National Catholic Reporter

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U.S. military archbishop makes pastoral visit to Guantanamo base

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Guantanamo Bay, Cuba

Archbishop Timothy Broglio of the U.S. Archdiocese for the Military Services visited the naval station at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, as part of a five-day pastoral visit.

Broglio celebrated Masses Sunday at the base and also administered the sacrament of confirmation to two adults and two teenagers.

It was the archbishop's third visit to Guantanamo since he became the military archbishop in 2008.

"I am grateful for this opportunity to spend some time with this portion of the flock assigned to my pastoral care and to visit with the priest, Father Gabriel Mensah, who is serving here for the second time," Broglio said in a statement issued Monday, the fourth day of his Jan. 10-17 visit.

"The island's beauty hides a bit of the frustration experienced by those who serve here, because they are confined to the base, due to the political situation in Cuba. As always, my desire is to confirm them in their faith and listen to their concerns."

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Broglio is not the only U.S. prelate to visit the island in January.

Auxiliary Bishop John Manz of Chicago was visiting the Holguin and Santa Clara dioceses in Cuba Jan. 10-17, reviewing church projects supported by the U.S. bishops' Subcommittee on the Church in Latin America that help provide pastoral care from the Catholic church. Manz is a member of the subcommittee.

"It is important that the church in the United States support the church in Cuba, especially during this time of changes," Manz said in a statement Friday. "We also want to support the church in Cuba as it is recognized in civil society for the insights about the human person that it brings to the table."

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