By Julian L. (missionary in the Philippines from 2010-2011)
Going to Cuba was like stepping back in time; one of the first things you notice walking out of the airport are the 60 year old vintage American cars. There are no globalized American companies such as McDonalds or Starbucks and many of the old buildings of Havana, which were built by the Spanish, have been well preserved. Cuba is truly one of the most unique places on earth.
The best part of my trip was visiting the Heart’s Home in Cuba which is located in the capital city of Havana. It is located in a neighborhood just south of the central part of Havana that is not found in any tourist travel book. When the taxi dropped me off at the Heart’s Home, the first thing I noticed were children in front of the house ringing the bell asking to come in. I knew this was the right place since it reminded me of my mission in the Philippines 6 years ago.
Currently the Heart’s Home in Cuba has 4 missionaries living there: A. (Italy), V. (Mexico), M. (France) and E. (France). It is a relatively new Heart’s Home as it was recently opened in 2013. I was privileged to say the rosary with the children and then go with V. and M. to visit friends at the nursing home. My trip so far had consisted of road tripping with my friends in a 1953 Oldsmobile and taking pictures around the country like tourists. It’s a beautiful country, but for me, the most memorable part of the trip - more profound than seeing the vintage cars and the old buildings - was to spend time with the missionaries and the friends of Heart’s Home in Cuba. This is truly what made my trip memorable and unique.