March 28, 2012. (Romereports.com)
A rain storm interrupted the pope's farewell in Havana, Cuba, forcing the ceremony to be held inside the JosÚ MartÝ International Airport. There, Benedict XVI gave his final address to the Cuban people.
Raul Castro and other government officials were present and thanked him for visiting the island. The pope called on Cubans to renew efforts to build a better society. He noted that problems must be solved with “patient and sincere dialogue, mutual understanding and a loyal willingness to listen”.Benedict XVI
“Cuba, look again to the faith of your elders, draw from that faith the
strength to build a better future, trust in the Lord’s promises, and
open your heart to his Gospel so as to renew authentically your personal
and social life.”
Benedict XVI urged Cubans to “build a society of broad vision, renewed
and reconciled”. He said no one should have “limited fundamental
freedoms” and indirectly mentioned the U.S. embargo on the island.
“May no one feel excluded from taking up this exciting task because of
limitations of his or her basic freedoms, or excused by indolence or
lack of material resources, a situation which is worsened when
restrictive economic measures, imposed from outside the country,
unfairly burden its people.”
After this three day historic journey to Cuba, Benedict VXI said goodbye with the famous Spanish saying “Hasta Siempre”.
“Hasta siempre, Cuba, a land made beautiful by the maternal presence of Mary. May God bless your future.”
This was his second trip to Latin America and one of the most important
of his pontificate. It was marked by his petition to Raul Castro to make
Good Friday a national holiday and also by his private meeting with