Film ‘Beyond Forgiving’ screened in Buenos Aires
Some 80 people gathered on 28 March in the prestigious Palacio San Martin, the former site of the Argentine Ministry of Foreign Affairs, for a screening of an impressive work featuring the theme of forgiveness in South Africa by documentarian Imad Karam and others.
The invitation was issued by the National Committee of the Culture of Peace and Citizenship and on behalf of the Foreign Office. Dr Fernando Lorenzo, coordinator of this Committee, was so impressed by the film that he wishes it to be shown throughout Argentina. This occasion was precipitated by the friendship and teamwork of his colleague Patricia Pérez and Elida Mauri, president of IofC Argentina. Despite severe health impediments, she worked around the clock inviting people and attending to every last detail of the event. The audience included representatives from several governmental organizations and NGOs.
Speakers at the event included women who had worked as young volunteers in Argentina 50 years ago with what was then known as the Moral Re-Armament Initiative. The speakers were now well into their eighties and spoke with passion and vigour still. Elsa Vogel and Digna Hintzen told of their experiences of forgiveness during World War ll in France and the Netherlands. Jeanette Ibargoyen, from the US and Uruguay, spoke about the work she and her husband do training young people in a way of life that builds community and democracy. Their programme Gente Que Avanza includes musical performances, theatre, and training courses. With this programme they have travelled all over Latin America over a span of 30 years and have had the privilege of training thousands of youth. A new generation continues this work from their headquarters in Montevideo.
The film was received warmly with effusive applause. The audiences were receptive to both the film and the speakers. Many people stayed after the screening to talk and have their own discussions afterward. And when the event culminated, the participants all dispersed into the clement Buenos Aires evening newly equipped with their newfound insights.