Who We Are
We are run by an unaffiliated board of 7 men who desire to see children educated in a way that leads them to live fulfilling lives in service to our Lord & Savior.
This is a summary statement based on the confession of faith adopted by Mennonite General Conference in 1963. For a fuller statement see the Mennonite Confession of Faith.
- We believe in one God eternally existing as Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.
- We believe that God has revealed himself in the Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments, the inspired Word of God, and supremely in his Son, the Lord Jesus Christ.
- We believe that in the beginning God created all things by His Son. He made man in the divine image, with free will, moral character, and a spiritual nature.
- We believe that man fell into sin, bringing depravity and death upon the race; that as sinner, man is self-centered and self-willed, unwilling and unable to break with sin.
- We believe that there is one Mediator between God and men, the Man Christ Jesus, who died to redeem us from sin and arose for our justification.
- We believe that salvation is by grace through faith in Christ, a free gift bestowed by God on those who repent and believe.
- We believe that the Holy Spirit convicts of sin, effects the new birth, gives guidance in life, empowers for service, and enables perseverance in faith and holiness.
- We believe that the church is the body of Christ, the brotherhood of the redeemed, a disciplined people obedient to the Word of God, and a fellowship of love, intercession, and healing.
- We believe that Christ commissioned the church to go into all the world, making disciples of all the nations, and ministering to every human need.
- We believe it is the will of God that there should be ministers to teach the Word, to serve as leaders, to administer the ordinances, to lead the church in the exercise of discipline, and to serve as pastors and teachers.
- We believe that those who repent and believe should be baptized with water as a symbol of baptism with the Spirit, cleansing from sin, and commitment to Christ.
- We believe that the church should observe the communion of the Lord’s Supper as a symbol of his broken body and shed blood, and of the fellowship of his church, until his return.
- We believe in the washing of the saints’ feet as a symbol of brotherhood, cleansing, and service, and in giving the right hand of fellowship and the holy kiss as symbols of Christian love.
- We believe that God has established unique roles for man and woman, symbolized by man’s bared head in praying and prophesying, and by woman’s veiled head.
- We believe that Christian marriage is intended by God to be the union of one man and one woman for life, and that Christians shall marry only in the Lord.
- We believe that God wonderfully and immutably creates each person as male or female. These two distinct, complementary genders together reflect the image and nature of God. (Gen 1:26-27.)
- We believe that Christians are not to be conformed to the world but should seek to conform to Christ in every area of life.
- We believe that Christians are to be open and transparent in life, ever speaking the truth, and employing no oaths.
- We believe that it is the will of God for Christians to refrain from force and violence in human relations and to show Christian love to all men.
- We believe that the state is ordained of God to maintain order in society, and that Christians should honor rulers, be subject to authorities, witness to the state, and pray for governments.
- We believe that at death the unsaved enter into everlasting punishment and the saved into conscious bliss with Christ, who is coming again, and will raise the dead, sit in judgment, and bring in God’s everlasting kingdom.
Supporting Scriptures are cited following each article of the 1963 Mennonite Confession of Faith.
UMM has a vision of being a partner organization with our Anabaptist community in helping establish urban learning centers. Our goal is to partner with local churches in urban areas to develop educational programs. We see value in both early education and elementary education.
Early education (daycare) is a field with significant opportunities to invest in a community. Providing childcare for families enables them to hold jobs and be a supportive part of the community. This is particularly true in single-parent households. Our opportunity provides quality early education, similar to what we have in our Anabaptist homes, strengthens our communities by getting our students ready for whatever school they attend.
Elementary education at our schools gives opportunities to families. They have the opportunity to place their children in a school, with small class sizes, that can be more attentive to a child’s development and needs. Typically our families appreciate our distinctly Christian approach to education and value such things as Bible memory. Families also appreciate the interaction with staff people who are led by Jesus to genuinely care about both the parents and children. Our elementary schools typically are able to charge less tuition than their counterparts in a city due to volunteerism and capital funding from the Anabaptist community. We are in the process of developing a scholarship fund to enable more families to attend our schools.
Early Education (Daycare)...
…is a field with significant opportunity to invest in a community. Providing childcare for families enables them to hold jobs and be a supportive part of the community. This is particularly true in single-parent households. Our opportunity provides quality early education, similar to what we have in our Anabaptist homes, strengthens our communities by getting our students ready for whatever school they attend.
…at our schools gives opportunities to families. They have the opportunity to place their children in a school, with small class sizes, that can be more attentive to a child’s development and needs. Typically our families appreciate our distinctly Christian approach to education and value such things as Bible memory. Families also appreciate the interaction with staff people who are led by Jesus to genuinely care about both the parents and children. Our elementary schools typically are able to charge less tuition than their counterparts in a city due to volunteerism and capital funding from the Anabaptist community. We are in the process of developing a scholarship fund to enable more families to attend our schools.
Our mission is to develop flourishing children who love God and become strong community builders.
We want to build a world where no child or youth feels alone and gets every possible help they need as soon as possible.
- Financially self-sustaining (90% of operating costs are currently covered through tuition. Capital projects are funded primarily through donations from the broader Anabaptist community).
- Living & working in the same neighborhoods
- Involving the larger Anabaptist community in the ministry through work projects and PR events
- Using education as a means of evangelism
The UMM advisory council held its first meeting in February of 2006.
The council was a first step in establishing an organizational structure out of which an inner-city mission could be started. In October of 2006, it was determined that UMM would begin outreach work in Baltimore City, Maryland by the summer of 2007. The UMM advisory council established the UMM board at this time. In June of 2007, Reuben and Patty Petersheim moved their family to Baltimore.
During the first several years, the goals were to establish relationships and to get to know the community and culture of the Baltimore area. In those first years, Reuben taught in the public school system as a way to financially support his family. Patty invited neighbors to a playgroup for the purpose of developing relationships with local mothers and children. Together, they held a Bible study with neighbors every other week. For four years, they and the board worked at figuring out how to operate and fund a Christian school in the city.
In the fall of 2011, our first school was started. Hampden Christian School began with five students and 3 full-time teachers. Today we serve many families who live in the neighborhood where the school is located, and our teachers live. The school also has a daycare that cares for infants through 3-year-olds. Our elementary school offers grades K-8. The majority of our patrons are not from a Mennonite background, but many of them are Christian. We do have a number of families from a variety of religious backgrounds.
Our Executive Board
Our Advisory Board
Our advisory board is made up of 10 individuals that represent pastors and educators within the anabaptist community.
Hampden Christian School
Mary Lois Petersheim
New Growth Learning Center
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