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Catholic Dictionary




A Cuban shrine of Our Lady of Charity. According to legend, a small statue of Mary and her Child was brought from Spain by an officer who accompanied Columbus on his second American voyage and who gave it to a native pagan cheiftain. but when the crew came to claim it, both the chief and the statue had disappeared into a nearby swamp. the statue was later recovered, mysteriously floating on a wooden plank. At a later date the statue of the Madonna was on its way to Santiago de Cuba but accidentally arrived at Cobre, where a child told them that Mary had said she wanted it to be. Until the Communist takeover, Cobre was a famous place of pilgrimage with thousands of visitors, especially on December 8. Our Lady of Charity of Cobre is considered the patroness of Cuba.