Mennonites in Mexico
May 16, 2013 7:51 AM Subscribe
posted by filthy light thief (18 comments total)
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If you fancy diversity in cheeses, you might have come across queso Chihuahua, or Chihuahua cheese, a Mexican semi-soft cow milk cheese
. But if you're in the Mexican state of Chihuahua, the cheese is called Queso Menonita or Campresino Menonita, for the Mennonites who first made the cheese in this region. The Mennonites in Mexico
are a small but growing socio-religious pocket of that has retained much of their traditional Dutch and German heritage, despite a series of moves, from Russia to Canada, and finally Mexico
. Mexican photographer Eunice Adorno spent time with Mennonites in Durango
, capturing moments in their lives
Adorno first had to overcome the language barrier, as she spoke Spanish and English, but no Plautdietsch
, or Mennonite Low German.
Though the Mennonites retained their language, they shared some of their culture with their new neighbors, including their cheese. The Old Colony Mennonites have stayed closer to their roots, while most of the Modern Mennonites speak Spanish, drive trucks and buggies and their schools are a mix of the Mennonite and Mexican educational system
. In the 1990s, there was also Mennonite drug-smuggling rings, who accounted for about 20 percent of the drugs smuggled into Canada
Some Mennonites are looking to move again, but this time, it's because of drought and limited farming land, not religious persecution. About a dozen Mennonites traveled from Mexico to the prairie of Tatarstan, 900 km (~560 mi) east of Moscow and similar to Manitoba with its cold winters, hot summers and flat prairie.
Mennonites have also moved into Paraguay, Bolivia, and Brazil, with smaller groups in Uruguay and Argentina
. In Paraguay, the Mennonite community is almost completely self-contained. They administer their own schools, conduct various community services, have political structures, and maintain law and order in their colonies. Only in serious criminal cases do the national authorities step in