The abbot of the Congregation of the Benedictines of Saint Ottilien, Father Jeremias Schroder, said the religious order will open a new house in Cuba by the end of the year in response to a request from the Archbishop of Havana, Cardinal Jaime Ortega y Alamino.
According to the Fides news agency, Cardinal Ortega hopes the new community and the exemplary life of its four members will help bring about a spiritual renewal in Cuban society.
Father Schroder said that after the visit by Pope John Paul II ten years ago and the recent visit by Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone, “the role of the Church in Cuban society is not only no longer rejected, it is even appreciated.”
“I hope that this openness continues,” he said. “Our community has also been supported by Cuban officials, for example, concerning the simplification of bureaucratic procedures,” Father Schroder emphasized.