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As Pope Visits, Afro-Cuban Religion Hopes for Recognition

The air was choked with smoke from incense and cigars while the faithful sipped sugarcane liquor from a gourd at the altar and spat mist over the crowd. Niurka Mola 50, stood at the altar in the cramped living room of a downtown Havana walk-up, calling on the spirits of ancestors to give guidance. Later, with followers enthralled by the arrival of the spirits, one man fell into a brief fit of convulsions. Mola is a "godmother" in Cuba's Santeria tradition, which has its...

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