Alianza Evangélica Menonita de la Argentina
Alianza Evangélica Menonita de la Argentina (Evangelische Mennonitische Alianzgemeinde do Argentinien / Evangelical Mennonite Brethren Church in Argentina). Early in the 1940s, individuals from Paraguayan Mennonite colonies moved to Buenos Aires looking for work. In 1947 about 150 (out of ca. 2,000) Russian-Mennonite immigrants to Paraguay on the first Volendam transport stayed in Buenos Aires, hoping for better living conditions. Hundreds of the others soon returned to Buenos Aires from Paraguay.
Mennonite Central Committee (MCC), by request of various Mennonite mission boards of North America, established a religious and social center in Buenos Aires in 1949. After three years of pastoral ministry, a believers' fellowship organized with sanction from the various Paraguayan churches and North American mission boards. From its outset this fellowship was intended to be an "alliance" between the various Mennonite conferences—thus the name Alianza Evangélica Menonita de la Argentina. Members are baptized upon their faith by either immersion or sprinkling.
Martin Durksen served as pastor from the beginning, with support largely from MCC. Meetings were held in a rented hall in Villa Bolester, a suburb of Buenos Aires, but a meetinghouse was under construction in 1959. The congregation, was fully independent although its pastor was a member of the Evangelical Mennonite Brethren Church (Allianzgemeinde in Paraguay). It formally organized in 1957. The membership in 1958 was 65, with an attendance of ca. 100 at the services. There were 700-800 Mennonites of Russian background in Buenos Aires in 1958 wom the congregation sought to serve.
In 1962, once the congregation was established and had its own building, MCC ended its involvement. The German-speaking congregation then joined the Evangelical Mennonite Brethren (Fellowship of Evangelical Bible Churches) conference, being cared for primarily by the Paraguayan Evangelische Mennonitische Brüderschaft (''Konferenz der Evangelischen Mennonitischen Brüderschaft von Südamerika) conference. The congregation was continually weakened by immigration to Europe and North America, due to Argentinian political and economical upheavals. The congregation has established a Spanish-speaking congregation at Delviso, near Buenos Aires. In 2009 the congregation's membership was 42.
Mennnonite Church Yearbook (1986-87): 164.
Minutes EMB (1984): 55-56.
Kraybill, Paul N., ed. Mennonite World Handbook. Lombard, Ill.: Mennonite World Conference, 1978: 247-48.
Mennonite World Handbook Supplement. Strassbourg, France, and Lombard, Ill.: Mennonite World Conference, 1984: 97.
Adapted by permission of Herald Press, Harrisonburg, Virginia, and Waterloo, Ontario, from Mennonite Encyclopedia, Vol. 5, p. 15. All rights reserved. For information on ordering the encyclopedia visit the Herald Press website.
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MLA style: Durksen, Martin. "Alianza Evangélica Menonita de la Argentina." Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. March 2010. Web. 21 May 2013. http://www.gameo.org/encyclopedia/contents/A4436.html.
APA style: Durksen, Martin. (March 2010). Alianza Evangélica Menonita de la Argentina. Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. Retrieved 21 May 2013, from http://www.gameo.org/encyclopedia/contents/A4436.html.