My husband and I went to see Andy Garcia's most recent movie, "For Greater Glory." It is hard to believe that the events upon which the movie is based, Mexico’s Cristero War (1926-29), took place less than one hundred years ago right on our nation's doorstep. What is even more incredible is how the motivations behind the actions of governments and people of that time can so easily be mirrored in our own times.
As I watched this gripping drama of people having to defend their most sacred beliefs with their very lives, I could not help but wonder which of those characters best represents me. The main character in the novel is a young boy whose faith inspires the general who leads the Cristeros against the government forces determined to secularize society. The United States wants the support of the Mexican government for their petroleum interests and provides air support and machine guns to use against the determined Catholics. Images of followers of Christ strung up on poles along the railroad, priests shot for wearing their hassocks and performing the rites of their faith, and children being killed and tortured remain in one's memory long after the last scene of the movie.
"Those who do not learn from history are doomed to repeat it," wrote George Santayana.