also applies to the (now extinct) language(s) of the Khoekhoe or Khoikhoi among whom the Moravians ministered in the Cape. Although the first missionary, Georg Schmidt, acknowledged that this language was too difficult for him to master, we do find some lists with Khoekhoe words in the Moravian archives.
Later missionaries were also interested in the Khoekhoe’s language, already almost extinct in the early 19th century. This paper investigates whether the notion put forward by the missionary Hans Peter Hallbeck (1784-1840), that this language showed similarities with languages spoken in India (Hindustan regions), has any merits. In addition to this, the question also arises whether the origins of the language(s) could give any clues as to the origins of the Khoekhoe people groups in the Cape of Good Hope, who displayed quite different external bodily features compared to the Bantu. To this day debates are ongoing and very diverging hypotheses have been put forward as to their origins, varying from being the remnants of the exilic ten tribes of Israel, to the closest link with primordial humanoids who populated the earth millennia ago from Africa. Whether the Moravian missionaries can give answers to this ongoing debate, is a question worth asking. Anyhow, their writings are revealing as to the perceptions about the Khoekhoe in the 18th and 19th centuries.
Polyglot Lovefeast 1749 Bethlehem: Greenlanders first meet Indigenous American Indians
Stephanie McCormick-Goodhart, Independent Scholar
A lovefeast on June 9, 1749, celebrated the broad range of international Moravian missions. Simultaneously, in 13 different languages, concentric rings of people of many nations sang and prayed. Three native Greenlanders arrived in Bethlehem with missionary Matthew Stach after a two-year European tour that began 1747. Their fascinating Inuit presence, clad in sealskin, stirred printed news around the world from London to New York and Philadelphia. King George II asked to meet them in London, as well as Governor Hamilton in Philadelphia and Governor George Clinton in New York. Over 30 indigenous Americans from the local Moravian mission at Gnadenhutten on the Mahoning—some of whom were just relocated from Wechquadnach on Lake Gnadensee and Shekomeko in New York, and Friedenshutten on the Susquehanna—met the Greenlanders with great curiosity and “fraternal greetings” during their three-week visit in Pennsylvania. Delaware, Mohican, Wampanaoag, and two or three more North American Indian Nations, Arawacks from Berbice in South America, together with missionaries and immigrants of various European origins, worshipped and sang with the Greenlandic Innuits from the Arctic. Archival sources chronicling this moment include: rare 1749 newspaper coverage describing the event with their frank perceptions of one another; plus insights from Bishop Cammerhoff’s Bethlehem diary notes; the Single Brethren’s Diary; details of the sea journey in Captain Garrison’s ship’s log of then newly built Moravian vessel Irene; contemporary portraits by Moravian painter Johann Valentin Haidt; records of music at the Lovefeast service with wind and string instruments; toys and memoirs of missionaries; and missing letters written directly from Gnadenhutten Indians to Greenlanders.
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The Kummer Sisters’ Binder’s Volumes and Manuscript Books: A Testament of Cultural Significance
A snapshot of mid-nineteenth century Moravian culture and music education survives in binder’s volumes (bound volumes of sheet music) and manuscript books belonging to three women educated at the Moravian Young Seminary in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania. Caroline Louisa, Sophia Elizabeth, and Sarah Agnes Kummer attended the school between 1833 and 1843 and attained a high level of piano proficiency in addition to pursing academic instruction. The Seminary was well known for its superior music instruction, and the piano was the chief instrument appropriate for women to play at that time. The Kummer sisters’ surviving volumes include representative genres and works: compositions for piano solo and piano duet, pieces for voice with piano accompaniment, and some hymn accompaniments and theory exercises. Collectively the books comprise genres then popular—serenatas, sets of variations, fantasies, waltzes, marches, airs, bagatelles, and nocturnes by contemporary composers such as Carl Czerny, Henri Herz, Franz Hünten, and Sigismund Thalberg—the same literature performed in European salons and on the concert stage.
The books document the Moravians’ desire to keep pace with the latest developments in piano pedagogy and the popular repertoire and cultural standards upheld in Bethlehem. In addition of exposure to fashionable genres, piano students could also receive instruction in Moravian hymn accompaniments, which incorporated writing and playing chorale interludes.
In this lecture recital, Martha Schrempel and I will perform piano duets from the Kummer books. Between the performances, I will discuss the significance of the repertoire as a cultural yardstick in Moravian society and piano instruction offered at the school. Furthermore, the audience will be invited to sing Caroline’s arrangement of “Wachet auf, ruft uns die Stimme,” with the chorale interludes.
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SESSION 14: PRESENTATIONS
Moravian Education in Ireland 1765 – 1900
Sally Ann Johnston, Moravian Archive of Ireland
A love of and enthusiasm for education has been central to the ethos of Moravians from the earliest days of the church. The settlement in Gracehill, Northern Ireland founded in 1759 was no different to most other Moravian settlements in establishing schools as an integral and essential element.
Over a period of almost a century there were four separate schools, running concurrently, no small achievement for a small rural Settlement and the associated challenges encountered. Separate day schools for boys and girls and boarding academies were a feature of the Settlement and achieved varying degrees of success at different times undoubtedly leaving a lasting legacy.
This paper will review contemporary sources to describe the provision of education in Gracehill by the Moravians, highlighting the quality and variety of the educational experience and analyzing the extent to which the schools were key to the nature and sphere of the Moravians’ influence in Ireland.
African Culture influencing realization of female position in the Mission of the Moravian Church in Tanzania
Mary Kategile, Teofilo Kisanji University
Women have been an integral part in any society in the history of the world. In African context women are called backbone of the society. This is attested through the roles that African women play in everyday life. Women are active in maintaining the social connections, caring for their families, in that it can be argued that they are the pillars of families and by extension the society, yet their input is barely recognized. Despite the women’s different roles, they play in the church, society as well as in their families. Historically women have played different roles in African traditional religion and in the Church, as well. Women as nurturers are recognized as having the role of custodianship and transmission of values and ethics of particular families, clans, societies, and nations. This role is recognized to have been magnified in the process of integration of traditional economies. Basing on that societal perception on women in church leadership is influenced by African culture and its social systems which resulted to male dominance in leadership. Culture can be understood to be a legitimate ingredient of human existence, but often is misinterpreted by the patriarchal systems of the church in relation to leadership roles, and consequently the roles of women in the church is not recognized despite their being a majority in church membership. This paper assessed the influence of African culture on women position to the mission of the Moravian Church in Tanzania. It further explored gender role in the traditional society, nature of social inequality between the sexes in African social systems, and its effects on the mission of the Church.
The Moravian Schools and the Spreading of the Gospel in Western Tanzania between 1891 up to 1967
Wilson Nkumba, Sikonge Moravian Mission Hospital
In the upcoming presentation I plan to talk about the role of Moravian schools in enhancing the rapid spreading of the gospel in the western part of Tanzania.
Basically, the presentation aims to highlight the historical significance of the Moravian schools played in the crucial process of molding people’s hearts in order to accept the good news brought by early Moravian missionaries.
The intention of this presentation is not to cover the role of Moravian schools from the beginning down to the present, but rather the focus will be from 1891 when the first missionaries established the church down to early 1970s.
In the beginning it was not easy to get direct access that allowed missionaries to have ample time to share the good news of Jesus to Africans. It was in one way through, the presence of the schools as platforms whereby missionaries were provided with enough time to sow the word of God in African children. Getting the hearts of African kids then opened the door for entire society to come to contact with gospel of Jesus Christ indirectly.
In short, in the upcoming presentation I am very much interested in explaining how useful the Moravians schools were and how we can currently benefit with our schools by the use of past historical experience.
This is what I plan to write.
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SESSION 15: PRESENTATIONS
The Inuit Voice in Moravian Music
Tom Gordon, Memorial University of Newfoundland
A century after Moravian missionaries introduced their hymns, anthems and brass band music on Labrador’s north coast stewardship for these traditions was assumed by Inuit musicians. Across the next century and a half Inuit organists, choirmasters, and band leaders transformed Moravian music practices, infusing them with their own voice. Parts of this recast practice echo more traditional Inuit forms of expression: the drum, katatjak, and pre-contact singing. Parts of it reflect the imposition of Inuit conceptions of beauty on a music which was foreign but alluring.
From evidence gathered from oral histories and archival records, thousands of music manuscripts and hundreds of audio recordings, this Inuit Voice in Moravian music can be characterized by five distinctive traits. These are a pure and powerful vocal timbre, a reduction of the musical object to its essence, an attraction to harmonic resonance, the creation of temporal stasis, and a foregrounding of narrative qualities in music; all of which will be illustrated in this paper.
Regardless of its origins, the Moravian music introduced in Labrador became, over time, an intrinsically Inuit form of expression. The process by which this transformation occurred was grafted by generations of Inuit organists, choirmasters, musicians, and singers – the application of an Inuit imagination to the music of Western Europe. But there is no question in the eyes, ears and hearts of many Labrador Inuit that this music is their own spiritual and cultural expression.
Evangelical America and Native American Hymns
James Owen, University of Georgia
Research for part of my current book looks at the role of Moravian hymnody and mission work among indigenous peoples in shaping modern evangelical Christianity. Evangelical heritage often glosses over the role of indigenous peoples in shaping modern faith, while interactions at mission sites provided Europeans a window on native cultures as well as providing Natives a window to evangelical world. I argue three main points: The very existence of millions of Natives who had never heard the gospel sparked the early imaginings of modern evangelicalism in Europe; interactions with Native Americans at mission sites was a powerful force in shaping evangelical Christianity after 1600; and that hymn-singing was the central activity of converting Native Americans.
The Bohemian Brethren and the Moravians helped shape early evangelical thinking, influencing important figures from Puritan John Eliot to George Whitefield and the Wesley brothers. Under Zinzendorf’s missionary mandate, Moravians boldly journeyed to “dark” and “uncivilized” corners of the New World to teach evangelical theology through hymn-singing. As church organizations like the Moravians became more organized, the face-to-face interactions of European missionaries and Native peoples became central to evangelical thinking about how to spread the gospel and what conversion would accomplish for Native and colonial societies. By the late-eighteenth century, evangelical Christianity was an empowering cultural tool for Native societies, who developed their own brands of faith that in-turn shaped American evangelism.
In the process, Moravians generated a vast library of indigenous language glossaries, grammars, hymnlyrics and scripture which are important in language revitalization and evangelical expansion in indigenous American communities today. This research draws from extensive work in Moravian archives at Hernhut, Bethlehem PA and Winston-Salem NC, including personal correspondence, hymnal prefaces, mission diaries, and hymn lyrics.
From Hymnal to Books of Worship: Changes in the American Moravian Liturgical Heritage
C. Riddick Weber, Moravian University
The change in titles from the 1969 Hymnal of the Moravian Church to the 1995 Moravian Book of Worship indicates a recognition within the Moravian Church that its worship resources are more than simply songbooks. Liturgies have played a key but often misunderstood or undervalued role in Moravian worship, in conveying Moravian theology, and revealing elements of Moravian polity. Because Moravians understand both their theology and their polity to be dynamic, liturgical resources have changed over time. Some liturgies have disappeared. New ones have been created. Some reflect external theological emphases, while others seek to make known new Moravian theological understandings or restate older ones that have been downplayed.
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SESSION 16: PRESENTATIONS
The Colonial Landscape in the Latin Poems of Christian Wedsted (1720-1757)
Aaron Palmore, Loyola University Maryland
This paper explores how the Moravian scribe and linguist Christian Wedsted (1720-1757) explores Pennsylvania’s landscape in his Latin poetry. Wedsted composed at least 50 Latin poems during his time with the Moravians in Germany, England, and Pennsylvania, where he arrived in 1753.
Wedsted’s oeuvre includes birthday poems, impassioned Moravian religious verses, and personal anecdotes about life on the colonial frontier. At around 1200 lines, his extant poems make up one of the largest unpublished collections of 18th-century Latin poetry from the Americas.
In poetic epistles addressed to various recipients including Nikolaus Ludwig von Zinzendorf himself, Wedsted develops a perspective on nature that combines Moravian thought with tropes drawn from classical Latin authors like Ovid, Horace, and Vergil. While Wedsted’s views may seem idiosyncratic, they also accommodate the expectations of his classically educated addressees.
For instance, in a poem that commemorates those who died in the November 1755 attack on Gnadenhutten, Wedsted begins with a direct address to the Mahoning River and mourns the loss of the security he used to feel in the Pennsylvania countryside. Here, Wedsted intertwines Moravian idioms with allusions to Vergil’s pastoral poetry in the Eclogues. In another poem, Wedsted seems to meld Moravian and Ancient Roman precepts by describing the numen (“divinity”) of the natural world as he arrives in Bethlehem.
As Wedsted’s poetic style evolved during his few years in Pennsylvania, he changed his formal preference from composing in elegiac couplets to the more difficult sapphic stanzas. In this mode, inspired by his experience in Pennsylvania, he composed a long poem to Matthew Hehl on the nature of Eden.
Ultimately, Wedsted’s negotiation of the American environment in his Latin poems makes a valuable contribution to our understanding of the colonial trope of America as an untapped garden of possibilities.
“Why are you grumbling against the Pope in Rome? We already have Popes nearby”. Critical writings of former members Johannes Hansen & Martin Cunow against the acting of the Moravian Church
Jonas Schwiertz, Freie Universität Berlin
The Moravian Church was often subject of critical writings. The polemics of the 1740s to 1750s are well known. Closer ties with the Lutheran Church, as well as recognition by various sovereigns in the second half of the 18th century, are interpreted as tendencies of a more general acceptance of the Moravian Church. The church leaders became proficient in silencing criticism from outside the community.
Less well known are the critical writings of former Moravians in the 19th century, such as those of Johannes Hansen (1797 – ?), published in 1821, and Martin Cunow (1786 – 1847), published in 1839. Both had grown up in the Moravian Church and had separated or been excluded as young adults. Their insights into the structures and abuses of power were intended to warn outsiders. Their criticism was directed in particular against the supposedly constricting monastic-like choir organizations, against the lot practice, against the pejorative attitude towards the world outside the community, and especially against the relentless persecution of deviants, which seemed to be done in a “jesuitical” or “papal” approach.
In my paper I want to present the partly similar, partly very divergent points of criticism and motivations of Hansen and Cunow. Furthermore, I will show how the Moravian Church deals with these fundamental criticisms, both internally, by the Unity Elders Conference, and publicly, through defense writings.
I want to analyze the way in which the Moravian Church was able to resist most attempts at reform. There was a simmering unhappiness and even revolts, but only few members dared to leave. Those, however, who left or were forced to leave, could in the rarest cases completely separate themselves from the Moravians, but still had to deal with their living conditions outside the community.
Zinzendorf’s Understanding of the Human Subject & Its Relationship to Post-Enlightenment Thought
Chaz Snider, Calvary Moravian Church & The Global Center for Advanced Studies
The philosophical and theological ideas of Count Zinzendorf enter the history of human thought at a critical time. The early enlightenment period has already begun with the work of people like René Descartes (1596-1650), Francis Bacon (1561-1626), and John Locke (1632-1704). But the significant developments made by Immanuel Kant (1724-1804) and the subsequent philosophical movement of German Idealism and the related Romantic movement lead by philosophers such as Johann Gottlieb Fichte (1762-1814), Friedrich Schelling (1775-1854), and Georg Wilhelm Hegel (17701831) and theologians like Friedrich Schleiermacher (1768-1834) had not happened yet.
The first section of this paper will examine Zinzendorf’s understanding of the human subject. How, according to Zinzendorf, one relates to oneself, others, and God. There will be an examination of how Zinzendorf’s anthropology may have contributed to the unique style of community the Moravians created.
This section will also offer thoughts on how Zinzendorf’s anthropology relates to other aspects of his thoughts and possibilities for how this developed.
The second part of the paper will consist of examining Zinzendorf’s as cusp or transitional thinker. It will look at Zinzendorf’s concept of the human subject in light of the significant changes to western thought that happened in the generation after Zinzendorf. In addition to historical connections with later thinkers this paper will compare and contrast his view of the subject with the major themes of German Idealism.
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SESSION 17: PRESENTATIONS
Reviving the Lititz Collegium Musicum: History You Can Hear!
Jeff Gemmell, Millersville University of Pennsylvania/Lititz Moravian Congregation
The inaugural gathering of the Lititz Moravian Collegium Musicum (LMCM) occurred on 9 September 2018. Billed as Lancaster County’s newest, yet oldest chamber orchestra, LMCM brought together professional musicians from south-central Pennsylvania and beyond, including church members, to recreate a significant feature of cultural life in early Lititz. The founding of the original Collegium Musicum can be traced back to 1768, when an account was established, and a collection was taken for instruments. Following the “collegia musica” tradition then popular in Europe, the Lititz ensemble provided accomplished amateurs the opportunity to perform for practice, entertainment, and enlightenment. The Lititz Collegium Musicum served a dual purpose: it strengthened the musicians’ skills to play the intricately composed repertoire used in worship, yet also satisfied the community’s desire for leisurely music-making. With time and as society evolved in the nineteenth-century, increased emphasis on professionalism led to a shift in terminology: public performances came to be called concerts and the performing groups became academies, societies, or symphony orchestras. Hence, the Lititz Collegium Musicum was the core of what would become the Lititz Philharmonic Society in 1815 and, even later, the Lititz Band.
The mission of today’s LMCM is to research, edit, perform, and share forgotten or rarely heard historic repertoire found in the Lititz Collegium Musicum Collection, which is maintained by the Moravian Music Foundation and housed in the Moravian Archives in Bethlehem, PA. This paper will the discuss the past six years of conducting this research, the results obtained through the synergistic interplay of components necessary to produce LMCM gatherings in the very place where the music was first performed, and the nature of cultural sharing between Moravians and the world as reflected in the repertoire and activities of Lititz “collegia musica” in the past, the present, and the future.
GemeinKat: The World Can Now Search Music of the Gemeinde
Barbara Strauss, Moravian Music Foundation
With the ending of the GemeinKat Project, the Moravian Music Foundation presents four new tools scholars can use to search holdings of the Gemeinde in America. These holdings include music in Bethlehem and Winston-Salem from the 1740s through about 1900. By converting the catalogs of the collections from Bethlehem, Lititz, Salem and other settlement communities to online access the following tools are now possible.
The online catalog, using OCLC’s WorldCat Discovery, is a conversion of the paper catalog done by Richard Claypool, Jeanine Ingram, Robert Steeleman completed in the 1970s, which was supported by grants from the National Endowment for the Humanities. The online catalog also includes records for the library at the Archie K. Davis Center and an increasing number of digital images.
The RISM catalog refines records from WorldCat Discovery by displaying musical incipits of all musical works and places the records in the context of early music manuscripts and imprints found world-wide. It is in the RISM catalog that the ties between the Gemeinde in America and Europe are found.
The third tool is the set of finding aids created for each collection in Bethlehem and Winston-Salem. For the first time, these documents record information about the composers and music, key individuals, and the relationship of specific collections to the whole.
The fourth tool is ArchiveGrid, a public research project at OCLC, where “archival” records in WorldCat are gathered and are searchable in new ways. The benefit of this tool is that scholars can identify pertinent collections at other institutions worldwide.
The GemeinKat project makes the music of the Gemeinde in America discoverable to scholars wherever they are.
Uncommon Bonds: Labrador Inuit and Moravian Missionaries—A framework for the digital mobilization of records in northern Labrador
Mark Turner, Memorial University / Nunatsiavut Government / OKâlaKatiget Society
June 2023 marked the official conclusion of the first phase of Uncommon Bonds: Labrador Inuit and Moravian Missionaries. Developed as a partnership between the Nunatsiavut Government, Moravian Archives Bethlehem, Moravian Church in Newfoundland and Labrador, Memorial University Libraries and the National Heritage Digitization Strategy and funded by the Council on Library and Information Resources, the original goal of the partnership was the digitization and digital return of 60,000 pages of archival records removed from northern Labrador communities in 1959. Throughout its three years, however, the partnership expanded significantly, becoming a mechanism to broker the digitation of additional records from the region and developing a web portal to facilitate access to these newly digitized records. Now Uncommon Bonds exists as its own organizational entity responsible for coordinating further digitization of relevant records, promoting access to those digital records, and assisting in the physical management of records in the region. This presentation is a capstone summary of the first phase of the project and will place specific emphasis on (1) the reasons for the expansion of the project beyond digitization and digital return; (2) the development of uncommonbonds.org; and (3) the organizational model for Uncommon Bonds in this new phase of the partnership. Given the nature of the conference, I am happy to adjust my focus per the suggestions of the programming committee.
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SATURDAY LUNCHEON PRESENTATION
Mobilizing the Walk and Talk of Cultural Heritage: Using Digital Technology to Promote Wellness and Place-based Knowledge
Katie Faull, Professor of German and Humanities, Faculty Director of Civic Engagement, Special Advisor to the Provost
Shaunna Barnhart, Director of Place Studies Program, Bucknell Center for Sustainability & the Environment
Stu Thompson, Associate Professor and Chair, Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering
Students involved in the Project:
Anna Ottman, Sophomore, Electrical Engineer
Vy Tran, Junior, Computer Science
Jean Marie Ngabonziza, Sophomore, Computer Engineer
During this lunch-hour presentation, the development team of the smartphone app Ready Set Fit will discuss the ways in which smartphone technology can be leveraged to promote wellness and place-based knowledge. The team of faculty, staff and students from Bucknell University will discuss the design concept behind the app, its development over the last 5 years, its implementation in promoting downtown foot traffic, and its crowdsourcing method for the collection of local knowledge along with the community partnerships that motivate the walking trails that are in the app. After an introduction to the ideas and approach, there will be time for discussion on how the technology could be used to support specific aspects of the audience’s work. The team is interested in feedback on the project and ideas for future directions. After the discussion, the students on the development team will talk about their experiences and how the project has impacted them. Finally, there will be time for more discussion and/or Q and A.
Participants will be able to download the app for iPhone and Android, explore the trails in Bethlehem, and experience the 3D scans of historic sites in the area that have been added to the application.
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SESSION 18: PRESENTATIONS
“… But the good that has been done will be more fully known in Eternity alone”: Moravian Wilhelm Andreas Rhenius and his social activities in Klaipėda, East Prussia
Inga Strungytė-Liugienė, Institute of Lithuanian Language
The biographical facts of Moravian Wilhelm Andreas Rhenius (1753-1833), the inspector of the Bachmann estate near Klaipėda/Memel (East Prussia), and his life after his arrival at the Bachmann estate have been researched by the local historian Johann Semritzki (1918). The educational activities of Rhenius in Klaipėda in the 2nd decade of the 19th century were described in the publication by Strungytė-Liugienė (2021). This paper focuses on the multifaceted – religious and educational – activities of Wilhelm Andreas Rhenius in Klaipėda in the 2-3 decades of the 19th century. Rhenius’s participation in public life in Klaipėda, his collaboration with the London Religious Tract Society and the British and Foreign Bible Society will be discussed here. The aim is to reflect on Rhenius’s contribution to the Protestant Awakening movement, as well as to the Lithuanian ‘Surinkimininkai‘ movement in the Klaipėda region.
[Sembritzki, J.] 1918: Geschichte des Kreises Memel. Festgabe zum Andenken an die 34 jährige Verwaltung des Kreises durch Geheimen Reg.-Rath Cranz. / im Auftrage des Kreisausschusses versatzt von Johannes Sembritzki. Memel: Robert Schmidt.
Strungytė-Liugienė, I. 2021: Wilhelmo Andrėjaus Rheniaus (1753–1833) šviečiamoji veikla Klaipėdoje ir pirmieji lietuviški anglų religinės literatūros vertimai [Educational Activities of Wilhelm Andreas Rhenius (1753–1833) in Klaipėda and the First Lithuanian Translations of English Religious Literature]. Knygotyra, 76, 93–113.
The Moravian Missionary in Texas: The Moravian Missionary J.A. Friebele’s Journey from Pennsylvania, Jamaica, Florida, North Carolina to The Mission Field He Found in Texas
Brent Thorn, Tyler Junior College
Moravian mission research requires a transatlantic frame of reference. Their Global mission network created during the 18th and 19th century produced a complex philosophical and social experiment, and one of their last frontiers was Texas. Pennsylvania became the center of German immigration in the 18th century, but Texas became the focus of many Germans hope for a new beginning in the 19th century. Common characteristics of German immigrants to Texas in the 19th century include hard working, efficient, and motived to find economic opportunity. Germany in the 19th century fought to organize its various regions and join England and France in the industrial revolution. German leadership succeed in competing in a modernized economy, but this success led to fewer opportunities for the evergrowing German population. Joining Britain and France in colonizing the non-European world became one outlet for relieving the social pressures of the expanding German nation. However, the other western powers resisted Germany’s efforts and colonization proved ineffective. Immigration, on the other hand, provided opportunity for Germans in the new world, and by the 19th century, Texas became an important destination. A single Moravian missionary from North Carolina relocated to Texas for personal reasons but found a promising mission field among the people from his ancestry. The question is how did he get there, what did he find, and who became his focus? What philosophy and theology did the immigrating Germans bring with them, and how did the frontier experience change them?
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SESSION 19: PRESENTATIONS
A Contribution of the Moravian theological teachings in Tanzania and its contribution to the rest of the Moravian World
Clement Fumbo, Evangelical Fellowship Church Tanzania
This study investigates the Moravian theological teachings in Africa and Tanzania in particular and its contribution to other Christian understanding and Churches that are mushrooming in Tanzania. The methodology employed include but not limited to author experience as a member and minister in this Church for more than 25 years, relevant documents available and previous research results. Initially, the Moravian theological teachings, despite challenges faced in diverse traditions, has a unique and unifying factor that make Moravian members worldwide share the ‘same’ background of Moravian traditions and teachings that encourage respect and dignity for every individual person. However, diversity of cultures and traditions has a direct influence on the Moravian Church traditions and teachings in the local settings as such shaping the community in either negative or positive perspective.The study aim to find out the impact of its history, nature and contribution both positive and negative to the rest of the Moravian World. Main research questions reads, ‘What is the Moravian theological teachings in Tanzania perspective and how it has contributed to the Moravian World as a whole and Tanzania society in particular’.
The Historical Importance of Moravian Sikonge Mission Hospital Since Its Establishment in 1923
Peter Songoro, Sikonge Moravian Mission Hospital
It has been my interest for so long to talk about the service being rendered by Moravian mission Hospital. My desire was to expose the true and valid evidence on how this hospital has been of great importance not only to the community but also to the Moravian church at large.
Even though this hospital is going to celebrate a centurion September 2023, but less is known about its importance. For this reason, I planned to write in order to give the true value of the historical importance of the hospital for a hundred years of service.
Therefore, in the upcoming presentation I am preparing to talk about its historical importance before Tanzania’s independence and nowadays. Apart from that, am also going to talk about the different phases and its ups and downs in which the hospital passed through for a hundred years of service. In the first phase which was from the founding of this hospital to 1970s I will explain how the Moravian church played its role of supervising and facilitating the hospital to fulfil its mission. And in the second phase which was under public private partnership, I will explain the contribution of the government on the running of the hospital.
Currently there are so many healthy facilities in Sikonge and around Sikonge. The presence of these facilities does not minimize its importance in the society because Sikonge Moravian hospital is still the only hospital that performs various health services related interventions ranging from common minor cases to major conditions that may need specialized attention compared to what is done to other facilities that surround our hospital. For this reason, Sikonge Moravian Mission hospital is still needed.