The Miami Herald, in advance of Pope Benedict’s papal visit later this month, reports on the vital role played by the Catholic Church in Cuba, particularly to the country’s neediest people:
Havana retiree Maria Antonia confesses that she would be starving without the free lunches doled out by her neighborhood Catholic Church.
The 69-year-old widow has a $12-a-month pension that barely covers six to eight days worth of food per month, and she has no relatives abroad who can send her a few extra dollars.
“A free lunch is a life-saver when a pound of pork costs more than $1,” says Maria Antonia. “The church to me is not just a temple or a mass. It is a way of surviving.”
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