An integral part of academic life at Elizabethtown College, the Young Center for Anabaptist and Pietist Studies fosters and promotes the study of Anabaptist and Pietist groups. Young Center staff, visiting scholars, and students conduct scholarly and interpretive investigations of the life, culture and beliefs of Anabaptists and Pietists, primarily in their North American context. The Center interprets the cultural and religious heritage of Anabaptist and Pietist communities to the general public via lectures, seminars, exhibits, and conferences.
Located near the college's Lake Placida, the Center, which is named for Galen S. Young, D.O., and Jessie M. Young, includes a small bookstore, offices, research space, and a classroom. The adjoining Bucher Meetinghouse, named for Rufus P. Bucher, provides ample space for many of the Center’s programs. The Bucher Bookshop, located in the lobby, contains over 100 different titles on the Brethren, Brethren in Christ, Amish, Mennonites, Hutterites, and Moravians. The books range from scholarly studies to children's fiction.
The Young Center’s yearly activities include a spring and fall lecture series, an annual banquet, the Durnbaugh Lectures, and the Dale W. Brown Book Award. Staff members regularly teach undergraduate classes for the college and conduct research related to the Anabaptist and Pietist movements. The Center also supports a fellows program and maintains a variety of research collections that are available to the public.
The Center is open from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday.
From the Young Center
Young Center thanked by Finnish author
Former Snowden Fellow publishes book on economic comparisons of Pietists and Anabaptists
Finnish author Aini Linjakumpu recently acknowledged the Young Center for Anabaptist and Pietist Studies in her book “Vanhoillislestadiolaisuuden taloudelliset verkostot.” Her research compares the economic and entrepreneurial customs of the Bruderhof and Amish Anabaptists to the Conservative Laestadians, a Lapland Pietist group. She explores the economic knowhow and prowess of these groups and how their religious identities shape their business ethics. In fall 2016, Linjakumpu conducted research for her book as a Snowden Fellow at the Young Center. In the opening pages of her book, the scholar thanked the Center for research assistance and gave a nod to each staff member.
“It is not often that Elizabethtown College and the Young Center are mentioned in acknowledgements in a book written in Finnish, and it’s equally rare that a book comes out comparing the Laestadians and the Amish and the Bruderhof.” -- Jeff Bach, director of the Young Center for Anabaptist and Pietist Studies
From the Young Center
Hutterite blogger mentions Young Center
Attended summer peace conference
Linda Maendel was a guest this spring at “The Peace Churches and the Great War: A Centennial Reflection” at the Young Center for Anabaptist and Pietist Studies. As a member of the Hutterites, a communal Anabaptist group, she was fascinated with the Amish and their way of life. She wrote about the experience in her online blog, Hutt-Write Voice. The Hutterites are located primarily in areas of Canada, North and South Dakota and Montana. Similar to the Amish, they have specific lifestyle guidelines. Unlike the Amish, they allow the use of motorized vehicles, electricity or telephones. Linda is permitted to use a computer and have internet access only because she is a member of the most progressive of the Hutterite subgroups.
“Her community hopes (her blog) will attract positive interest in the Hutterites. We are glad for the attention to the Young Center and our College.” -- Jeff Bach, director of the Young Center for Anabaptist and Pietist Studies