Florida Colony (Florida, Paraguay)

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Florida Colony is located in Florida, Paraguay, near Luz y Esperanza. The church originated in 1977, shortly after a group of Beachy Amish from the United States settled in the area in 1976. The congregational formally organized on 25 September 1977. Services were held in homes until a wooden church house was built in 1978.

Originally worship was held in English, but when local people began to attend Spanish became the primary language. Sunday school was held in English, Guarani and Spanish.

A fire on 24 May 1992 destroyed the church and school building, though hymnbooks and some benches were saved. A brick building was then constructed.

The Florida Colony is self-supporting, with most families farming and dairying. The main crops are soybeans, wheat, cotton and corn. The congregation is active in the distribution of Bibles and Christian literature in the neighborhood.

In 2018 the church had 35 members and was a member of the Mennonite Christian Fellowship. The ministerial team included Bishop John H. Myers and Ministers David Riehl and Henry Ervin Schlabach.


Mennonite Church Directory (2014): 87; (2018): 97.

Miller, Allan A., compiler. The origin of the Fellowship churches. Gap Mills, West Virginia: Yoder's Select Books, 2004: 34-36.

Schroeder, William and Helmut T. Huebert. Mennonite Historical Atlas, 2nd ed. Winnipeg, MB: Springfield Publishers, 1996: 148.

Additional Information

Address: C. de C. 166, Colony Florida, Paraguay

Denominational Affiliation:

Mennonite Christian Fellowship

Ordained Leaders at Florida Colony

Name Years
of Service
Uria Shetler (Bishop) 1976-1989
Oscar Schlabach (Minister) 1977-1989
Sam Lapp (Minister) 1978-1983
John H. Myers (Minister)
Eli Schlabach (Deacon) 1989-2000
John Troyer (Bishop) 1989-2004
David Riehl (Minister) 1997-
Jonathan Schlabach (Deacon) 2003-2009?
Henry Ervin Schlabach (Minister) 2009-

Author(s) Richard D. Thiessen
Sam Steiner
Date Published June 2018

Cite This Article

MLA style

Thiessen, Richard D. and Sam Steiner. "Florida Colony (Florida, Paraguay)." Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. June 2018. Web. 21 Mar 2019. http://gameo.org/index.php?title=Florida_Colony_(Florida,_Paraguay)&oldid=160854.

APA style

Thiessen, Richard D. and Sam Steiner. (June 2018). Florida Colony (Florida, Paraguay). Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. Retrieved 21 March 2019, from http://gameo.org/index.php?title=Florida_Colony_(Florida,_Paraguay)&oldid=160854.

©1996-2019 by the Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. All rights reserved.