Report From Mexico, produced by Trident Films, is a 1951 film that shows the work of the Evangelical churches proselytizing in predominantly Catholic Mexico. The film features footage of rural Mexican communities, predominantly classrooms and spaces used for church services. The film beings in Mexico City, where President of Union Theological Seminary Dr. Noonan sits behind a desk (00:55). He greets two Americans who have arrived to see the work of the Protestant churches in Mexico. The film shows a Mexican town with a Catholic church (02:07), people at a market and moving through the streets of a small town. This is contrasted with shots of new modern buildings and homes in Mexico (03:20). A woman teaches a group of children in a village (04:08). Older children walk into the courtyard of a Protestant school that they attend. The two Americans walk to a meeting with Mexican missionaries trained at the seminary, where they learn about the ongoing work of the missionaries. A man recounts his work to the group, and the film cuts to his story. After arriving at a train station, he gets into a truck and heads to the farm in a small village to study. The truck drives along a rural road to the new center. Young boys run out and greet the man. A woman teaches the young boys and men in a classroom. A boy feeds pigs at the farm. Another boy digs up mud to make adobe bricks (10:53). The young man climbs onto a tractor (11:05), and the film shows the tractor as it plows a field right next to an ox-drawn plow. Next, a woman from an industrial city talks about her center, the Good Will House. Young men and women walk into the center (13:10). Young children are taught in a small classroom. The film shows the exterior of the building that houses the Protestant school Instituto “Colon” (15:44). Girls learn to type and write shorthand in the classroom at the school. Dr. Noonan introduces the American couple to Chico, who takes the two to his parish village. The three walk down a dirt road to the village (19:12), passing grazing livestock. They arrive at the small building the missionaries use for a church (19:58). Members of the parish attend a Sunday service there. A group of children gather to listen to Chico tell a bible story (22:40). Chico then takes the two Americans to visit the construction site of his parish’s new church. Chico preaches from the pulpit in the unfinished church, concluding the “report.”
Union Theological Seminary in the City of New York is an independent, non-denominational, Christian seminary located in New York City. It is the oldest independent seminary in the United States and has long been known as a bastion of progressive Christian scholarship, with a number of prominent thinkers among its faculty or alumni. It was founded in 1836 by members of the Presbyterian Church in the U.S.A., but was open to students of all denominations. In 1893, Union rescinded the right of the General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church to veto faculty appointments, thus becoming fully independent. In the 20th century, Union became a center of liberal Christianity. It served as the birthplace of the Black theology, womanist theology, and other theological movements. Union houses the Columbia University Burke Library, one of the largest theological libraries in the Western Hemisphere. Union is affiliated with neighboring Columbia University. Since 1928, the seminary has served as Columbia's constituent faculty of theology. Although administratively independent, Union is represented in Columbia's governance structure and appoints one faculty member and one student to the Columbia University Senate. In 1964, Union also established an affiliation with the neighboring Jewish Theological Seminary of America.
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