“The fundaments of the paradigm of fraternity”
From the Focolare Movement’s site
“I was totally demotivated in my profession as an engineer… Now I have rediscovered it in another light …” “I’m in my second year of architecture. The university presents it in a very commercial approach, missing out the human side of it. This course has exceeded my expectations.” These are just two of the many impressions at the end of the course that had gathered about 80 Latin-American university students, in an intense week (25-30 July) at the Congress Centre in Mariapolis Ginetta, Sao Paulo, Brazil.
This cultural initiative promoted by the Latin-American Academic Centre Sophia ALC of the Focolare Movement, presented an innovative project, well expressed by the title, “The theoretic-practical fundaments of the paradigm of fraternity: its projection in the social, political, economic and cultural sciences.”
The Latin-American youths delved deeply into the wounds that hurt their peoples today, the drama of the indigenous populations, the great issues of the Amazon, social inequality, and violence which – the Argentinean politologist, Juan Esteban Belderrain, referred to in saying that – Latin America holds the sad world record. In 2012 the number of homicides rose to 140,000, over a third of the global statistics. It is a phenomenon that is growing.
Against such a dramatic background, the youth feel highly involved in deepening the cultural novelty that has opened out over their own disciplines, and in actualising the paradigm of fraternity in a commitment of thought and life. Just one example is when the Brazilian Political Science professor, Marconi Aurélio e Silva, explained that with the application of this paradigm already experimented on over the last 20 years, politics overcomes the antagonistic dimension, complementary majorities and oppositions have come to the fore, a part of the truth is gathered in adversaries, and the participation of citizens is activated.
The new cultural paradigm in these days was lived also in the interpersonal relationships between students of various Latin-American cultures, and between students and professors, in an interdisciplinary and multicultural dimension. And not only that, upon their departure the youths undertook to identify the greater urgencies in their own cities, and supported by the professors, laid out and initiated projects at a political, economic and social level.
To conclude, Prof. Sergio Rondinara, of the Sophia University Institute of which Sophia ALC is the first extra-European section, expressed great hope in perceiving in the youths present, “a wonderful, crystalline cross section of the Latin-American peoples, that makes us foresee the extraordinary potential of the future of this continent.”