The Mission

Topics: Society of Jesus, The Mission, Jesuit Reductions Pages: 4 (1094 words) Published: August 1, 2014
Brittany Riewe
The Mission
The Mission takes place during the Jesuit Reductions in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. During this time many Jesuit missionaries established missions independent of the Spanish state in order to teach the native inhabitants Christianity. Leading this cause is Father Gabriel, a Spanish Jesuit Priest, who arrives in the jungle in South America to set up a mission and convert a small village of Guarani Indians. In the beginning of the film, there is an image of a Jesuit missionary tethered to a cross which is being sent over the massive Iguazu Falls. This act encourages Father Gabriel to try to reach out to the tribe. Guarani warriors track Father Gabriel down, prepared to kill him, as he tries to make his way to their village. Gabriel is able to calm the warriors down by playing a song which is the beginning of his acceptance into the tribe. The movie then shifts to Rodrigo Mendoza, a slave trader and mercenary, who is filled with guilt after killing his brother and is looking for repentance. Father Gabriel, after finding out about Mendoza's actions, seeks him out to offer him a way to repentance and salvation. Once Mendoza agrees, his armor and weapons are bound within a satchel that is attached to his waist and he is challenged to scale the cliffs of Iguazu Falls. He makes it up the falls and to the Guarani camp where he is met with skepticism and disdain. Eventually, one of the Guarani cuts the satchel off and throws it into the falls representing the forgiveness of the tribe and him being released from his penance. Mendoza then becomes a Jesuit under the guidance of Father Gabriel. The Guaranis gain confidence in Father Gabriel's mission from the leadership he portrays and the eagerness of the Guarani’s to learn. During all of this, there are political events going on as well. Spain and Portugal sign a treaty ordering Spain to transfer the control of some land, which includes the land containing Father Gabriel's...

Cited: Huonder, Anthony. "Reductions of Paraguay." CATHOLIC ENCYCLOPEDIA:. Robert Appleton Company, n.d. Web. 17 July 2014.
"The Jesuit Missions: Their History." The Jesuit Missions: Their History. N.p., n.d. Web. 17 July 2014.
Villarrubia, Eleonore. "The Jesuit Missions in South America." Catholicismorg. N.p., 23 Mar. 2011. Web. 17 July 2014.
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