Santiago (Agenzia Fides) - Yesterday, 10 May, the entire Cuban people celebrated the centenary of the proclamation of the Virgen de la Caridad del Cobre as Patroness of Cuba. Fides received several testimonies from missionaries who work on the island. The main feast was celebrated in Santiago, where the Sanctuary of Nostra Signora de la Caridad del Cobre stands. Archbishop His Exc. Mgr. Dionisio Guillermo García Ibáñez presided over the celebration, during which he recalled that the presence of the Virgen de la Caridad in the history of Cuba has been significant and permanent. "Before the Virgin, one prays for Cuba, for oneself and for the people", said the Archbishop.
The solemn proclamation as Patroness of Cuba was made by Pope Benedict XV in 1916. In his trip to Cuba in 1998, John Paul II crowned her as the Virgin Patroness of Cuba.
The note sent to Fides from a local source, indicates that the population lived this feast with great enthusiasm. Many people recalled the words of Pope Francis on 22 September 2015, when he celebrated Mass in the sanctuary: "The Cuban homeland was born and grew, warmed by devotion to Our Lady of Charity. She has molded the Cuban soul, inspiring the highest ideals of love of God, the family and the nation in the heart of the Cuban people". (CE) (Agenzia Fides, 11/05/2016)