Remembering John Rudy

Everence news |

Leader helped Everence Foundation come of age

John Rudy leans back in his office chair, with pleasant, casual expression.

John Rudy, pictured here in his office, was an instrumental leader in the growth of the Everence Foundation (originally Mennonite Foundation).

John H. Rudy, former Everence® Foundation (originally Mennonite Foundation) leader during a period of visible and dramatic growth, passed away on Aug. 26, 2020. He was 96 years old.

Rudy first joined Everence (then known as MMA) in 1964. Recruited to breathe new life into the Foundation, MMA founder Orie Miller had been impressed with Rudy’s administrative, financial and pastoral gifts during his previous career at RCA Corporation in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, and then as pastor of Bethel Mennonite Church in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania.

Quick-witted and friendly, Rudy’s leadership at Everence Foundation helped the organization transition alongside a changing Anabaptist/Mennonite demographic. As more church members entered into non-agricultural professions, Rudy was able to talk about economic trends and personal finances with farmers and business leaders alike – and challenged long-held church beliefs about the accumulation of assets.

“Nowhere in Scripture do I read that Jesus condemned anyone for making money, or having money,” he wrote in a 1978 MMA article. Rudy contended that money could be beneficial in expanding the Kingdom of God, depending on how people of faith made their money and chose to use it. As the financial lives of Anabaptists changed, John encouraged a financial stewardship philosophy of frugality, contentment, ethical investing, planning and generosity.

“Everence Foundation grew rapidly under John’s direction – a legacy that continues today in terms of capabilities and impact,” said Ken Hochstetler, Everence President and CEO. “His faithful leadership has made it possible for generations of Anabaptists and other people of faith to both give and receive through faithful stewardship of their finances.”

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