Mapping the Autochthonous Indigenous Church: Toward a Decolonial History of Christianity in las Américas
Toward a decolonial history of Christianity in Latin America, this chapter identifies indigenous counterclaims to the Spanish narrative of spiritual conquest. In the course of the sixteenth century, indigenous communities across New Spain grafted the Christian church onto their own histories, cosmologies, and landscapes, creating the mythologies, structures, and institutions that ensured the church’s projection into the future. Through the emplacement of churches, these maps summon an idealized landscape that projects the church into an indigenous future. Accepting Christianity but refusing Spanish authority over Christian practice the version of indigenous Christianity depicted in the mapas is geographically bounded and defined in relation to indigenous structures of authority.