The SHARE Blog

What I Learned in El Salvador

October 28, 2015

By Ryan D’Silva

I always knew I wanted to go to El Salvador after my brother went to El Salvador 4 years ago and came back and told me about all the friends and the community he visited and all the great food he ate while he was there. I was in 8th grade at that time and could not wait to go and have the experience for myself.

During my junior year at Shawnee Mission Northwest high school, my mom asked me if I would be interested in going in the summer of 2015. I knew I was ready for the experience and I heard that there were four teens from my high school going along, so I jumped at the opportunity. But sadly, I knew very little about the relationship between our church and El Buen Pastor. Luckily for me, our leader and guide, Teresa Aley spent many hours with us before our trip. She brought us up to speed on the history of El Salvador, she asked us what we were interested in doing while we were there. We wanted to meet the President of El Salvador, we wanted to eat pupusas and we wanted to visit El Mozote, and she said yes to it all!

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Grassroots Projects Update!

September 30, 2015

Here’s a peek into how our grassroots projects are going!

CRIPDES San Vicente

Women’s Project

crsv mujeres 1

  • 31 women’s committees are stronger and actively functioning. 30 women know and are using organic agriculture skills to guarantee healthy food for them and their families through vegetable gardens.
  • Women have actively participated in the municipal women’s committee from Tecoluca. Their projections and demands have been made and later have been presented to different institutions.
  • Through coordinated help from “Ciudad Mujer -Usulutan”, 204 women from Tecoluca have graduated after leaning different skills (60 women trained in baking, 40 women trained in hammock making, 60 women trained in sewing, and 44 trained in computing). As a result, some women have started their own small economic initiatives.
  • The community savings and loans groups have been followed up with and are operating well.

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A Peek into the Magic of a Grassroots Delegation

September 28, 2015

st sebs4

“Life in Teosinte in not taken for granted – every moment is precious. Why do these people want to continue living in Teosinte – working as hard as they do to make a life for themselves? I believe they choose to live in Teosinte because this is the life they know. They want a place for their families, a place they can call home and live in peace. The passion and love in the hearts of the Salvadoran people is great. The struggle for peace, equality and justice continues.”

Sue Olson, Saint Sebastian delegate.

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What inspires you about the story of the four churchwomen?

September 21, 2015

We were moved by the way the four churchwomen have inspired the delegates joining our upcoming Remembering the Churchwomen Delegation. Below we share some quotes from their applications; we think you’ll find their inspiration inspiring too.

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Bio 4 of 4: Maura Clarke

September 15, 2015

Maura Clarke (1931-1980)

Maura Clarke (1931-1980)

Maura Clarke was born on January 13, 1931, and lived in Queens, New York. She joined Maryknoll in 1950. In 1959 she was sent to Nicaragua where she taught school and did pastoral work in a Capuchin parish in Siuna, a remote city in eastern Nicaragua. In the early 1970’s she was working in a parish in the capital city of Managua and was there at the time of the devastating earthquake of 1972. Managua was hit hard; an estimated 1020,000 people were killed. Trapped on an upper floor of the parish house, the Maryknoll Sisters climbed down through a window with a rope of sheets and immediately began ministering to the wounded and digging out the bodies of the dead.

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Testimony from a SHARE Volunteer

August 31, 2015

Cathy 2I first visited El Salvador with a SHARE delegation from Oregon in 2012, to observe the elections – a great experience. When I returned to El Salvador to study Spanish I had the opportunity to travel with Isabel and Anabel to visit the women dairy farmers in Jiquilisco – a very inspiring day.   I also traveled with two of your delegations – church women doing wellness work with Salvadoran women in a rural community and then with an educational visit of high school students from the Midwest USA. I was along to take photos and write stories for SHARE’s blog and website – and it was also a learning experience for me.

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Nueva Trinidad Speaker Bios

Sandra Carolina Navarrete Ayala and Jose Faustino Alas from Nueva Trinidad will be visiting their sister parish St. Patrick’s in Seattle this fall to speak about current issues in El Salvador.

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An Interview with a Board Member of the Rutilio Grande Community

board member rutilio grandeVictor: What is your name?

Luis: Luis Perdomo

Victor: How old are you?

Luis: I am 32 years old.

V: And what is the name of your community?

L: Community Padre Rutilio Grande

V: Who do you live with?

L: I live with my wife, my son who is seven years old, and my daughter who will be born in September.

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A Trip to Remember

August 27, 2015

Roberto with his relatives

Roberto with his relatives

God truly has a plan for everyone, and I came to realize that through my experience this summer. My name is Roberto Melgar and I am currently a junior in high school, and this summer I was given the most amazing opportunity of my life. This summer Good Shepherd Parish gave me a chance to go on a mission trip to a little small country in Central America. Funny enough, that country just happen to be El Salvador, the country where my parents migrated from almost eighteen years ago. I couldn’t pass up the opportunity to go and discover the land where my parents grew up and where most of my family lives. To make things even more interesting, I found out about the mission trip through a celebration of Monsenor Romero! Having been recently beatified, it seemed like the first of many miracles to come from Blessed Romero.

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Bio 3 of 4: Jean Donovan

August 25, 2015

jean donovan

Jean Donovan (1953-1980)

Jean Donovan, the youngest of the four church women killed on December 2, 1980, was born on April 10, 1953. She was the younger of two children and raised in an upper middle class family in Westport, Connecticut. Her father, Raymond, was an executive engineer, and later chief of design, at the nearby Sikorsky Aircraft Division of the United Technologies, a large defense contractor for the U.S. and manufacturer of helicopters used in the Vietnam War. Jean was very close to her brother Michael and was deeply affected when he was struck with Hodgkin’s disease, from which he made a complete recovery. The experience of the disease and his courageous battle to conquer it left a strong impression on Jean and, as she said later, gave her a deeper sense of the preciousness of life.

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