"Generation after generation, day after day, we are asked to renew our faith,' the pope said. "We are asked to live the revolution of tenderness as Mary, our Mother of Charity, did."
HAVANA (Reuters) – Overall, an estimated 50 dissidents have been detained and prevented from attending papal events, said a Cuban human rights group.
HAVANA (Reuters) In his speech, Francis urged further backing for Cuban Catholics "so that the church can continue to support and encourage the Cuban people."
VATICAN (RNS) His Cuba and U.S. visits could heighten the pope’s clout as a moral authority on the world stage.
The church -- repressed for decades after Fidel Castro's 1959 revolution -- now has more autonomy than any organization outside the Communist Party.
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.
Fidel and Raul Castro turned against the Church decades ago, now, in their old age, they have brought the Church in from the cold.
Pope Francis could exercise some spiritual leadership and deny Raul Castro communion at Mass in the same way Castro denies freedom for the people of Cuba.
(RNS) Pope Francis’ itinerary for his Sept. 22-27 U.S. visit shows how this “pope of the people” wants to avoid becoming a prisoner of the East Coast “power corridor” during his five days in Washington, New York and Philadelphia.
South Florida Cuban exiles are divided over his move -- aided by Pope Francis -- to normalize relations with Cuba.
Francis would be the third pope to visit Cuba, after St. John Paul II in 1998 and Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI in 2012.
(Reuters) Vatican spokesman Father Federico Lombardi said Francis had accepted invitations made by the Cuban government and the Cuban Roman Catholic Church.
VATICAN CITY (RNS) “The Holy See takes the long view," one Vatican source said. "There is a lot of quiet diplomacy going on.”
(RNS) “Pope Francis did what popes are supposed to do: Build bridges and promote peace,” Miami Archbishop Thomas Wenski said after Wednesday’s announcement about the U.S.-Cuba rapprochement.
(RNS) The pope wrote a personal letter to President Obama this fall — something he'd never done before — and a separate letter to Cuban President Raul Castro.