Cardinal Ortega gave Paya’s funeral mass in Paya’s neighborhood in Havana, bringing together two Catholic figures that had their differences in recent years, especially as the church has taken a larger role in Cuba’s political debate and undertaken a greater dialogue with the government. The Cardinal’s complete homily is here in Spanish and Progreso Weekly covers it in English.
The funeral mass and procession to the cemetery were joined by members of the opposition, and there was a strong police presence. Even though it was, to say the least, an assembly that the opposition didn’t choose to convoke, the security forces arrested about 50 and released them by morning (BBC, Herald). Reacting to the arrests, author Zoe Valdes, writing from Paris, decries what she views as the lack of courage of the Cuban people, dripping with contempt for those she left behind.