How was your vocation born?
It was born in the parish of La Soledad, among the children of Catechism. Seeing the problems of the children and teenagers attending Catechism, and gradually getting to learn about Don Bosco, I came to the idea that I could have done something like that. I was a little anxious, but I did not think about consecrating myself or going into a seminary, though I was very much fascinated by all the gestures the priest performed on the altar. Then I met Fr Ramón García Rampérez, the first Salesian I met, who invited me to some vocational retreats. And it all started from there.
What was your vocational path?
At first I thought I would become Salesian Coadjutor, but then I realized that my vocation was priestly. I started in 1999 in Santiago de Cuba; I was there four years until I went to the Dominican Republic for the novitiate. For reasons of my character, typical of that age, I did not take my first profession at the end of that year and, in fact, the next six years were passed outside of the Congregation. I returned in 2009 as a volunteer, then I went back to the novitiate and went on my way to here.
How would you like the young to see you?
Like a friend who helps them to walk, to move forward. There is an episode in Old Havana a few years ago that inspires me. When I got to that Salesian house, the youth group had dissolved. To get close to the children again, to see them come back and to see how they grew accustomed to Mary Help of Christians made me think and say: it's worth approaching them, attracting them, drawing them. Now I see that they continue walking alone, even though I'm gone, and this fills me with joy. That is why I say it is worth sowing seed.
What is your Salesian Dream?
I want to love Jesus every day and continue to make Cuba Salesian, which many no longer here today dreamed about.