January 18, 2012
Marc Frank, Reuters
(Reuters) - The Virgin of Charity of El Cobre is a gold-clothed, doll-like figurine which, according to Cuban legend, three fishermen found floating in a bay as Spain colonized the region with the sword and the cross.
She is Cuba's patron saint and Pope Benedict will visit her in the eastern city of Santiago de Cuba on March 26 to mark the 400th anniversary of her discovery.
Benedict's visit was agreed as the Catholic Church's relations with Cuba's communist-run state have improved in recent years.
Some residents are conjuring up great expectations...