Altona residents going to visit relatives on jantsied
Photo Credit: Winnipeg Free Press
Schanzenfeld – After years of raging debate the Jantsied question has finally been settled.
For over a century Mennonites on the west and east side of the Red River have disputed which side was ditsied and which was jantsied. Both sides claimed that settlements on the other side of the Red River were on jantsied.
Sensing that this ongoing dispute was causing disruption in the Mennonite community church elders from both ditsied and jantsied met this week in Schanzenfeld to resolve the issue once and for all under the guidance of John Smith an independent arbitrator.
Henry Blatz, speaking on behalf of Mennonites east of the Red River, spoke eloquently about the absurdity of the argument pointing out that if you were in Steinbach then clearly towns and cities like Altona and Winkler were on jantsied.
Peter Dyck speaking on behalf of the Mennonites on the west side of the Red River made the argument that seeing as Altona and Winkler were clearly on ditsied then Steinbach was obviously on jantsied.
The arbitrator summed up the discussion by observing that this was clearly a matter of perspective and ruled that the issue would be settled by a coin flip. Smith called on Peter Dyck to make the call. Dyck chose ‘heads” and won the flip. As the winner Dyck declared that from this day forward the settlements west of the Red would be known as ditsied and those on the east of the Red River would be known as jantsied.
In an exclusive post meeting interview with Spottschreft, Blatz indicated that as far as he was concerned the ruling was open to challenge as the issue was much too important to be settled by a flip of a coin and by a non-Mennonite arbitrator, a process that he characterized as un-Mennonite.
For those having difficulty with the Plautdietsch (low German) words in this post please consult the the “Translation” Page