Church in small town Cuba - Jibara
A Distorted Reality
FREEDOM OF RELIGION IN CUBA
By Gladys Blanco and Luz Marina Fornieles Special for AIN
The presumed lack of any kind of freedom in Cuba is outstanding among the many distortions that exist today regarding the island's reality.
It's then hardly surprising that the empire includes in its arsenal of official, as well as media fallacies, the false idea that the island's inhabitants are denied the right to practice a religion of their choice.
Accustomed to spreading only what favors their evil purposes, the U.S. administration of President George W. Bush and its lackeys from the Florida-based Cuban-American National Foundation, pretend to not hear or see the facts, the truth…
In order to determine who is right, it would be enough to verify the differences between what the enemies of the Cuban Revolution say and the many achievements the island nation demonstrates to the world.
"FREEDOM OF RELIGION: A CUBAN REALITY"
Everyday life in Cuba is open to anyone interested in getting to know and understand it. That was the experience of Reverend Samuel Kobia, General Secretary of the World Council of Churches (WCC), who after spending almost one week on the island in August 2005, described his pastoral visit as excellent and very useful.
Born in Miathene, Kenya, in1947, and elected General Secretary of the WCC in 2003, Kobia affirmed that while on the island he had the opportunity to meet not only with followers of the member churches of his organization (Methodist and Presbyterian churches), but also with representatives of other churches, thus concluding that freedom of religion "is a reality in Cuba."
Speaking with Cuban and foreign press, Samuel Kobia revealed that he and his delegation met one night with President Fidel Castro and had a long and "very good" conversation.
"We discussed different issues, among them Church-State relations. We also requested permission to build new churches on the island that facilitate our pastoral mission," said Kobia, who affirmed that "the Cuban government places no restrictions on religion and supports the building of new churches."
PRIESTS, MINISTERS, BABALAOS AND SPIRITUALISTS
Cuba is a medley of religions. The Christian faith was brought to the island by Spanish colonialists at the beginning of the 16th century.
In the course of five centuries, religious life has been enriched tremendously with new religious faiths and institutions of different types.
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This religious spectrum reflects why it is said that Cuba is a medley of religions, in which Catholicism, Protestantism and all faiths of African and other origins have their own space. Learning firsthand about this reality and meeting with followers on the island of the most diverse religious denominations and congregations, led the leader of the World Council of Churches, Samuel Kobia, to affirm that in fact: "Freedom of religion is a reality in Cuba."
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