John David Roth

Curriculum Vitae


Goshen College

Goshen, IN  46526

Office: (219) 535-7433





            Ph.D.               University of Chicago (1989) – History

            M.A.                University of Chicago (1983) – History

            B.A.                 Goshen College, Goshen, IN (1981) – History





            Professor of History: Goshen College (Indiana), 1995-present

Associate Professor of History: Goshen College (Indiana), 1990-1995

Director of the Mennonite Historical Library: Goshen College (Indiana), 1988-present.

Editor, The Mennonite Quarterly Review, 1994-present

            Faculty Director of Goshen College Study-Service Term in Costa Rica, 1996-1997

Assistant Professor of History: Goshen College (Indiana), 1985-1986, 1988-1990.

Dissertation research in Germany: Supported by grants from the Deutscher Akademischer Austauschdienst and the Social Science Research Council (September, 1986-December, 1987).

Instructor: Seminar on German Paleography, University of Chicago, 1985.


Grants and Awards


Lilly Endowment – Project Director for four year research project on “Amish and Old Order Groups in Indiana,” 1999-2003 – $373,000

Lilly Endowment – Project Director for conference on “Mennonites and the Family,” October 14-16, 1999 – $6,000

Lilly Endowment – Project Director for conference on “Mennonites and Conflict,” June 6-8, 1996 (Goshen College) – $21,000.

“Mennonite Periodicals Preservation Project,” Project Director – $60,000 grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities (1990-1993) and $10,000 from the Schowalter Foundation for preservation microfilming.

“Marc Perry Galler” prize: Best dissertation in the Social Science Division, University of Chicago, 1989-90.




A Companion to Anabaptism And Spiritualism, 1521-1700, ed. John D. Roth and James Stayer] (Leiden: Brill, 2007)

Stories:  How Mennonites Came to Be (Scottdale, Pa.: Herald Press, 2006)

 “Forgiveness and the Healing of Memories: The Ecumenics of Reconciliation from an Anabaptist- Mennonite Perspective,” Journal of Ecumenical Studies (forthcoming)

 “Polls Apart: Why Believers Might Conscientiously Abstain from Voting,” in Nathan E. Yoder and Carol A. Scheppard, ed. Exiles in the Empire: Believers Church Perspectives on Politics (Kitchener, Ont.: Pandora Press, 2006), 243-251.

“Challenges of ‘Crosscultural’ Communication: A Response to C. Norman Kraus,” DreamSeeker (January, 2006), 28-31.

“Foreword,” to Gerald Biesecker-Mast, Separation and the Sword in Anabaptist Persuasion (Telford, PA: Cascadia Publishing House, 2006), 11-13.

Beliefs: Mennonite Faith and Faith (Scottdale, PA: Herald Press, 2005)

“Can we be a people who speak about what we have seen and heard?” and “A time to speak boldly; a time to keep silent,” essays in mPress, July 5, 2005, p. 3  and July 9, 2005, p. 2.

“How Should We Address Government?” MC-USA General Convention, Charlotte, NC, July 7

“Called to One Peace:  Christian Faith and Political Witness in a Divided Culture,” Mennonite Life on-line journal (July, 2005); with a response to respondents.

 “A Deep Pastoral Concern [On Speaking to Government],” The Mennonite (August 9, 2005), 10-11.

“Past Due: Not a New Dilemma for Anabaptists,” The Marketplace (Sept.-Oct., 2005), 18-19.

 “Give and Take: Thoughts on a Healthy Mennonite ecumenism,” The Mennonite (January 4, 2005), 8-10.

“’Be Not Conformed’: Why Have American Anabaptists Lived in Protest Against the Modern World?” Christian History 84 (Fall, 2004), 31-33.

 “Scanning, Sifting, Nudging and Nurturing: Editing an Academic Journal,” Anabaptist-Mennonite Scholars Network Newsletter 6:2 (Fall, 2003), 2-3.

“On the Rise (and Demise?) of Mennonite Institutions,” The Mennonite (Feb. 4, 2003), 8-11.

 “Foreword” to:  Will Schirmer, Reaching Beyond the Mennonite Comfort Zone (Telford, PA: Cascadia Press, 2003).

Choosing Against War:  A Christian View (Intercourse, PA: Good Books, 2002).

Witnesses to Hope: Student Reflections on Hope at the Beginning of the 21st Century, John D. Roth, ed. (Goshen, IN: Dept. of History, 2002);

“The Limits of Confessionalization: Hans Landis and the Debate over Religious Toleration in Zurich, 1580-1620,” in: C. Arnold Snyder, ed. Commoners and Community: Essays in Honour of Werner O. Packull (Kitchener, ON: Pandora Press, 2002), 281-300;

 “Recent Currents in the Historiography of the Radical Reformation,” Church History 71 (September, 2002), 523-535.

“A Historical and Theological Context for Mennonite-Lutheran Dialogue,” MQR 76 (July, 2002), 263-276.

Letters of the Amish Division:  A Sourcebook,  trans. and ed. by John D. Roth. 2nd edition (Goshen, IN: Mennonite Historical Society, 1993, 2002).

“Pietismus und Täufertum – ein schwieriges Verhältnis,” Mennonitische Geschichtsblätter 58 (2002), 71-94

“Reflections on a Tragedy,” The Mennonite (September 25, 2001), 4.

John D. Roth, ed. Engaging Anabaptism: Conversations with a Radical Tradition (Scottdale, PA: Mennonite Publishing House, 2001).

“Michael Sattler,” Encyclopedia of Protestantism (New York: Routledge, forthcoming).

“The Church ‘Without Spot or Wrinkle’ in Anabaptist Experience,” in: Karl Koop and Mary Schertz, eds. Without Spot or Wrinkle: Reflecting Theologically on the Nature of the Church (Elkhart, IN: Institute of Mennonite Studies, 2000), 7-25.

Oyer, John S. “They Harry the Good People Out of the Land”: Essays on the Persecution, Survival and Flourishing of Anabaptists and Mennonites, ed. by John D. Roth (Goshen, IN: Mennonite Historical Society, 2000)

 “Living from the Center in a Fragmented Culture,” Our Faith (Winter, 2000), 6-7.

“The Rites and Rights of Voting: Reflections on a Presidential Campaign,” The Mennonite (October 17, 2000), 4-5.

 “What Families Should Value,” Christian Living (June 2000), 4-7.

“Context, Conflict and Community: South German Mennonites at the Threshold of Modernity, 1750-1850,” in: Gerald and Sue Biesecker-Mast, eds. Anabaptists and Postmodernity, (Pandora Press,  2000), 122-146.

“Pietism and the Anabaptist Soul,” Pietismus und Neuzeit: Ein Jahrbuch zur Geschichte des neueren Protestantismus 25 (1999), 182-202.

“Harmonizing the Scriptures: Swiss Brethren understandings of the relationship between the Old Testament and the New Testament during the last half of the sixteenth century,” in Werner O. Packull and Geoffrey L. Dipple, eds. Radical Reformation Studies:  Essays Presented to James M. Stayer (Brookfield, VT: Ashgate Publishing Co., 1999).

 “’Even So, Come, Lord Jesus’:  A Review of Recent Literature on the Millennium,” Christian Living (December, 1999), 4-8.

“Anabaptist Missions and the Critique of Christendom,” in David W. Shenk and Linford Stuztman, eds. Practicing Truth: Confident Witness in Our Pluralistic World (Scottdale, PA: Herald Press, 1999),  82-101.

“Do Denominations Matter?  The Relevance of Anabaptism to Contemporary Christianity,” Brethren in Christ History and Life 22 (August, 1999), 221-233.

 “Binding and Loosing: Why the Mennonite Church does not regard same-sex marriages as a Christian option,” The Mennonite (January 19, 1999), 4-6; [part II], The Mennonite (January 26, 1999), 5-8.

Migrant Muses: Mennonite/s Writing in the U.S. (Goshen, IN: Mennonite Historical Society, 1998).  Co-editor (along with Ervin Beck).

 “Mutual Aid Among the Swiss Brethren, 1550-1750,” in: Willard M. Swartley and Donald B. Kraybill, eds. Building Communities of Compassion:  Mennonite Mutual Aid in Theory and Practice (Scottdale, PA:  Herald Press, 1998), 119-143.

“A Fresh Breath of Life:  Mennonite Integration Moves Ahead in Costa Rica,” The Mennonite (May 5, 1998), 8-9.

“Mennonite Integration in Costa Rica,” Mennonite Life 53 (March 1998), 24-27.

“Pietism and the Anabaptist Soul,” in: Stephen L. Longenecker, ed. The Dilemma of Anabaptist Piety (Bridgewater, VA: Forum for Religious Studies, 1997), 17-34.

“The Relevance of Menno Simons for Evangelical Christians,” Mennonite Historical Bulletin (January, 1997), 1-6.

“The Mennonites’ Dirty Little Secret: What Today’s Christians can learn from how Menno Simons rescued the Anabaptist movement,”  Christianity Today (October 7, 1996), 44-48.

“Revival Fires and an Anabaptist Pilgrimage,” in: Ted Koontz, ed. Godward: Personal Stories of Grace (Scottdale, Pa.: Mennonite Publishing House, 1996); also published as “Gnade, Feuer der Erweckung und eine mennonitische Pilgerreise,” in Er macht Wege frei: das habe ich mit Gott erlebt (Lahr: Verlag der Liebenzeller Mission, 1997), 36-46.

Articles in the Encyclopedia of the Reformation (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1995) on “Christian Entfelder,” “Hans Hottinger,” “Valentin Weigel,” and “Nikolsburg”.

Refocusing a Vision: Shaping Anabaptist Character in the 21st Century, John D. Roth, editor (Goshen, Ind.: Mennonite Historical Society, 1995).

“Aandacht voor homoseksualiteit overdreven,” Algemeene Doopsgezinde Weekblad (20 May 1995), 6-7.

“Christian Peacemaking in the Culture Wars,” Gospel Herald (March 18, 1995), 1-4.

“Community as Conversation: A New Model of Anabaptist Hermeneutics,” in: H. Wayne Pipkin, ed. Essays in Anabaptist Theology (Elkhart, Ind.: AMBS Text-Reader Series, 1994), 35-50.

Editor and Project Manager of:  Susan Fisher Miller, Culture For Service: A History of Goshen College, 1894-1994 (Goshen, IN: Goshen College, 1994).

 “Common Origins of Mennonites and Amish to 1693,” in: V. Gordon Oyer, ed. Tradition and Transition: An Amish Mennonite Heritage of Obedience (Metamora, Ill.: Illinois Mennonite Historical Society, 1993), 9-24.

Letters of the Amish Division (translator and editor). Goshen, IN: Mennonite Historical Society, 1993.

 “The Amish as a People of History,” Reunion (Autumn, 1993):1-2.

“The Significance of the Martyr Story for Contemporary Anabaptists,” Brethren Life and Thought (Spring, 1992):97-106.

“Foreword,” Anabaptist and Mennonite Spiritual Writings, Craig Haas, ed. (Intercourse, PA: Good Books, 1992)

“Issues for the 90s: The Search for Mennonite Identity,” Gospel Herald (3 April 1990):233-236.

“From Nonconformity to Transformation: Reflections on the Demise of an Ideal,” Festival Quarterly (Winter, 1990):15-17.


Publication Board Membership

  Sixteenth Century Studies Monograph Series (Truman State University)

  Studies in Anabaptist and Mennonite History (Mennonite Historical Society)

  Pennsylvania German History and Culture series (Penn State University)

 Classics of the Radical Reformation (Institute of Mennonite Studies).


Church Involvements

Berkey Avenue Mennonite Fellowship: Young Adult Sunday School class, 1994-present; elder, 1995-2004; congregational chairperson, 1999-2004; Pastor-Congregation Relations Committee, 2004-present

Participant in the MCUSA-ELCA "Healing of Memories" dialogue, 1999-2004; MWC-LWF dialogues, 2005-present

20-25 invited presentations/year to congregations, conferences, youth groups, etc.