Jesuit missions of the Guaraní (World Heritage), the ruins are a reminder of the missionary work of the Jesuits in the 17th century and their work in the land of the Guaraní.
The aim of the Jesuits was to proselytize the Indians and to protect them from slave hunters and exploitation.
Guaraní Jesuit Missions: Facts
|Official title:||Four Guaraní Jesuit missions: San Ignacio Mini, Santa Ana, Nuestra Señora de Loreto, Santa Maria Mayor|
|Natural monument||Ruins of the mission stations and protective villages (»Reducciones«) of São Miguel das Missoes in Brazil, San Ignacio Miní, Santa Ana, Nuestra Señora de Loreto and Santa María la Mayor in Argentina|
|country||Argentina / Brazil|
|location||Surroundings of Posadas (Argentina) and Santo Angelo (Brazil), southeast and northwest of the Río Uruguay|
|appointment||1983, expanded 1984|
|meaning||important testimony of the missionary work of the Jesuits in the land of the Guaraní|
Jesuit Missions of the Guaraní: History
|1609||Philip III allows the Jesuits to christianize the Guaraní of the La Plata region|
|1610||Foundation of Nuestra Señora de Loreto|
|1611||Creation of San Ignacio Miní|
|1626||Creation of Santa María la Mayor|
|1632||Relocation of San Ignacio Miní near Posadas|
|1633||Relocation of Santa María la Mayor|
|1637||last relocation from Santa Ana|
|1715||The heyday of San Ignacio Miní, reduction for 4000 Guaraní|
|1735-45||Construction of the Jesuit Church of São Miguel das Missões|
|1767||Expulsion of the Jesuits|
|1810||Mission of San Ignacio Miní|
|1817||Destruction of San Ignacio Miní|
|1941||Restoration of San Ignacio Miní|
Christian protection against the barbarism of the Jesuit missions of the Guaraní
Whoever visits one of the former protective villages of the Jesuits becomes thoughtful. In São Miguel das Missões the gaze wanders over the now preserved remaining walls of the monumental baroque Jesuit church. In the nearby museum, stone carvings and carvings from the great days of this Indian mission are viewed with interest. Those who hold out until the evening will be deeply touched by a multimedia show that brings the history of the protective village closer through light, language and music. According to extrareference, São Miguel das Missões as well as other protective villages remind of one of the blackest chapters of Brazilian and Argentine history, the barbaric, systematic genocide of the Indians – once millions, today only a few hundred thousand, who continue to be deprived of their rights. The badly shrunken Guaraní tribe makes headlines again and again: Desperate tribal members commit suicide in series. It was the Guaraní to whom the Jesuits devoted themselves, supported by individual Franciscans, Capuchins and Carmelites. They trained the Indians to become gardeners, farmers, builders and sculptors. Her hands created the red stone Jesuit church in São Miguel das Missões, a design by the Italian Jesuit architect Gian Battista Primoli, who obviously used the mother church of the Jesuit order in Rome, Il Gesu, as a model. Capuchins and Carmelites. They trained the Indians to become gardeners, farmers, builders and sculptors. Her hands created the red stone Jesuit church in São Miguel das Missões, a design by the Italian Jesuit architect Gian Battista Primoli, who obviously used the mother church of the Jesuit order in Rome, Il Gesu, as a model. Capuchins and Carmelites. They trained the Indians to become gardeners, farmers, builders and sculptors. Her hands created the red stone Jesuit church in São Miguel das Missões, a design by the Italian Jesuit architect Gian Battista Primoli, who obviously used the mother church of the Jesuit order in Rome, Il Gesu, as a model.
According to a well thought-out plan, workshops, schools, hospitals and residential buildings were grouped around the mission church, of which only the foundation walls can be seen today. On the rectangular square directly in front of the church gate, monks and natives presented plays on biblical topics, danced and made music together, and not only on the holidays.
Father Anton Sepp von Seppenburg, who comes from Tyrol and is a celebrated teacher of the mission villages, praised the Indians’ “incomparable monkey joke” and also described their eating habits: “The teeth are the knife, the five fingers are the fork, the hand is the spoon and a pumpkin the drinking utensils. You take a piece of meat, swing it three times through smoke and flames and drive it straight into your mouth. And since the meat is juicy, the blood runs down everywhere on the voracious Goschen, and this is a delicacy for them. ”
More important than education in other table manners, including monogamy, which had been unusual among the Indians up until then, was the training of the Guaraní as riflemen and gunners – the slave hunters of the rapidly growing metropolis of São Paulo could not have been resisted with just a bow and arrow. Attacks on Indian communities often resulted in the enslavement of thousands, who were herded like cattle to the slave markets of São Paulo. Between 1614 and 1630 alone, complained the Jesuit priests in Rome, 300,000 Guaraní were abducted from nearby Paraguay to toil on the plantations of São Paulo. Pope Urban VIII was indignant in the face of these events and threatened slave hunters and traffickers with excommunication – albeit without effect; urban “money nobility”,
In the course of time, instruction in the arms trade proved to be particularly useful for the residents of the reductions – attacks were repelled with increasing success and gangs of slave hunters were routed. It is said that in 1641 the notorious Antonio Raposa Tavares with 400 whites and several thousand hired Tupi Indians attacked the missions with confidence, but without foreseeing the outcome. Guaraní gunners first took the opponents’ palisade fortress under heavy fire, then the militias stormed forward and almost completely wiped out whites and tupi in the woods in numerous skirmishes. The “Te Deum” is said to have been sung for days in the mission villages. São Miguel was the most exemplary developed base, was considered the pearl of the mission stations and protective villages.