Helfferich, John Henry

Helfferich, John Henry a minister of the German Reformed Church in the United States, was born at Moszbach, Palatinate, Oct. 22, 1739. After studying theology, he was licensed Sept. 22, 1761, and labored for a time in his own country. In January 1772, he arrived in New York as a missionary, together with Rev. J. C. A. Helfenstein and Rev. J. G. Gebhard. He soon after settled at Weissenberg, Lehigh County, Pa., where his charge comprehended as many as seven congregations at one time. Here he remained, declining all calls from other churches, and labored faithfully until his death, Dec. 5, 1810. "During his ministry Mr. Helfferich baptized 5830, and confirmed 4000 souls. He may be regarded as the father of the German Reformed Church in the field over which his labors extended. Though that part of the Church did not escape the general stagnation of a later period through German rationalism and indifference, yet the vantage-ground upon which it was placed, by means of his labors, has been a blessing to it down to our day." — Harbaugh, Fathers of the Reformed Church, 2, 241 sq.

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