The Spanish-American War 125 years ago, although brief, spun confusion and upheaval for Catholics on the Caribbean island of Puerto Rico.
Puerto Rico’s archbishop said he has not been in contact with all his priests since Hurricane Fiona knocked out power to the island, and he expressed concern for the hurricane’s impact on the southern and western parts of the island.
Hurricane Fiona is continuing its ruinous path Tuesday after devastating Puerto Rico with flooding rain then ripping through the Dominican Republic, where more than a million people were left without running water and dozens of homes were destroyed.
Father Camacho told The Tablet his family’s story to illuminate the need for people in Puerto Rico to receive SSI benefits and the hardships people go through without them, after the Supreme Court on April 21 declined to mandate that Congress extend federal disability benefits to residents of Puerto Rico.
Religious leaders in Puerto Rico have welcomed a debt restructuring plan that will reduce the stress on the U.S. territory’s economy and called for more focused efforts to reduce poverty and prioritize economic development.
For Anabell Maradiaga, moving to Puerto Rico has been an eye-opening experience, compared to life in the concrete jungle of Corona, Queens. The 19-year-old is on her way to becoming part of the Missionary Sisters of Mary for Faith Formation.
For the first time in at least 30 years, on March 16 interfaith leaders — including two Catholic bishops — got a seat at the table to discuss global issues with the head of the U.S. Department of the Treasury.
In 2006, Puerto Rico’s economy entered a recession. A key factor was the United States federal government phased out a provision of the Puerto Rican tax code that gave U.S. corporations in Puerto Rico tax exemptions. The move prompted companies to move out of Puerto Rico and cost thousands of Puerto Ricans their jobs.
Father Enrique Camacho has lived with his parents in San Juan, Puerto Rico, since 2017. He moved there after Hurricane Maria destroyed the parish house where he lived. And like much of the island, it still hasn’t been rebuilt. Hurricane Maria came two weeks after Hurricane Irma devastated much of Puerto Rico.
There have been enough earthquakes in Puerto Rico over the past year and a half that the sensation has stuck with Archbishop Roberto González Nieves of San Juan. Sometimes, González said, he thinks the earth is shaking even when it’s not.