Unification and Conflict. The Church Politics of Alonso de Montúfar OP, Archbishop of Mexico, 1554-1572
Uppsala: Swedish Institute of Missionary Research, 2002, 268 pp.
Traducción al español por Alberto Carrillo Cázares
Unificación y conflicto. La gestión episcopal de Alonso de Montúfar, O. P., Arzobispo de México, 1554-1572,
Zamora, Michoacán: El Colegio de Michoacán, 2009, 303 p.
My doctoral dissertation (defended at Lund University in 2002) focuses on Archbishop Alonso de Montúfar OP (ca. 1489-1572). It seeks to explore two decades of sixteenth century Mexican Church History mainly through the study of documents found in Spanish and Mexican archives. Born outside Granada in Southern Spain, just after the conquest from the Muslims, Alonso de Montúfar assumed teaching and leading positions within the Dominican order.
After more than forty years as a friar, Montúfar was elected archbishop of Mexico and resided there from 1554 until his death eighteen years later. From the 1520s onwards, many missionaries went from Spain to Mexico in order to christianise the native inhabitants and to administer the church’s sacraments to them. Many of the missionaries were members of three mendicant orders: the Franciscans, the Dominicans, and the Augustinians.
Alonso de Montúfar’s time as archbishop can be seen as a period of transition and a time that was filled with disputes on how the church in Mexico should be organised in the future. Montúfar wanted to strengthen the role of the bishops in the church organisation. He also wanted to improve the finances of the diocesan church and promote a large number of secular clerics to work in the Indian ministry. All this meant that he became involved in prolonged and very animated disputes with the friars, the members of the cathedral chapter, and the viceroy of Mexico. One chapter of this dissertation is devoted to a detailed study of Archbishop Montúfar’s role in the early cult of Our Lady of Guadalupe in Tepeyac, which today has become of the most important Marian devotions in the world.
The dissertation is available in fulltext here
In 2009, the Spanish translation of the book was published by the Colegio de Michoacán