March 28, 2012.
(Romereports.com) The Pope has reportedly asked Cuban president Raul Castro, to declare Good Friday, a national holiday in Cuba.
During the second day of his apostolic visit, Benedict XVI met with
president Raul Castro at Havana's Revolution Palace. According to the
Vatican's spokesman, Federico Lombardi, it was on that very day, that
the Pope issued the request to the president.
When John Paul II visited the country back in 1998, then president, Fidel Castro, declared Christmas a national holiday, at the request of the Pontiff.
It has also been confirmed that Fidel Castro will meet with Benedict XVI on Wednesday, before celebrating Mass in Havana's Revolution Square.
The Cuban government has been criticized for marginalizing religion, but Benedict XVI hopes his visit will strengthen the faith of Cuban Catholics.