David Agren covers Mexico as a freelance correspondent for Catholic News Service. His reporting also regularly appears in the Guardian, USA Today and the Washington Post. A native of Canada, he has lived in Mexico City for the past 11 years.
Sr. Bertha Lopez was buying 55-pound sacks of rice, when the cashier asked: "Where do they want the rice? For Guatemala or for whom?"
Honduras ranks as the sixth most unequal country in the world. Drug cartels are common, and workers are subjected to extortion. Women are fleeing Honduras to protect their children from gangs: boys are forced to become foot soldiers while girls are preyed upon against their wills. Now under tougher U.S. policies, gang violence will no longer qualify for asylum claims. And deportees are arriving back in Honduras in massive numbers.
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An order of nuns has withdrawn from an especially violent city after the parents and sister of one of the women religious were kidnapped and killed.
The Diocese of Chilpancingo-Chilapa, where two priests were murdered Feb. 5, said in a statement that the nuns from the Comunidad Guadalupana (Guadalupe Community) had withdrawn because of a lack of security, leaving a school it operated in the city of Chilapa without staff.
Schools in Chilapa had suspended classes from September to December because of the insecurity, the statement said.
Sr. Consuelo Morales, a member of the Congregation of Our Lady: Canonesses of St. Augustine, was awarded Mexico's top human rights award Dec. 10 for her work with the families of missing persons.