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La Milagrosa, Cuba's Unofficial Patron Saint

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La Milagrosa, Cuba's Unofficial Patron Saint

Religion

La Milagrosa, Cuba's Unofficial Patron Saint

La Milagrosa, Cuba's Unofficial Patron Saint

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  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/4075207/4075208" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">

NPR's Tom Gjelten reports on the grave of La Milagrosa in Necropolis Cristobal Colon, Havana's main cemetery. For over a century, Cubans have traveled to the grave site to pray. La Milagrosa, Spanish for "The Miraculous One," is seen by many as Cuba's unofficial saint — a woman who died in childbirth in 1901 and later buried with her stillborn son at her feet. According to legend, when her body was exhumed years later, the corpse was uncorrupted — a traditional Roman Catholic sign of sanctity — and the baby was nestled in her arms.

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