Guatemalan dignitaries to visit Postville; Luther College’s David Vasquez will lead panel discussion
Monday, June 09, 2014 2:21 PM
A community conversation centering around an upcoming documentary, “The U-Turn” by Luis Argueta, brings Guatemalan ambassadors to Postvile Saturday, June 21, at the Y Communty Center.
The event focuses on stories of transformation, the changes in the lives of the immigrants, their home country and those who have worked in partnership with them.
The event is sponsored by the Northeast Iowa Peace and Justice Center Immigrant Group and Luther College Ministries.
Special guests are Ambassador Luis Fernando Carrera Castro, minister of foreign affairs and Ambassador Oscar Padilla Lam, vice minister of foreign affairs and Fernando Sanchez, advisor to the minister, traveling from Guatemala City.
They are accompanied by Hugo Hun, consul general of Guatemala from Chicago, Ill., as well as Luis Argueta and his wife, Jennifer.
Other invited guests are Mayor Reikow and city council members, and the Diversity Council, Sister Mary McCauley, Father Paul Ouderkirk and area pastors.
The community is invited and welcomed to attend and participate in the event.
Preview trailer of new film
Argueta will have a preview trailer of his upcoming documentary follow up to his award winning earlier documentary, “abUsed: Raid in Postville.”
Still in progress, the new film will center on young men able to return to Postville with a U-visa because they were victims of crimes in the United States and willing to be witnesses for the court. They returned to Postville late in 2011 and brought their families to start a new life.
All of the Guatemalan ambassadors and the Arguetas are traveling from Worthington, Minn., where they gathered the evening before at the Midwestern premier of Argueta’s film, “Abuelos y Nietos,” (Grandparents and Grandchildren Together,) the story of U.S. citizen children born to Guatemalan parents in the Worthington area.
Lisa Kremer of Familias Juntos accompanied 12 of these children from the ages of nine to 14 to Guatemala last summer to meet their grandparents. In addition, two of the children met older siblings that they had never seen.
Vasquez to host panel
Pastor David Vasquez of Luther College hosts a panel introducing the Guatemalan officials, Postville Mayor Reikow, Postville School Superintendent Knutson, recent immigrant panel members and community members who helped Guatemalan families returning to Postville through the U-visa program.
The session concludes with a question and answer session followed by a reception hosted by a group of women from the Postville community, Irma Rucal, Rosa Zamora and Alma Chavez.