March 19, 2012
Miami Herald, Mimi Whitfield
For centuries, pilgrims have come to the Our Lady of Charity shrine with wishes for a cure for ill health, a better economy, and improved relationships. Now Cubans inside and outside the island also have a long list of wishes for Pope Benedict XVI when he visits Cuba to celebrate the 400th anniversary of the discovery of a statue of the Virgin.
Benedict, who begins a two-country visit in the central Mexican state of Guanajuato on Friday, will arrive in Santiago de Cuba on March 26 to mark the the Jubilee year of the discovery in the Bay of Nipe. The statue of the Virgin, who became Cuba’s patron saint in 1916, is now ensconced in a shrine in El Cobre, a mining town about 12 miles northwest of Santiago....