Commissioning in Cuba

Communist leaders attend commissioning services in Havana.

Communist Party officials attend the recent commissioning in Havana, Cuba. [Photo by Donald Wilson]

More than 500 Army soldiers met in Havana, Cuba, the weekend of Dec. 4-6, 2009, to witness commissioning services for 20 cadets.

Major Donald Wilson, El Salvador regional commander, attended and photographed the three-day event.

“This was not the first joint commissioning in Cuba, but it is the only way Latin America North cadets can be commissioned together because the cadets in Cuba cannot receive visas to leave the country,” Wilson said.

Representatives from every corps in Cuba were present. One couple in the audience—parents of an officer being commissioned—had traveled 20 hours by train.

Although the auditorium was filled, many more soldiers had applied to attend. Their applications were denied, however, because Cuban government regulations specify that a designated number from any one denomination can attend a united event such as this.

Commissioners Max and Lenora Feener, USA South territorial leaders, were guest speakers, accompanied by the Texas Divisional Band.

Seated in the front row were several representatives of the Cuban National Communist Party.

“I asked Commissioner Feener if the Party was there to monitor the content of the meeting and his message. He didn’t think they were there to report on the Army,” Wilson said. “I spoke to a woman from the group who pointed out that five Salvation Army generals had visited Cuba and then began to name them.”

At the conclusion of Feener’s message, more than 150 people responded to his invitation to the mercy seat. Because there was no altar, the seekers—with no hesitation—knelt at the front row where the government representatives were seated, fearlessly seeking the Lord right in front of the Communist Party members.

“There was a freedom and liberty in the meetings that gave glory to God and expressed a deep passion for the Savior,” Wilson said.

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