Christianity in Latin America: A History by Justo L. González

By Justo L. González

Christianity has had an indisputable impression on Latin the USA, which has in flip remodeled Christianity itself. targeting this together constitutive dating, Christianity in Latin the US provides the real encounters among humans, principles, and occasions of this huge, heterogeneous topic. This ebook bargains an obtainable and interesting evaluation of the historical past of Christianity in Latin the USA with a generally ecumenical concentration to foster knowing of a number of the forces shaping either Christianity and the quarter.

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Are they not men? Do they not have rational souls? Are you not bound to love them as you love yourselves? . 8 Montesinos’s charges and those of some of his fellow Dominicans as well as the concerns of the crown over the harshness of the encomenderos resulted in the creation of the Laws of Burgos of 1512. These laws sought a way to combine an existing labor system with evangelization and to codify a more benevolent treatment of the Indians. After all, the indigenous peoples were considered the vassals of the Spanish crown, and it would have its subjects well treated.

The new god had won. ” Yet, as historian Inga Clendinnen points out, even Christianity imposed with such a heavy hand did not succeed in “killing off” the old gods nor in giving the Spaniards the sole right to the interpretation and implementation of Catholicism. As we will see in Chapter 2, Indian communities throughout the Indies created and claimed their own brand of Christianity, a unique mixture of indigenous ways and Spanish ways – from both the little and great traditions. In spite of enormous efforts by the Spaniards to create religious homogeneity or at least hegemony, there was in the New World the birth of a new religious reality just as there was also the birth of new racial and cultural realities.

By 1515, however, Las Casas had renounced his past life and was making his case against the settlers directly to King Ferdinand, describing the atrocities that he – Las Casas – had witnessed in the conquest of Cuba and that were of such a nature that “[m]en and women hanged themselves and even strung up their own children [in order to escape the horrors of enslavement to the encomenderos]. As a direct result of the barbarity of one Spaniard . . ”10 In 1522 Las Casas finally succumbed to the entreaties of a Dominican and joined the order, taking his advocacy for the Indians of America to new levels, as we will see in Chapter 2.

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