[freedomtowernight_edited.jpg] 26th Parallel: Religion in Cuba Today

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Religion in Cuba Today

The Palm Beach Post published an article this past weekend on the revival of religion in Cuba, namely the Christian denominations as well as Santeria.

I won't dispute the article's claim that the number of people attending church services are up, or that the regime has taken a less heavy-handed approach to religious institutions. Still, you have the not too long ago case of the government banning religious services held in private homes, as well as the subtle ways in which religion is used to discriminate.

Remember, it wasn't too long ago that Cuba was still officially an atheist state.

I have heard personal accounts of discrimination based on religion existing to this day, especially towards Seventh Day Adventists. It's not the outward, obvious discrimination that everyone can see, but more subtle and ultimately damaging, such as being passed over for more "lucrative" career tracks simply because of your beliefs. A 1987 U.S. Department of State bulletin described Seventh-Day Adventists as being considered a counterrevolutionary sect in Cuba.

As we all know, change in Cuba doesn't come fast or easy.

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