Interchurch Ministries of Nebraska [RG3576.AM]

HISTORY NEBRASKA MANUSCRIPT FINDING AID

RG3576.AM:  Interchurch Ministries of Nebraska

Records:  1887-1970
Lincoln, Lancaster County, Nebraska:  Interdenominational Church Organization
Size:  8.5 cu.ft.; 9 boxes

BACKGROUND NOTE

The organization that adopted the name of the Interchurch Ministries of Nebraska in 1971 was originally the Nebraska Sunday School Association, founded in 1867.  Its original purpose was “to promote the efficiency of Sunday Schools throughout the state by uniting Christian workers in earnest efforts to advance the cause of Christ.”

In 1924 this body was renamed the Nebraska Council of Christian Education.  Sunday Schools as well as other instruments of Christian education were to be organized for growth, efficiency and cooperation.  In 1933 the organization became the Nebraska Council of Churches and Christian Education and its role was expanded so that it promoted cooperation in the fields of unity, social relations, and other Christian activities, as well as education.  When, in 1955, it became simply the Nebraska Council of Churches, its purpose remained the same, but it was also given greater powers to administer the cooperative enterprises of its membership.

By 1970 the Nebraska Council of Churches began to move toward reorganization, as it was thought that the council framework had outlived its usefulness.  It was felt that the Council was no longer an adequate expression of Christian Cooperation within the state as Catholic, Greek Orthodox, and Evangelical bodies were not included.  The Council represented less than half of the Christian bodies in the state and lacked the broad-based support it needed to be effective.

In response, the seven-denomination Nebraska Council of Churches decided at its annual meeting to disband and reshape into a “pan Christian body,” and it became the Interchurch Ministries of Nebraska.  In the past the Council had set policies for all of its members.  The restructuring provided that members could support programs where they affirmed them or dissociate themselves as individual churches if they opposed a particular program.  Also, in addition to its Protestant members, the Interchurch Ministries sought out religious groups which had been absent from its earlier organizational.  Thus, to an even greater extent, the Interchurch Ministries of Nebraska promotes cooperation and administers cooperative enterprise in the fields of Christian education, comity, social relations, and many other Christian activities.

SCOPE AND CONTENT NOTE

This collection consists of nine boxes of manuscript material arranged into six subgroups:  SG (1) Organizational History; SG (2) Government; SG (3) Divisions and Departments; SG (4) Committees; SG (5) Special Topics; and SG (6) Miscellany.  These subgroups, all dealing with programs of the Interchurch Ministries of Nebraska, are divided into series within each subgroup.

Subgroup 1 consists of material which documents the Organizational history of the Interchurch Ministries of Nebraska, 1887-1968.  Constitutions, Articles of Incorporation, reports on the history of the organization and membership lists are provided.  Records of the Nebraska Sunday School Association, the earliest forerunner of the Interchurch Ministries of Nebraska, is included in this subgroup as are the early records of county, regional and local church and Sunday School councils.

Subgroup 2 contains material on Interchurch Ministries of Nebraska Government, 1925-1968.  This subgroup is comprised of minutes from Series 1:  Annual Meetings and Series 2:  Executive Committee Meetings.

The Divisions and Departments of the Interchurch Ministries of Nebraska comprise Subgroup 3.  This subgroup contains six series, one for each division or department:  1) Christian Education, 1928-1967; 2) Social Action, 1939-1964; 3) Finance, 1914-1968; 4) Youth Council, 1932-1968; 5) Research and Planning, 1953-1968; and 6) Comity, 1941-1966.  Minutes, report, correspondence, plans, programs, and budgets are included for each of these series.

Subgroup 4 contains seven series, one for each committee:  1) Camps and Campsites, 1956-1970; 2) Town and Country, 1940-1964; 3) New Church Development, 1957-1964; 4) Ministry in Institutions, 1955-1964; 5) Evangelism, 1950-1964; 6) Nominating Committee, 1928-1968; and 7) Radio and T.V.   Like the material in Subgroup 3, this subgroup also contains minutes, reports, correspondence, etc.

There are six special topics, each having its own series number, in Subgroup 5.  These are 1) Federated Churches, 1949-1968; 2) Lakeside Ministries, 1966-1968; 3) Ministerial Convocations; 4) Cotner College, 1954-1963; 5) Reformation Festivals, 1957-1962; and 6) Audio-Visual Communications Seminar, 1962-1965.  This subgroup contains the same type of material as that of the previous two subgroups.

The Miscellany of Subgroup 6 consists of topics with a small amount of material provided.  Also, correspondence that does not fit into any of the other subgroups or series is filed here.  A box of bulletins and pamphlets on a variety of subjects is also included in this subgroup.  The last two boxes in the collection are unprocessed and have not been inventoried or arranged into subgroups or series.

It should be noted that there is a great deal of topical overlap in this collection.  For example, the Department of Research and Planning, (SG 3, S5), the Comity Department, (SG 3, S6), the Town and Country Commission, (SG 4, S2), the New Church Development Commission (SG 4, S3), and Federated Church material SG 5, S1) all deal with church expansion.  Likewise, the Division of Christian Education (SG 3, S1) and the youth Council (SG 3, S4) both promote educational programs for its young members.  Researchers should therefore expect to find material both duplicated and expanded upon in more than one location within this collection.

DESCRIPTION

Subgroup 1: Interchurch Ministries of Nebraska, Organizational History, 1887-1968
Series 1 - Constitution and Articles of Incorporation

Box 1
Folder

  1. Articles of Incorporation 1959; Constitutions, 1924-1968; By-Laws; Suggested Amendments

Series 2 - Nature and Work

  1. Reports and Radio Broadcasts describing working and activities

Series 3 - Membership lists, 1930-1960, n.d.

  1. Name and church affiliations; committees

Series 4 - Nebraska Sunday School Association

  1. Minutes, 1887-1898; also includes Articles of Incorporation, Constitution, By-Laws, Pledges, Financial Reports, Newspaper Clippings
  2. Minutes, 1898-1916
  3. Minutes, 1916-1933
  4. Annual Convention Proceedings, 1892
  5. Annual Convention Proceedings, 1893
  6. Annual Convention proceedings, 1895
  7. Annual Convention Proceedings, 1897
  8. Annual Convention proceedings, 1924; Honor Roll – those who gave their lives to Christian service, ca. 1921 (by county)
  9. Hitchcock County Sunday School Association Minutes, 1896-1923
  10. Hitchcock County Sunday School Association Minutes, 1925-1938
  11. Hitchcock County Sunday School Associated Material

Series 5 - County, Regional, and Local Councils

  1. Material and Suggestions
  2. County Officers and Workers
  3. Adams-Cherry Counties
  4. Cheyenne-Dodge Counties
  5. Douglas-Hall Counties
  6. Hamilton-Loup Counties
  7. McPherson-Polk Counties
  8. Red Willow-York Counties

Box 2
Folder

  1. Sandhills Council of Churches
  2. Sparsely Settled Areas
  3. Omaha Council of Churches
  4. Peru, Nebraska, Churches
  5. LaPlatte Community Church
  6. Sioux Ordinance Depot Community Church

Subgroup 2: Interchurch Ministries of Nebraska, Government, 1925-1968, n.d.
Series 1 - Annual Meetings and Reports (Filed by date of submission)

  1. 1925-1927
  2. 1926-1931
  3. 1932-1934
  4. 1935-1940
  5. 1941-1945
  6. 1946-1953
  7. 1954-1959
  8. 1960-1968 and undated fragments

Series 2 - Executive Committee Minutes, 1928-1968, n.d.

  1. 1928-1954
  2. 1955-1963
  3. 1964-1966
  4. 1967-1968 and undated; some correspondence and committee membership lists included

Subgroup 3: Divisions and Departments of the Interchurch Ministries of Nebraska, 1914-1968
Series 1 - Division of Christian Education, 1927-1967

  1. Responsibilities of Christian Education Division; Annual Reports, 1930-1966
  2. Minutes, 1928-1949
  3. Minutes, 1950-1956
  4. Minutes, 1957-1962
  5. Minutes, 1963-1966; Committee Assignments
  6. Vacation Church Schools Reports and Recommendations
  7. Vacation Church Schools Minutes, 1953-1966; Correspondence, 1949-1967, n.d.; News releases

Box 3
Folder

  1. Vacation Church Schools Plans and Programs for Institutes, 1949-1967, n.d.
  2. Vacation Church Schools-Newspaper Clippings and Photographs
  3. Laboratory/Demonstration Schools Minutes, 1931, n.d.; News releases; Correspondence, 1932-1968, n.d.
  4. Laboratory/Demonstration Schools Plans and Suggestions
  5. Laboratory/Demonstration Schools Reports on Laboratory Schools, 1942-1963
  6. Laboratory/Demonstration Schools Faculty and Student Rosters
  7. Laboratory/Demonstration Schools program, 1942-1961, n.d.; Fliers, Photographs, Clippings
  8. Work Camp Committee Statement of Purpose; Minutes, 1960-1964
  9. Work Camp Committee Correspondence, 1961-1966
  10. Work Camp Committee Applications
  11. Work Camp Committee Rosters, Plans, Reports, Clippings, Pamphlets
  12. Committee on Children’s Work Statement of Purpose; Annual Reports and Minutes, 1943-1964; Correspondence 1951-1957; Membership, Pamphlets
  13. Conference on Cooperative Christian Education, 1948
  14. Seminar on Youth Moving to the City, 1967
  15. Miscellaneous Report on Education
  16. Miscellaneous Correspondence, 1927-1965

Series 2 - Division of Social Action, 1939-1965

  1. Committee Reports, 1939-1958; Programs and Resolutions supported
  2. Juvenile Court Committee Minutes, 1958-1959; Correspondence, 1958-1959; Progress Reports, Supplementary Studies
  3. Juvenile Court Committee Policy Statements, Membership, Pamphlets
  4. Food for Peace program
  5. Governor’s Commission on Human Relations-Includes Minutes, Reports, Correspondence, Membership, and Bulletins
  6. Civil Rights-Includes Resolutions, Correspondence, Bulletins, Fact Sheets, Reports, Clippings
  7. Social Hygiene and Mental Health Pamphlets
  8. Christian Rural Overseas (CROP), 1962-1964-Includes Reports, Memos, News Releases, Correspondence, Bulletins
  9. Legislative Action-Purpose, Plans, Progress

Box 4
Folder

  1. Loyd Grandsinger Defense Committee Correspondence, 1956-1959 (regarding right to fair trial)
  2. William Heusel Correspondence, 1949 (regarding refusal to Register for military draft)

Series 3 - Finance Division, 1914-1968

  1. Account Book, 1914-1941
  2. Account Book, 1927-1928 (see oversize)
  3. Account Book, 1928
  4. Account Book, 1934-1941 (see oversize)
  5. Account Book, 1960-1961
  6. Proposed Budgets, 1930-1968 and undated
  7. Treasurer’s Reports, 1927-1947
  8. Treasurer’s Reports, 1953-1968
  9. Minutes, 1928-1962
  10. Correspondence, 1947-1967
  11. “Honor Roll” (contributors), 1951-1958; Miscellany

Series 4 - Department of the Christian Youth Council, 1932-1968

  1. Constitution; Minutes, 1939-1966
  2. Programs and Seminar Material, 1932-1954
  3. Programs and Seminar Material, 1955-1961
  4. Programs and Seminar Material, 1962-1968 and undated
  5. Correspondence, 1939-1961
  6. Correspondence, 1962-1967 and undated
  7. Membership Lists
  8. Reports and Pamphlets
  9. Reports and Pamphlets
  10. Scrapbook-Includes photographs, clippings

Series 5 - Department of Research and Planning (STRATEGY; also known as Church Extension and Planning), 1953-1968

Box 5
Folder

  1. By-Laws; Minutes, 1953-1959
  2. Minutes, 1963-1968
  3. Participants; Evaluations and Progress Reports
  4. Correspondence, 1956-1968
  5. Miscellany-Includes church identifications, statistical information, reports, pamphlets

Series 6 - Comity Department, 1941-1966

  1. Minutes, 1941-1963
  2. Minutes, 1964-1966 and undated
  3. Reports
  4. Correspondence, 1948-1963
  5. Correspondence, 1964-1966
  6. Statistics
  7. Miscellany-Includes Clippings and Proposals and suggestions under consideration

Subgroup 4: Committees on the Interchurch Ministries of Nebraska
Series 1 - Committee on Camps and Campsites, 1956-1970

  1. General Plans and Suggestions; Minutes, 1956-1967
  2. Correspondence, 1961-1970
  3. Campsite Information Sheets
  4. Outdoor Exploration Programs; Pamphlets and Reports
  5. Pamphlets and Reports
  6. Training Camps
  7. Workshop on Campsite Development
  8. American Camping Association material
  9. American Camping Association material

Series 2 - Town and Country Committee, 1940-1964

  1. Minutes, 1940-1954; Correspondence, 1948-1964
  2. Reports
  3. Reports, Pamphlets, Clippings

Series 3 - Committee on New Church Development, 1957-1964

  1. Minutes, 1957-1964; Correspondence, 1858-1964
  2. Reports
  3. Miscellany-Includes statistics, pamphlets

Series 4 - Committee on Ministry in Institutions, 1955-1964

Box 6
Folder

  1. Statements of Purpose; Minutes, 1955-1964
  2. Correspondence, 1955-1964
  3. Pamphlets

Series 5 - Committee on Evangelism, 1950-1964

  1. Minutes, 1950-1958; Correspondence, 1950-1964
  2. Programs and Institutes
  3. Billy Graham Crusade material

Series 6 - Nominating Committee, 1928-1968

  1. Proposed officers and Membership Lists, 1928-1968

Series 7 - Radio and TV Committee

  1. Reports and Proposals

Subgroup 5: Special Topics, 1949-1968
Series 1 - Federated Churches, 1949-1968

  1. Federated Churches in Nebraska by J.F. Balzer
  2. Reports
  3. Reports
  4. Correspondence, 1949-1968; Statistics; Local Churches
  5. Pamphlets

Series 2 - Lakeside Ministries, 1966-1968

  1. Consultation Reports, Correspondence, Pamphlets

Series 3 - Ministerial Convocations

  1. Reports, Programs

Series 4 - Cotner College, 1954-1963

  1. Articles of Incorporation; Description; Minutes, 1954-1963; Correspondence, 1958-1963
  2. Financial Records

Series 5 - Reformation Festival Materials

  1. 1957-1958      
  2. 1959-1962

Series 6 - Audio-Visual Communications Seminar, 1962-1965

  1. Minutes, 1962-1964; Correspondence, 1964-1965
  2. Questionnaires; Seminar material

Subgroup 6: Miscellany
Series 1 - Miscellaneous Subjects

  1. Correspondence, 1927-1961
  2. Correspondence, 1962-1968
  3. Lucile Cypreansen Memorial
  4. Pershad College Scholarship
  5. Films
  6. Baptist Convention
  7. Communication in the Family
  8. Young Adults
  9. Mission Aid; Migrant Missionary; Campus Ministry
  10. Civil Liberties Union

Series 2 - Bulletins and Pamphlets

Box 7  Bulletins and Pamphlets

Boxes 8-9  Unprocessed

 

Subject headings:

Church government -- Nebraska
Cooperative associations -- Nebraska
Educational associations -- Nebraska
Education of children. Nebraska
Interchurch Ministries of Nebraska (Lincoln, Nebraska)
Lincoln Council of Churches (Lincoln, Nebraska)
Lincoln Fellowship of Churches (Lincoln, Nebraska)
Nebraska Council of Churches
Nebraska Council of Churches and Christian Education
Nebraska Council of Christian Education
Nebraska Sunday School Association
Social problems
Social reform

 

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