On that day, university students led protests in direct response to President Daniel Ortega’s changes to the social security program, which required workers to contribute more money, but gave them fewer benefits in return.
Although the government repealed the controversial legislation, the changes had stoked the fires of opposition among many Nicaraguan citizens to the point of no return.
The fires have long been burning among citizens expecting democracy—Ortega’s presidency was the result of voter fraud; he has stacked the Supreme Court in his favor; he has control over many of the country’s television stations. He has also eradicated opposing parties to stay in power. (1)
Blauvelt Dominican Sister Jennifer Schaaf, O.P. has made many trips to Nicaragua with students from Yale University, where she serves as Assistant Chaplain of St. Thomas More Catholic Chapel Center.
As Catholics, we must stay informed of crimes against God’s people and take action in whatever way we can.
Sister Jennifer urges everyone to be aware of this tragic situation and has shared the following informative graphic from the Council of Protestant Churches of Nicaragua, an organization with whom she works.
Read through the organization’s list of ways to support the Nicaraguan people during this time of unrest, and consider acting upon this call for aid.
Maria Bohan is a Volunteer for the Communications and Development Office at the Sisters of Saint Dominic of Blauvelt, New York. She is a student at Bryn Mawr College majoring in English and a graduate of Pearl River High School.