Thursday, July 26, 2012

Paya's farewell

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.

Here are notes on Paya’s passing from Espacio Laical and Palabra Nueva.  And here are reflections from Mauricio Vicent in El Pais, Arturo Lopez Levy, and Andres Oppenheimer in the Herald, and the New York Times obituary. 

1 comment:

brianmack said...

I'm getting a crash course in Mr. Paya's bio. A wonderful man who truly
made a difference not only in Cuba but
all around the world. I was unaware he was a devout Roman Catholic. Totally impressed as it was quite difficult to practice one's religion,
in Cuba, several years ago. Carinal
Ortega is as much a gift as Mr. Paya.
Prayers for Oswaldo, his family, and
a unified Cuba.