(From opendoors.org). “Cuba’s community regime is not tolerant of dissenting voices or any other institutions gaining influence or power. The church falls into both of these camps and, as a result, Christians experience persecution from the authorities. Christian activists or church leaders speaking out against corruption or political issues can be arrested and imprisoned. Others face smear campaigns against them and harassment or violence from the authorities and their sympathizers. The authorities compile a database of churches and pastors considered ‘counter-revolutionaries’, which these Christians fear will be another way to monitor and control them.
“Communist Cuba has historically aimed to repress religion and reduce the church’s influence. Today this is done by refusing to register new churches or allow them to buy or use premises to meet legally. This forces many believers to meet illegally in unregistered house churches. If caught, they can then be fined, have their property confiscated or have their church shut down. It’s hard for Christians to get a visa to visit Cuban churches, and it’s considered a ‘suspicious activity’ if a Cuban Christian tries to visit believers in other countries. This makes international fellowship, and getting Christian literature, very difficult.
“One pastor says his church meets in his garage and in homes around different neighborhoods, because they do not have a building, and not even the possibility of legally registering their church. Cuba has risen ten places on the World Watch List thanks to an increase in violence and pressure in all spheres of life. Government measures include arrests, abductions, arbitrary fines, close surveillance, denials of licenses and religious visas and physical and mental abuse.”