NCCUSA-CWS Ends Visit to Cuba

Working for the normalization of relations between the two countries through joint humanitarian projects
( [email protected] ) Jan 31, 2004 11:43 AM EST

The National Council of Churches- led group to Cuba concluded their visit by celebrating the consecration of a new Greek Orthodox Cathedral in the communist nation, Jan 28.

Throughout the six day trip, the thirty-member U.S. ecumenical delegation also expressed its concerns about the lengthy sentences given 75 Cuban dissidents. The delegation counts members from at least nine NCC member denominations and four state ecumenical councils, along with staff of the NCC and the global humanitarian agency Church World Service.

The delegation was lead by the General Secretary of the National Council of Churches, the Rev. Dr. Bob Edgar; its primary task was to discuss church concerns and issues pertaining to U.S.-Cuban relations within the churches.

The relationships between the NCC, CWS and their member bodies and the Cuban Council of Churches have grown significantly since the Cuban Revolution. The churches worked together for a “normalization of relations between their two countries and on church-to-church issues and joint humanitarian projects,” according to the NCC news-room. To date, CWS has sent more than 50 humanitarian aid shipments to Cuba valued at more than $3 million.