Cuba pardons 3,522 prisoners days before Pope Francis’ visit

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Cuban President Raul Castro (R) smiles as he meets Pope Francis during a private audience at the Vatican May 10, 2015.


Cuban President Raul Castro, right, smiles as he meets Pope Francis during a private audience at the Vatican May 10, 2015. Photo courtesy of REUTERS/Gregorio Borgia/pool

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Dissident groups say none on the list are political prisoners. Cuba released 53 political prisoners in conjunction with last December's announcement of detente with United States, engineered with the aid of Pope Francis.

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  • Greg1

    There are degrees of sin:
    1John 5:16-17 “If any one sees his brother committing what is not a mortal sin, he will ask, and God will give him life for those whose sin is not mortal. There is sin which is mortal; I do not say that one is to pray for that. All wrongdoing is sin, but there is sin which is not mortal”
    Mortal sins are listed as follows:
    Rev 21:8 Matt 15:18-20, Rev 22:15, Ephesians 5:3-7, Col 3:5-6, Gal 5:19-21, 1Cor. 6:9-11.

  • @SL

    “We all must Repent!”

    If we already have the moral capacity to choose to be good and to thus reach for ‘Repentance’ (as you claim)…
    why can’t we just “be good” without it? And why wouldn’t that be enough?

  • Larry

    Anyone else remember the last time Cuba emptied out its prisons?

  • Larry

    Murder and rape are forgivable. Having legal consensual adult relations outside of the arbitrary rules of the faith, or belonging to the wrong faith/sect, means one is eternally damned. 🙂

  • Greg1

    As a Catholic, Mortal sins are forgiven by the sacraments of Baptism (if not previously baptized), Confession, and Anointing of the Sick (if unconscious). Extreme sorrow would be sufficient if no priest were available and your life’s end was closing in on you. As for those who hold to other Faiths, well, our Lord knows how honest that person’s convictions truly are, and will Judge accordingly. If, for example, a person Knows that the Catholic Church is the Church He established, guards, and operates through, but refuses to join it because of the rigors associated with it, then there is no salvation for that person. However, should a person “truly believe” that his/her church is the real McCoy, then Our Lord will Judge that person by the precepts required by that church. But you’d better be following those precepts, or else. Conviction of the Conscience is everything at Judgment time.

  • Fran

    What really matters is that these prisoners repent of their wrongful actions and turn their lives around, no longer practicing their sins, so that they can receive forgiveness from God and have the hope of everlasting life on earth. They can receive forgiveness on the basis of Jesus’ ransom sacrifice (1 Tim. 2:5,6).

    A good example of that happening is the wrongdoer who was next to Jesus before death (Luke 23:42), when he asked Jesus to remember him when Jesus would get into his kingdom.

    Jesus promised him at that time that he would be with him in paradise (verse 43), so the wrongdoer has the hope of being resurrected back to life on earth (which will become a paradise) when Jesus is exercising his millennial rule (Isaiah 11:1-9).