Pedro Analysis

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Evaluate The Character Of Father Renteria In Terms Of ‘Spiritual Emptiness'

In the novel, Chronicle of a Death Foretold, Father Renteria was the priest of Comala. He demanded that the people of the town possess integrity and purity; however Father Renteria had lost faith in religion and himself because he felt as if he was responsible for the negativity towards religion in Comala. He states, "What has their faith won them? Heaven? Or the purification of their souls? And why purify their souls anyway, at the last moment..." to show his lack of faith in religion. Therefore, it can be said that Father Renteria was not very pure and was a hypocrite. The people of Comala were extremely church oriented and always concerned with the after-life and prayers. For example, Dorotea "was always waiting for the church doors to open. He smelled the odor of alcohol.'' Like most other town people, Dorotea was faithful to church even though she had sinned. There is also irony when describing how hypo critic Father Renteria was. He told the people of Comala that they could be forgiven for their sins, yet he went to the priest for forgiveness. Miguel Paramo raped Renteria's niece and killed his brother. Father Renteria built up so much hate that it contradicted his philosophy of "never hate anyone". At Miguel's funeral, father Renteria did not offer a final benediction because of his hatred and selfishness. He wanted revenge for what Miguel had done. Father Renteria is a symbol which represents the stuggles the people of Comala try their hardest to preserve against corruption. His struggle is brought to the table at confession time. Father Renteria goes to a priest to ask him forgiveness and says "I have sinned..." tolling louder on his conscience until "there was a taste of blood on his tongue." The blood is a symbol of his drop in faith and the fact that it was slipping away. This explains ‘Spiritual Emptiness'. The fact that Renteria loses his faith he is spiritually empty....
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