The Miami Herald features a Babalú Blog exclusive article written by one of our writers, Dr. Carlos Eire:
Church in Cuba doing Castros’ bidding
Why is it that the Catholic Church in Cuba is working hand in hand with the Castro dictatorship, even to the point of collaborating in the expulsion of dissidents from the island or of posting statements on its official website that support the current regime?
On the surface, it might seem that the church has taken a pragmatic approach, and one with a very long history: that of lessening overt persecution by any means possible. After all, the Catholic Church over the centuries has often sought to compromise with secular rulers, for one simple reason: Since it has no army, and is officially committed to turning the other cheek, the deck is always stacked against it in serious church-state struggles. The church knows this all too well.
Take, for instance, its experience in 17th-century Japan, where it was totally annihilated after making serious inroads and where believers were horribly tortured before being killed in ways that made crucifixion seem like a light punishment. Or take the case of merry old Elizabethan England, where Catholics were wiped out, too, after the pope excommunicated Good Queen Bess, and where every Catholic priest captured by the authorities was disemboweled, hung, drawn and quartered.
Given such a history, the compromising behavior of the Cuban hierarchy shouldn’t surprise anyone. But the fact is that it does shock many Cubans, because their church doesn’t seem to be turning the other cheek, or even a blind eye: It actually seems to support the ideology and repressive measures of the dictators. Nothing proves this more convincingly than a document issued in 1986 by the National Cuban Church Encounter, which, instead of calling for an end to human-rights abuses on the island called for “reconciliation” with the Castro regime and declared that socialism “helped us to have more regard for human beings .?.?. and showed us how to give, because of justice, what we used to give as charity.” Anyone with the slightest exposure to Catholic theology should have no trouble spotting all of the heresies crammed into that statement.
Lately, compromising with dictators has become the hallmark of Cardinal Jaime Ortega y Alamino. To see this first hand, simply visit the website of the diocese of Havana, where he openly displays his commitment to Castroite notions of “social justice,” and defends the legitimacy of the current police state. In the summer of 2010, as he brazenly engineered the expulsion of dozens of dissidents from Cuba, the good cardinal decreed on this website that anyone who worked to undermine the status quo should have no voice in determining the future of Cuba. In other words, the cardinal routinely expresses his ideological commitment to the repressive policies of the Castro regime: all this in the name of “egalitarianism” and “social justice.”
Continue reading the Herald piece HERE.
The original Babalú exclusive article written by Carlos Eire can be read HERE.