March 28, 2012
AJ Goodwin, NBC News
MIAMI – When Pope John Paul II visited Cuba in 1998, the Archdiocese of Miami expected so much interest from U.S. parishioners wanting to witness the historic event that they booked a cruise ship to transport and house all the expected pilgrims.
But many in South Florida’s Cuban-American community were outraged by the image of a cruise ship full of Americans docking in Havana, so under pressure the archdiocese cancelled the charter.
Now, 14 years later, Miami Archbishop Thomas Wenski is leading a pilgrimage of 302 mostly Cuban-Americans to Santiago de Cuba and Havana to witness Pope Benedict XVI’s visit. And the Miami archbishop will even celebrate mass at Havana’s Cathedral on Tuesday afternoon...