Faculty Travel Seminar 2017


The Rise of the Global South: Catholic Social Teaching Along the Trail of Martyrs

Guatemala & El Salvador - January 8-16, 2017


group pic travel seminar

“I would like a Church that is poor and for the poor.” ~ Pope Francis

"I do not believe in death without resurrection. If they kill me I will rise again in the people of El Salvador." ~ Oscar Romero

The election of Jorge Bergoglio of Argentina as Pope Francis highlights the increasing importance of the “Global South” to the Catholic Church. What happens in Latin America matters.  The numerical growth of the Latin American Church, coupled with exciting new ecclesial paradigms that have emerged from the Latin American experience, provide ample material for reflection. The statements of the Latin American Bishops Conference (CELAM) from Medellin (1968) to Aparecida (2007) firmly placed the Church in Latin America on the side of the poor and marginalized, which translated into Pope Francis’ call for “a poor church that is for the poor.” The new orientation has resulted in considerable conflict within the church and with the society.

This seminar explored current developments by visiting the sites of five groups of modern martyrs whose lives and commitment reflect the new stance of the Church and its precarity: Bishop Juan Gerardi and Father Stanley Rother in Guatemala, Archbishop Oscar Romero, the four women missionaries—Jean Donovan, Ita Ford, Dorothy Kazel, and Maura Clarke-- and the Jesuit professors and their housekeepers at UCA—Ignacio Ellacuría, Ignacio Martin-Baró, Segundo Montes, Juan Ramón Moreno, Joaquín López y López, Armando López, and Elba and Celina Ramos in El Salvador. Through their lives and sacrifice we examined the challenges as well as the seeds of hope and opportunity the Latin American Church proposes to itself and to the more affluent North.  


Faculty Presenters:


Wednesday, April 26


Esteban Del Rio, Communication Studies, Center for Inclusion and Diversity

From Prophetic Imagination to Action: The Church, The University, and Justice in El Salvador


Kristin Moran, Communication Studies

Journalism for Justice: What Can We Learn from Martyrs?


Alberto López Pulido, Ethnic Studies

Teaching About Violence: Facing Violence While Facing Ourselves


Allison Wiese, Fine Arts

Reading to Strangers: Salvador


Wednesday, May 10


Colin Fisher, History

Internationalizing U.S. Environmental History: The Case of Guatemala


Antonieta Mercado, Communication Studies

Between Denial and Struggle: Indigenous Communities in the National Imagination of El Salvador and Guatemala


Sandra Sgoutas-Emch, Psychology, Center for Educational Excellence

The Ultimate Sacrifice: The Behavioral Profile of a Martyr


Karen Teel, Theology and Religious Studies

Unnatural Disasters: American Catholic Bishops on Poverty and Racism