March 4, 2012. (Romereports.com)
Benedict XVI will visit Cuba from March 26th to the 28th. During his visit he's expected to speak about one of their national heroes: the Catholic priest Félix Varela
Born in Havana in 1788, he was ordained as a priest
at age 23. He's remembered as one of the nation's greatest teachers and was a political activist calling for the abolition of slavery. He also made calls for democracy and independence from Spain.
At 34, he represented Cuba and other provinces in the Spanish
Parliament. However, after Napoleon invaded Spain, he fled to the United
There, he founded the first Spanish newspaper in the U.S. He also
continued to work with the youth and in education. After spending 30
years in exile, he died in Florida without ever seeing his country
He was remembered by John Paul II
during his trip to Cuba in 1998. He
emphasized Varela's deep spirituality that fueled his work and love for
his home country.