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Latin America Roundup -- April 24

April 24, 2008 |  8:11 am

Search for missing priest in Brazil continues

Adelir_antonio_de_carli Rescuers are continuing to search for a missing priest in Brazil who disappeared after drifting out to sea suspended from hundreds of helium-filled party balloons. Rescue workers said they had not given up hope of finding Father Adelir Antonio de Carli even though bunches of the multicolored balloons had been found floating on the sea. Read the report and watch the video here.

At El Salvador mall, shopping and salvation all under one roof

Each day, the San Jose Chapel in the Galerias Escalon, San Salvador, offers a Catholic mass and even the sacrament of reconciliation. For a few moments, dozens of shoppers and mall employees exchange Armani and Adidas for Matthew, Mark, Luke and John. The unlikely pairing between faith and commerce makes perfect sense in El Salvador, where they love their malls. Although poverty persists, the high-rise malls draw well-to-do residents who seek air conditioning and a taste of the U.S. in a secure environment. This is the story, from the Chicago Tribune.

Immigrant students log improvement in English fluency 

California nonnative students showed improving English proficiency this school year, with more than one-third demonstrating a level of fluency that could allow them to take higher-level course work, according to data released today by the state Department of Education, writes Seema Mehta.

Photo: Roman Catholic priest Adelir Antonio de Carli gives an interview before floating off using party balloons filled with helium in Brazil on Sunday. Carli was reported missing off the coast of Santa Catarina state hours after taking off on an attempt to break the 19-hour record for the longest flight with balloons. (Renita Pelissari / Agencia O Globo)