Catholics in the City of the Angels

A film by MANUELA DALLE
Produced by Camera Lucida

Synopsis

The city of Los Angeles is totally fragmented. Its inhabitants are from all over the world and represent a broad social spectrum. The communities are divided, sealed off from one another and sometimes violent. There are many places of worship, every street corner has a church, temple or synagogue. One of them brings together people from different groups, this is the church run by Father Sanchez.

Father German Sanchez, a 56 year old, Colombian born priest, arrived from France to take care of the French Catholic community in difficulty. He managed to breathe new life into the community. He found a parish, St Sebastian’s Church and the school, shared by communities, English-speaking, French-speaking and Hispanic.

Today there are some 2000 families in this community from all over the world: South America, Switzerland, France, Canada, Lebanon and Vietnam. Mostly expats and immigrants, they often have only their religion in common.

So how do this disparate people live alongside one another? What are they looking for in their shared religion? Do they experience it in the same way? Is it for the same reasons? What moves Father Sanchez? How does he bring all these believers of such different cultures together? Overall, why and how can one be a Catholic in Los Angeles today?