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Cuban Council of Churches applauds President Raúl Castro’s courage

Religious institutions ‘taken into consideration’ as part of modernization reforms

July 26, 2013

HAVANA

The Council of Churches in Cuba (CIC) made public last week a statement in which it praises “the political courage of our president, Army General Raúl Castro Ruz, when approaching sensitive matters of our society, without fear of interpretations that could distort the authentic image of the revolutionary social project.”

The document followed a gathering on July 15 between the first vice-president of the State Council and the Council of Ministers, and member of the Political Bureau of the Party Central Committee, Miguel Díaz-Canel, and CIC representatives, held in the CIC offices in Havana.

The president of CIC is the Rev. Joel Dopico, pastor of Varadero Presbyterian Church, a growing church near Cuba’s beach resort area.

Díaz-Canel explained to the CIC representatives the complexity of the process of modernization of the Cuban economic model. He admitted that at the front of the most difficult stage of the process, have been the elimination of the monetary and exchange duality, salary and price reforms, and making the socialist state companies more efficient. 

The minister called on the representatives of the CIC to have the religious institutions work together with the state in matters of common interest and in the preservation of the unity of the Cuban nation.   

“We are pleased that in your call to work for the recuperating of values, you have taken the Cuban religious institutions into consideration,” says the CIC statement.

The statement adds that it will not be possible to achieve a more just and human society in an environment of order, discipline, solidarity, fraternity and respect among human beings, without a more just, prosperous and sustainable society.

At the same time, the CIC recognizes that the material improvements alone are not able to lead to the re-establishment of values. “It is necessary, at the same time, to attend to other factors of a spiritual, political and juridical order, which also intervene in that complex situation,” the CIC points out. 

Thus, the changes in the national reality are to be brought about “in the context of the appeal for the respect of legality, the strengthening of ethical principles, a better coexistence among Cubans, in conjunction with the battle to improve the economy and the quality of life of our people,” says the CIC.    

In concluding, the CIC document s affirms the will of Cuban Christians to contribute to the recovering of the spiritual values that historically have sustained the nation, along with material values. 

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