Our Lady of Charity
La Virgen de la Caridad is the most profound symbol of the Cuban nation.
The story of Our Lady of Charity is a rather simple one. Like many other Marian apparitions, it occurred in a nameless place and involved ordinary people.
Around the year 1600, three boys were sent to gather salt needed to preserve the meat of the town’s slaughterhouse, which supplied food for the workers and inhabitants at the Spanish copper mines near Santiago, Cuba. Two of the boys were native Indians and brothers, Rodrigo and Juan de Hoyos, and the third was a 10-year-old black slave, Juan Moreno.
On their way back to Santiago del Prado (modern El Cobre) and halfway across the Bay of Nipe, they encountered a fierce storm that threatened to destroy their frail boat.