problem. Now, as soon as it gets dark, everybody wants to get home and lock their doors,” he said.
Galo also recalled his six years as a priest in Guadalupe Bravo, a municipality two hours from Juarez. Once, he said, the community produced cotton that was competitive with the that of Egypt—the best in the world.
“We used to go up and down the road without any problems, aside from the fact that they were narrow, dirt roads,” Galo remembered. “Yes, there where families that dealt drugs, mostly marijuana and cocaine. Even in those less violent years there were Cessna planes (in the drug trade) that used an airstrip built by the government-owned oil company, PEMEX," said the priest.
Galo recounted, “My predecessor told me that if I was driving around the landing strip and happened to see a plane landing or taking off, the best thing was to slow down and not pay attention to whatever was going on. Of course, I knew they were unloading drugs, but the drugs were being moved up north [to the United States]. It wasn’t that I didn’t care, but what could I do? My job was to take care of the spiritual life of my community.”
At least once a year, he said, a family in the parish used to visit him with an envelope full of money. “The advice I got from the previous priest was not take it, but let them know that they could give it to charity,” Galo said. “I can’t tell you if the same happens now in other communities, but it happens,” he added.
Hope--The Only Option
“We can’t lose hope,” stressed Father Jose Rios Galarza. He spoke in his church office at Our Lady of Peace, in a run down neighborhood on the
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