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Cristero uprising, Mexico, 1928

Raina Zimmering

Subject History
Social Movements » Collective Behaviour

Place Central America » Mexico

Period 1000 - 1999 » 1900-1999

Key-Topics church and state, rebellion, revolution

DOI: 10.1111/b.9781405184649.2009.00423.x


The Cristero uprising, also known as the Cristero war, or the Cristiada, was a religious armed uprising in Central Mexico from 1926 to 1929. With the Mexican revolutionary Constitution of 1917 , all religious communities lost their legal status: Article 3 mandated secular education in schools, Article 5 outlawed monastic religious orders, Article 24 forbade public religious worship outside temples, Article 27 restricted religious organizations' rights to own property, and Article 130 took away the basic civil rights of members of the clergy. President Plutaro Elias Calles adopted equivalent laws. He signed the Law for Reforming the Penal Code, known as the Calles Law. Calles seized church property, expelled all foreign priests, and closed the monasteries, convents, and religious schools. The Catholic Church hierarchy reacted with the closing of churches and schools and an economic boycott, but this had no political effect. In August 1926 tensions turned into armed conflicts between demonstrators and police. In Guadalajara (Jalisco), 400 armed Catholics committed suicide after locking themselves in the Church of Our Lady of Guadalupe. In Durango, Trinidad Mora led an uprising, and in southern Guanajuato another rebellion, led by former general Rodolfo Gallegos, took place. The Jalisco region became the main focal point of the rebellion led by 27-year-old René Capistran Garza, leader ... log in or subscribe to read full text

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