- Miami, FL (1888PressRelease) March 14, 2017 – After the tremendous success we had with the missionary trip to Ecuador to help victims of the earthquake, a group of pastors approached our firm with the idea of organizing a similar missionary trip to Cuba after Hurricane Matthew damaged the island.
Pastora Sara Carro, one of the pioneers of Hispanic churches in Osceola County, was the organizer and in charge of coordinating details for the trip. Several pastors from Central Florida, such as Jairo Garcia and Raymond Diaz, and leaders of local ministries such as Carmen Otero, Isabel Delgado, were added to the list.
When we arrived to Cuba, our emotions were high. We heard a lot about a nation just 90 miles from USA shores, the Castro brothers (including the recent death of Fidel Castro), the communist regime, and stories of religious persecution.
But minutes after arriving to Cuba, we found it to be very friendly and welcoming. We were greeted with big smiles and everyone there seemed happy to see tourists arriving to their island. We noticed a lot of tourists in Havana, mostly Europeans and from Canada, were enjoying the old Havana, very similar to old San Juan, even with a Spanish castle called El Morro. Something caught our eyes immediately, the amount of old American vehicles (from the 1950's) driving around.
When we went outside Havana, we were able to notice more characteristics of the communist regime such as a vigilante in every community, the method of rationing in Cuba, with a system of food distribution known in Cuba as the Libreta de Abastecimiento ("Supplies booklet").
The system establishes the ration each person is allowed to buy through that system, and the frequency of supplies. In addition, the only billboards allowed are about the revolution and quotes from Fidel and Che Guevarra. Despite all of the above, the people there have learned to live within the system, and with a great desire to listen to the word of God.
We noticed, the ones that are already in church, have a lot of knowledge about the Bible, perhaps due in part to the limited Internet access. In addition, there are only three TV channels- one of the reasons believers spend more time reading the Bible in Cuba. It is also ironic that the prohibition established by the government to build additional churches has created what they called "casas cultos" or house churches, with the permission of the regime, which allows the freedom to preach the gospel in houses inside their very own communities.
It is true that we also heard testimonies of religious persecution in the past, which included the jailing of religious and political dissidents in prisons and concentration camps, the demolition of places of worship, and the systematic regulation of religious groups throughout the country. We also noticed that many religious leaders stated they exercised self-censorship in what they preached and discussed during services, so we followed their advice. As a result we were able to minister youths, women and set up several events where we were able to distribute school supplies to children in need.
To summarize, it was amazing to have the opportunity to reach out to our brothers and sisters from this beautiful island, thanks to the generous sponsorship of Michael T. Gibson and his wife Jen.
The Orlando-based personal injury law firm of Michael T. Gibson, P.A., is dedicated to cases involving auto accidents, nursing home abuse claims, premises liability and slip and falls. The firm also represents consumers and individuals in insurance disputes of all types. Attorney Michael T. Gibson's practice is grounded in his family's experiences. Having witnessed his own mother suffer through a horrific auto accident, he has personal experience fighting a large insurance company to obtain justice. He brings this experience along with his legal skills and training into every case he handles. Mr. Gibson is also the author of "Your Complete Guide to Florida Auto Accident Claims." Those interested in obtaining a free copy of his book, can download it on the firm's website. For more information, visit http://www.autojusticeattorney.com or call 1-855-What-Next (1-855-942-8639). Se habla Espanol.