NORTH NEWTON, KAN. James P. Regier, Newton, won first prize in the 2004 nation-wide Anabaptist Research Paper Competition for Undergraduates. The annual competition is sponsored by the Sider Institute for Anabaptist, Pietist and Wesleyan Studies, located on the campus of Messiah College in Grantham, Pa. He is a 2003 Bethel College graduate. Written during his senior year, Regier’s paper, "Mennonitische Vergangenheitsbewaltigung: Prussian Mennonites, the Third Reich, and Coming to Terms with a Difficult Past," examined why most German Mennonites came to embrace German nationalism and to support Adolf Hitler’s government. The paper analyzed how the group explained such support to themselves and others after the war.
In the award letter the judges noted that they were especially impressed with the extensive research Regier had done with original German-language documents, according to Mark Jantzen, assistant professor of history at Bethel College.
The first place prize included a cash award and an invitation to attend the awards banquet on the Messiah College campus. Regier’s paper will be published on the Messiah College website.