Showing posts with label Cuba. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Cuba. Show all posts

Sunday, April 2, 2017

Castro Mistress: Fidel Received the Last Rites

69-year-old in an interview with the Italian church broadcaster: Dictator met with a priest every day and developed a positive attitude towards Christianity

Rome (kath.net/KAP) The long-term Cuban dictator Fidel Castro (archive photo) had received the sacraments before his death in December 2016. "Some Jesuit fathers have told me that Fidel Castro died being comforted by religion, and they said to me, "be quiet because Fidel died in a Christian way," said Anna Maria Traglia, a former lover of Fidel Castro, for the Italian Church broadcaster "TV 2000." According to her information, the "Maximo Lider" was visited daily by a priest.

Traglia, now 69 years old, is the niece of Cardinal Luigi Traglia, who in turn, in the 1970s, was the vicar of Pope Paul VI. In Rome. When she was 27, she had met Castro by the intermediation of his relative, the secretary at the Cuban embassy in Rome, whom Traglia had met and befriended. For years she had been Fidel's lover, said Traglia, who spoke of a "great love" until the end of her life and lived in Cuba for a long time. 

On her urging, a parish was opened in Havana, where she had attended Mass every Sunday afternoon, said Traglia. After the service Fidel was waiting for her in front of the church door in a car with the number plate "Comandante 1."  She had also unintentionally introduced a meeting between Castro and Cardinal Agostino Casaroli. When she was invited by the nuncio at that time, Castro had simply come along, causing the Vatican diplomat to be embarrassed, as there were no instructions for this situation. However, a "mutual sympathy" had developed immediately between the two men.

Traglia traveled to Cuba a year and a half ago, when Castro was already in bad health. By May 2016 there had also been regular telephone contact with the ex-dictator. On her last encounter she found Castro "very changed", said Traglia. "One day he told me: I often think of your words, referring to my Christian faith."

Trans: Tancred vekron99@hotmail.com
AMDG

Friday, February 5, 2016

Pope Francis to Meet With Moscow Patriarch in Communist Cuba

 Pope Francis and Patriarch Kirill I of the Russian Orthodox Church will meet in Cuba for the first time next Friday as part of an effort to heal a schism that has divided Christianity between East and West for nearly 1,000 years.

The meeting, the first ever between a sitting pope and Russian patriarch, will take place at José Martí International Airport, where the two will sign a joint declaration. Pope Francis will fly to Cuba before traveling on to Mexico for a six-day tour of the country.

“This meeting of the Primates of the Catholic Church and the Russian Orthodox Church, after a long preparation, will be the first in history and will mark an important stage in relations between the two Churches,” said a joint press release.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/pope-and-russian-orthodox-leader-to-hold-historic-encounter-in-cuba/2016/02/05/1bba6e78-cbfe-11e5-a7b2-5a2f824b02c9_story.html

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Dozens of Cuban Dissidents Detained During Pope Visit

Pope Francis and Raoul Castro
(Havana) They have asked for a meeting with Pope Francis. Emphatically. However, the communist Castro regime was not  prepared to make concessions. During the stay of Pope Francis on the Caribbean island,  dozens of Cuban dissidents were arrested.
Two of them are Marta Beatriz Roque, a former political prisoner, and Miriam Leiva, an independent journalist. The aim of their detention was to prevent them from participating in public events surrounding the Pope, for example,  Vespers in the Cathedral of Havana, at which  both Roque and Leiva wanted to participate. Both dissidents could produce personal invitations from the apostolic nunciature. Yet the Cuban security agencies were not impressed.

This is the other side of the Pope's visit to Cuba

Yet this shady side of the Pope's visit will not be reported by the mainstream media.
The reports of Roque and Leiva are largely identical. The actions of the State Security were carried out according to the same pattern. Both were surrounded on the open street by several police officers, put into a car and taken to an unknown place. There they were detained for hours   together with other persons.
Also, Berta Soler, the President of the Damas de Blanco, the Ladies in White, was temporarily arrested when she wanted to visit the Apostolic Nunciature in Havana to greet the Pope.

At least 50 dissidents arrested

Arrested dissident who wanted to get too close - according to the regime - to Pope Francis.
According to information from dissident circles, several dozen people were arrested during the Pope's visit. Some were jailed, others placed under house arrest, while others - like Roque and Leiva -  were detained without explanation for several hours. The detention lasted as long as the pope's public events lasted. The total  affected by the police action were at least 50 people.
Vatican spokesman Father Federico Lombardi had - according to the correspondent of the Spanish daily El Pais - refused to comment on the news. "I have nothing to say", said the director of the Vatican Press Office, said El Pais.   Father Lombardi made ​​it clear that according to the program   a meeting with  Cuban dissidents was provided for. But he did not know why they did not appear on the agreed date. The Vatican spokesman also confirmed that the opposition had tried to greet the Pope "in passing." It's an experiment which has obviously failed. The communist regime was victorious once again.
For the dissidents there only remained the words that the Catholic Church leader uttered on his arrival in Cuba: "I would also like that my greeting reach especially those that I would not be able to meet for various reasons, and all scattered throughout the Cuban world" The statement has been interpreted that the pope meant the political prisoners and dissidents and the Cuban exiles.  Although many, too many, acted as if it applied neither to one nor the other, for them the Pope's visit ended before it had begun,"  said Corrispondenza Romana.
Text: Giuseppe Nardi
Image: Corrispondenza Romana
Trans: Tancred vekron99@hotmail.com
AMDG

Monday, September 21, 2015

Words of Consecration: "For All" in Cuba, "For Many" in the USA -- Pope Francis and Both-And

Edit: maybe the First World doesn't deserve as much of the new mercy?
(Havana / Washington) Did Christ shed his blood "for all" or  "for many"? Pope Francis celebrated the first Mass of his pastoral visit to America on Sunday at the Plaza de la Revolucion in Havana, and demonstrated there  that he takes a both-and   on the issue of the words of consecration. With that he doesn't exactly reverse the efforts of his predecessor, Benedict XVI. for a liturgical renewal, but freezes halfway.
Overall, the Pope will celebrate seven Masses in Cuba and in the United States. The words of consecration are, however, not to be identical.
The celebrations take place in Spanish and English as well - at least partially - and the Eucharistic Prayer in the language of the Church, Latin.

Words of consecration are not identical

"If you look at the words of consecration at all these Masses, you will find that you are not the same," said the Vatican expert Sandro Magister.
The first Mass in Revolution Square with the oversized Che Guevara-representation in the back, is something the Castro regime places such great importance during Pope's Visit. Pope Francis celebrated the Mass on Sunday entirely in Spanish. Before half a million faithful, the Pope at the consecration of the wine into the blood of Christ, spoke the words "por vosotros y por todos los hombres para el Perdón de los pecados", literally, "for you and for all men for the forgiveness of sins."
The Mass   Francis celebrated also on Monday, 21 September in Holguin and on Tuesday in Santiago de Cuba, were also completely in Spanish.The words of consecration, however, vary somewhat. Instead of "por vosotros" the Church leader used "por ustedes" (polite form) will tell, while the remaining words of consecration were said as in Havana.

Another Country, same language, other words of consecration

Then Pope Francis travels from the Caribbean island to the American mainland and will celebrate his first Mass in the US federal capital Washington. Despite the change of states he will celebrate this Sacrifice of the Mass in Spanish, the native language of a rapidly growing number of US citizens. The words of consecration were spoken - unlike Cuba - not  "por todos los hombres" but "por muchos" for many.
So it will be the case with the three other Holy Masses in the US, where the Pope will address the Eucharistic Prayer in Latin: "pro vobis et pro multis effundetur in remissionem peccatorum" for you and for many. In the US,  "for all" is not to be heard.

"What can be made of this vacillation between 'for all' and, for many'?"

Holy Sacrifice of the Mass
"What can be made of this wavering between the" "close to the words of consecration in the US?" For all "in Cuba and" for many, wondered last Saturday Sandro Magister.
"It can be concluded that the long-standing question that Benedict XVI. finally concluded in  2012  making a definitive and unified worldwide solution is left in limbo by Pope Francis," said the Vatican expert.
The original words of consecration by Benedict XVI., the faithfully arranged transmission of the words of consecration in the vernacular languages, ​​is based directly on the official Latin formula. Because of persistent resistance of some bishops' conferences Benedict XVI. wrote on 14 April 2012 in order to overcome it, a letter to all the bishops. The "pro multis" of the Roman canon should be uniformly applied instead of the hasty translations in the course of the liturgical reform 1965/1969 in the vernaculars. Thus, the German pope wanted to counteract a misleading teaching of  universal salvation that was gaining ground among Catholics.He wrote the letter in German, with which he made it clear where the greatest resistance was situated.

"New Mercy" versus Words of Consecration?

The statement of Benedict XVI. is valid for the whole Church. As Pope Benedict resigned, some of the Bishops' Conferences, including the Italian and German, were yet delinquent and had not made a new edition of the Missal. The correction of the formula "for all", which had been naturalized after the Second Vatican Council, through the faithful rendering "for many" is seen by many as a "restriction" of "mercy".
"With the inauguration of Francis, the idea has spread that this diction [for all] corresponds more to the universal expansion of compassion, which is constantly being preached by the new pope," said Magister.
As it seems,  the Argentine Pope is representing on this point "no strict position" (Magister) and also does not seem interested in trying to enforce a certain position. His position is rather a both-and, by using both the one and the other diction "even with this trip to Cuba and the United States."
Text: Giuseppe Nardi
Image: Nuova Bussola Quotidiana
Trans: Tancred vekron99@hotmail.com
AMDG

Saturday, September 19, 2015

Pope's Visit to Cuba: Widow of Oswaldo Payá Criticizes Castro Regime and Cardinal Ortega

Oswaldo Paya (1952- 2012)
(Rome / Havana) Prior to the Pope's visit to Cuba, Ticino journalist Giuseppe Rusconi (Rossoporpora) introduced an interview with Ofelia Acevedo, widow of Oswaldo Payá, a leading figure among the Cuban Catholics and President of the Christian civil rights movement Movimiento Cristiano de Liberacion (Christian Liberation Movement), who came his end in  a "very suspicious car accident" on 22 July 2012 (Rusconi). In the accident,  Oswaldo Payá (Founder and President) and Harold Cepero (president of the youth organization) the entire leadership of Christian Liberation Movement was extinguished. Pope Francis, who received the Payá family on 14 May 2014 in a private audience, knows the situation   well. The Widow criticizes Cardinal Jaime Ortega, archbishop of Havana, whom she  accuses of a hostile attitude towards the dissidents and critics of the regime.
Oswaldo Payá founded the Christian Liberation Movement in 1987 which became the authoritative voice of the anti-communist and anti-Castro dissidents. The Catholic Payá was the central figure of the dissident scene. Three years ago he was killed 700 km from Havana in a suspicious car accident. His name is connected with Proyecto Varela for obtaining fundamental rights and freedoms for the Cuban people by a referendum. Payá gathered the necessary 10,000 signatures and handed them over in 2002 to the Cuban Parliament. In 2003 he submitted  it again with 14,000 signatures, although the communist island regime responded with repressive measures. Ofelia Acevedo had to emigrate a year after the death of her husband with her ​​family to Miami (USA) because there was no end to constant police harassment and threats.

"In Cuba there is no freedom of religion"

For Pope's visit to Cuba Ofelia Acevedo said:
"When I found out, I was surprised, I felt great joy. Surprised because three papal visits within 17 years are a privilege, joy because Pope Francis is especially identified with the poor, marginalized and persecuted. These groups apply to the majority of my people. You expect a message of encouragement and hope by Pope Francis, who inspires them to rise up and go a long way to begin to become actors in their own history, to find the strength to do this in Jesus Christ, the great restorer of human dignity. "
The announcement of the Pope's visit has so far, says Acevedo,  brought  no improvements for the Cuban people.  "The lack of freedom keeps Cubans trapped in poverty and injustice." The situation is no much the same: "In Cuba there is no freedom of religion. There is an Office of Religious Affairs of the Central Committee of the Cuban Communist Party (the only legal party on the island), which is connected to  State Security (the Seguridad). It has the task to  monitor every member of the Church,  to search, to persuade, to threaten, anyone who in his opinions or his conduct is displeased with the government of the Castro brothers. They have the power to intervene at any time in any area of ​Church life which does not satisfy the government. The Church has no access to the mass media. Families can offer their children no Christian religious instruction, because there is no such. The current head of the Office for Religious Affairs of the Communist Party has declared in connection with the Pope's visit, that religious instruction was eliminated by the Revolution."

Pope Francis knows the "pathetic" situation of Cubans

The Pope visits between 1998 and 2012 were an important sign of fraternal communion with the Pilgrim Church of Cuba.  The messages of John Paul II. and Benedict XVI. had been gratefully received by those Cubans who could hear it. "The Church hierarchy refers to positive consequences, because the government made it possible after the visits, that some priests could enter the country and purchase certain equipment and vehicles necessary for the pastoral care, as well as the return of some confiscated property including churches and schools in the early years of the revolution, which were then in the best condition. When they were returned, they were empty, dilapidated or or totally destroyed. Other visible positive consequences are not known to me."
The Castro government announced on the occasion of the Pope's visit, the amnesty of 3522 prisoners. "Until now there are himself among these, however, no political prisoners. In fact, so far the amnesty has not been put into effect yet for any prisoners."
The widow of Oswaldo Payá was received with her family by Pope Francis in a private audience. "We talked to him about the deplorable conditions under which the vast majority of Cubans survive. We talked for the pilgrim Church in Cuba to which we belong and whom we dearly love. We also talked about the assassination attempt of 22 July 2012, the car of my husband, which was perpetrated by agents of the Seguridad. On my husband's assassination, Oswaldo Payá and the young Harold Cepero [president of the youth organization of the Christian Liberation Movement] were killed. We have told the Pope that we are calling for an independent investigation in order to clarify the precise course of events. I think that Pope Francis knows the real situation in which Cubans live. He is well informed and involved in different moments linked to the suffering of the Cuban people."

"If the Pope wants it, he can meet Cuban dissidents"

Should the Pope want it, "he will be able to meet Cuban dissidents".
For some time, the negative disposition of Archbishop Jaime Cardinal Ortega y Alamino of Havana toward the dissidents has been criticized not only by the Catholic opposition. This past June 5 Cardinal Ortega, who was a central point of contact for Oswaldo Payá, gave an interview for the Spanish Cadena Ser,  in which he even denied the existence of political prisoners in Cuba.
"Unfortunately, Cardinal Ortega has on several occasion behaved in ways towards dissidents, not only the Catholic, that correspond to those employed by state security: exclude and insult."
Rusconi asked the widow what her husband, Oswaldo Payá, would say if he were still alive to the Pope. "My husband could hardly have had the opportunity to be in the vicinity of the pope during the visit. In the two previous Pope's visit he had asked the Church authorities to be able to meet John Paul II. And Benedict XVI., but it was not possible. We assume that the Cuban government would never have accepted such an encounter. But I'm sure if Oswaldo could speak with the Pope, he would have asked for nothing, but he would have said, 'I want to hear your word with an open heart and full of hope.'
Text: Giuseppe Nardi
Image: InfoVaticana
Trans: Tancred vekron99@hotmail.com
AMDG

Monday, August 10, 2015

Pope Names New Personal Physician --- Fabrizio Soccorsi Will Accompany Him to Cuba

Next foreign trip to Cuba (Francis with Raul Castro in photo).
His new personal physician Fabrizio Soccorsi will
accompany him.
(Rome) Professor Fabrizio Soccorsi, former chief physician  of hepatology at the Roman San Camillo Hospital and advisor to the Department of Health and Hygiene of the Governorate of Vatican City was named by Pope Francis to be his new personal physician. This was announced by the Holy See Press Office.
Fabrizio Soccorsi was born on 2 February 1942 in Rome. After completing his studies in medicine and surgery in 1968 at the University La Sapienza  he began an extensive activity as a physician and lecturer. He was chief hepatologist and director of the Department of Liver Diseases, Digestive System and Nutrition and the Department of Internal Medicine at the San Camillo Hospital in Rome
Soccorsi has published hundreds of scientific papers. He was peritus of the medical advisory board of the Congregation for the Causes of Saints. In late July, Pope Francis had separated  the former personal physician from his position.

Predecessor remains personal physician of Benedict XVI.

Professor Eneo Polisca remains President of the Medical Advisory Board of the Congregation of Saints and continues as personal physician of Benedict XVI.
Last week, Pope Francis appointed the endocrinologist Professor Alfredo Pontecorvi from the Gemelli University Hospital as the new director of the Department of Health and Hygiene of the Vatican City. Thus, the two offices of the papal physician and the Vatican health director are no longer united in one person.  Before Eneo Polisca held this  office,  for more than 30 years before it was Renato Buzzonetti for 30 years, who  also served four popes, Paul VI., John Paul I, John Paul II. Benedict XVI. 
Soccorsi will accompany Pope Francis on his future foreign trips. His first foreign assignment will be the pastoral visit of the Pope in Cuba and in the United States. He will be accompanying the pope also with the anesthesiologist Giampiero Vetturini, who was already number two under Polisca in terms of health of the Pope.
Text: Giuseppe Nardi
Image: Christian News
Trans: Tancred vekron99@hotmail.com
AMDG

Thursday, January 15, 2015

Neo-Cardinal Pimiento: "One Can Tolerate Gay Marriage"

(Bogota) He is nearing 100 and will be almost the oldest member of the College of Cardinals, when  Pope Francis will put the purple biretta on his head on February 14.  We are talking about Colombia's neo-Cardinal José de Jesús Rodriguez Pimiento, for almost 20 years emeritus Archbishop of Manizales.
In the current issue of the weekly magazine Semana dated January 11, an interview with  the Cardinal who will turn 96 years old was published in spe. The interview was published under the title "In the name of Francis."
The weekly claims to have conducted the interview because of the cardinal survey.  The named topic is"gay marriage and Cuba."
Semana: What did you feel when you heard the news?
José de Jesús Pimiento: Surprise. I'm not hoping for such an honor, because I have become an elderly and withdrawn person. It is a noble and generous offer of the Pope, that inspires me and acknowledges the work  that I have done. It is a comfort.
Semana: Why do you think Francis has chosen you?
José de Jesús Pimiento: He wants to highlight those who have effectively worked in the ministry. He sees us as models. Although I do not think I'm that, I humbly recognize that honor.
Semana: What was your job?
José de Jesús Pimiento: I have worked in various dioceses and given stimulus to the social work of the Church. I have coordinated the Accion Social Accion Catolica and  done definite work to assist the victims of the tragedy of Nevado del Ruiz. I have twice led  the Episcopal Conference, have been involved with the Holy See on the reform of the Concordat and worked in favor of implementing the Second Vatican Council in Colombia. I could not do everything what I wanted, but at least I moved ideas.
Semana: And what did you do?
José de Jesús Pimiento: I helped, instead of exploitation and capitalism, to solve the problems of the poor, like the excessive accumulation of goods that cause misery in the world.
Semana: Could the Pope also send a message of peace to Colombia?
José de Jesús Pimiento: I do not know if he plans to. In any case, my appointment is a call to Colombia to better understand its spiritual values ​​and preserve them.
Semana: Do you agree generally with Francis?
José de Jesús Pimiento: I was touched because he stimulates the life of the Church. He is a creative shepherd, and knows his thinking on needs   time to apply. Today we encourage the values ​​that humanity needs.
Neo-Cardinal Pimiento "One can tolerate gay marriage"
Semana: What do you think about gay marriage?
José de Jesús Pimiento: The state legislature makes many mistakes. What  the Lord and nature have determined can not be changed. Gay marriage is a  union that can be tolerated, but it is not a marriage.
Semana: What do you say about the work of the Pope in the case of United States and Cuba?
José de Jesús Pimiento: What he has done is not just   political, but the application of the Gospel in the life of  States.
Semana: Are you now living in the Vatican?
José de Jesús Pimiento: I'll stay where I am, in the retreat house of the Foyer de Charité from Bucaramanga and will continue to help those who seek me for advice.
Born in 1919 in Colombia, José de Jesús Rodriguez Pimiento  was ordained a priest in 1941.  In1955 Pope Pius XII appointed him Titular Bishop of Apollinis in Lydia (now Turkey) and Auxiliary Bishop of Pasto. In 1959 he was appointed by Pope John XXIII. to the See of Monteria. As a diocesan bishop, Msgr. Pimiento took part in the rest of the Second Vatican Council. In 1964 he was appointed by Pope Paul VI.  as Bishop of Garzón-Neiva and in 1975 as Archbishop of Manizales. In 1996, Pope John Paul II. acccepted the age-related resignation of the then 77 year old  archbishop. As a delegate, he participated in the II. And III. General Conference of Latin American Bishops, In 1968 in Medellin (Colombia) and 1979 in Puebla de los Angeles (Mexico), he was elected Chairman of the Colombian Bishops' Conference 1972.   It was an office which he held two consecutive periods. After his retirement he returned to pastoral care and worked as a missionary.  For several months he managed his home diocese as Apostolic Administrator. In 2005 he celebrated his golden jubilee as bishop.
Translation: Giuseppe Nardi
image: Semana (Screenshots)
Trans: Tancred verkon99@hotmailcom
AMDG

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Castro Requests Book Recommendations From Pope

This Wednesday afternoon (local time) the Pope met the revolutionary leader, it was a "heartfelt and intense' half-hour meeting in the Apostolic Nunciature after Mass in Havanna.

Havanna (kath.net/KNA) Pope Benedict XVI is meething at the close of his Cuba visit with the earlier head of state Fidel Castro. The approximately 30-minute interview took place according to information from Vatican Speaker Federico Lombari, at the office of the Apostolic Nunciature in Havana.

The interview was "heartfelt, lively and intensive", offered Lombardi. The 85-year old revolutionary leader was received then at 12:20 (local time) by Cardinal Secretary Tarscicio Bertone. Castro told Bertone that he looked forward to the beautification of Mother Teresa (1910-1997) and John Paul II (1978-2005).

A little later he met Benedict XVI. During the interview, conducted through an interpreter, Castro's wife was present. At the end of the talk, he was introduced to Castro's two sons. The Pope relayed to Castro his "immense satisfaction" about the trip and his reception in Cuba, said the Vatican speaker. Castro, who in the short TV - reception, gave the impression of an exhausted man, asked the Pope about reforms in the Liturgy and what the Pope does.

As Radio Vatican reported, Fidel Castro told the Pope that he had followed his entire trip on television. Also, the 84 year old Pope and the 86 year old Castro, joked about their age.

 In addition they exchanged opinions the current religious, moral and cultural situations as well as the difficult situation of humanity and the promotion of science. Castro had also asked the Pope to recommend him some books about the themes they'd discussed, so that he might deepen his understanding of them. Benedict XVI had not decided then and there, however, which books he wants to foward to Castro, says Lombardi. The meeting came at an end according to the speaker, with a personal wish of Fidel Castro. This wish was reported by the Cuban side to the Vatican side. The Vatican Television Services filmed parts of the encounter.

  Link to kath.net...

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Pilgrimage to Shrine of St. Lazarus in Cuba

A pilgrimage combining two faith traditions has taken place in Cuba at the shrine of St Lazarus.

It is a religious event which has managed to continue uninterrupted, even in the face of oppression in the past.

Michael Voss reports from Havana.

See video images...
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