Pope in Mexico, Cuba

En route on March 23 to Latin America, Pope Benedict XVI called for patience with the Catholic Church’s effort to promote freedom in Communist Cuba and criticized Catholics who participate in the illegal drug trade or who ignore their moral responsibilities to seek social justice. Responding to a question about human rights in Cuba, Pope Benedict said that the “church is always on the side of freedom—freedom of conscience, freedom of religion.” He added, “We want to help in the spirit of dialogue to avoid the trauma and to help move toward a fraternal and just society” in Cuba. Asked about Latin America’s dramatic inequalities of wealth, Pope Benedict lamented what he called a widespread moral “schizophrenia” that stresses personal morality while ignoring social conscience. Commenting on the Mexican drug war that has claimed an estimated 50,000 people over the past five years, Pope Benedict said that the church has a responsibility to “unmask evil, unmask the idolatry of money that enslaves man” as well as the “false promises, the lie, the swindle that lie behind drugs.”

Don't miss the best from America

Sign up for our Newsletter to get the Jesuit perspective on news, faith and culture.

The latest from america

Greg Hicks as "Richard III" (photo: Alex Brenner)
It would be fascinating were the producers able to arrange a quick transfer to a venue somewhere near the White House.
David StewartMay 26, 2017
In the hyper-curated, beautiful world that Dev lives in, a scene that conveys the touching, ugly stubbornness of marriage seems totally impossible.
Eloise BlondiauMay 26, 2017
This image released by the Minya governorate media office shows bodies of victims killed when gunmen stormed a bus in Minya, Egypt, Friday, May 26, 2017 (Minya Governorate Media office via AP).
The attack in central Egypt today killed at least 26 people, including children aged 2 to 4, and wounded 25 others.
Gerard O'ConnellMay 26, 2017
The data and facts are clear: If you care about working families and sound economic policy, SNAP is the program for you.
Meghan J. ClarkMay 26, 2017