George Rodriguez is a freelance correspondent based in Costa Rica. He's been a correspondent for several international news agencies — Reuters, Inter Press Service (IPS), Agencia Mexicana de Noticias (Notimex) — and has contributed with other media. His beat has been mostly South and Central America, having done intensive coverage of repression under past dictatorships and of internal wars. He has also done work in Europe and West Africa.
For Sr. María Molina of the Congregation of the Missionary Sisters of the Assumption, a strong heart and an unwavering faith are fundamental tools in working with children at social risk. When hearing their tragic stories of abuse, "one has to be very firm and very balanced," so as not to become overwhelmed, she says. "They easily tell a story that one never imagines -- and yet it happens."
Sr. Lorena Morales' life underwent a drastic change 20 years ago when she left the historically peaceful environment of her native Costa Rica for the violent setting of war-torn Sudan. For Morales, a member of the Comboni Missionary Sisters, it meant leaving the safety of a nation that abolished its army in 1948 after a five-week civil war, the last armed conflict the country was involved in. She has since shared the plight of Sudanese communities caught in fighting that for a total of four decades has battered the northeastern African nation.
Sr. Alexandra Vega, a member of the Congregation of the Religious of Our Lady of Sion in Costa Rica, has a powerful view of the Bible and of life: They go together.
The Sisters of Our Lady of Sion in San Jose, Costa Rica, focus on education and dialogue as a means to achieve peace. They run a school, youth and women's social programs, and their Center for Biblical Studies and Judeo-Christian Relations at their congregation's headquarters in Moravia, in the northeastern outskirts of San José.