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Cuba to Mark Good Friday as Holiday Thanks to Benedict XVI's Visit
Zenit News Agency ^ | 3/22/13

Posted on 03/22/2013 6:39:31 PM PDT by marshmallow

And Cubans Able to Follow Some of Pope Francis' 1st Days

The Cuban government announced that Good Friday will be a public holiday in Cuba. The news was published Monday in the Granma newspaper, indicating that the measure was established in Resolution 24 on March 29, 2009.

The following day, the same newspaper, which is the official publication of the Central Committee of the Cuban Communist Party, published a note stating that "by an error the newspaper's editorial board omitted yesterday to state that the labor recess of the 29th is for Friday of Holy Week, the omission sparking numerous criticisms from readers."

In the clarification, Granma said: "obviated likewise was the explanation that the government's decision to recess non-indispensable work activities that day is due to the gesture of good will formulated since Pope Benedict XVI's visit to our country."

In 1998, after John Paul II's visit, Christmas was declared a public holiday. The date was made official the following year.

In the case of the date of Good Friday, the news was made known a year after Benedict XVI's visit to Cuba, which coincided with the official beginning of Pope Francis' pontificate.

During Pope Benedict XVI's visit there was speculation about the possibility of a new public holiday. Some thought it would be the feast of the Virgin of Charity, patroness of Cuba. Others thought it would be Good Friday, as an ecumenical gesture that unites all Christians.

This new gesture reflects the more relaxed relations between the Church and the Cuban state, after half a century of tensions. It was in the 60s of the 20th century, a period marked by ideology and atheism, when the tradition of Christmas and Good Friday disappeared from Cuban society. In 1961 the Church was despoiled of its classrooms and access to....

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TOPICS: Catholic; Current Events; Religion & Culture; Religion & Politics

1 posted on 03/22/2013 6:39:31 PM PDT by marshmallow
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