The HCS journey began when Reuben and Patty Petersheim moved to Hampden in 2007 with a vision to start a Christian school. Reuben taught Social Studies in Baltimore City Public Schools for four years before beginning Hampden Christian School in 2011 in a yellow house on Falls Rd. The school grew rapidly, and four years later moved into the present building at 1234 W 36th St. Currently the school has around 65 students.
The school operates under Urban Mennonite Ministries, a nonprofit with the mission of operating Christian schools in urban areas. We are affiliated with Hampden Mennonite Church, which meets in our sanctuary.
As Christians in the Anabaptist Mennonite tradition, we attempt a humble, joyful, obedience to Christ.
Brief Statement of Mennonite Doctrine
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.
1. We believe in one God eternally existing as Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.
2. 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.
3. 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.
4. 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.
5. 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.
6. We believe that salvation is by grace through faith in Christ, a free gift bestowed by God on those who repent and believe.
7. 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.
8. 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.
9. 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.
10. 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.
11. 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.
12. 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.
13. 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.
14. 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.
15. 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.
16. We believe that Christians are not to be conformed to the world, but should seek to conform to Christ in every area of life.
17. We believe that Christians are to be open and transparent in life, ever speaking the truth, and employing no oaths.
18. 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.
19. 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.
20. 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.
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.) Rejection of one’s biological sex is a rejection of the image of God within that person.
We believe that the term “marriage” has only one meaning: the uniting of one man and one woman in a single, exclusive union, as delineated in Scripture. (Gen 2:18-25.) We believe that God intends sexual intimacy to occur only between a man and a woman who are married to each other. (1 Cor 6:18; 7:2-5; Heb 13:4.) We believe that God has commanded that no intimate sexual activity be engaged in outside of a marriage between a man and a woman.
We believe that any form of sexual immorality (including adultery, fornication, homosexual behavior, bisexual conduct, bestiality, incest, and use of pornography) is sinful and offensive to God. (Matt 15:18-20; 1 Cor 6:9-10.)
We believe that in order to preserve the function and integrity of Urban Mennonite Ministries as the local Body of Christ, and to provide a biblical role model to the Urban Mennonite Ministries members and the community, it is imperative that all persons employed by Urban Mennonite Ministries in any capacity, or who serve as volunteers, agree to and abide by this Statement on Marriage, Gender, and Sexuality. (Matt 5:16; Phil 2:14-16; 1 Thess 5:22.)
We believe that God offers redemption and restoration to all who confess and forsake their sin, seeking His mercy and forgiveness through Jesus Christ. (Acts 3:19-21; Rom 10:9-10; 1 Cor 6:9-11.)
We believe that every person must be afforded compassion, love, kindness, respect, and dignity. (Mark 12:28-31; Luke 6:31.) Hateful and harassing behavior or attitudes directed toward any individual are to be repudiated and are not in accord with Scripture nor the doctrines of Urban Mennonite Ministries.