Asunción - PARAGUAY
CA-MSC is the American MSC Conference (Conferencia Americana – MSC). In the past CA-MSC was called CAL (Conferencia America Latina) - MSC. It began in 1973 when they realized that our confreres were working hard and well, but had no communication among them. They were isolated from one another.
Recently, CA-MSC organized a meeting held in Paraguay from 17 to 22 January 2011. Thirty one confreres were present, and Fr. Mark was among those who attended the meeting. This 12th CA-MSC Meeting was held on the occasion of the 500th anniversary of the prophetic voice of Fr. Antonio Montesinos O.P against colonization in 1511.
Statue of Antonio Montesinos OP
Assisted by local experts and Msgr. Mario Medina, the bishop of the Diocese of San Juan de Misiones, the participants reflected on the reality of the local church in Paraguay - its strengths, challenges, future, and vocation. They also reflected on the significant experiences of the various MSC communities in America. Also, they talked about some topics of the General Chapter, for example, the need of restructuring our Provinces, Pro-Provinces, Regions and Sections in Latin America.
They had the opportunity to make a pilgrimage to the Shrine of Our Lady of Caacupé. The Rector of the Shrine welcomed them. Fr. Mark presided over the Mass in the Shrine.
Asunción, Paraguay, 23 January 2011. Paco Blanco msc
The Spanish nominee for the 2010 Oscar for Best Foreign Language Film was Tambien la Lluvia (Even the Rain). It is about the making of a film in Bolivia in 2000, the time of the Water Wars where the Indians challenged multi-national companies who were being given permits by the government to control the water (even the rain, as one character says).
The film is about the Spanish conquest, the greed for gold, the cruelty towards the Indian populations. Scenes from the film being made are interspersed during Tambien la Lluvia, including the campaigns of Bartolomeo Las Casas OP and Antonio Montesinos OP, who championed the causes of the Indians.
Parallels are made between the conquest of the 15th and 16th centuries and the exploitation of the 20th and 21st centures – the screenplay was written by Scot, Paul Laverty, frequent writer for the social-minded films of Ken Loach; Laverty studied for the priesthood at the Scots College in Rome but did not continue to ordination; he has shown great interest in Latin American issues and Catholicism, spending time in Basic Christian Communities.