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January 30, 1998     The Message
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January 30, 1998

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1997 The Message -- for Catholics of Southwestern Indiana 1 3 ....IM and ANN CAVERA a new position that required office. In the process of packing, I amassed from the past 30 years that set aside "just in case." Unable to part with repacked and hauled everything to my it that causes us to hold on to things? Over my mother-in-law about now, I had never considered is one of those Second aSSOciated with aging. Not long ago my Holding on That's the same type of advice (CNS) -- say the Jan. a Student group in should not deter such trips need to better COnditions in other and teachers College, a were after their an iso- Ly. WOmen in the pass- broke up the a few days, four arrested in con- attack. At the gov - ;aid Jan. 22 it . experts Investigation. OUtcry Over the of study s noreason to all over David Knut- professor in Jesuit-run Xavier University in Cincinnati, which sponsors a semester-long study program in Nicaragua each year. "I would be very disappointed if anyone chose not to do international study because of this." "There is no travel situation in which you can reduce the risks to zero," said Karen Musalo, a frequent visitor in Guatemala in connection with her work at Santa Clara University in Cali- fornia, also a Jesuit school. "If you have.a commit- ment to social justice and to living the reality of life in another country, you can't reduce the risk to zero," Musalo said, "unless you stay home." JoAnne White, director of the Center for International Nursing at Holy Ghost-run Duquesne University in Pitts- burgh, re-evaluated the prepa- rations made by the center's program which places students in community nursing situa- tions in Nicaragua. But she wouldn't consider ending the international studies. "Students come back and say the experience has changed their lives," White said. Among the precautions they the U.S. Embassy and notify- ing whoever might be helpful, such as local police depart- ments, she said. Jesuit Volunteer Corps has projects in some countries with reputations for violence, but Jesuit Father Vin DeCola said the organization is careful to post volunteers far away from trouble spots. For instance, participants in the two-year volunteer program in Peru are in the south, across from St. Norbert College in DePere, Wis., one year had to rearrange part of a study trip in a remote section of Panama's rain forest because of skirmish- es acros; the nearby border with Colombia, said James Hodgson, who conducts the tours. He is a professor of biology and environmental science at the college, run by the Norber- tine Fathers. Although Panama itself isn't generally thought of as a haven have a commitment to social justice and to living the reality of life in another country, you can't reduce the risk to zero, unless you stay home. the country from the regions where a group of terrorists last year held hostages at the Japan- ese Embassy or where the Shin- ing Path guerrilla movement was active. One session out of about 30 in the volunteers' two-week training is devoted to reducing the risk of trouble, Father DcKo- la said. The session addresses topics like behlg careful about carrying money around, wearing jewel- ry, checking in with others, trav- eling together and paying atten- tion to advice from local people. "But you can't alleviate all the risks," said Father DeCola. Not long ago, one group of Jesuit volunteers scheduled to for rampant crime or terrorism, Hodgson said he depends on local guides to smooth the way for his students to study in iso- lated areas where outsiders are not always welcome or to warn them of problems that might spill over, like fighting related to the drug trade in Colombia. "When someone says don't go'into an area, vou don't go," Hodgson said. "'In this case we went to different villages." At Xavier, where students were preparing to leave for their semester in Nicaragua in late January; the events in Guatemala have given the faculty "a reason to sit down and rethink how we do things," Knutson said. But he added that he didn't think there his students are given for their semester-long service projects in Managua, the Nicaraguan capital. Musalo said the incident with the Maryland students doesn't change anything about Guatemala or the valid reasons for students to travel there or to any other country where there are spo- radic problems. She noted that a Japanese exchange student in the United States , a ccidenJ,:,J41l ........ several years ago, causing an out- cry in Japan about safety in the United States, and that European tourists stayed away from Florida for a while after several cases of criminals target- ing foreigners. "Guatemala is the same country it was six months ago," said Musalo, direc- tor of the International Human Rights and Migration Project at Santa Clara's Center for Applied Ethics. "It had law- lessness, crime, police corrup- tion and a dysfunctional jus- tice system. That's been the situation for a long time and it isn't something that people who go there all the time are not aware of.'" Musalo takes groups of facul- ty and staff from Santa Clara to become familiar with the peo- ple, politics, economics and social situations of Guatemala. She said she hoped the atten- tion to the January inddent might be good for Guatenuda in the long run, because the rest of the world might pay more work in Jamaica was assigned was much mason for new pre attention to its long-running :! : =ople there with an unrelated From,what I understand the If the same crimes had been i ! . , .j ' . )rogram were attacked while St. Mary s grouLwas doing all ttedagainstaof " -d - . "'" u,= . .- , "rova. neat care  ......... ,'' - ' / 4"t would hope that all:the ,0.-L .tholic c..=c, wm,.,.. OR COMPLETE .. t for o on Jeffrey w. w,, a. ELECTRICAL SERVICE .   w,m=. R. . FISCHER EUCCTRIC INC. people we would want /or tOWn, am 0S.  W. tN 47501 8CHNEI,,,LVILLF., IN Guatemalans in their own coun- o. F,,,, (, .? 389-2418 tD'," she said. i I I the Spanish department at take are keeping in touch with lly PATRICIA ZAPOR Catholic News Service A group of biology students card with my picture on it, taken in 1976. She took the times, especially around bill time, when I indulge in opportunity to.make fun of my long hair, my plaid dreaming about winning the lottery. I shared this fan- sport coat, and my ugly tie. To add further insult, she . tasy with Ann and it led to a discussion of what we accused me of still having that same sport coat in my would take with us if we used some of our dream closet. I assured her I'd gotten rid of it years ago. I was winnings to move away. Surprisingly we found our- ' too embarrassed to acknowledge that I still have the selves able to mentally let go of almost everything tie! There is something very comforting about holding except our many pictures of family and friends. We on to things. I don't know whether it is a lack of trust discovered that above all we would want to hold on or a lack of faith, but it is certainly a human trait, to our memories that have been captured in our pho- Ann and I remember a time when all of our tographs. Much of the rest, we could leave. earthly belongings would fit into the trunk and back Jesus instructed his disciples and all of us to let seat of our car. We traveled light in those days with a go of our things so that we might have the freedom to sense of freedom and adventure. Now we have focus on what is truly important. In The Second Half acquired so much that it would take a very large we find the things that mean the most to us are things truck and a number of sturdy young men to move us! that are symbolic of the love we share with others. And, more importantly, the very act of letting go of Now if only I had saved the box the computer things often feels a little risky, came in, I could throw away some of this old office Recently I read the words from the Gospel of stuff! Mark where Jesus sent his disciples out two by two.  By JIM CAVERA He gave them specific instructions on what NOT to take with them. Obviously he clearly understood our Jim and Ann Cavera live and work in Evansville. my employee identification human tendency to hold on to things. There are Their colunm is a regular feature of the Message. Don't stop study abroad, college organizers say