By Fr. Nick Harding, OMI
In Fr. Nick’s latest photo journal, he gives us a slice of life in Habana (Havana) where he and Fr. Roger Hallee, OMI serve the local people in an Oblate mission parish. He gives us a glimpse of the neighborhood he lives in along with some insight into life in a country where the government oversees much of everyday life.
Though Fr. Nick is able to send these photos and thoughts out via email, he and Fr. Roger cannot see them when they are posted here on the Oblate website as internet from outside Cuba is blocked by government censors.
Photo with papaya trees in our backyard garden (great bananas )
Four of us Oblate priests given great food by Sri Lanka embassy, Fr Shihan is from old Ceylon. (L-R) Fr Wilmar Gama from Brazil, Fr. Shihan from Sri Lanka, Fr Roger Hallee and me
Photo of downtown Habana from rooftop of convent where we go for quarantine (note far left lighthouse, and far right Capital )
View of dilapidated buildings downtown, note laundry drying.
Me with some elderly Oblate associates on the coast of our parish area, note Habana skyline in background.
Photo of front of our rectory, 1951 Plymouth with Datsun motor belongs to our neighbor.
On our street an old man under a tree refills disposable lighters for a living, note woman dressed in white for initiation into Santeria sect.
Today I went to buy our ration of food. This is for the two of us Oblates in Cojimar for a month . The package of coffee says on it contains 50 per cent chicory. Note the Black beans would be for one meal for two in the USA but it is our supply for entire month. I have lost about 13 lbs. in weight.
Egg man on our street (maximum 15 eggs per person per month). The price has gone up but it’s still subsidized and everyone gets a ration booklet no matter what your income or if you are a foreigner with resident visa
Best wishes from Cuba,
Nick Harding OMI