Bishops Satisfy with Storm Recovery in Cuba
Wenski was part of a delegation of U.S. Roman Catholic Church leaders hoping to take advantage of the new Obama administration to further push for the lifting of Washington's 47-year-old economic embargo against Cuba, and show support for the Catholic Church on the island.
"There has to be a stepping away from the rhetoric and engagement has to take place in some small areas that don't represent a surrender on either side," said Wenski, a well-known and respected church leader.
Following last summer's storms, Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of Miami worked with Catholic Relief Services to send monetary aid and material supplies to Caritas Cuba, a Catholic social services agency.
"We were very impressed with the report from Caritas," Wenski told The Miami Herald by phone from Orlando, adding that the aid reached the intended destinations. "Caritas has a very transparent way of proceeding."
Wenski said he was also pleased with the construction under way of a new seminary just outside of Havana. "It is probably the largest single construction project the church has undertaken in Cuba in 50 years," he said.
The delegation also met privately with Alarcón, who tried to get the group's support for the release of five Cuban agents jailed in the United States. Cuban President Raúl Castro has offered to free political prisoners in exchange for the release of the convicted agents.
Wenski said no decision has been made by the delegation on what position -- if any -- it will take on the matter of a prisoner swap.
Source: Miami Herald