From traditional recipes, myths and realities to humorous videos, Marcela Enns Enns shares Mennonite culture with the world through social networks.
The 30-year-old woman, originally from Cuauhtémoc, Chihuahua, shows both the traditional world and the modern life of those who this year celebrate a century of their arrival in Mexico.
Signature: Hérika Martínez Prado / El Diario de Juárez – in one of his videos
“I am not the typical Mennonite woman that we say, if I were, I would not be so active on social networks with my public profiles. Many Mennonites use the networks but in general they do not have their public profiles and it is rather to be in contact with family and friends”, explained Marcela, who remembers that at the age of 15 she had her first camera and nine years ago she began her life of influencer through Instagram.
With 374,300 followers on Tik Tok as @menonita_mexicana, 175,000 on YouTube as Menonita Mexicana, 19,000 on Facebook as Dietsche Mejal – Menonita Mexicana and 49,900 on Instagram as dietsche_mejal, the Chihuahuan seeks to inspire other women in her community to be more independent, stronger and not be afraid to speak what they think.
Signature: Hérika Martínez Prado / El Diario de Juárez
Marcela is the youngest of four children, her father is a merchant and her mother is a housewife, and although she comes from traditional families, she remembers that her paternal grandfather was “very rebellious” to their customs.
“He always wanted to kind of break the rules or the laws that existed, so he was looking to get out of the established a little bit. And my parents left the traditional church after they got married, but we’ve lived here in the community, and my dad and uncles were among the first to send their kids to a non-Mennonite public school. It was like a very big issue in those days, so I did not grow up in a traditional family, but we were already liberal and we lived with people who were not Mennonites, ”he explained.
And it is that the traditional Mennonites go to their own schools, where they learn to read, write, mathematics and mainly about the Bible, but when they reach adolescence the boys begin to help their parents with the work in the fields and the girls to his mom at home.
Signature: Hérika Martínez Prado / El Diario de Juárez – Mmicrophone in hand, he talks about his beliefs and experiences
A century in Chihuahua
The Mennonites are one of the most prominent groups of foreign origin in the history of immigration in Mexico. And a century after his arrival, in Chihuahua their communities are still divided between living their traditions deeply rooted in their religion and the advantages of modern life.
In Cuauhtémoc, the first municipality in the country they inhabited, most consider themselves liberal or modern, so technology has been part of their lives for decades.
“My ancestors have migrated a lot, from Germany and Holland, to what is now Russia, Poland and Ukraine. From there they migrated to Canada and finally arrived in Mexico in 1924”, two years after the first Mennonites did it to that same community, Cuauhtémoc, narrated who lived in Canada for a year and a half, because his father wanted him to be the first of his family in speaking English.
Signature: Hérika Martínez Prado / El Diario de Juárez – At home, helping to prepare empanadas
Marcela, who works in two local companies, managing social media and doing advertising photography, started experimenting with Instagram in German and is now one of the most famous people in her community.
“I always really liked photography, I had my first camera since I was 15 years old, my sister sold it to me, so I explored photography a lot, and after a while I stopped doing it and that’s when I discovered Instagram (in 2013) and said: oh, what a father, here I can upload photos and videos. And the videos were 15 seconds long, at first you couldn’t make longer videos on Instagram, so I made short videos in Low German, like comedy, about things that Mennonites do, like they are very unique, about what we do us,” he said.
That was how she began to make her first videos, and she began to be followed by many Mennonites “because at last there was content in Low German, which was not there before, everything was in English or Spanish, and many who do not speak English or Spanish, well they had no content to view. And they already asked me a lot: hey why don’t you do something in Spanish, we want something in Spanish. And that was how I started adding content in Spanish,” she explained.
Signature: Hérika Martínez Prado / El Diario de Juárez – His smile, on the surface
Workers and solidarity
For her, the Mennonites are a hard-working group that seeks to improve in different ways, a group that is in solidarity with others, and that always helps each other. She also describes them as united people, since even if there are religious differences between the different churches, they can come together to work when necessary.
I love it, the dresses are made with so much detail, that is, the clothes we wear today have nothing to do with those dresses… and for me it is like reconnecting with my roots, for me it is a pride to wear that type of clothing, but it is not something that I wear on a daily basis, I dress normally on a daily basis”, said who only in some of her videos or on special occasions uses her huaraches, stockings, colored dresses, the scarf and the traditional Mennonite braids.
In her videos, Marcela shares her story, traditional recipes such as Mennonite bread, clears up doubts from her followers, and seeks to show the best of the Mennonite world.
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