DAILY CATHOLIC     WEDNESDAY     July 1, 1998     vol. 9, no. 127

NEWS & VIEWS
from a CATHOLIC perspective

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CARDINAL ASKS FREEDOM FOR CHURCH IN CUBA

          VATICAN (CWNews.com) -- Cardinal Pio Laghi, the prefect of the Congregation for Catholic Education, issued a strong call for religious freedom during a visit to Cuba.

          Celebrating Mass at the Havana cathedral yesterday, on the feast of Sts. Peter and Paul, Cardinal Laghi delivered a homily in which he asked for recognition of the legitimate rights of the Church and of the faithful. In particular, he mentioned the right of parents to send their children to the school of their choice, including Catholic schools among the options.

          Catholic teachers in Communist Cuba were encouraged by the cardinal on Saturday to preach the Gospel despite official restrictions on religious education.

          Cardinal Pio Laghi, president of the Congregation for Catholic Education, told a conference of 200 teachers and catechists that many avenues for Catholic education exist apart from the official schools and universities. "The high level of public education allows us to invent new paths, sometimes not formal, for Catholic education," he said.

          Religious education is not currently taught at state schools in Cuba, where Catholic schools and universities were all nationalized along with other private teaching establishments after the 1959 Cuban revolution. But the Church is allowed to operate its own catechism classes and is running two seminaries to train priests. The cardinal also stressed the benefits of Catholic education for society, "for the improvement of social living and order, through raising the qualities of citizens' ideals and their deeper motivations."


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July 1, 1998       volume 9, no. 127
NEWS & VIEWS

DAILY CATHOLIC

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