Sunday, May 27, 2012
I Am A Hutterite.
Book Review. Kirby, Mary Ann. I Am Hutterite. The fascinating story of a young woman’s journey to reclaim her heritage. Thomas Nelson. 2010. Comment. Henry. Hutterites represent a very small and very interesting minority group in Canada and the U.S. Their culture is based on religious convictions that originated with one Jacob Hutter, an Austrian hatmaker of the sixteenth century. In 1528 he led a fledgling group of Anabaptists to a new kind of Christian community. In 1536 he was burned at the stake. After his martyrdom his followers became ‘refugees’ that took them on a four hundred year journey (flight). In 1874 they arrived in New York with the resolve to pool their resources and start over. Their distinctive when compared to other community groups (Amish and Mennonite) is their common ownership of goods. As Mary Ann reminisces about her childhood years on the colony in southern Manitoba we get a good look at the positives of colony life. When her family left the colony her world experienced a serious collapse. Life was difficult as she faced prejudice of many kinds. Family life as she had experienced it was turned upside down. To her the ‘cost of freedom’ was too high. It was only in adulthood that she began to appreciate the reasons behind her parent’s decision to pay the price of freedom in exchange for security of colony life. This is a great historical resource and also a warm biographical story. According to the “Award jury, SASK Book Awards: This (story) has the makings of a prairie classic.”