John Winebrenner, founder of a sect, born in Frederick county, Maryland, 24 March, 1797; died in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, 12 September, 1860. He was partly educated at Dickinson college, Carlisle, Pennsylvania, stud-led theology in Philadelphia, and was ordained by the synod of the German Reformed church in September, 1820, at Hagerstown, Bid. The same year he was called to the Salem church at Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, and at the same time he ministered to churches in the neighborhood, he retained his connection with the Harrisburg charge till 1827, when, owing to his religious views on revivals, Sunday-schools, and the early temperance and anti-slavery movements, and to his allowing non-ordained persons to preach in his pulpit, he became obnoxious to his congregation, and a separation took place. His connection with the Reformed church ceased by the action of the synod in September, 1828. In several pamphlets that he subsequently issued he defended his principles from the attacks of his opponents and continued active as a preacher. In October, 1830, he established a new denomination that he called the "Church of God," whose members were at that time known as Winebrennerians. They hold that there are three positive ordinances of perpetual standing: baptism by immersion, the washing of feet, and the Lord's supper. Baptism, however, they do not regard as necessarily preceding church fellowship, faith in Christ being considered the prerequisite to admission into their communion. Washing the feet of disciples they hold as being obligatory on all Christians, and they also approve of fasts, experience-meetings, and camp-meetings. Mr. Winebrenner met with remarkable success as the founder of a new sect. The ministers of that denomination now (1889) number about 500, and the membership probably 65,000. They have a foreign and domestic missionary society, a book depository, and a printing establishment at Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, where a weekly paper, the "Church Advocate," and a Sunday-school paper, " The Gem," are published. For several years he edited the "Gospel Publisher" (now the "Church Advocate "), and with Isaac Daniel Rupp, issued "The History of all the Religious Denominations in the United States" (Hartford, 1844). He also published "Pronouncing Testament and Gazetteer" (Harrisburg, 1836) ; "Brief Views of the Church of God" (1840); "A Treatise on Regeneration" (1844) ; "The Seraphina," a music-book (1853) ; "Practical and Doctrinal Sermons" (1860) ; and pamphlets and separate sermons. He was the compiler and editor of the "Church Hymn-Book."