For the first time in the lives of most Cubans, a man whose surname is not Castro will lead the Communist-controlled nation. Cuba’s National Assembly announced on Thursday, April 19, 2018, that First Vice President, Miguel Diaz-Canel, 57, will replace Raul Castro as the head of the Cuban government.
Many residents of the island nation are optimistic that this change in government will usher in major societal changes in Cuba. Yet, optimism is not so strong among others because Raul Castro, Fidel’s brother, is still the First Secretary of the Communist Party and as such, will probably continue to exert a great deal of influence over decisions affecting Cuba’s future.
Nevertheless, a recent article in the National Catholic Reporter states: “real changes are quietly being made by the second-largest institution after the government in Cuba: the Catholic Church. Connections forged with Cuban-Americans are strengthening parishes, shoring up social services and extending beyond the Cuban church by offering business and entrepreneurship training to help rebuild civil society.”
During an interview Miami’s Archbishop, Thomas Wenski stated that the “key to the revitalization of the Cuban church is reconciliation, not only between Cuban-Americans and Cubans but among Cubans themselves.” Other rebuilding challenges faced by the Cuban Catholic Church are a shortage of Priests and laypersons to staff parishes, as well as building or rebuilding churches that have been neglected for over six decades.
Please click here to review the complete article on rebuilding Cuba’s Catholic Church published in the National Catholic Reporter.
Click here to review “Encuentro Ecclesial Event Unites Cuban Catholics, Bridges US-Cuba Division” also published by the National Catholic Reporter.