From our Bureau of Oafish Fake Heads of State with some assistance from our Bureau of Stunned Princes of the Church
Trucutú Díaz-Canel’s visit to Father Felix Varela’s church in Manhattan took place a week ago, but the waves of ill-feeling generated by his rude behavior are still reverberating.
As it turned out, Trucutú arrived early, without warning, spent only 10 minutes at the church, itching to leave, and exited the premises before Cardinal Dolan of New York had a chance to get there.
So, Cardinal Dolan, who had granted Trucutú’s request for this hypocritical event, was rudely snubbed. Bishop Octavio Cisneros — a Cuban exile — had to step in and fulfill the role that should have been played by Cardinal Dolan.
So it goes. This is what can happen when atheistic communist dictatorships make use of religion to serve their own purposes. Tellingly, Trucutú and his entourage intentionally staged this event to suit their needs, not caring about the sacred nature of the event they had requested, or its diplomatic significance. They got their photos taken at Father Varela’s church. That’s all they wanted. Click, click, we’re done ….Vamonos . . . let’s get out of here . . .
Abridged from The National Catholic Register
Sometimes in Church-state relations, things don’t go as planned.
This was more than evident at the Church of the Transfiguration in New York City’s Chinatown on Sept. 23. President Miguel Díaz-Canel of Cuba — in town to attend the U.N. Sustainable Goals Summit and to give brief remarks to the General Assembly — had asked the Archdiocese of New York three weeks earlier if he could lay a wreath at the statue of Venerable Félix Varela, a Cuban priest and patriot on route to canonization. The event was by invitation only and shrouded in secrecy.
The Sept. 23 event at the Catholic church was to be held from 5 p.m. to 6 p.m. Cardinal Timothy Dolan, the archbishop of New York, was supposed to attend.
Bishop Octavio Cisneros, retired auxiliary bishop from Brooklyn, was there because of his work promoting the cause of beatification and canonization of Venerable Félix. He arrived at 4:10 p.m. President Díaz-Canel arrived ahead of schedule at 4:20 p.m.
“The appropriate person to have welcomed him was Cardinal Dolan,” who was not yet due to arrive, “but it was just me,” Bishop Cisneros told the Register.
Apparently, President Díaz-Canel walked right into the church to place his wreath of flowers at the statue of Father Varela. Bishop Cisneros followed and explained the importance that Father Varela had — as a priest — for the Catholic Church in New York.
“I told him a few words about this church, how Father Varela had founded the parish. I told the president about the significance of this church and the significance of Father Varela in New York as someone who worked tirelessly to help the Irish and Italians,” he said. “I explained that when the poor were sick, Father Varela would visit people in the hospital, even during a cholera epidemic.”
They were not together more than 10 minutes when, suddenly, Díaz-Canel thanked Bishop Cisneros and told him that the U.S. Secret Service men had given him instructions to depart.
Then the Secret Service whisked Díaz-Canel out of the building.
Cardinal Dolan was only a few blocks away in his car when he was called and told that the president of Cuba had just left. Cardinal Dolan’s driver turned the car around immediately, according to Christopher Ljungquist, adviser on Latin America at the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ Office of International Justice and Peace.
Everybody in the Transfiguration parish-school building was shocked . . . The members of the Cuban delegation and even the priests of Transfiguration parish looked at each other with amazement.
Whole story HERE