Cuban bishop says more pastoral visits to prisons will be made


Bishop Domingo Oropesa of Cienfuegos announced this week the Church in Cuba would increase the number of pastoral visits to prisons.

In an interview with the Efe news agency, Bishop Oropesa, who is from Spain, explained that he hopes the plan will bring more comfort to prisoners and their families.  For now the plan will be implemented in Camaguey and later in the entire country.

He said the Diocese of Camaguey is seeking priests to volunteer to become more involved in prison ministry.

Regarding the present-day situation in Cuba, Bishop Oropesa said the Church is not taking “political positions” but rather providing “concrete doctrinal guidance.”

The new bishop of Cienfuegos said his primary interest is that of preaching the Gospel.  “The priest focuses on helping people, but if this or that political option is best or worst, it’s not that I want to get involved, I don’t take sides for or against,” he said.

Asked about his reaction to being named the new bishop of Cienfuegos on July 9, Bishop Oropesa joked, “No, nobody gave me any advice. The only thing the Nuncio gave me was a scare.”

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