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Cerocahui, Chihuahua, Mexico
Village of Cerocahui

A wonderful virgin landscape setting in the midle of the mysterious Tarahumara Indian country. The charming village of Cerocahui is located at the edge of Urique Canyon, the deepest canyon in the western Sierra Madre system, in a valley dotted with apple orchards. The 900 inhabitants of the village experience a way of life many of us yearn to live.

Cerocahui was first visited by outsiders in 1679 when the Jesuit Padre Pecoro stayed here for a short period and reported that the Indians were not ready to accept his faith.

On the 23 of November 1680 the Jesuit priest father Juan Maria de Salvatierra arrived in Cerocahui. The enthusiastic Italian priest began the teaching of Christianity and started construction of the mission church. He remained in the area for 10 years then went on to found the Church at Loreto, the first mission established in Baja California.

The Jesuits continued their work in Cerocahui until 1767 when they were recalled to Spain as the result of political differences with the Spanish King. Orders to close the mission were sent out by messengers from Mexico City — the Jesuits had but one month to leave the country.

We have no more recorded history until 1936 when the Jesuits returned in the form of the dynamic Padre Andres Lara, the man generally credited with founding Cerocahui.

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lodging in Cerocahui, Mexico

By 1940 Padre Lara had begun work on the decrepit church of Cerocahui which was — at the time — a tumble-down structure of adobe walls.

In 1941 the good Padre founded the Tarahumara Indian Girls Boarding School which continues operation today. He also built the first road to Bahuichivo during the mid-50's.

The Padre died in Guadalajara in 1976 and his remains were taken to the religious cemetery in Sisoguichi. On March 11, 1997 his remains were returned to Cerocahui where they presently rest in the walls of his beloved church.

On October 26, 1961 President Lopez Mateos inaugurated the Chihuahua al Pacifico railroad, providing the first real public transportation to Cerocahui. In 1968 the Hotel Mision was opened. We recommend a guide accompany you to provide additional history on the church and to translate for the Spanish-only staff at the Tarahumara School.

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