When we have volunteers with knowledge of other languages, we run classes in French (as in the photograph), in Italian, in Portuguese and even in Latin.
Human rights education
There is a great need to spread knowledge about the imprisonments and tortures of many innocent members of Christian communities, carried out during the 35-year dictatorship of Alfredo Stroessner (1954-89), because at the time people were too frightened to talk about it.
SMEF has made grants to a nearby museum, Casa de las Victimas, to enable them to back up and print out the data from local interviews in the course of the Comisión de Verdad y Justicia (Truth and Justice Commission). We have also funded the publication of an issue of the review Dictadura y Memoria which included an interview with a local victim, who is a eucharistic minister in the parish, and have arranged for victims and their families to tell their stories at the Institute.
We have bought Bibles and hymnbooks for the parish to create the beginning of a small stock. Then, as people buy them, the income enables the stock to be replaced. We have funded transport for a group of charismatic retreatgivers to lead a very dynamic Pentecost vigil, that attracted large numbers of young people.
We also give scholarships to agricultural school, and in the past have organised several series of visits to outlying farms by agricultural experts to give practical advice on improved methods of farming.