Things the pope will and won’t see in Cuba when he visits

The effects of Communist rule and the longstanding U.S. trade embargo make for an interesting societal landscape in Cuba — one that’s unfamiliar to many visitors. CNS correspondent Patricia Zapor and I, back from a recent visit to the island, compiled this list of things the pope will and won’t see when he is there.

Won’t See:

The back bumper of a vintage Buick Eight Special in Old Havana. (CNS/Nancy Phelan Wiechec)

  • Mobile phones
  • New churches
  • American cars (post 1950s)
  • Commercial advertising
  • Good beer selection
  • The iPad
  • Fast-food joints
  • Church schools
  • Beef
  • Wealthy homes

Will See:

  • Phone booths
  • Old churches
  • Classic cars
  • Cigars
  • Rum
  • Free live music
  • Bicycle taxis
  • Baseball fans
  • Pork and chicken
  • Friendly people
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