Menno Simons was an Anabaptist religious leader in Freisland. Today this area is a province of The Netherlands. Menno was an influential leader of the Anabaptist movement but he did not found the Mennonite Church. The Anabaptist movement was begun by Conrad Grebel, Felix Manz and George Blourock in Zurich, Switzerland, eleven years before Menno renounced the Roman Church.
Menno’s followers were first nicknamed Mennists and later became known as Mennonites. Menno had hoped and begged that people would not use his name to identify themselves. His plea was that they name Christ.