This Wednesday afternoon (local time) the Pope met the revolutionary leader, it was a "heartfelt and intense' half-hour meeting in the Apostolic Nunciature after Mass in Havanna.
Havanna (kath.net/KNA) Pope Benedict XVI is meething at the close of his Cuba visit with the earlier head of state Fidel Castro. The approximately 30-minute interview took place according to information from Vatican Speaker Federico Lombari, at the office of the Apostolic Nunciature in Havana.
The interview was "heartfelt, lively and intensive", offered Lombardi.
The 85-year old revolutionary leader was received then at 12:20 (local time) by Cardinal Secretary Tarscicio Bertone. Castro told Bertone that he looked forward to the beautification of Mother Teresa (1910-1997) and John Paul II (1978-2005).
A little later he met Benedict XVI. During the interview, conducted through an interpreter, Castro's wife was present. At the end of the talk, he was introduced to Castro's two sons.
The Pope relayed to Castro his "immense satisfaction" about the trip and his reception in Cuba, said the Vatican speaker. Castro, who in the short TV - reception, gave the impression of an exhausted man, asked the Pope about reforms in the Liturgy and what the Pope does.
As Radio Vatican reported, Fidel Castro told the Pope that he had followed his entire trip on television. Also, the 84 year old Pope and the 86 year old Castro, joked about their age.
In addition they exchanged opinions the current religious, moral and cultural situations as well as the difficult situation of humanity and the promotion of science.
Castro had also asked the Pope to recommend him some books about the themes they'd discussed, so that he might deepen his understanding of them. Benedict XVI had not decided then and there, however, which books he wants to foward to Castro, says Lombardi.
The meeting came at an end according to the speaker, with a personal wish of Fidel Castro. This wish was reported by the Cuban side to the Vatican side. The Vatican Television Services filmed parts of the encounter.
Link to kath.net...