Reaction Paper on Oscar Romero and "Liberation Theology".
"Liberation Theology" A school of theology, especially prevalent in the Roman Catholic Church in Latin America, that finds in the Gospel a call to free people from political, social, and material oppression. (http://www.dictionary.com) .
Two inescapable facts confronted Latin American pastors in the latter half of this 20th century: that most of their parishioners lived in grinding, miserable poverty and that the Church represented the only viable community organization in their world. Out of this awareness came a new understanding of the very meaning of the Church's work. The movement that came to be called "Liberation Theology" began with the awareness that it is blasphemous to care for people's souls while ignoring their needs for food, shelter and human dignity. As Jesus participated in the suffering of the poor, and proclaimed to them the good news of justice and freedom, so must today's church engage in the struggle for justice in this world.
Oscar Romero, Archbishop of El Salvador, had the courage to live the teaching of Jesus, even though this meant alienating the rich and powerful who oppressed, tortured, murdered, and defrauded the poor of that nation. He stood in the pulpit of the national cathedral and urged soldiers to obey their Lord and disobey commands of oppression. He paid for this, taking a bullet to the heart while blessing the Holy wine during mass. .
This movie portrays the story of a quiet, scholarly man who stood in the gap between the machine of dehumanizing globalization and the peasant people of El Salvador. We watch him wrestle with discovering an authentic Christian response to the injustices and oppression prevalent in El Salvador. We see him reprimand all those who would practice violence, whether as military authority, the El Salvadorian rebels, or institutionalized violence that robs people of their humanity and ability to feed their families.