had similar difficulties, both because many spoke German and because
they refused to serve in the army. People who didn't even know any
Mennonites decided they were bad people.
many people did not like that Mennonites spoke German, there was
a law saying that Mennonites did not have to serve in the military.
Canada respected its promise to the Mennonites. Canada 's Mennonites
were fortunate to live in a tolerant country. Many other countries
were not as understanding.
had made that law to attract Mennonite farmers to Canada. When a
group of Mennonites had come from Russia to Manitoba in 1874, the
Canadian government had guaranteed that the Mennonites
would not have to do any military service. This was part of
Canadian law. Canada had wanted hard-working farmers and so they
agreed to a special law just for the Mennonites.
1916, however, the government decided to make a list of all the
males in Canada between 16 and 65 years old. Mennonites were afraid
that the army would use this list to force their men into service.
Some refused to register on the list. Others wrote “Mennonite” on
their cards to make sure there was no confusion about their beliefs.
the end of the war, Mennonites had contributed to the war effort
in many ways. Although they did not willingly supply men or money
to any military cause, they did give money to the Red Cross to help
lessen the suffering caused by war. Mennonite farms also produced
a lot of food for Canadian families.
the Second World War began in 1939, Mennonites
in Canada responded in a similar, but not identical, manner.