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What are the general trends of the Catholic Church in LA – in colonial period, and following independence, and from the 1960’s
- conversion of indiginous people to Catholicism
- elites from colonial period became allies with the catholic church
- church became a major political conservative force in the region
- with independence and support for liberalism the church had less power and support, which was then given to the state
- the catholic church no longer has power over services
- the state takes over it now
What is Syncretism?
mixing of indigenous gods with local traditions
What is liberation theology?
- developed by Latin America roman catholic s
- emerged in the 1960's
- the idea of a radical Catholic church movement
- using the true catholic church teachings to emphasize liberation from social, political, and economic oppression as an anticipation of ultimate salvation.
- radical liberation theologians are killed
what is evangelical conversion?
- largest growing religious denomination in LA
- Evangelicalism reduces corruption by promoting individual traits such as honesty and trust
- this discipline emerges in institutional mechanisms that prevents corruption for society by large
- evangelical groups getting funding from Right-wing US financing
- this is beneficial when US corporations move into the region, and seek a disciplined labor force keen on capitalism
What are some of the dynamics of “la iglesis evangelica” In LA?
- people convert for their own reasons
- such as prohibition on drinking, smoking, and extramarital sexual relations
- attractive for female run households and feminist achievements
- latin american elites use the church for political purposes
- those who oppose the elites are usually violently silenced
Who is Oscar Andres Rodriguez and how is actions link up with broader trends of the Catholic Church in LA?
- Honduran cardinal
- actively supported the coup who ousted Mel Zelaya whos policies were trying to help the poor
- he questioned Zelaya's use of funds for the poor and opposed it
What are general types of violence in LA and some of the reasons for its occurrence
- violence in LA is due to these attacks against the poor
- protests from some citizens and especially teachers argue that these types of policies affect the youth
- it gives youth no opportunity to advance their lives, but rather assimilates them into being a compliant labor force
- the idea that youth are abandoned
gang violence in LA – what are some of the reasons it occurs, some of the history and the significance of church – organized youth groups.
- when youth are abandoned they turn to other opportunities influenced by gang membership
- something that teachers are actively protesting against in support of the youth
- those that are able to go to school do so at a high expense - often having to sacrifice finances and food for an education
- although it is ok to be critical of the police force and military it is also necessary to consider the reasons behind joining for some people
Be familiar with some of Wolseth’s arguments about gangs and church groups – especially the significance of not moving on after a violent death.
- young poor men with the inability to secure jobs enter into the military or the drug trade
- gangs are an alternative measure for work
- church groups and migration are turned to of alternatives to stay out of trouble
- it offers young men a sense of belonging
- Wolseth recognizes that society sees some young men as useless and so their resort to gangs is viable, but not the violent aspect of it per se
- wolseth looks at how evangelical groups target abandoned youth
- giving youth an opportunity to do and experience things they often would not be able to
- in this process, youth are shaping their behavior and no longer pursuing the path of violence and gangs
- gang members in the region also take the disguise of evangelism by preaching and asking for donations in places like the streets and the bus.
- this is their way of getting support from the public without having to use violent tactics
Becoming a member of the iglesia evangélica means leaving all other paths to be on the path of God… reforming behavior, changing one’s attitude and one’s social position (eg. no more drinking).
In theory, converting to the iglesia evangélica means no more gang-related activities… but it is not always so easy or straight-forward