At Domino Park, in Miami's Little Havana neighborhood, men play dominoes and tell each other stories every day. Many talk about Cuba, the Fidel Castro regime, the embargo. Among them, Mo Varelas, son of a Cuban pastor, tells how the whole family finally chose to flee.
PMore than 1,5 million Cubans have fled the island since 1959, seeking political asylum or fleeing extreme poverty. Most live in Miami, where they love their coffee as much as they hate the dictator who ousted them. “Fidel Castro is gone, but his legacy remains,” and Cubans in Miami remain waiting for visible change before cheering.
Mo Varelas recounts that his father Moïse, former pastor in Cuba, now aged 90, was not happy about Fidel's death, fearing that the circumstances would not change.
“We do not forget the members of our families who were killed, persecuted. Those like my father who were imprisoned for preaching the Gospel, some for a very long time, and who still do not have freedom of expression on political or religious matters. With this degree of censorship, it's hard to be enthusiastic about a possible change. ”
Mo remembers that many Christians and preachers were sent to the firing squad. We don't know the number. His father, Moïse recounts being sent to forced labor in the sugar cane fields.
“They did it to hurt Christians and keep us from doing our gospel work… they didn't want us to preach in our churches.”
The Varelas family will eventually join the more than 300 Cubans benefiting from the “Freedom Flights” of the 000s and 60s. Moïse did not want to leave. It was the Christians who urged him to bring his 70 children to safety. He continued to preach in Miami. Currently in his tenth decade, he continues to preach!
"I will continue to bring the Word of God until the end of my life, because God has not called me for a day or a year, but for my whole life."
Relations have been heating up between Cuba and the United States for two years, Castro is dead, but the flow of refugees continues. 10 refugees in 000, 2008 in 50 and they continue to flow despite the death of the dictator. They pass through Central America, take a flight to Ecuador and walk 000 kilometers in the tropical jungle, on the border of Panama and Colombia. The walk lasts 2016 days, with the water from the streams as the only food.
In Miami, the new refugees mingle with the old ones. Mo testifies:
“We are not celebrating the death of a man, but… We will celebrate when there is real change in Cuba, when there is real freedom in Cuba. We would like to see a democratic form of government, and there we can celebrate. "
His father Moses warns him and calls for prayer.
“Cuba is still suffering. We have to keep praying for Cuba, because we don't really know how this will turn out. ”
Info Chrétienne being an online press service recognized by the Ministry of Culture, your donation is tax deductible up to 66%.