Winter Tea Party winners: Angela's book,THE SCARLET COAT, will go to: Print copy- Andrea Stephens; e-book copy - Catherine Wight!

LUCY REYNOLDS has a table topper quilt on the way, and winners of the Valentine Ebook Collection are: Deanna Stevens, Caryl Kane, Anne Payne and Winnie Thomas. With thanks to all who joined in!

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Schoenbrunn Village - Moravian Missionaries



Tamera Lynn Kraft

In the 1770s, Moravian missionaries moved to Ohio from Bethlehem, Pennsylvania to settle a village called Schoenbrunn which means Beautiful Spring. Their goal was to bring the Gospel to the Delaware Indians. After the Delaware would convert to Christianity, they moved into Schoenbrunn. Within a year, the village grew so large, they started another settlement and Gnadenhutten.

Schoenbrunn, in many ways, was ahead of its time. The settlers of the village, including the Delaware, created their own code of conduct and opened a school. The school taught both boys and girls when other colonial schools at the time only accepted boys. The students learned to read both English and Lenape out of a Bible that was translated in the Lenape language.

The Moravians built a church there with painting on the walls of Biblical scenes. They used these painting to teach about the Bible. They had church every morning and twice on Sunday. On special occasions they would have Lovefeasts where they served coffee, juice, and sweet buns. The Christmas Eve Lovefeasts were the most special because the Moravians were the first to have Christmas Eve candlelight services.

The settlement only lasted a few years. When the Revolutionary War broke out, British troops suspected the Moravians of giving information to the colonial army. These charges against them were true. After a time, they moved to protect themselves from reprisals.

Schoenbrunn Village is still open today for visitors and tourists to learn about some of the earliest missionaries in America.

In November, my Christmas novella called A Christmas Promise is due to be released by Harbourlight Press in e-book format as part of their Christmas Extravaganza.

12 comments:

  1. Tamera, This is one people group I would love to study. They had quite an impact on so many people at that time, and yet they often go unrecognized in history. Thank you for sharing this.

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    1. I agree, Lynn. They were so committed to preaching the Gospel that 2 Moravians sold themselves as slaves to evangelize the slaves at St. Thomas.

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  2. Great story. I'll have to add it to my bucket list.

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    1. Thanks, Anne. I can't wait for you to read it.

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  3. Tamara, thank you for this post. I'm always amazed by the people who don't recognize the part of Christianity in the history of our country.

    Looking forward to reading A Christmas Promise. Thank you.

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  4. This looks really cool, Tamera! And congrats on your first post on CQ!!!

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    1. Thanks, Carrie. And thanks for inviting me to be a part of Colonial Quills. I'm honored.

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  5. Great post. Great place to visit. I have spent considerable time studying the Christian Delaware. I do plan a novel about one of their key figures, he actually was associated with Schoenbrunn. The general approach to the genders was largely a reflection of the Moravians. Some decades before in England, the love feasts and even the leadership of the church, reflected the inclusion of both genders. A visit to the site is highly recommended. My youngest daughter, (13 at the time), wanted to spend the night in the cabins when we visited. Of course, that is not allowed, but I was impressed that a teenager would find the site interesting, (especially when their father almost had to drag them to the site). Have fun and bless someone.

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    1. Thanks, Freeborng. I agree that there is so much history in Schoenbrunn. I loved visiting there, and I found the staff so helpful to my research for A Christmas Promise. I've been considering writing a novel or series of novels about the Moravians. I look forward to reading yours.

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  6. Thank you for the interesting post. I have always wanted to learn more about the Moravians.

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    1. Thanks, Kay. They are fascinating people.

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