Several families from a Mennonite colony in Campeche, Mexico, arrived in Angola earlier this year to begin a new settlement in the African nation.
It is believed to be the first settlement developed by Low German-speaking Mennonites in Africa and could be the first such organized migration away from North and South America.
Die Mennonitische Post reported two families from Las Flores Colony in Mexico moved to Angola last month, joining seven other families who arrived in March and May. Four more families from the colony planned to move to Angola in August.
The immigrants are Sommerfelder Mennonites, similar in many ways to Old Colony Mennonites, using modern vehicles and machinery while opposed to computers, smartphones and the internet. Post editor Kennert Giesbrecht told Anabaptist World the group’s opposition to modern advancements fueled interest in developing a new settlement. A different group of Old Colony Mennonites in Bolivia still using horses and buggies could be making a similar move to Angola in the coming months.
The settlement is near Malanje, about 250 miles east of the capital, Luanda. The first families lived in tents under an outdoor roof until the beginning of July, when garages and shipping containers were added as living spaces.
The Post reported land has been purchased and efforts will begin soon to conduct land measurements in order to create a village similar to Mennonite colonies in Mexico.